Fall is around the corner, and parents across the country are warming up their wallets to get their kids ready to return to school. Between school supplies and clothes and shoes, the return to classes isn't likely to be a cheap proposition; a recent survey by the shopping site PriceGrabber found that 48 percent of parents plan to spend $250 or more on back-to-school shopping this year.
Slashed school budgets are partially to blame for the mile-long lists of school supplies, says Lou Marino, a professor of management at the University of Alabama.
"One of the ways to make ends meet is to shift the cost to parents," Marino says. "Things the schools used to provide -- like paper -- are now the parents' responsibility."
While you may not be able to avoid the fall buying frenzy, you can reduce the back-to-school costs. Use a few of these suggestions to trim the fat from your back-to-school budget.