Skip to main content

Back to School Shopping is Just the Beginning

HOUSTON, Aug. 13, 2015 — Back-to-school shopping season is in full-swing, and parents everywhere are on the lookout for the best deals on everything from pencils and notebooks to backpacks and laptop computers. As retailers focus on back-to-school necessities, Cadence Bank encourages parents to remember that school expenses don’t end with the first day of classes. 
According to a recent National Retail Federation survey, the average family with children in grades K – 12 plans to spend $630 on back-to-school supplies, apparel, shoes and electronics. But that’s only the upfront costs. 
Public and private school parents alike can expect to spend hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars on school-related expenses beyond the initial supply list – from transportation and activities fees to fundraisers and field trips. 
“We often hear from parents who struggle with family budgeting, and education expenses are a part of that,” said Leah Colvin, retail executive for Cadence Bank. “One of the most important things parents can do is to plan for the long term, as school-related costs don’t end when school starts. Anticipating expenses helps parents eliminate surprises that could otherwise mean taking on credit card debt or tapping into their emergency savings. Many banks offer simple online tools to help busy parents keep their budget in check.”
Cadence suggests following these tips to help take the anxiety out of school expenses all year long:
  1. Anticipate the hidden costs. With a little forethought, most school-related expenses can be estimated well in advance. For children interested in sports, parents may be required to purchase athletic equipment and apparel as well as tickets to sporting events, or cover travel costs for out-of-town games. For arts-oriented children, parents may incur fees for supplies, concert attire and instrument rentals, plus tickets for school performances. Parents of high school students need to factor in the cost of college visits and applications, as well as testing costs for the ACT or SAT, and any preparation books or classes the student might need. It’s also important to anticipate school, club and sports team fundraisers. Collectively, the cost of dues, candles, gift wrap and raffle tickets can add up. 

  2. Plan early. Once parents have estimated the costs they will encounter throughout the school year, it’s time to budget. Using an online personal financial management (PFM) platform, offered by banks and other online resources, can help parents set and maintain their school-related budget. Additionally, putting money aside every month in a designated savings account will ensure that parents have the cash needed for school expenses when they arise, such as a prom dress or class trip next spring. Parents should consider depositing money directly from their paycheck, removing the temptation to spend it on other things.

  3. Keep track of spending. PFM tools aren’t just for establishing a budget. They also can help parents stay on top of their finances by tracking spending against a set budget yearly, monthly, weekly or even daily. Many PFM tools automatically categorize spending, making it easy to see how much of each paycheck is going toward school-related expenses as well as household expenses, dining out, entertainment, shopping and more. Setting automatic reminders when expenses are approaching the pre-determined budget can help parents avoid straying too far from the goal. Furthermore, mobile PFM apps make it easy for busy parents to stay on track when they’re on the go. 

 During this back-to-school shopping season, Cadence Bank encourages parents to take time to look beyond the supply list and plan for all school-related costs. Talk with a financial professional about the benefits of PFM tools and how they can help with budgeting and savings goals. 

About Cadence Bank

Cadence Bank, N.A., based in Birmingham, Ala., is a $5.7 billion bank with more than 100 locations in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Tennessee and Texas. Backed by 126 years of financial expertise, Cadence serves commercial and consumer clients with a full range of innovative banking and financial solutions designed to keep pace with their lives. These products and services include commercial and consumer banking, small business banking, treasury management, international banking, specialized lending, commercial real estate, wealth management, investment and trust services, financial planning, retirement plan management, business and personal insurance, consumer loans, mortgages, home equity lines and loans, and credit cards. Cadence Bank and its affiliates, Linscomb & Williams and Cadence Insurance Agency, are wholly owned subsidiaries of Houston-based Cadence Bancorp, LLC. Additional information about Cadence Bank is available at Cadence Bank, N.A. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Contact Information: 

Danielle Kernell

Cadence Bank, N.A.
713-871-4051 direct | 713-392-7709 mobile

[email protected]

Questions? We are here for you...

To ensure your safety, please do not include sensitive information in your submission.