Mr Taxman
Change the way you feel about taxes.
Get informed and discover what the taxman doesn't want you to know.
Sharing it with Australia, Mr Taxman is a regular Woman’s Day columist and TV finance commentator
  • click to visit Mr Taxman on Twitter
  • click to visit Mr Taxman on FaceBook
  • rss

Back to school savings ideas

Jan 11, 2011

The Christmas credit card bill came in last week and you are probably still getting over the shock.  And now the kids are getting ready to going back to school.  With rising interest rates and inflation at 3%, the 2011 school year is going to be a squeeze as families continue to feel the pinch from the aftermath of the global financial crisis. 

But it doesn't have to be.  With a bit of planning and smart shopping, you can make this back-to-school alot easier.

Shop around during the sales

There are some great deals in the back-to-school sales.  But it is important that you shop around because not everything is on special at the one store.  Don't buy things that are not needed or rarely used.  Recycle stationery items, such as pens and pencils from around the house.

Keep those receipts

Make sure that you keep your receipts to claim the Education Tax Refund in your tax return in July.  In its third year, this is a 50% rebate on eligible school expenses such as laptops, books, internet and stationery.  The claim is up to $780 for each primary school student and $1,558 for secondary school students.   For more information, go to www.educationtaxrefund.gov.au

Buy pre-loved

Shakespeare's words have not changed over the years, so you may as well buy novels and text books second hand rather than brand new.  Your kids may even benefit from having some key points already highlighted for them and make study a bit easier!  Also look at buying rarely worn clothing items, such as blazers, second hand.

Beware of "special" leasing deals

The big ticket items, such as computers, can make a real dent in the cashflow.  Retailers realise this and offer leasing/rental alternatives which may seem pretty cheap when broken down to a small weekly rental figure (such as $12/week).  But these deals may have implied interest rates as high as 50%.  Do your own calculations and don't get caught out.

Make it, don't buy it

Making the kids' lunches each day is a cheaper (and probably healthier) alternative than buying from the canteen.  Give them a treat every now and then to compensate.

Shop online

I often get the best deals online and auction websites such as eBay and Grays Online are great for finding huge bargains on the more expensive items.  Try and buy items in "off-peak" times as lower demand usually results in lower prices.  You may be able to buy everything for school without leaving home. 

Bigger is better

Buy clothes in larger sizes so that those growing bodies get greater wear out of them and last for longer

Car pooling

No point in four mums bringing each of their kids to school each day by car when one mum can do the trick.  Saves on petrol and gives the other mums a bit of relax time.

Prepare for 2012 now

Start an education savings account now and put a regular amount from each pay packet so that next year's back-to-school is easier.

Tags: ChildrenFamilyFinancial Planning

Author: Mr Taxman

Comments

Post a New Comment

Media Availability

Are you interested in booking Mr Taxman for a speaking engagement or requesting his viewpoints for an article?

comments-rhsLatest Comments

  • "I was so delighted to meet PRIEST AZIBA after a long time looking for help in order to fix the ups and downs with my boyfriend. We lived together for two years without any problems until this year..."

    By: windy wagna at Dec 13, 2019 7:43AM

    Post: Marriage

  • "I have been in relationship with my boyfriend for 2 year now and we were planning to get married soon and all of a sudden he left me for another girl, i really love this guy and never can imagine my..."

    By: BOANTE at Dec 07, 2019 12:19AM

    Post: Marriage

  • "Are You Heartbroken? Don’t be upset, let Dr.Eddy help you get your Ex back” I’m so excited my boyfriend is back after he left me for another girl. My boyfriend was having an affair with a co-worker..."

    By: Pauline .S at Dec 06, 2019 2:13AM

    Post: Marriage

  • "I just want the whole world to know about this spell caster I met two weeks ago, wisdomspiritualtemple@gmail.com I cannot say everything he has done for me my wife left me 3 years ago left with my..."

    By: micheal at Dec 05, 2019 12:43PM

    Post: Marriage

  • "The simple truth about binary options which many of us do not know is the fact that it is mainly based on predictions. Without proper knowledge of what next can happen to the stock market, you are..."

    By: Richard Walters at Dec 02, 2019 3:42AM

    Post: Foreign currency trading