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It's beginning to look a lot like...Back to School!

It’s the last month of summer break for many who are planning to go back to work and/or school. So, time to take those camping trips, vacations, scenic drives, and overnights.

Can you believe that Christmas is only 142 days away? There, I said it. Why am I talking about Christmas already? Great question! (If you don’t celebrate Christmas, you can apply this to a holiday/occasion that’s important to you.) In conversations with people, I hear that they’ve overspent for Christmas and are working on paying off debt attributed to the holidays. I also find that some “have hopes” of being able to buy that bicycle or necklace for their loved one. What if right now, we started planning for this annual holiday? What would our budget look like?

Even though Christmas is a few months away, getting back-to-school ready can also be a pain in the budget if we don’t plan accordingly.

Here are some questions you and your budgeting partner might want to consider together:

1. What is our overall back-to-school (or holiday) budget?

2. How do we want to spend that and on whom?

3. What is the maximum amount of money that we will spend on one person?

4. What will we do if we become aware of a need/want after a gift has already been purchased?

5. Holiday specific: What do we need to set aside each month to reach our holiday gifting budget (as determined in question #1)

6. What can we do to save money?

Use coupons or promo-codes

Shop sales

Check out FB Marketplace and Craigslist for discounted or FREE items

Shop at thrift stores

Consider involving your students in this planning process. Another great topic to discuss during this time is the idea of “cheap” vs. “value.”

Taking a hard look at what you have and what you need for back-to-school readiness before you go shopping will help you stick to your list and ultimately, your budget.

I help clients think about these things well in advance so their budget doesn't get out of control. When you're ready to prepare your budget for these expenses, drop me a line and we'll work together for up to an hour to prepare you to be successful!

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