It is the middle of September, so around my house that means it is time to start planning for Christmas. If you haven’t been saving for Christmas purchases now is the time to start. We set aside a certain amount each paycheck to go toward Christmas purchases, so that when the time to start buying rolls around we aren’t surprised by the expense. But if you have not been doing that now is the time to start saving in earnest.
Set a budget. Include items like new household decorations, neighbor/teacher/gift-swap gifts, wrapping expense and costs of hosting or attending parties and other Christmas outings. Figure out your total amount needed and then start saving. Don’t go into debt for Christmas. Pay cash!
Once you have your total budget set and savings started, get detailed. Assign an amount to each person you will buy for and the other categories, and stick to that amount. If you want to give more to someone (your kids for example) get creative. Make gifts for others (lots more on this in coming weeks!), buy good condition used toys so that you can get more for the kids, or sell items you have but don’t use to raise cash for your Christmas purchases. But stick to the budget. You are not helping your kids or teaching them anything good by giving them everything they want (but don’t need) and by going into debt for Christmas purchases.
Do you have a great way to save money for Christmas? Share your thoughts in the comments or Submit Your Tip!