10 Tips for Back to School Shopping
Richmond VA- With another school year fast approaching, parents and teens alike are looking for fast ways to gather up their new gear. “Whether you’re looking for the newest style of clothing, or the latest trend in school supplies, shopping for back to school shouldn’t leave you with a broken piggy bank,” says Olivia Smith, Communications Coordinator of BBB Central Virginia. “In between trips to the pool or the beach BBB wants to make sure our community is ready for the new school year with these ten tips.”
BBB offers 10 tips to gear up for the new school year:
Create a Budget Plan- With a budget you can plan the items you need to buy. Consider buying basic supplies at a discount store.
Make a List- A list will limit you to the items you need and cut back on your impulse buying.
Keep your Receipts- Some items can have a limited return policy or warrant details listed on the receipt. Hold on to the receipts until you’re sure the item will work or have followed up with any warranty claims.
Ask about a Return Policy- If you can’t find a business’s return policy ask before making a purchase.
Research Major Purchases- Whether you’re looking for a new laptop, calculator, or a dorm refrigerator, compare brands and features you’re looking for before making your purchase.
Shop Tax Free- Virginia’s Sales Tax Holiday weekend is August 4th to the 7th. Do your research and see if anything you need for the new school year is covered under the Virginia Sales Tax Holiday.
Keep an Eye Out for Sales- Sign up for store alerts or coupon finder apps to get the best deal. Some retailers have added discounts or coupons to their receipt to encourage consumer feedback- take advantage of those as well.
Keep Personal Information Secure- Never email your personal information such as credit card numbers, banking numbers, or social security numbers. When you’re using a free WiFi limit your use of online banking or online purchases to keep your account information safe.
Start Early- By starting early, you can space out your large purchases and plan around store sales.
Watch Out for Education Discounts- Some stores will give a discount to a student or teacher on items such as computers or clothing. Check around your local area before making a big purchase and make sure to price compare.
About BBB: BBB serving Central Virginia serves Richmond, the Tri-Cities, Charlottesville, and Fredericksburg, as well as 42 surrounding counties from Fauquier to Mecklenburg and Northumberland to Amherst. The nonprofit organization was established in 1954 to advance responsible, honest, and ethical business practices and to promote customer confidence through self-regulation of business. Core services of BBB include business profiles, dispute resolution, truth-in advertising, consumer and business education, and charity review.