Buying College School Supplies on a Budget
College students shop all year. School shopping for first year students, returning students, or those who budget supplies, should happen throughout the school year. College students with parental help and students buying school supplies on their own must budget. Buying must have school supplies on a budget is not too difficult if it's planned ahead. Write a student supplies budget before shopping and follow the shopping list. Buy school supplies on sale and stagger bigger purchases. Organize shopping lists into classroom supplies, dorm room supplies, bathroom supplies, and other supplies. Here are some very basic college supplies to help you get started on a college school supply list and budget.
College School Supply #1: Laptop
Laptops sound expensive for buying as a college school supply on a budget. But, it is a necessity and at some colleges, it is a requirement. Other than tuition and a place to live, the laptop computer will be one of the absolute most must have school supplies for college. it is absolutely reasonable to get a refurbished or discounted laptop. On the cheap side they run around $500 or less. It is not necessary to have a brand new Mac or laptop computer that is over $1000. No way. When people buy these expensive laptops and accessories for their kids, it is because they do not know it is not necessary to spend that much, perhaps because they are unfamiliar with what to buy, or because they actually can afford it. When buying college school supplies on a budget the expensive laptops are out the window. This is a really important item to have, so budget for it, and do not shop for expensive laptop computers.
Laptops are increasingly important in the college classroom. Instructors make an assumption that their students either own one or have access to a laptop. The laptop is also great for note taking. There are many ways to utilize the laptop in the college classroom. If you are heading to college for your first year then you'll need these supplies plus the college classroom supplies.
College School Supply #2: Backpack/Messenger Bag
Some college students carry their books, but they get heavy in a hurry. A backpack, messenger bag, or laptop carrying case backpack is definitely a must have college school supply (or useful for any age going back to school). On a budget, shop practical. Dickies backpacks are cool and have several different designs as well as unisex backpacks and bags. Dickies backpacks start at around $20 which is a great price for grabbing a brand name backpack on a budget. It is also possible to shop online for college school supplies on a budget. Buying a backpack or messenger bag should not be too expensive. Some of the best messenger bag brands are Chrome and Timbuk2. Timbuk2 messenger bags very popular.
College School Supply #3: Towels
College students moving out of the home or living in a dorm will need bathroom supplies. One of the biggest must have bathroom supplies are towels. Name brand fancy towels are not necessary. Budget shopping for student school supplies means prioritizing the items that deserve more money. Learning this budgeting skill by school shopping for college will be useful throughout life. Shopping for must have student school supplies on a budget means buying cheap towels. Save the expensive or name brand purchases for bigger supplies, trendy clothes, or favorite items, not towels for the dorm. For example, Zappos sells a towel set for $50 that includes a towel, washcloth, and a hand towel. Spending $50 on dorm room towels isn't college school shopping on a budget, unless the money is there. Target towels are much better for students shopping for must have college school supplies on a budget. Put the saved money on something that you really want to have with you during school.
Figuring out how many towels a college student needs is not too difficult. Consider what you use at home. If you need two towels each shower because you have long hair, etc., then factor that in. Buy a week's worth of towels or two weeks if you think that you wont be able to get to the laundry once a week. Use Bath and Body Works discounts to save on a favorite lotion or body wash.
College School Supply #4: Pens, Sticky Notes, and Paper Supplies
Pens, pencils, paper, sticky notes, staplers, and other office supplies are must have college student school supplies. One of the cheapest place to get a lot of these are dollar stores. Cheap paper supplies for the classroom are just fine. Budget one cutesy or trendy item, but other than that get cheap classroom paper supplies. Unless special drafting supplies are needed, and a class calls for specific items, but cheap classroom supplies to stay within the must have college school supplies budget.
The best place to buy the most needed budget school supplies is at the thrift store. Goodwill and other second hand stores carry a lot of paper and office supplies, cheap, and they are perfect for getting some of these necessary student school supplies for college within a budget. There are binders, folders, files, staplers, pens, paper, staplers, three hole punches, two hole punches, clipboards, and many other excellent discount office supplies. Considering many of the college student school supplies are "throw away" items, get lost, stolen, and forgotten, how much money do you want to spend? Make a thorough college classroom school supply budget list. Make sure to buy lots of pens.
Student Voice Recorder and Where to Buy Cheap College Textbooks
Although not specifically a pen and paper supply, tape and voice recorders are very helpful. You can use these during class to record lectures and refer later when studying. A voice recorder is a huge help. Another place to save money is by rent, sell, and buying college textbooks through Amazon because they have a great student savings program.
College School Supply #5: Clothes
New clothes are part of back to school and college shopping. Budget for clothes. Don't buy everything for the entire year at once. When winter coat clearance sales hit, buy a coat. Get clothing as you can afford it financially and with the dorm room space. Clothing is about personal style and expression. Some people want the latest, trendy fashions like skinny jeans and plaid while others don't care. Buying clothing as a college school supply can be fairly inexpensive if it is done thoughtfully. Do not load up and buy a bunch of new clothes to take with you. Shop at second hand stores and thrift stores, the great friends of college students shopping within a school supplies budget. The only person who knows where it really came from is you. Be proud or broke. Save money by shopping discounts at Old Navy, an affordable clothing store. If you are shopping online, check the internet for discount codes before buying, and check for the lowest price. Shopping online saves money and helps stay within the college school supply budget.
This must have college school supplies list on a budget is not at all exhaustive. There are many other college student supplies completely dependent on the student's living situation. The best way to stay within the college school supply budget is to write everything down before spending money. Learn how to budget financial aid money. An organized back to school shopping list helps keep a budget.
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