If you’ve been here for a while, then you have heard me say that the holidays are an annual event. But for those of us that let the holidays sneak up every year it’s because we’re busy and we have lost complete track of time and every month we say things like “Geesh it’s already February.” It’s Already March” It’s already April.” And so on. In 2 weeks, Thanksgiving will be over and done and it will be December!
The procrastinator shoppers can really blow their budgets this time of year. As you continue to bo$$ up your money management, you’ll see this habit eventually go away because your Stay Ready Fund will be ready to go for this season. (For more about a Stay Ready Fund, Visit my website at www.myakcoaching.com to learn the The Money BO$$ Nine).
To help you optimize your income for the holiday shopping season, here are 6 money tips for the procrastinator shopper.
Tip 1. Take Your Lunch To Work – Shameless plug for the Take Your Lunch To Work Challenge that we started November 1st going through November 29th. It’s a great way to not only save money but it can also be a healthier option then going through the drive thru. This is one way to put some extra cash away that can go toward your holiday shopping.
Tip 2. Eat At Home - I know that after a long and busy day, it is often more appealing to utilize the convenience of dining. Well we are paying more for the convenience when we dine out, get food delivered, or pick up carry out. Since the preparation has already been done for us we pay for that convenience. Since it is fall, it’s a great time of year to crockpot hearty soups, stews, chowders, and roast that can be inexpensive to make, filling, and a set and forget dish so when you walk through the door, dinner is ready.
Tip 3. Refrain From Impulse Purchases – I will use myself as an example of how I’m currently looking to invest in a new laptop bag. I know a good quality leather bag will be a good investment but cost more than my last laptop bag. Refraining from getting the bag now because I can make due until after the new year when there will be more sales will allow me to put that money aside for holiday shopping. It’s an item I want (and need) but I want to get what I really want and not select something based on price. It can become impulsive when you’re addicted to getting a good deal.
Tip 4. Find Ways to Make More Money – See if you can work overtime to get those end of year goals tackled to finish the fiscal year strong. Be a seasonal holiday employee at your favorite store. Or you may have things around your house that are in good condition that you can sell. Some good platforms for selling items are Craigslist, Offer Up, and Facebook Marketplace. I’ve used all of them and had some success in getting things sold quickly.
Tip 5. Looks For Sales- There are tons of sales right now. There are pre Black Friday sales, then of course there are Back Friday and Cyber Monday coming up. I’ve had a lot of success with getting things for my kids especially for the low at stores that you would think are a little more expense then your Target and Kohl’s but you’d be surprised at some of the bonuses you get that don’t involve opening a store charge account that will allow you to get some good quality items for lower than expected.
Tip 6. Create Your Own Tradition – This is a big one that I’m doing this year because I’ve been very intentional about my inner peace. One thing that will not happen moving forward is allowing the holidays to stress me out. I’ve already told my kids that they’ll get gifts as I purchase them so they’ve already gotten some of their stuff. I personally am not going through the process of gift hiding, wrapping and creating a magical experience since my kids are getting older. It’s hard enough trying to find something they actually like since their taste and style changes every other day. We will still do something together that is special but it will not involve the “traditional” process and I’m ok with that since I choose my peace above all.