It may not feel like it, but the season of entertaining is just around the corner. First comes Thanksgiving, with the holidays soon to follow. If you’re planning on acting as the host this year, it’s easy to let your task take a huge bite out of your budget. Between inviting far-off family to your home and keeping your fridge stocked with delicious food, it’s easy to lose track of your spending. Before you spend more than you should on the season, try out these money-saving tips. They can keep any special day on a budget.
Try to borrow items you need
If your place is small — or if you’re expecting to host a long list of guests — you might not know where to put everyone. Before you buy extra blow-up mattresses and dining chairs for friends and family, consider renting these items.
You waste a lot of time on Facebook keeping up to date with your feed. The website might as well pay you back for all the hours you’ve invested in scrolling. Reach out to your friends to see if anyone has what you need. You might be surprised to see how many people come to the rescue, but don’t be discouraged if your post is met by the digital version of crickets. Your friends are celebrating the same holidays as you, so they might need these items as they host their own parties.
If you can’t borrow, check out the second-hand market. You’ll be able to find gently-used items at a lower price than if you had to buy them new.
Plan basic but delicious meals
When inviting guests to your home, you may feel compelled to pull out all the stops. You might want to impress and spoil your friends and family with gourmet meals and fancy cocktails, but this is an easy way to waste your budget.
Remember, the most important part of the holidays is the people you spend it with. It’s okay to serve simpler options as long as they taste good. These classic made-for-crowds meals are a great way to keep your menu on a budget. You can also host a potluck to cut down on your expenses. This meal style is a great option if your guests aren’t travelling far.
Buy in bulk
Whether you’re hosting just one night with a ton of guests, or you’re hosting several smaller occasions, you’ll need a lot of supplies to keep your guests happy. Buying in bulk has the potential to save on a lot of your must-have items, from extra toilet paper and towels to food and drinks.
It’s not an absolute rule, however. Sometimes bulk foods can end up being more expensive than their regular sized items. You need to look at their price-per-unit to confirm you’ll save money by buying in bulk. You should also take into consideration how much you’ll use of any item. Food waste is an expensive problem in North America, so you’ll want to make sure you can use up perishable items.
Start saving now
One of the best ways to protect your budget from the holidays is by saving early. The longer you have to budget for these celebrations, the easier it will be to save extra cash without throwing your finances in flux. Savings can help you cover everything you expect to have to pay for — and those things you weren’t expecting, like when your great uncle Doug breaks one of the chairs your borrowed or when your youngest niece pierces a hole in the air mattress.
It can be hard to start saving early enough to cover these unexpected expenses, especially if you live in a place like Ontario — where the holiday season starts as early as October with Canadian Thanksgiving. Fast-acting payday loans are a great way to bridge the gap between your expenses and savings when things are moving too fast. You can learn something about the best payday loans Ontario has to offer. They can deliver the cash you need in as little as one hour. That’s because online lenders like GoDay process all their requests over their automatic system that operates 24/7. In offering the fastest payday loans Canada has to offer, they can help you cover bills quickly. You won’t have to wait as long as you would with the bank.
Hosting the holidays on a budget is all about being prepared. Whether it’s saving early or contacting a friend to borrow their blow-up mattress, these proactive tips can help you save money — no matter how many guests you welcome into your home.