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How can single parents save money this Christmas?

113613248_S.jpgIf you're a single parent in Missouri, chances are you're on a tight budget this Christmas. While you want to make sure the holiday is special for your children, you also don't want to spend yourself into financial instability. Whether you're concerned about making child support payments or trying to stretch them as far as they'll go, U.S. News & World Report offers the following advice to keep your finances on track this holiday season.

Set a budget and stick to it

First and foremost, set a budget and stick to it. While you naturally want to provide everything you can for your kids, it's important that you keep a realistic budget in mind when shopping. If you find you're unable to buy the high-value gifts your kids want, make the holiday special in other ways. For instance, take your kids on a tour of dazzling lights or spend the evening hand-crafting ornaments for your tree.

Limit gift giving

Instead of buying gifts for your entire family, consider setting up a gift-exchange. This is where each family member draws names from a hat and only buys a gift for that specific person. This is a great option when most of the family is on a budget, which is often the case for larger families with many kids.

Offer alternatives

Some of your loved ones may be OK with swapping out gifts for other alternatives. For instance, if you have an elderly relative who needs help around the home, consider offering your services in this case in lieu of buying a gift. Not only will doing so help you save money, it can also be much more rewarding and fulfilling than just buying something off the shelf.

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  • Saint Louis County: 120 S. Central Ave., Suite 450, Clayton, MO 63105: Clayton Office
  • West County: 16024 Manchester Rd., Suite 103, Ellisville, MO 63011: Ellisville Office
  • Jackson County: 256 NE Tudor Rd., Lee's Summit, Missouri 64086: Lee's Summit Office
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