Yes, I know its only February, and you have 10 whole months till Santa comes down the chimney. So, why think about it now?
I’ll point you to my motto:
“Have a Plan, Not a Payment”
How would it feel to get through your Christmas shopping, knowing you didn’t blow your budget and still gave all the gifts you wanted to?
Pretty good, right?
Here are 3 simple things that can enable you to do just that!
- Determine who you will buy for, and how much you will spend
This could take some thinking and discussion with your spouse; I’ll wait here till you figure it out. Surprised by how much you want to spend? Hold on, it gets better!
This is the first step of your plan, figuring out the end goal!
Add up the total and divide by 9
No, you didn’t loose a month; I’m assuming you will start saving in March and shop in November.
Put this number under the “Christmas” category in your Cash Flow Plan. Since you and your spouse agreed to the amount per person, this should go into the budget w/o much discussion, except where to cut the monthly amount from.
I imagine that this number is much more manageable then the value determined in step 1.
Each month put that amount aside in an envelope or separate savings account, earmarked for Christmas.
There are a few unexpected advantages to this method:
- No fighting over how much is spent on Black Friday
- If you run across a great deal in July, you will have the money already to buy the gift; just make sure you hide it well!
- When the bills come in January of 2016, there won’t be one for Christmas gifts!
So, think you can do this?