Sunday, July 29, 2012

How to Save Big Money on School Supplies

Back to School shopping is beginning, and its best to do it a little at a time - when the deals are right. Each week, stores have what they call "Door-busters", or deals that are designed to get you in their doors. That is GREAT, but the first thing to remember is that just because they want you to do all of your school supply shopping there, doesn't mean you have to. 

Step 1: Stick to the list. Those cute extras may be fun,but they will drain your wallet fast. Besides, isn't the list the teacher gives you daunting enough? When it comes to choosing the plain folders vs. the ones with the cartoon or T.V character on it, remind the kids that what they like now might not be what they like in a few months...and each blank folder is a canvas for them to decorate.

Step 2: Shop at home first. This year I was lucky enough to save BIG by not having to buy a new backpack or pencil box for my munchkin...but darn near everything else I needed. See what you have left over from last year that is in good condition, or rummage through the home office supplies if you have them. At the end of each school year, clean and stow anything that is reusable for the next year.

Step 3: Check Ad match-Ups for great deals. Find the door buster deals, pair with any coupons you might have, and save big! If you have multiple coupons or if the price is super low on the door busters, you can stock up for next year. Just get the GREAT deal and get out! Don't spend more than you have to, shop around a little. Little Mom on the Prairie offers MANY store match ups every week! We match sale prices to known available coupons for you, all you have to do is shop!

Step 4: Take advantage of state tax holidays. Unfortunately, my state chose not to do this again this year, but many are still having the tax break for school supplies.

Step 5: Know when to be Cheap vs. Frugal. One year I bought my daughter pencils at .25 cents per 25 pk. box. I was so thrilled with the price, I bought 4 boxes, and patted myself on the back. That was easily 2 years worth of pencils for $1.00! The problem? They were very cheaply made, and the lead was crumbly, leading to constantly having to sharpen...we went through all 4 boxes, then  had to go out after the sales were over, to buy my daughter some decent ones. Choose the products that look like they are going to last.

This year, I went to 3 stores and spent $30 total, for all of her 4th grade supplies. She started school this past Wednesday, so I didn't have as much time to shop around as y'all...I will keep those ad match-ups coming for you, to help you along!

Staples Back to School Savings Ad Match-Up with a Freebie

Staples is having an awesome sale this week, no coupons needed! 

$0.01 DEALS
with a minimum purchase of $5

Home Select Pocket Tissues – Limit 6
Regular Price $0.40

2-Pocket PaperFolder, Assorted Colors – Fasteners – Limit 10
Regular Price $0.20

Staples Standard Paper Clips (100 pk.) – Limit 2
Regular Price $1.99 – $2.99
$0.25 DEALS

BIC Mechanical pencils, 0.7 mm (5 pk.) – Limit 4
Regular Price $2.49
$1/2 Bic Stationery Product Coupon (SS 07/29/12)
Final Price=FREE
Prang Chalk, assorted colors (12 pk.) – Limit 4

$0.50 DEALS

Staples Poly-Cover Composition Book or 1-subject 8″ x 10.5″ Notebook (70 sheets)– Limit 6
Regular Price $1.99
$1 DEALS – Limit 4 unless otherwise noted
Softsoap, Aloe (7.5 oz.)

6″ x 9″ Top-Wire Writing Pads, colors or prints
Regular Price $1.99

Staples Dry-Erase Board Eraser
Regular Price $3

Staples Assorted Patterns Composition Book
Regular Price $2.49

Staedtler Compass or Protractor
Regular Price $2 – $2.99

Staples #10 Envelopes, Tamper Evident, white (20 pk.)
Regular Price $4.29

Staples Mini Poly Snap Envelope, 4″ x 6″, assorted colors and designs
Regular Price $1.99

Staples 3″ x 4.25″ Memo Book with Magnetic Closure (60 sheets)
Regular Price $1.99

Staples 8.5″ x 11″ MultipurposePpaper (500 sheets) – $6.99
$5.99 Easy Rebates (Limit 2)
$1 each after Easy Rebate
Swingline Compact Stand-Up Stapler, assorted colors

Staples Standard Weight Top-Loading Clear Sheet Protectors (50 pk.)
Regular Price $9.49

1″ Avery Durable Binder – Blue – Limit 2
with a minimum $5 purchase
Regular Price $2.99

RoseArt Crayons (24 pk.) – 2/$1
Regular Price $1
RoseArt Colored Pencils (15 ct.)

Staples Photo Supreme 8.5″ x 11″ Paper, Double-Sided Matte – $14.99
$13.99 Easy Rebate (Limit 4)
$1 each after Easy Rebate
$2 DEALS – Limit 4 unless otherwise noted
Lysol Disinfecting Wipes, Spring Scent (35 pk.)

Staples Jumbo Glue Sticks (2 pk,)
Regular Price $3.99

Staples Pushpins in Jar – clear (125 ct.)
Regular Price $2.99

Pilot FriXion Ball Gel Pens, Fine – Black (3 pk.)
Regular Price $5.79

Crayola Washable Markers or Crayons
Regular Price $3-$4

1.6L Really Useful Storage Box, assorted colors
Regular Price $4.49

Scotch Dual Lock Fasteners
Regular Price $4.49

Quartet 8.5″ x 11″ Magnetic Dry-Erase Board with Marker and Eraser
Regular Price $7.99

Ticonderoga Black #2 Pencils (24 pk.)
Regular Price $5.49

Pentel 24/7 Liquid Highlighters, assorted colors (5 pk.)
Regular Price $7
Crayola Crayons (64 pk.)

All PaperMate InkJoy Retractable Pens
Regular Price $7.99

Pentel EnerGel Deluxe Retractable Gel Pens, Medium – Black (6 pk.)
Regular Price $11.99

Zebra Z-Grip Mechanical Pencils, 0.7 mm (24 pk.)
Regular Price $11.49

Expo Neon Dry-Erase Markers,BulletTtip, assorted (5 pk.)
Regular Price $10.49

BIC Velocity Retractable Ballpoint Pens, Bold, assorted colors (8 pk.)
Regular Price $9

Bienfang 8.5″ x 11″ Sketch Pad (100 sheets)
Regular Price $7.99
Wet Ones Citrus Wipes (40 ct.) – $2.99

Purell Hand Sanitizer (8 oz.) – $2.99
$1.99 each after coupon
Locker Planet Accessories – $3.99 – $19.99
Animal Prints Locker Dry-Erase Board – $6.99
25% Off All Lunchbags and Accessories
25% – 50% Off All BackPacks

Happy Shopping!