All the parent knows it’s not at all cheap to raise a child.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, in one report, found that the annual expenditure can be between about $13,000 and $15,000 per child for the average family consisting of four. Food, housing, transportation costs, child care, health care, and, among other items, clothing were included.
As the season alters to warmer weather, parents pay close attention to those clothing costs when they realize their fast-growing kids are too big for last year’s summer clothes. But, don’t fear, there are ways to save on kid’s clothes.
These are the six ways to save on kid’s clothes for summer:
1. Children’s consignment sales: These biannual sales are often run by local moms, church groups, and nonprofit organizations. Shoppers typically pay about 25 percent of the retail cost on used items. At these sales, you’ll find piles of clothes for babies to grade-schoolers. But, shopping for bigger kids, especially those who are picky about what they want to wear, can be trickier.
2. Thrift stores and garage sales: A buck for a pair of shoes. A quarter for a pair of shorts. It’s hard to find amazing deals at your neighborhood thrift store or garage sale. And, let’s be honest about this thing, does two-year-old care where her clothes come from and what is the brand? Would you rather buy that mud pie in the 25-cent garage sale T-shirt or would you buy a $10 blouse you bought for full price at the mall?
3. Consignment stores: Like the seasonal consignment sales, these shops are open all year and can be a great opportunity to clean out your closets — and fill them back with items that actually fit your kids. Depending on which store you visit, you can find clothes, shoes and more in almost all sizes. But these stores can especially be a great opportunity for your teens, who are looking for a trendier grab.
4. Hand-me-downs: Which kid has never worn their older sibling’s or cousin’s hand-me-downs? Of course, you wouldn’t outfit your son in his elder sister’s bathing suit. But, in many cases, clothes can be exchanged among each other– whether it’s a rain jacket or a T-shirt.
5. Neighborhood swaps: In your block or in your apartment building, you’ll probably find another family, who is trying to figure out how to fill the wardrobe up on summer gear without breaking the bank. You can pick up new and unique items for your children for free. Your neighbors can do the same.
6. Planning ahead: It might not help you out this season, but, as each season the weather changes down, check the sales racks at your favorite stores for great deals on clothes in a size larger that your kids can wear next year. End of season clearance sales are amazing and they offer tremendous savings.
Kids grow fast. They get messy. And they are not a stranger to skinned knees and ripped jeans. Buying secondhand clothes or exchanging items with friends, family, and neighbors keep kids in seasonally appropriate gear and parents “in the black.”