Christmas is one of those times of year that we normally throw caution to the wind and just blow our budget regardless of the consequences.
At Christmas we end up spending money on things that we don’t need (or others don’t need) more than any other time of the year. And the sad reality is that many will go into debt to accomplish this.
5 practical tips to avoid overspending this Christmas
1. Set up your Christmas budget early.
Often we don’t even think about the Christmas spending that we’ll do until November or December rolls around. When it does we quickly realize that we haven’t saved enough to buy the gifts that we wanted to give. Add a “Christmas gifts” line item to your family budget, and save for it in small increments, all year long!
2. Do your research.
When you’re searching for that perfect gift, make sure that you do your research and find the best deal on that item. Find out the best time to buy and buy it before the price goes back up!
3. Be creative with your gift giving.
Instead of giving someone a $100 gift, be creative and find a way to give them a nice $25 gift instead. Make them something handmade (like a themed gift basket or cookies), cook them dinner, etc.
4. Make a plan and stick to it.
Make a Christmas spending plan, and stick to it. If you had planned on spending $50 on your spouse, stick to it. Don’t decide at the last-minute that you would really like to get them that iPod they wanted, or that new Diamond ring. Stick to the plan!
5. For extended families, draw names from a hat.
To cut down on expenses for your extended family choose names from a hat. That way you only have to buy a gift for one member of the extended family, instead of 10-20. If you want to, you can also set a dollar limit in order to make sure no one spends too much.
What other tips would you suggest for not overspending this Christmas?