It is that time of year again as we pack the children back off to school. On one hand we are relieved to have a bit of peace and quiet and a bit of normality back, but on the other the expense of the uniform and other bits and bobs can provide a lot of stress and anxiety.

Sending the children back to school can be extremely costly; unfortunately many children don’t consider the costs and many want all of the latest trends, gadgets and anything else that they can use to show off to their friends. It’s probably because of this that the average teenager is thought to cost £9,000 a year according to figures released by the Office of National Statisitics.

Luckily you don’t have to spend a fortune on uniforms and can get everything your child needs for little cost, whilst still allowing them to look cool! Here are my top 5 tips for staying cool for school on a budget:

  • Shop around for school uniforms: you don’t have to be confined to the school shop; supermarkets have very good back to school ranges nowadays. Asda has George, Sainsbury’s has TU and Tesco has F&F.
  • If your children want the latest gadgets, make them work for it! If they are teenagers, encourage them to get a paper round of part time job to earn a little money, and then they can save up. If they are younger, encourage them to do jobs around the house for their pocket money.
  • Children grow, quickly! When buying school uniforms, buy them a size bigger so they will last longer.
  • Give your children a budget. Telling them what they have to spend can help them learn the tricky art of budgeting.
  • Re-use last year’s bits and bobs. If it is still in good working order or still looks wearable then why throw it out. With more than one children of school age things can get costly, there is absolutely nothing wrong with handing down uniforms or school equipment.