The holiday season is quickly approaching, so many of us will ramp up our spending to buy gifts for all those special people in our lives.

While this is a great time to give back and show people how much you care, keeping your spending in check and staying within your budget can also take time and effort.

Last year, the average consumer planned to spend nearly $1,000 on holiday shopping. This year, that number is predicted to increase, given the rising inflation we’ve been experiencing. So, let’s look at how you can plan for your holiday shopping, stay on budget, and avoid overspending.

Set Spending Limits

Setting spending limits is the best way to start with your holiday budgeting. You can place a cap on the total amount you can afford and establish spending limits for each individual. You can also plan to buy gifts for a set number of people. 

A helpful way to set spending limits is to write down every person you plan on giving gifts to and put a dollar amount next to each person. This list will help keep you on track with holiday budgeting and avoid overspending before you start shopping.

Two happy women Christmas shopping

Price Check 

Comparison shopping is easy to do online. You can pull up multiple shops at once to see which store has the best deals on any item. However, when shopping in person, don’t be afraid to pull out your phone and price-check an item. You never know if it’s available somewhere else at a lower price. 

It’s easy to feel rushed into a decision while in the store. However, this can easily take your holiday budgeting goals off track. So, be a savvy shopper and make sure you’re getting a great deal. 

Saving $5 or $20 here and there can add up when buying gifts for many people.

DIY Gifts

Are you skilled at crocheting? Do you love creating art? Is baking a hobby of yours? Take advantage of your talents and make meaningful and unique gifts that can cost less than buying a gift in-store.

This holiday budgeting tip is a thoughtful idea for people you love and those outside your immediate circle—neighbors, delivery drivers, landscapers, and other service providers.

Woman wrapping DIY gift with twine for Christmas

Avoid Shopping Sprees

During the holidays, many retailers entice you with exciting sales and offers. Once you’re in the door, they offer more incentives to make large purchases.

Retailers use many psychological tactics to bring in more sales this time of year. These include merchandise placement, the music they play in-store, and the overall atmosphere of the holiday season. 

Knowing these tactics and having your holiday budgeting goals in mind, you can make smart purchase decisions. You can also avoid overspending in one store. 

Pay the Necessities

It’s easy to get caught up in holiday cheer and festivities. When planning your holiday budget, you should always pay your necessities first, such as bills and debt payments.

Doing this can reduce some of the stress associated with this time of year and prioritize your spending.

After all, the holiday season is brief, so keep these few months on track with your other financial matters! 

Buy in Advance

Whenever possible, try to avoid making last-minute purchases. Taking your time and buying in advance will allow you to compare prices, wait for the right deals, and avoid unwanted costs like rush shipping.  

Additionally, buying gifts for everyone in your life over weeks or months is a savvy holiday budgeting tip. You can spread out the spending throughout the year and avoid making a significant dent in your bank account.

Young woman wearing a Santa hat buying gifts online

Utilize the Personal Savings Tools at a Community Bank

One way you can prepare for the holiday season is to utilize holiday budgeting and savings tools available at a community bank, like Cleveland State Bank. 

In the case of holiday shopping, these banks can help consumers save in advance with a money market account or high-yield savings account, like the Christmas Club account offered by CSB. Opening one of these accounts can give you the extra financial boost you need this time of year. 

So, consider what tools your community bank offers year-round to get your finances in order ahead of the holidays.

Holiday Budgeting and Planning with Cleveland State Bank

You can implement many holiday budgeting tips this time of year to keep your spending in check. When your plan is laid out, you can ensure that you’re making wise purchasing decisions to keep you financially on track for the rest of the year. 

With Cleveland State Bank, people in the Sheboygan, Manitowoc, and Fond du Lac areas can benefit from the fantastic savings products we offer. These products can help you prepare for the holiday season.

Man putting a 100 dollar bill into a piggy bank during Christmas

Our mission is to nurture the financial well-being of our community with our franchised bank solutions, like our Christmas Club accounts, ensuring that there will always be enough for your family’s Christmas celebrations. With this account, you can put a small amount away every paycheck and receive an annual check with interest during the holidays.

For year-round support with your finances and personal savings, visit Cleveland State Bank online or stop in a branch today to check out our modern banking solutions. 

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