Google+ Life With Amberly & Joe: Why You Should Budget for Gifts - Marriage & Money

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Why You Should Budget for Gifts - Marriage & Money

Every year after Christmas, you hear people talk about how they have to cut back on expenses because either their budget was shot paying for gifts, or they have a lot of credit card debt to pay off because they paid for gifts with that. Joe and I have been in a similar boat before, we'll run into a month with a family birthday every single week or we haven't thought about our upcoming birthdays/anniversary or something and our budget suffers because of it. This year we are using our envelope to help us stick to our budget and not overspend!

Don't go into debt for Christmas or any other holiday

August through December are terrible months for our finances. We have to register cars, get new tires, pay for tuition and books, and all of those fun life things. October is both of our birthdays PLUS we have a bunch of other family birthdays to buy for, and then it's time for Christmas and we don't have any money saved up. When we ran into this dilemma a few months ago, we realized that our envelope could help solve this problem for us! 

At the end of the year, I made a list of every birthday that we buy for and holidays that involve gifts. Then we sat down together and decided how much we wanted to spend on each other and other people for each of those and create a budget. We totaled up those amounts, and divided it to figure out how much we'd be putting into our envelope each month. That way, when Christmas comes around, we'll have enough money to go shopping without worrying about it eating into our grocery budget for the month or having to come out of some other savings.

Marriage & Money

Nobody needs to go into debt to pay for Christmas, anniversaries, birthdays, Valentine's, etc. They happen every year, so you have plenty of time to prepare! Sit down and make a budget, save money in a special account for those things, and don't spend more than you've allotted. You can live life normally and not feel like you need to eat rice and beans for a month after the holidays are over to replenish your bank account.
How do you budget for gifts?



  1. Alessandra FergusonFebruary 6, 2014 at 2:21 PM

    We are starting the same thing this year. Last year we ended up moving so it kind of ate into that budget and we had to use a credit card, but we spent very very little. This year we decided if we could set a small amount aside every month we would have a good Christmas budget. Now having a kid, that becomes even more important for us to be proactive on! :) Good post!

  2. We started this last year and it made a HUGE difference in my stress level at Christmas time! Great tips! I'm your newest fan! Hope to meet you this weekend! :)

  3. I'm glad it's worked for you! I'm excited to see how it works for us this year! We halfway did it last year, but didn't have as much saved up as we wanted because we didn't start in time or create a budget first! :) I'm excited to meet you as well! :)

  4. Ah, yeah, things like that do kill your budget sometimes! :) I'm excited to see how it works out for you! I'm sure it will be great, because you're planning way far ahead!

  5. I love your Marriage & Money series, even if the marriage part doesn't apply to me. I am adding a new "Gifts" fund to my envelope budget!

  6. Woo hoo! I'm glad you can find some way to apply my stuff to your life!

  7. Once again, I'm in awe at how easy y'all make the envelope system seem!

  8. We've been talking about putting money away each paycheck for chrismas so it doesn't kill our accounts come next year! But it's kinda hard with only one income haha. So hopefully with our cheaper apartment it's more doable!

  9. It's hard, but just a little bit helps :) I'm excited to see how it helps us this year! :) We're actually reworking our envelope system again this weekend :P It's never ending... hahaha


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