Don’t Overlook How Much Of Your Budget Goes To Gifts

Tuesday, April 6, 2010, AM | Leave Comment

Almost everyone buys gifts. There are wedding gifts, birthday gifts, graduation gifts, Christmas gifts, house-warming gifts and [can I say?] only the devil knows what else.

Not trying to be religious, God, on the other hand, does not want you to overspend. The dollar amount for the gifts can all add up to an amount easily over your budget.

The problem is, and it happens to most folks frequently than they can imagine, that they spend more on expensive gifts – something they would never buy for themselves – for a variety of reasons.

When you give gifts, you don’t want to look bad with a less expensive one or at least not cheaper than the Jones’ who always show up and are present at any occasion.

However, you don’t have to follow the Jones’. Buy a gift that is obviously appropriate for the occasion at a price that you can easily afford. It should not imbalance your budget that you go berserk over later when you face reality.

You can save money if it’s your birthday

Now, there are vendors who would celebrate your birthday by offering you something extra that you might – then again might not – enjoy for the day. For example,

  • Starbucks gives reward club members a free coffee.
  • Baskin Robbins offers a free ice cream cone.
  • DSW loyalty members get a $5 reward certificate.
  • Express credit-card holders receive a $15 coupon toward their next purchase.

Beware

However, birthday offers can also entice you to spend on gifts with cash or credit card and gift cards or make an extra purchase with your money. So consider any strings that might be attached before you take advantage of the free offer.

In a Nutshell
Nobody has to remind anyone that these are extremely tough times. Personal income is almost stagnant if not laid off already. You don’t have to follow anybody to buy expensive gifts. Don’t buy anything for others which you couldn’t buy for yourself.

What do you think?

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