With the new school year approaching, parents and students may want to begin to prepare for what is ahead. It is the perfect time to start fresh, make new friends and experience new things. However, it is not always easy to keep up with the costs of the newest trends, school supplies, food prep, and tuition.

Having a family and raising kids is more expensive than ever. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), it costs nearly $300,000 to raise a child from birth to the age of 18, on average. With almost 70% of high school graduates attending college, the expenses don’t stop there.

Going back to school doesn’t have to be expensive; here are some saving tips to consider for students K-12:

  • Take inventory of last year’s supplies, reuse what you can, and shop early for what you need.
  • Look for discounts on clothing & supplies, and shop for school supplies on scheduled tax-free days.
  • Make shopping lists and do not stray from them.
  • Set aside money monthly and plan for unexpected costs.
  • Start saving as soon as possible. It is never too early to open a separate college savings account and take advantage of compounding interest.

Attending college can have its own expenses that are different from those you prepare for in K-12. By putting together a smart budget, you can track your spending and limit what you spend on unnecessary things.

Tips to consider when saving for Incoming/Current College Students:

  • Put money into eligible savings bonds and invest in mutual funds.
  • Budget your money to assess where you can reduce spending and increase savings.
  • Buy used textbooks.
  • Start saving money; if you did not start early, it is not too late to open a savings account dedicated to college funds!

By figuring out what to prioritize for you and your family, it can help you spend less on the unnecessary purchases and save more for times of need. Keeping up with your goals and budget will allow you to see what works for you, and what does not. Take the next steps in your process to save money towards your back-to-school expenses today!

Click here to visit First Bank’s savings account page for more information about opening a savings account.