By Joseph Staples // SWNS
Parents — get ready to empty your wallets.
This year’s back-to-school list is bound to be more expensive than the last, with parents planning to spend nearly $450 on supplies for each child, according to a new poll.
A study of 2,000 American parents of school-aged children found half believe their kid’s pricey supply list gives them anxiety (51%), and two-thirds said it’ll be more expensive than last year.
Commissioned by Slickdeals and conducted by OnePoll, results showed that parents said they anticipate spending a few dollars more on school supplies than clothes ($225 vs. $217).
Half of parents also expect to spend more on technology for their kid’s education this year compared to last (51%).
And the items that made most school supply lists for the first time ever this year were face masks and hand sanitizer (both 47%).
The study also revealed nearly half of parents aren’t prepared for their kids to return to in-person learning (47%).
Parents may feel this way because they aren’t ready to deal with the cost of supplies (43%), their child’s separation anxiety (40%), and drop-off/pickups (36%).
As most kids return to a physical school, parents think their child will go through 25 pencils and nine notebooks this year.
And while 54% of parents have already started school supply shopping, more than a quarter are holding off because they can’t afford school supplies right now (28%).
Most parents said they spend more money than usual when shopping for school supplies (87%).
Nearly half of parents said they have savings set aside specifically for their child’s school supply costs (47%), and 42% spend the summer months building a budget for the next school year’s school shopping, but parents still struggle to check their lists off.
Although 57% of parents don’t have a college fund set up for their child, 42% of those who do say they have had to borrow money from their child’s college savings to pay for their school supplies.
“It’s not surprising that parents report feeling stress over the cost of school supplies, but there are some simple strategies that can help save money,” said Ryan Tronier, senior personal finance editor at Slickdeals. “One of the first things parents should do is take inventory of what they already have at home. Also, saving some of your shopping until after the school year starts can be a good thing for your wallet as you may find that some of the things you thought your child might need are not as necessary.”
The results further showed that having a picky kid doesn’t help 45% of parents when school shopping.
A similar number of parents surveyed have a kid who unknowingly picks out the most expensive option of a product because it comes from a specific brand (44%).
Still, most parents opt to buy the more affordable version — no matter what their kid wants (57%).
“Between new sneakers, supplies and technology, back-to-school costs can add up quickly. We have a large community of savvy shoppers so that users can score the best deals on the best products," added Tronier.
PARENTS FEEL THE LEAST PREPARED FOR
- The cost of supplies 43%
- Dealing with my child’s separation anxiety 40%
- Drop off/pickups 36%
- School supply shopping 36%
- Waking up early to prepare kids for school 35%