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As soon as your Christmas tree goes up, the next task on your checklist might be to start gift shopping. Despite the joys that buying gifts for your loved one brings, it can be a stressful time for people with limited income.
Americans spent $789.4 billion on Christmas last year, including holiday gifts. Christmas comes with many responsibilities, but the financial aspect of the occasion shouldn’t overwhelm you. Take some time to carefully calculate your affordability and take measures to ensure you don’t spend the next month pulling yourself out of debt. Here are some ways you can manage your gift budget.
Sell Things You Don’t Need
If you want to purchase gifts without overexerting yourself, you can sell your Rolex and other high-end timepieces if you’re ready to let go of them. Although some old products might hold a sentimental value in your life, you can trade them in for cash if there are items you no longer need.
Selling old items will also declutter your home and create space for new things. The holidays are the perfect time to clean your home since you are likely to have guests over and may want to entertain them in a fresh environment.
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Create a Reasonable Spending Plan
You may get overwhelmed during the holidays and spend more than needed. Since the holidays can put pressure on many people, it can be helpful to create a reasonable spending plan and stick to it throughout the season.
Create a reasonable budget for your gifts a few months before the holidays approach. If you don’t take your time to prepare, you may end up using more money that should’ve gone towards your expenses. Not having sufficient funds to run your household can put unnecessary stress on you and your family.
Take Time to Find the Best Prices
You can save some money if you purchase items with discounts, coupon codes, or on sale. Scientific studies found that coupons take the stress out of holiday shopping and increase happiness among those who receive coupons.
Take some time to create a list of potential gifts and look for them online before heading to the shop. Browsing different stores will give you a chance to compare prices for similar products among different stores. Choose the product that works best in your favor financially.
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Learn to Say No When Necessary
Your friends or family might make numerous plans throughout the holidays, putting social pressure on you to spend money. Although those plans may work for others, they might not suit you if they exceed your affordability. Whether it’s an additional secret Santa arrangement, potluck, or a concert, think about what you can spend before agreeing to the plan.
If you’ve got all your expenses and your gift budget set aside, and you have some money to spare, go and enjoy. However, don’t participate in activities because you’re afraid to say no and put yourself in a financially stressful situation.
Planning out the holidays will allow you to express your feelings to your loved ones with thoughtful gifts while maintaining your budget.