Back to School: Shopping smart

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THE BRONX -

The countdown to the end of summer is quickly approaching, and that means it is time for children to pick up their pencils and books.

Preparing for a new academic year can be exciting for students but can also be hard on the wallet for parents.

Sandra Abeles of the Department of Consumer and Worker Protections is sharing tips on how to be smart when going back to school shopping. 

"First thing to do is make a list and setting a budget. If you have more than one kid, it's good to combine your list because many of these items come in bulk packages and you can save more when they are in bulk," says Abeles.

When you've made that list and checked it twice, the DCWP says to check if you have any of these items left over from last year so you don't buy what you don't need.

It is also advised to compare prices for what you still have to purchase.

"You might see sales coming up especially close to Labor Day. If it's something you don't need right away you might want to wait and see what kind of sales may come up then," Abeles says. 

Abeles says it is also important to keep all receipts.  

"So many stores have a 30-day return policy and if they don't have their refund policy posted it's definitely worth keeping your receipt and checking in and maybe saying, maybe we got a little too much and taking stuff back,” says Abeles.

For those feeling overwhelmed, the DCWP encourages them to utilize a free financial counselor by simply dialing 311.

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