How To Save For Christmas Without Thinking
One of my favorite quotes from Dave Ramsey is “Christmas is not an emergency.” I think I love it so much because my husband and I used to treat it like an emergency back when we didn’t know better.
We knew that Christmas came the same time every year whether we were prepared for it or not, but for some reason we’d blow off the idea of saving for it until the last minute, or we’d make excuses about not affording to save for it throughout the year.
And that, of course, led to scrambling to get money together at the last minute or using our credit cards. face palm
We’ve since changed our thinking and discovered a life-changing way to save money for Christmas on autopilot.
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Enter the Capital One 360 Savings account. It’s free and earns 1% APY. We now start saving for Christmas the first week of January. It comes out of our checking account automatically. How does it work? I’ll tell you step by step.
Determine Your Budget
First, you need to figure out how much you want to spend on Christmas. Make a list of everyone you’d like to buy for and how much you want to spend per person. Want to spend the same amount on everyone on your list? Great! Want to spend more on certain people than others? I won’t tell if you don’t.
Now that you have your list and budget, you need to determine how much you need to save weekly, biweekly, or monthly to reach that total by Christmas. Ready to move on to the next step?
Open a 360 Savings Account
I found out about the Capital One 360 Savings accounts two years ago and it has been a game changer for us. All you have to do is open the account and set up an automatic savings plan. This will allow you to connect your bank account to the savings account and determine how much money and how frequently you want to transfer to your savings account.
For example, we have ours set up to transfer $35 every Friday (when my husband gets paid). You literally set it once and forget about it for the rest of the year.
We chose $35 because we have four children whom we do not spoil during the year, so we like to make Christmas extra special for them (and for us too, if I’m being honest). You could save $5 a week if you’d like.
The amount and frequency you choose doesn’t matter. What matters is that you are actively saving month after month without thinking about it.
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I also like the automatic transfers because it kind of just forces me to do it, like automatic bill paying. I don’t have the option to say, “I don’t think I want to save this week,” unless I go into my account and manually change it.
You can change it at any time of the year. You can even set up different savings plans for multiple items. You can have a Christmas saving plan, a new car savings plan, a mortgage down payment savings plan, etc. The sky is the limit with this thing.
We are on track to have about $1800 to spend on Christmas. We probably won’t actually spend that much, but if we do, we won’t feel bad about it because that’s what we budgeted the money for. Make sense? I couldn’t recommend the Capital One 360 Savings account enough.
If you use my link to open a 360 Savings account with an initial deposit of $250, you’ll get $20 deposited into your account automatically! Oh, and I’ll get $20 too. Win win!
Do you have an automatic savings plan for Christmas? Tell me about it in the comments!