Saving For Holiday Spending Already?

Not many people want to be the first house on the block to put up their holiday decorations, and even fewer want to be the last house to take them down after the beginning of the new year.

Having an appropriate number of lights up is one potential faux pas of the holiday season, but having enough money saved to afford gifts is a more significant concern. If you have any worries about paying for this year’s presents, now is the time to begin saving.

In past blog posts, we have offered some tips to saving for a dream vacation. In many ways, those same principles apply to having enough money available in November and December. A month later, we looked at some steps to setting up savings goals.

In both of these scenarios, the examples examined hold true now as well. However, now that we’re in the middle of September, the sense of urgency to begin putting money away may be more clear than in the summer months.

Over the coming weeks, annual holiday deals will start to make their way onto the internet. But before sales begin, making a shopping list for your loved ones can help on a number of levels.

  • Plan to Save

If you have been to the grocery store recently, having a list of needed items can save both time and money at checkout. Knowing what you want, and need, to buy helps eliminate shopping distractions and unnecessary purchases. If Santa Clause is “making a list – and check it twice,” so should you!

Also, by making a list now you can begin looking for special deals that might come before the holiday season. Knowing the best time to buy can help minimize your holiday expenses.

  • Save to Spend

In recent years, having enough money around for monthly bills, much less holiday gifts, has become an issue for many families. If you can implement some of the savings strategies we’ve outlined on this blog over the last few months, you can hopefully begin putting money aside to cover holiday expenses.

  • Save to Save

The holidays can be a catalyst to begin a savings program that you can carry into 2013. As we said earlier, sometimes it’s hard to think about next summer’s vacation in the middle of July… but when Spring arrives and you’re ready to begin planning, the money might not be there.

Take the time to shop smart this holiday season, and to begin saving money in a way that can help you afford more than just this winter’s gifts. Whether it’s a structured saving plan or just setting up automatic transfers into a savings account on Popular Online Banking, let this year’s holidays help you begin saving for your future.

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