Parents and students are being urged to look at ways they can reduce their back to school and back to college costs.

Buying second hand books, considering ‘digs’ for accommodation and other measures can be used to try and ease the financial burden.

 

It’s emerged today that parents of school children are being forced to dip into their savings and a fifth have to take out a loan to buy materials needed for the new school year.

Justin Healy, Managing Director of Spark Market Research says there is no doubt many parents are really struggling financially:

Catherine Masiacz of the Red Book second-hand store in Sligo, however says parents can save up to 50% off books and uniforms by buying in second hand stores.

She says the expense is a concern for the parents she meeting coming into the shop with some being forced to buy two sets of books to ease weight of the bag that small children have to carry to school.

But speaking to Ocean FM News earlier this week, she urged parents to look for local second hand shops as a means to reduce costs:

At third level, while rents are sky high in places such as Dublin and Galway, students in Sligo can be lucky.

According to IT Students Union President Barry Clohessy rents remain reasonable and could range anywhere from €200 a month to €400.

But he says in order to ensure that you are getting exactly what you are paying for and to avoid potential scams he urges people to always check out the accommodation first and to avoid paying deposits in cash:

Meanwhile, another students union officer in the south of the country says staying in digs is another way to save on expense.

The latest figures show a record number of bedrooms now being rented in family homes.

Kelly Coyle, is the welfare officer at the UCC student union: