If your children's birthdays are coming up, their enthusiasm and excitement has probably already made you aware of what they want. However, with the economy in rough shape, it's often not feasible to spend a fortune on birthday gifts. To avoid disappointing them, it will take some careful and clever planning. Here are five easy ways to save money on your kids' birthday presents.
Buy Them Used
Before you rush out to the mall to pick up a brand-new gift for your child's birthday, stop and consider how much you could save by buying it used. Things like MP3 players, game consoles, video games and computers can be bought from their previous owners for a fraction of the price and are usually still in excellent condition.
Don't Go Overboard
While it's tempting to give in and get your kids all of the things they want for their special day, it can lead to financial hardship. If you're worried about disappointing them, don't be. Most kids are perfectly happy to receive one or two of the things they asked for, especially if they were the most desired items. Furthermore, if you don't make a habit of fulfilling their every birthday desire, it will keep them from expecting way too much in the future.
Estimate the Value
Like a lot of children, yours may ask for a long list of items for their birthdays. Even if they seem to truly want everything on it, however, you need to take a step back and consider which of those things are really worth buying. Will it be used regularly or will it sit abandoned in a corner of the bedroom a month later? Are your kids mature enough to take good care of certain presents? Are they going to fight with their siblings over it? Could the gift interfere with their responsibilities at home and school? These are all important questions to ask yourself before making any significant purchases. By avoiding gifts that you think will be problematic, you can save a lot of extra money.
Coupons are a boon to any thrifty parent. These days, you can find coupons and discount codes for everything ranging from inexpensive clothing to high-dollar electronics. These can be found in mail advertisements, on blogs, on television and even in the form of QR barcodes that you can scan with your cell phone.
Many things these days are cheaper to buy online. For one thing, it saves you the burden of paying for gas. Free shipping is also a common perk of shopping this way. In addition, you can choose the cheapest and most reputable place to buy from to make sure you get the best value possible.