Do you dread back-to-school shopping? We know it can be costly, and many parents wind up maxing out their credit cards in an attempt to pay for everything. This is bad enough for credit ratings, which are harmed when a person’s credit usage vs. available credit ratio is too high. The impact is compounded if the increasing bills result in late or missed payments. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to protect your credit during the back-to-school season.
When shopping for back-to-school supplies, avoid or limit the use of credit cards.
Cash is still king when it comes to preventing credit troubles. Rather than relying on credit cards, begin saving money each month right now. When back-to-school shopping season begins, put that money toward as much of the required items as possible. Even if you don’t have enough money to buy everything, you may cut down on your credit card usage significantly.
Don’t go out of your way to get the best of everything.
It’s normal to want the best for your child or children, but there are some things that don’t require it. Even the cheapest or virtually cheapest varieties of notebook paper, pencil erasers, and other staples are usually fine. There are exceptions, such as with pencils (cheap ones tend to have “lead” that shatter far too easily, rendering them unusable), but a good brand will still be reasonably priced.
Only purchase new clothing and shoes if they are truly necessary.
Elementary kids grow so quickly that they almost always need to buy new clothes and shoes every year. Teenagers, on the other hand, grow at a slower pace. Allow them to dress in last year’s clothes if they still fit and don’t appear to be worn out.
Make your purchases throughout the course of the year.
Most back-to-school items are predictable enough that they can be purchased without a school list. This allows you to purchase typical products like paper and binders in modest monthly batches. This spreads out the cost and alleviates any school-related financial strain.
Pay Off Credit Cards As Quickly As You Can
Early payment not only frees up credit for the next purchase, but it also improves your credit score by lowering your credit usage ratio. This also means you’ll pay less interest each month, and you’ll have less debt to repay over time. Visit us online or book an appointment to talk with us for assistance in repairing damaged credit. We’ll work with you, credit bureaus, and others to remove any inaccurate information from your credit report.