With Christmas only a few days away, I thought this would be a great time to share some of our family budgeting tips on how to keep the finances under control in the festive season!
We are naturally a generous family, and we would love to give, give, give! However, without the generous bank account to go with the generous nature, we must be sensible!
A few years ago, we would always go over budget around Christmas, which was silly as Christmas is always on 25th December every year, so it wasn’t a surprise or an emergency!
Recently, we have put a few ideas into place so that we don’t go over budget at Christmas and today I would like to share those ideas with you.
Save for Christmas all year round!
Start a sinking fund for Christmas in January! Calculate how much money you spend over Christmas, divide it by 12 and put that away every month. This is your budget! Having an allocated budget can save you from overspending!
Also in January…
Buy your Christmas cards and wrapping paper in the sales! We have been doing this for years now and it has saved us $$$!
Make a list
Make a list of all the people that you need to purchase a gift for and allocate a budget next to each person’s name. Once you’ve spent each person’s budget then stop!
We don’t buy presents for the extended family, and we don’t feel bad about it. With 36 cousins on my side of the family alone, we had to draw the line somewhere, and there’s no hard feelings between anyone.
Make homemade gifts for your immediate family. My folks prefer homemade cards and gifts from our children, and even though they may look a mess to most people, the grandparents still love them!
If you do have the budget for it, then treat a close family member with an annual pass to a local attraction. We do this for my sister-in-law every year, and it’s a gift that lasts all year long!
Skip the cheap gifts
In our daughter’s first few years of life, my father-in-law was buying her cheap, plastic rubbish. So, I was very brave and asked him to put some money into her savings account instead. Thankfully he wasn’t offended and now puts money into her account on her birthdays and at Christmas! If you have any young children in the family, ask them if this would be a preferred option.
Give your time
After 2020 and the subsequent lockdowns, isn’t it great to be able to spend time with your family again? Playing games and creating family traditions and making memories may be the best gift that you can give.