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How to Make it a Debt-Free Experience

Well, parents, believe it or not the back-to-school shopping season has unofficially begun — and the earlier you start planning, researching and shopping, the better your chances of avoiding back-to-school debt.

According to Google Canada, online searches for school supplies and fall clothing start in June — and peak around the end of July!

Whether kids are excited to go back to classes or not, this is a time of year that can make financially-strapped parents anxious, dreading how those school purchases might impact the family budget and consumer debt load.

In this podcast episode, our Licensed Insolvency Trustees (LITs) from across Canada have some great tips and practical advice for parents on how to make back-to-school shopping a less stressful, debt-free experience. Our LITs discuss…

  • the importance of planning ahead and shopping early in the summer
  • how to create a back-to-school spending plan
  • strategies for avoiding school-related debt
  • spending tips and online resources for back-to-school deals
  • the importance of getting your kids involved in every aspect of the back-to-school season

Getting a head start can help parents avoid back-to-school debt

If you’re waiting until the last week or two before school starts to do your shopping, it’s easy to spend more than you want on school supplies. Overspending can lead to relying on a credit card or a line-of-credit to cover those expenses. In 2017, parents planned to spend an average of almost $900 on back-to-school purchases. That’s a big hit on a family budget for one month!

But what if you spread out those back-to-school purchases over a few months?

If you break up your school-related spending over four months — like July through October — that $900 becomes a much more manageable $225 a month. You might even be able to incorporate that amount as a line item into your July to October monthly budgets.

That can mean the difference between accumulating debt or making it through the season debt free. It also makes the whole back-to-school shopping experience less daunting as you can keep an eye out for deals and avoid the shopping mall mayhem in the week leading up to school.

Parents, how early do you start shopping for back-to-school supplies? Share you saving strategies with us! #BackToSchool, #DebtSolutions #ParentingTips

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