Holiday shopping doesn't have to be a time of stress and worry if you plan ahead. If you know you aren't someone who favors DIY gifts but still wants to spoil their loved ones then you should prepare in advance for spending. You can have a small income and still make this holiday one to remember.
Christmas is fast approaching and while there are other holidays in between ( Halloween if you don't consider it canceled in 2020 and Thanksgiving are also ones we'll later talk about in another post) Christmas is usually the one that leaves our wallets gasping for air.
It is the day that prompts us to make jokes like "I'm still broke from last Christmas" and while said with humor, it is very much a reality. One Christmas season, I had one fund that was an accumulation of random $20's, $50's and coins and this was all I had to my name.
If I was backed up on bills, needed spending money, or was loaning money to someone else, everything was out of this one area. So when I did my shopping and spent between $500 - $1000 on gifts my emergency fund/ sinking funds/ Christmas fund was empty.
I began the new year with zero dollars in my savings and no idea how to budget.
Keep reading to find out how to begin your own Christmas savings with just a few weeks left until holiday season while answering 11 frequently asked questions about the holiday season.
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What is a Christmas fund?
Money specifically set aside for the holidays. This means that once it's gone your shopping should be done and your other methods of saving or income would remain untouched.
For families that have a reliable steady income, having a Christmas fund may not be at the top of the list, but it is still beneficial.
For those who do not make as much money and often stress and worry around holiday time, this can be life changing for your health. Stress is known to manifest in fatigue, acne, headaches, lack of appetite and even overeating.
If you begin your Christmas fund with the first check in January you may have more money to spend on gifts than usual. Or you can set your goal and once you hit it, keep putting money aside for another reason.
How can I start one?
It's really simple to start.
What has worked for me is deducting $25 or $50 from my check. If there are 12 weeks left until December 19th you and you put $25 away a week you can save $300.
Keep in mind I am living off of a part-time income so if you make more money, look at your expenses and create your own savings amount.