Who is on your Christmas list this year? Whether it’s family, friends or a significant other, it doesn’t mean that you have to feel obligated to spend lots of money on them. There are many ways to show that you care without overspending. At the end of the day, they will be appreciative that you took the time to do such a nice gesture. Here are five ways to help you get through this holiday season without breaking the bank.
Create a Budget
Have you set your Christmas budget yet? If you haven’t done so, it is crucial to establish a reasonable budget that you can afford. Once the budget is set, you can begin planning which gifts you would like to purchase.
One note is that it doesn’t matter how much you spend on each individual person. Just because you spend $50 on your Mom, it doesn’t mean you have to spend the same exact amount for your Dad. By spending more on one person it doesn’t mean you care about them any more than someone else. As long as you stay within your set budget, you can allocate as much as you want to whoever is on your list.
Stick to a List
When you go shopping during the holiday season, it is important to stick to your list. From new products on the market to holiday deals, it makes it difficult to leave without buying extra things. Not only is the subliminal advertising a challenge to walk away from, but you also have to hold yourself back from treating yourself.
Christmas shopping is already expensive, but when you start buying things for yourself it adds to your overspending for the month without even knowing it. Also by having a list, you avoid wandering around and buying random, unnecessary items and taking up too much of your time. You know what they say, time is money.
Shop Over a Period of Time
Shopping during the holidays can be overrated. You can start Christmas shopping anytime you want throughout the year. By shopping throughout the year, you can actually purchase more because you are spending very little over time compared to buying lots of items all at once. By using this tactic, you also get to avoid all the crazy holiday lines, buying random knick-knacks in line and all of the advertisements.
Make Your Gifts
Who says you have to go out and buy gifts? Why not make your own? By making your own gifts, it is much more heartfelt and it also saves you money. Buying supplies at a craft store is not actually as expensive as you may think compared to buying pre-made items. Even if you didn’t want to give someone a handmade gift as their Christmas gift, you could always use them as stocking stuffers.
Suggest a Gift Swap
Although gift swaps may not seem as personable, it is a fun way to get to know people and to save lots of money. Two popular gift swaps to try are either: Secret Santa or a White Elephant gift exchange.
With gift exchanges, you only have to shop for one person compared to multiple people and it ensures that each person receives a gift without feeling obligated to get something for everyone.
The holidays are about taking the time to show your love and admiration to the ones who are closest to you. It is important to live within your means. If you need help with your finances, give us a call at (800) 835-3400, or stop by a branch. We are here to help you on your financial journey.