When you’re a natural gift giver, it’s easy to run out of time and forget someone on your list. For those of us who don’t give gifts as often, it’s good to keep some tips in mind.
TIP 1: Make a list and check it twice. A list will help you keep track of the people who need presents, how much money you have to spend, and what kind of gift each person needs to receive. If you don’t have time to make lists, write down the names of people who will get gifts in a notebook and highlight their name each time you think about buying a gift for them. The more reminders you have about who still needs presents, the better.
TIP 2: Keep your eyes open for gifts throughout the year. Don’t wait until December to start looking for great gifts. In fact, December can be one of the worst times to shop because sales are everywhere and stores are packed with people. Look at catalogs, check out websites, or just walk around and look at things you think might make great gifts throughout the year so that when December rolls around you aren’t frantically trying to find something good on such short notice.
TIP 3: Make a wish list. If you’re not sure what to get a loved one, start with his or her wish list. Does your mom have a Pinterest page filled with home décor ideas? Does your husband have an Amazon wish list bursting with gadgets? Even if they don’t have a list yet, casually bring up the idea of making one during casual conversation. You might be surprised at how receptive they are to the idea.
TIP 4: Don’t go overboard. If you’re going to buy gifts for everyone on your list, be sure to set a budget for yourself. As tempting as it is to spend $500 on presents for your friends and family, remember that you have other expenses (like food and utilities) that will have to come out of your bank account. If you need help keeping your spending in check, create a “gift wish list” for each person on your list so you won’t be able to overspend.