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Woman doing holiday budget, estimating money balance for shopping spree with financial help from Amerant Bank.
Personal Finances

How to Make the Most Out of a Holiday Budget

As the holiday season approaches, excitement and tension fill the air. However, the festive period can also stress many financially, especially when managing holiday expenses. The pressure to provide thoughtful gifts, host gatherings, and enjoy holiday activities can quickly strain one’s budget.

However, a budget does not have to limit holiday enjoyment. Read on for holiday budget tips to ensure a memorable and joyous holiday season without the stress.

Tracking Holiday Spending

All the best budgeting tips begin with tracking spending. The holidays are no exception. It can be tempting to splurge or break year-round habits for special occasions, but the best holiday budget doesn’t eschew regular expenses or positive spending habits.

Avoiding Holiday Shopping Sprees and Impulse Purchases

It can be tempting to run up credit card balances around holidays. This is avoidable by planning every purchase before making it. The best way to budget money is to have a spending limit and set aside specific amounts for specific purchases. To ensure every purchase stays within a holiday budget, shopping should happen before budgeting, and budgeting should happen before spending.

Checking Prices and Looking for Budget-Friendly Discounts

Black Friday and Cyber Monday present opportunities to get a better price on a planned purchase, but not always. Just because a price appears lower does not equate to a good deal.

Holiday shoppers must watch price changes leading to sales, as some retailers will inflate prices before discounting them. Shopping should begin months in advance. Shoppers who are aware of their wants and worth are not susceptible to bad discounts and deals.

Being Creative with Activities

When considering holiday money-saving tips, budgeters should remember the true meaning of the holidays. The things people look back on most fondly are the moments and memories shared with others. Those moments don’t have to command a fortune for someone to appreciate the gesture.

Many communities offer fun holiday activities for families and friends to enjoy together. These events take a lot of planning, and the dates and information are usually available months in advance. By budgeting money and time ahead of the holiday season, revelers can ensure a season marked by timeless memories.

Being Creative with DIY Ideas

A personal touch makes any gift more memorable. Making gifts can be one of the best holiday budgeting tips, and homemade items are often the most treasured for years. Even those without special skills or talents can create something unique that shows they understand the other person and what matters to them.

While choosing holiday gifts, it’s important to remember that being creative does not necessarily mean creating everything from scratch. Store-bought presents with a personal touch can be more significant because of that added connection. For instance, a framed photo of a memorable winter trip included with a set of mittens can make an otherwise simple gift deeply meaningful.

Leave Room in a Holiday Budget for Unexpected Expenses

Few plans look the same at completion as at inception, and no holiday saving tips should ignore the possibility of unexpected spending. While you should avoid splurging or impulse buying, having some room in a holiday budget for the unexpected is still essential.

Whether the unexpected comes in the form of a canceled event or a can’t-miss opportunity, extra room in a holiday budget will keep the stress of the holidays in check no matter what comes up. If you don’t require that extra money, setting it aside for future holidays and special events is better. This way, you’ll have an even better budget to balance out costs the following year.

Keeping the Stress Out of Budgeting for the Holidays

Money is one of the most common sources of stress for everyone. However, Amerant Bank’s tools and services can turn money into building blocks for the future. Avoiding roadblocks in the present is a must, and we pride ourselves on helping you get through them for financial success.

Learn additional budgeting tips and about financial services at www.amerantbank.com. Follow along with Amerant for more tips on all our social channels, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn at @AmerantBank.

Editorial Team
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