According to God, Christmas is the time for reflection, for job and rest as you celebrate the birth of His Son, Jesus Christ. However, nowadays Christmas seems to have become one of the most stressful events of the year which is filled with immense pressure to spend way more than what you can afford. If you decide to succumb to this pressure of doing more than what you can do, you will only find yourself drowned in a pool of debt. This holiday debt will probably last much longer than the items that you brought for holidays. You will rather be left regretting your decisions during a time when God only wanted you to enjoy.
Since the time for Christmas, Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve should be a happy one, you exert too much pressure on yourself or on your wallet. If you’re not much sure about the ways in which you can retain your holiday sanity and spend a debt-free Christmas, here are few tips you should take into account.
Devise a budget and follow a plan
Set up a budget for giving gifts and for holiday meals where you add a detailed list of things. Don’t forget to include co-workers, family members, babysitters, teachers and friends or anyone else whom you consider special in your life. If the average price of your gift ranges between $15 and $25, make sure you watch out for special gifts of this budget whenever they’re put on sale or rebates. Before the holidays, there are several holiday gifts which are put on discounts for the shoppers.
Shop on Black Fridays and Cyber Monday
You know about Black Friday deals when the prices are slashed off to their lowest levels, don’t you? Not only will you get some of the best deals on Black Friday but you will get them every weekend. Cyber Monday you will probably get the most out of your dollars and you would be able to save a big amount. If you think you can get better deals online, you can even shop from the e-commerce sites.
Homemade gifts are always a great idea
It is not that unless you buy something for your guests, there’s no value to it. Rather the actual value is not in the gift but it is in your heart. In case you are someone who is in dire financial straits, don’t force yourself to purchase gifts which are unaffordable. Why not try homemade gifts? They are not only made generously but they are also good for your budget. Some homemade gift ideas can be baked foods, drink mixes, soaps and even lotions.
Utilize your coupons
As long as Christmas cooking is concerned, you can coordinate the meals, desserts, sides and meats along with all the groceries which are on sale. If you can do this planning far in advance, it will not just save money, but will also save your time. Whenever the prices have been slashed, you can buy sausage balls, cinnamon rolls and other things like sweet potato pie and freeze them before the day arrives. All these should be completed before the arrival of guests.
Hit those clearance racks
Before you check anything else, make sure you hit the clearance sections offered by most of the retailers. Regardless of what the item is, whether books, toys or clothes, you can definitely get them now as sooner or later you will find people to gift them with. It is a bad habit to pay for something with its full price and hence it is better to hit the clearance racks.
Shop for holidays throughout the year
If you don’t want your holiday debt to keep haunting you till next holidays, you should know the right timing to do things. If you know the likes and dislikes of some or most of your guests, you can keep collecting things for them all throughout the year. This way you can get things when they’re on sale and help your pockets.
If you take a retrospective glance at the previous Christmas celebrations, you will see that things have changed a lot now. Your perspective for buying things has changed and hence you have evolved to become financially sounder.