Budgeting for the Holiday Shopping

Budgeting for the Holidays can be tough, overwhelming, and frustrating all rolled into one season. There are so many things to stress about during the holidays don’t let spending money be one of them! Note: There are so many great sales currently going on now you can shop my pick here.

Y’all before I share some of my tips and tricks on how to budget let me just get one thing straight-I HATE saving money and I use to be terrible at saving money. I really identify with the Carrie Bradshaw quote, “I like my money right where I can see it...hanging in my closet.” Luckily, through trial and error (and a lot of buyer’s remorse) I have learned HOW to spend money well. Gift giving, as I’ve found out, is one of my love languages, so I have become an expert in the field! In this post I am going to help you be better prepared and have a better understanding of what you should be shopping for and how I will be spending money over the Holiday season. So let’s get ready to rumble and shop smart!

First things first, you need to sit down and make a list of every single person you will be buying for. For example, I will be using one of my followers who needs to buy for her mother-in-law, father-in-law, two Aunts (on her husband’s side), two uncles (on her husband’s side), and her husband’s three siblings-that is 9 people just on the in-law side! A good rule to follow is keep immediate family at a higher price point and extended family a step lower. For the mother-in-law and father-in-law, I would stick to around $50 and seven others at or around $30. The total for in-law spending should be around $300 and you can use that same price point for your side of the family as well.

After you have the number of people you are buying for listed and the price points in mind, this is when you start brainstorming what gifts are in your price range. To help y’all out with this I will be posting gift guides each week leading up to December! If you are also expecting to be super busy during the month of December, I would go ahead and start buying a couple presents a week this month or start strategizing for Black Friday. I could write an entire post about strategizing for Black Friday but three tips I ALWAYS follow are 1. Stick with your budget (the budget you made weeks before) 2. Do not impulse buy once you are in there 3. Map out the store beforehand.

The holiday commercials that come the day after Halloween might be annoying but they will let you know of some great deals you need to watch out for! With your list of names and price points, I would add in what sales are happening when and what presents you will be able to buy at the sales. Keep in mind a lot of these sales are also happening online on Cyber Monday or even before thanksgiving! A big tip I follow for the Holidays is always shopping sales, and never buying full price!

Make sure you also aren’t relying on your credit cards to fill in the gaps. During the holidays, I always make sure to turn on my bank notifications so I don’t end up coasting through the last week of December on the little money I have left!

During the rest of the year, I typically budget with the 50/30/10/10 rule. 50% goes towards cost of living, gas for my car, and utilities. 30% goes towards my lifestyle, that’s when I eat out, my shopping, and any money I spend traveling. 10% goes towards my Church, or money I donate to my favorite charities. And then finally the last 10% goes towards savings. During November and December, however, I tend to alter this scale a little bit by changing the 30% of lifestyle to 10% lifestyle and 20% Holiday Budget. That means 20% of your salary from November and December can be for budgeting, if you scale back on buying for yourself. Also, I should note that 20% of your salary, is at the higher end of what you should be spending. Please don’t add to your holiday stress by going into debt over gift buying!!!

I hope this post has helped y’all de-stress. The most important thing is to start now! My final tip is to remember what the holidays are really for! Celebrating the birth of Christ surrounded by the ones you love and who love you. Us adults have to spend so much of our holidays just trying to survive the chaos, but planning ahead now let’s us enjoy the season too! Shop this look plus my current favorites on major sale! Also, check out more of my sale picks here.


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