Are you famous in your family for last minute gift buying? Do you spend too much because you don’t plan ahead? If so, I have the answer for you – Build yourself a gift closet! What in the world is that? Pretty much exactly what it sounds like. It doesn’t have to be a closet, but it is a stash of gifts that you can go to whenever you need one before going out and buying one. That’s all fine and dandy, right, but building one frugally one does take a bit of time and planning. After all, if you just ran out and bought a bunch of gifts to stock it with, you would be broke in no time. Check out these tips on how to build your gift closet without breaking your budget.
Start small – As I said earlier, the last thing you want is to buy a bunch of gifts all at once. Instead, start small. Buy one or two things at a time when you find them on sale then stash them away. Shop throughout the year with your recipients in mind.
Start early – Some of the thriftiest shoppers in the world start early…as in the day after Christmas early…for the next year. Why? Because clearance deals are too good to pass up during that time period. Start building your gift closet as early as you can and you’ll not only save, but you’ll score awesome gifts, too.
Scour the deals – Not only should you make friends with your favorite deal blogs, but you should also get to know the clearance section at your favorite stores and websites. On top of that, you may want to consider signing up for your favorite cash back website to help you save even more on online purchases. And if you shop Kmart or Sears and thousands of other partners, sign up with Shop Your Way and make me your Personal Shopper. It is FREE and you earn points on every purchase = cash money off your next one.
Use Free Gift Cards – When you’re using gift cards to pay for something? You’re not using cash. See the savings? If you aren’t sure how to get started earning free gift cards or want to start earning more, check out these 10 ways to earn free gift cards.
Think ahead – Your child might like Dora now, but will she the next time Christmas rolls around? If not and you don’t have any other little ones to buy for, you may want to stay away from toys and things that they may grow out of before you can gift it. Stick with the classics, as well as stocking gifts for kids birthdays
Check the thrift stores and garage sale sites for your area – I kid you not, I have scored some terrific, unique and brand new gifts at places like Goodwill and on the garage sale Facebook sites for my area (Search Facebook garage sale or buy sell trade then your local city, town etc.)
Don’t forget the cards – I also stash away cards to save me a trip to buy one at $4.99 while we are dressed and in the car on the way to the event — I like the $1 cards at Family Dollar and Target. I keep a good selection, grabbing a few at a time when I see ones I like. Remember, too, that sometimes a handmade card is just as great and way more personal (and frugal).
Having a gift closet around is a fantastic time saver, money saver and just overall sanity saver. Keep your gifts stashed away where no one will find them and when the time comes and you need one, you’ll be all set with no shopping required!