February 26, 2010, Newsletter Issue #87: Home business idea: Make money with a local school convenience supply pack

Tip of the Week

Each year, your local elementary school teachers supply lists of "what parents need to buy" for their children at the beginning of the school year. You can help busy parents save time and money, while helping your school raise some much needed funds for the classroom, by offering to create pre-filled supply packs for the students. You will be able to buy the supplies in bulk and on sale when it is off-season, and prepare the packages ahead of time for distribution to the classrooms. On the first day of school, when the teachers usually send home the list of supplies, ask the teacher to add a note that if the parents prefer to purchase a "Supply Pack", they are welcome to send the money in with the child the next day and the pack will be available for their child at school. You can easily fill a "Supply Pack" with everything the child will need for the year at a cost of around $10 per pack, and sell them at around $20 each. The pack itself will be easily worth about $40 to the parent if they had to buy all the supplies at retail price, so your packs will save them a lot of money and the hassle of the annual trip to buy school supplies. A really handy tip is to have the school send out notices to the parents a month before school starts, and ask them to reply with a confirmation of their willingness to purchase the supply pack when the school year begins. That way, you will know ahead of time how many orders you need to plan to fill. Give the school a 30% split on all the profits, and you can easily make around $4,000 per school each year. In fact, you can probably get your supplies a lot cheaper by cutting a deal with the local office supply store to include their coupons and flyers in each pack. If you approach one of the smaller stores, instead of the big chains, they will be grateful for the low cost advertising and exposure to all the local parents and businesspeople that send their children to school.

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