Back-to-school season is notorious for extra spending—desk supplies, new clothes, bigger backpacks, sports gear . . . the list goes on. While you’re preparing to get stocked up, take a moment to check out a few tips for staying on track with your budget and household money management.

Here are a few ideas:

  • Get organized – Before you rush out the door to buy brand new pens, folders, notebooks, and clothes, sort through your desk drawers and closets to take inventory of what you already have. After you’ve created a clear list of what you truly need for the back-to-school season, you can shop for the best deals with intention. It’s easy to get distracted by fun new items that aren’t even on your list, but stay on course, and you’ll control your spending. Also, consider buying in bulk for a lower unit price. This means that next fall when school rolls around again, you won’t need to buy another set of supplies because you’ll already be stocked up. Or, split the better-priced big pack of colored pencils with a family member or friend who needs the same thing.
  • Get the whole family involved – If your 8th grader wants a cool new jacket for the fall and your 5th grader wants a fancy new lunchbox, consider incentivizing them to help around the house in order to earn their favorite back-to-school buys. Fall comes with all kinds of house tasks like raking leaves and stacking wood – and then there are your everyday cleaning chores to keep your kids busy as they work towards a rewarding goal.
  • Get automated to stay on trackDigital banking has incredible tools to save you time, hassle and stress with your everyday money management. Check out neat features like automatic bill pay, eStatements, and mobile deposit to make managing your money easier and faster. You can even set customized text, call or email alerts from online banking. For example, maybe you’d like to know when your account balance goes below a certain dollar amount or when a purchase over a certain amount has been made. You can set these alerts so you’re notified and reminded of your financial picture, which can be helpful as you prepare and shop for back-to-school supplies.

If you need support and want to speak with one of our banking professionals, give us a call 24/7 at 800-860-8821 or stop by any of our banking centers.