With the holidays finally here, many of us are either in the midst of spending on gifts for loved ones or ourselves or possibly are finishing up those tasks with Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the rearview mirror. Many Americans will spend close to $1,000 on Christmas, and some will stretch both their budgets and their wallets very thin.
In this ever-stranger year of 2020, some of us may even be cutting back on our spending for one reason or another. If you’re in the camp of cutting back or making some big decisions such as buying a home in the near future, here are some ways to save some money during the holiday season.
Make Your Intentions Clear
If you’re planning on saving for a home and you’re using the holidays as an avenue to do so, then make those intentions clear with your friends, family members, and loved ones. While it’s a tough call for some of our nearest and dearest to either give less or give differently during this time of year, having them know that your goals are changing is big.
Make sure to communicate your intentions to buy a home. This will help them understand that you may not be spending as much as you have in the past and may even be budgeting both your gift-giving and travel plans in order to save towards your goal for a downpayment. Be prepared to offer alternatives to gifts for those of your family who may be more traditional in order to avoid any malcontent.
Evaluate Your Holiday Budget
Just because you’re saving for a down payment doesn’t mean that you can’t indulge in the holidays, give gifts, or celebrate the season but do so within the confines of a budget. Many of us get into the spending spirit or perhaps are rewarded with work bonuses during this time of year, but don’t be tempted to spend beyond your means.
One way to keep your budget balanced is to find inexpensive ways to celebrate the holidays. Instead of gift-giving, consider offering to cook dinner for your friends or family members you’re closest with. Avoid dining out during the holidays and entertain more with your loved ones. Additionally, when it comes to gifts, do so thriftily. Have Secret Santa gift exchanges, give handcrafted gifts, or bake cookies or other baked goods.
Save Gifts and Bonuses
For some of us, we depend on holiday bonus checks from our jobs or work to fund some of our holiday endeavors, for others, those extras are put towards paying down other debts or obligations. But if you’re working towards paying for a downpayment, then consider putting aside most if not all of that money for your home instead of spending it.
If your intentions about saving for a home have been made clear to your friends and family, then there’s a chance that they will be willing to contribute or gift in ways that help you reach that goal. If that’s the case, then put that money aside as well and be thankful and thoughtful towards those who are helping you reach your goals!
Get Your Finances in Order
Probably the best thing you can do to save for a downpayment during the holidays is to get your finances in order to begin with. Start by understanding what you can afford, what you need for a down payment, and what sort of payments you’ll be able to make. Then, get pre-qualified for a mortgage through a lender like Tidewater Mortgage Services, Inc. Apply today and get pre-qualified in as little as 24 hours!