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How to Fit Gifts and Shopping into Your Budget

Updated on January 24, 2012

Shopping for Gifts and Budgeting

In this current economy, many people are trying to find all kinds of ways to save money, but giving gifts for loved ones on special occasions is something that we hope to not have to ever give up. Part of what makes our lives so special is the people in it, and the special times in which we celebrate their lives whether on birthdays or holidays.

Rather than having to fore-go getting them a present to save money, there are some ideas to keep in mind that may help accomplish both desires. By sticking to a budget that you create, you don't have to give up on gift giving. You may need to get a little creative, but it shouldn't be too bad.

If we aren't careful, we can spend quite a bit on gifts for our friends and family and then end up regretting it or paying on it for a long time with added interest because of credit. Since giving a gift is often the way we show appreciation or love or caring, how can we continue on in that without breaking the bank?

Fit Gifts into your Budget

The goal is to set aside some money for gift giving. You need to try and fit this into your budget, otherwise you may end up spending money on gifts at the last second anyway. Regularly put aside a small amount for the purpose of having it handy when you need to buy a gift. Not to sound cliche or cheesy, the real point of gift is to let someone know you didn't forget them and were thinking about them anyway. Taking that kind of special thought and effort means a lot to people, often as much as the gift for some!

Set Limits

Set a limit for your gifts before you step into a mall or store or go online shopping. You can do this on paper of course or in your head, but just make the commitment to not go over it. Stick to this budget, and if you should spend a little less, then roll that extra over for the next time in case things cost more then. You can find nice items for not that much money, but you want to get a head start on your thinking, so you aren't pressed for time and can get as creative as you can.

Source

Christmas and Other Holidays

Christmas

Christmas can be an extra tough time when it comes to shopping, because at some point we just want to get people something, but are short on time. We tend to "spend more" just to get it done or get it done quickly. Those kinds of decisions are ones you can be paying on for many months if not years if you aren't careful.

There are a lot of emotions during the holidays, and whether it is the music or the festivities, we can get caught up easily into spending way too much money. You may even literally shop different right before the holidays instead of how you may normally shop during a non holiday month, say like January.

Budget for Christmas gifts and other holidays where you might buy gifts. Make and stick to a budget. Come up with ideas, and write things down as you can. This next tip helped me to save a lot of money the last couple of years, and especially this last year. I started early, and watched the sales. The earlier you start, the more you can keep an eye out for great deals and save quite a bit of money!

Know that your family and friends don't want you to be financially in the hole just because in part, you wanted to give them a nice gift that you couldn't really afford. I would also sign up to be on your favorite store's email lists and their paper mailing list, as I have saved quite a bit of money this way too. These announcements or mails will let you know of great sales going on. Sometimes, just waiting a day longer, you can get the same item for 50% off. That is why its great to start early, then be patient for the sales to come.

This is a general guide to consider the different things I have shared in this hub to get you think better, about all your purchases. They are simple rules, that if followed will greatly help your budget in regards to gift giving.

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    • oceansnsunsets profile imageAUTHOR

      Paula 

      7 years ago from The Midwest, USA

      Rpalulis, thank you very much for your words and ideas that you shared. I personally love gifts like that, and know that people put a lot into them. Its smart to start saving in January, I agree. Thanks for stopping by.

    • rpalulis profile image

      rpalulis 

      7 years ago from NY

      Having a gift fund is a great idea. Every year I say that I am going to start saving for Christmas starting in January and never do. This past year I had to get creative and made some Christmas gifts, which I still had to spend a little, but much more time went into the gift instead of money.

      Great Hub, very useful thanks so much.

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