Dollars and Sense

Why I Won’t Shop For Clothes In August

I know it’s the beginning of the school year again when my Facebook newsfeed is filled with pictures of kids on their first day of school. School supplies are heavily marked down in August (notebooks for a quarter, etc.), but in my experience, there aren’t as many truly great deals on kids’ clothes. Stores’ new clothes for fall are full price, and the clearance is most likely summer clothes that probably won’t be practical for your child in November if you live in a colder climate. If you are looking to buy all your kids’ clothes on clearance like I am, waiting until August will leave you with very few options since clearance sections in general are limited in sizes and options.

The really good discounts (50-75% off) are often not in August. These happen when there’s only a few of a certain item left (which can happen at any time of the year, but it happens frequently at stores like TJ Maxx and Marshalls where items vary by store and are constantly changing), or when it’s the end of each season and a new line of clothes is coming in while the “old” one is marked down.

So what’s the solution?

Hunt for deals all year round, not just before school starts.

It’s similar to buying 4 bottles of laundry detergent when they’re 50% off. You won’t use it all right now, but you will use it eventually, so you won’t be stuck paying more later on if you get it for a really good price now.

This is an especially great strategy if you live in a climate where the temperature is fairly constant. If the temperature where you live doesn’t change that much, it doesn’t matter what size you buy a shirt or dress in for future use. As long as the item is bigger than your child’s current size, they can wear it at any time of year in the future.

Hunting for deals all year round also spreads the total cost of “back to school” clothes out a bit more. Buying an item that’s a great deal every few weeks instead of shopping all at once means that you won’t be facing one large clothing bill every August.

I bought these socks recently for my daughter. She won’t be able to wear them for awhile, but they were 0.97 cents instead of $4.00 originally:

Screen Shot 2016-08-31 at 6.52.40 PM

So when she does need socks in this size, I won’t be stuck paying more money.

What are your favorite strategies for back to school shopping?

Featured image from pixabay.com

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