Christmas Dinner
Photo by Chaloner Woods/Getty Images)

Some people reading this are living paycheck-to-paycheck. So how do you find extra money for the holidays?

I can tell you honestly that there was more than one Christmas where my wife and I had nothing under the tree for Christmas.

The only reason we had a tree at all is because we bought an artificial tree a few years before when we were more prosperous.

Christmas Drawings

A tradition in our family was to draw family member names at Thanksgiving and you only had to buy one present at Christmas for the name you drew.

Any extra money went to gifts for the kids in the family who were not included in the drawing.

Another version of the drawing is the Secret Santa where you don’t always know who gifted you from the drawing.

Prepare For Christmas Ahead of Time

The best way to prepare for Christmas is to put a small amount of money in savings during the year. Many banks have Christmas Club accounts where you can park money that will earn a very small amount of interest.

If you are a disciplined saver you can use this reverse saving process. It works like this:

Each of the 52 Weeks you save dollars equal to the number of the week.

Week One = Save $1

Week Two = Save $2

Week Three = Save $3

Week Four = Save $4 etc.

The hardest part of this is the last four weeks of the year.

Week 49 = Save $49

Week 50 = Save $50

Week 51 = Save $51

Week 52 = Save $52

That final four weeks you would have to save $202 dollars.

So you might want to start saving the most in January and each week you would have to save less.

If you can bite the bullet and conserve during the first two to three months you can end up with a nice bundle for Christmas without crushing your paychecks or taking on additional debt.

Some Final Thoughts

Saving is never easy but almost anyone on any economic scale can save something. The more you can save that happier your holidays will be.

The biggest mistake people make is going overboard with credit. Credit makes it easy to spend more than your budget can handle.

So set a budget that will be comfortable to pay back if you plan to charge your Christmas.

In some cases you could end up paying double the price if you are slow in paying down your credit cards.

How to you save for the holidays?

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