Though the holidays are nearly here, it’s likely that many of our readers are still working on finding gifts for their loved ones. If your sack of Christmas goodies is still painfully empty, don’t despair. Not only can you stick to a budget, but you can find a great present for all the important people on your list. How? Simple! Follow these ways to save money this Christmas, and you’ll soon have a host of happy gift recipients thanking you for your thoughtful ideas.

  • Have a maximum gift budget. First, go through your finances, seeing how much you’ll be spending on necessities like food, bills, and gas this month. Then, see how much money you’ll have left in your budget for gifts. Once you know how many people you are buying for, make a maximum gift budget. It could be as low as $5 or $10 a person if this is a harder financial year. By having a responsible budget, you won’t fall prey to overspending or end this year in debt.
  • Hold a yard sale. During the holidays, you may have rustled through your attic or basement to find decorations. As you looked, did you see anything that you don’t use or want anymore? If it’s in decent condition, you can always sell it at a yard sale—or online. This has the second benefit of putting a little extra spending money into your pocket. If your kids are a little older, you can also encourage them to participate in the yard sale, so they can earn money to buy presents for loved ones and friends. Many will enjoy this opportunity, as it makes them feel more grown up.
  • Reuse wrapping. In many households, people gather up bags, boxes, and tissue paper from their presents, putting them in a bin until next Christmas. By reusing wrapping, you can eliminate an unnecessary expense from your gift budget.
  • Throw a potluck Christmas meal. For many people, Christmas is a time for friends and relatives to spend time together. However, the costs can add up, leaving people looking for even more ways to save money this Christmas. If you’re attending a Christmas or Christmas Eve dinner, why not make it a potluck? This will keep hosts from overstressing and it will save money too. Simply assign everyone a dish—or type of dish, such as appetizers or dessert—and let the savings roll in.
  • Offer less traditional gifts. Whether you decide to give handmade presents or the gift of your time, these are often less expensive alternatives. You can make simple jewelry, knitted socks, or hot chocolate mix kits. As for the gift of your time, you can offer to babysit for free, help out elderly relatives with chores or yardwork, or make dinner for busy families. As long as you try to tailor this present to their needs and likes—don’t offer to mow the lawn of a yard care enthusiast for instance—people will appreciate the thought and consideration. For handmade gifts, it’s often wise—and cheaper—to make them in bulk. Next year, you can also make them in advance, spreading out the time and cost over the course of a year.
  • Shop where the sales are. Though you can always save on Black Friday or Cyber Monday, there are sales going on all year long. Monitor a few websites of your favorite stores—or sign up for an email newsletter, which will alert you whenever a sale rises up. Then, you can take advantage of the lower prices to buy a gift. You can also wait until after everyone has gone back to school for savings on furniture, journals, and household necessities. Because stores will have a surplus in school supplies and college dorm necessities, you can buy them at much cheaper prices. Just remember to keep track of your spending and stick to a gift budget!

You deserve to have a happy holiday. With these ways to save money this Christmas, you will. Instead of stressing about costs, preparation, and meals, you can spend time with your loved ones, appreciating the best gift of all: their company.

Whether you’re looking to grow your money for gifts or for more long-term savings, the expert advisors at Ty J. Young Inc. can help you succeed. To learn more, call us at 877-912-1919. Plus, continue reading our blog to find out more about finances and frugal saving.
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