It’s never too early to start budgeting for the holidays. Expenses can add up quickly – especially when you head into the season without a game plan. Check out these 5 tips to help with holiday budgeting:
Holiday Budgeting Tip #1:
Just like Santa, it pays to have a detailed list of all expected expenses and to check it twice before and during the holidays – don’t wait, now’s the time to get started!
Your expense list should include everything from gifts to travel to stamps for greetings cards to even charitable donations. Think about:
- Who are you buying gifts for? And how much do you want to spend per person?
- What holiday feasts are you responsible for? And what do you plan on serving?
- Other miscellaneous costs like dry cleaning, Christmas lights (and the ensuing electric bill), ski rentals, etc. It all adds up faster than St. Nick can shimmy down the chimney.
Holiday Budgeting Tip #2:
Use a legal pad, spread sheet or online financial management tool like Trends to set spending limits, create savings goals and track holiday expenses.
Holiday Budgeting Tip #3:
Start tucking money away for the holidays by opening a Special Savings Account and setting up weekly automatic transfers from another account. And while you’re at it, toss spare change into a jar and exchange it at a Branch Office for crisp currency before heading to the mall – you’ll be pleasantly surprised how quickly loose change adds up.
Holiday Budgeting Tip #4:
Shop smart and start early to take advantage of sales, special offers and bonus days happening now to help keep expenses down. As you purchase gifts, mark them off on your list and locate a safe place to store them, away from curious eyes.
Cookies to bake, turkeys to roast and appetizers to whip up – cha-ching! No worries. Stick to your budget and save a bundle on groceries by purchasing baking supplies, relishes, and fruits and vegetables at Aldi, discount and warehouse stores.
Holiday Budgeting Tip #5:
It’s never too early to start thinking about next year. Shop holiday clearance sales to stock up on seasonal gifts, cards, wrapping paper and entertainment ware for next year’s festivities – they’ll be here sooner than you think.
Ready to Fa-La-La?
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Do you have tips to help cut holiday expenses? If so, please share below: