Back to school shopping: Buy now or later?

WESTBROOK, Conn. (WTNH) — Back to school shopping equals big business for retailers. The National Retail Federation estimates parents spend an average of $630 a year on school supplies.

Every penny counts for mother of two, Krista Verito.

“We bought shoes that were buy one, get one half off, so we saved $60,” she said. “We haven’t gotten the list for school supplies from school yet, so I’m trying to do it week by week, but we just got paid this week so we will do shoes this week and then clothes the next week.”

The Better Business Bureau said being a savvy shopper is key to saving money.

“One of the things consumers should ask: Is this garment made for the outlet store?” said Howard Schwartz. “It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with it, it means it’s simply different than what you might find in the store.

Many shoppers were proud of the deals they discovered at Tanger Outlets. Still, others prefer to shop online.

“Go online and find out what something typically sells for and then call ahead of time so it saves you the long trip to the outlet,” said Schwartz.

The National Retail Federation estimates 30-percent of parents will wait until there’s one to two weeks until school starts, hoping for last minute deals.

“Sometimes, at the last minute the prices aren’t where we want them to be, and if they like something, these days with teens, you buy it when they like it,” said Maria Drake.

Others say they wait all year for Connecticut’s tax-free holiday. That’s from August 16-22, 2015. It applies to clothes and shoes under $300.

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