I have a confession to make! I’m addicted to buying Christmas ornaments – or, at least, I was when I first moved into my house a couple of years ago.
I was so pumped! I love decorating for the holidays, and it was the first time I got to do things my style, my way. It was all fun and reindeer games… until I checked my account balance.
Though your circumstances may be different, I’m fairly certain I’m not the only who has faced this dilemma. Christmas has a way of awakening the inner shopper within us all. What was meant to be simple holiday celebrating a baby in a manager has seriously become the season of overspending.
So how can you get your home holiday ready this year? No, you don’t have to be a Scrooge! We’ve got a few tips to help you decorate for less this Christmas.
1. Do Your Research
When you see something you really like, it’s hard not to buy it immediately. But remember, price matching is your best friend! Take your time, shop around, and make sure you’re getting the best deal possible. Companies like Wal-Mart, Target, and Bed, Bath and Beyond all price match. Wal-Mart will even price match items on Amazon.com.
Be sure you’re comparing apples to apples though! Price matching usually only applies if the item is the same brand and model.
2. Trade Incandescent Lights for LED’s
Your credit card bill is not the only thing that has the potential to increase this Christmas. It’s quite possible your electric bill may be on the rise too. Old fashioned lights use significantly more electricity than their LED counterparts.
According to the Department of Energy, if you keep a six-foot Christmas tree lit 12 hours per day for 40 days with old fashioned lights, you’ll be spending an average of $10 worth of electricity. If you opt for LED strands, you’ll only use about 27 cents worth of electricity.
LED bulbs are also safer because they don’t get hot and won’t overload your circuits.
3. Clip Those Coupons
Craft stores like Michael’s, Hobby Lobby, and Jo Ann’s Fabric are great about offering weekly coupons. Although these coupons might not be promoting Christmas décor specifically, you should still be able to use them and get between a 20 – 50% discount. Not too shabby!
4. DIY Your Decorations
Let Pinterest inspire you and try creating your own decorations. If rustic is your style, gather branches and pinecones and add a pop of festive color or a little sparkle. Decorations don’t have to be extravagant to be beautiful. And as is true with most DIY projects, you’ll save a ton!
5. Keep An Eye On Deal-Sharing Sites
Sites like FatWallet.com, Savings.com, Coupons.com, and RetailMeNot.com are huge time savers when you’re trying to be frugal and festive. Just search “Christmas” or “Christmas decorations,” and they’ll aggregate all available coupons and discounts in one place!
There’s even an opportunity to make money while you hunt for holiday deals. According to Coupons.com savings expert Jeanette Cavini, “If you find a code elsewhere that Coupons.com doesn’t have, submit it to their Savings Guarantee, and they’ll pay you $25.”
6. Think Local And Outside The Box
Sometimes the greatest holiday treasures aren’t found in traditional stores. Grab a friend and go “thrifting” or check out garage sales nearby. Consignment shops that carry home décor can be a great source for Christmas items too! And if you have anything laying around the house that you’d like to trade, you just might walk away with extra cash for decking the halls.
Not a fan of holiday traffic? If shopping online is more your speed, take advantage of Facebook groups, Craigslist, or Nextdoor.com. Who knows what holiday gems could be hiding just down the street!
7. Shop After Christmas Sales
Ok, so this might not help you this year! But, good things come to those who wait. The best sales on Christmas decorations usually happen after the holidays are over. Most stores want to get rid of their seasonal items, and they’re willing to give some pretty hefty discounts to move them off the shelves. Shoppers beware though, if this is your saving strategy, be sure to make a list, so you don’t overspend and buy a bunch of items you won’t actually use.
How DuGood Can Help
Are new holiday decorations on your Christmas list this year? If you’re looking for extra cash, December Skip-A-Pay and Christmas Loans are available for the month of December.
Also, it’s never too early to start preparing for next year! You can open a Christmas Account with just $5. Make regular deposits all year long, and the holidays will never sneak up on you again!