Top 7 Not so Scary Ways to Save Money
Learning how to save money during Halloween isn’t as scary as it sounds. In fact, what is scarier than a horror movie on a dark Friday the 13th night?
Getting caught up in the holiday excitement and spending your savings away.
What’s even worse is spending your CREDIT CARDS away! yikes!
With the mentality “oh I will pay for it later” after all its the holidays right?!
Yes! The holidays are exciting and fun but don’t let them distract you from what MOST important.
Rachael Hollis is a national icon as she promotes living a healthy balanced life. And it just so happens that this time of year is the time to push the most!!
She has a #last90day challenge that is free to anyone in the community that wants to sign up. The challenge was made because so many of us fall into the lie that we will start living our best life when…(you fill in the blank).
I will start eating better… after the holiday goodies are over OR I will start saving money…. after the new year. Stop the excuses and start getting comfortable being uncomfortable.
Saving money is not convenient. It takes an intentional mindset. That is where you will find change. That is where you will really start SAVING MONEY.
Let’s finish your last 90 days of the year strong! Save more then you have ever saved during this season!
What are you spending extra money on this Halloween? Take your pick.
Now that we know what we are spending on here are ways to save!
1. Make, reuse, or borrow Halloween costumes
Now is the time to start taking inventory of what you have and what you can possibly borrow for that perfect Halloween costume for you or the kids. Sure it’s easy to buy a quick costume. The average person will spend between $20 – $50 on costumes. Then you throw in a few more kids and you are easily spending over $100!
Instead of heading to the local costume shop, ask your friends and family what they have to borrow. This is a fun opportunity to get creative with your kids. Let their imaginations run wild. Making the costume itself can be a great time to bond with your sweet little ones.
Some of my favorite costumes have been the ones we made from stuff at home. Like this one of my son dressing like a beggar for candy.
With some simple preparation, you can put together an awesome costume with what you have.
Reusing costumes from previous years or buying used costumes at a second-hand store, are both ways to save money this Halloween!
Facebook has an awesome market place that you can see what people are selling around you. I have already seen tons of princess dresses and other used Halloween costumes for half price.
And let’s be honest, depending on where you live there is a good chance your kid’s costume will be covered with a coat or something to keep them warm. So keep that in mind before you go out and buy the latest and greatest costume.
2. Buy cheap toys or generic candy
Likewise, when you take time to think about what you want to give away to trick or treaters, then you can simply save by being proactive.
Remember, you do not have to be that house giving away a personal soda and king-size candy bar. Kids will love mini tootsie rolls or smarties too. They are not picky! Plus, the kids will have plenty of options when they are done for the night.
A few things to consider when buying candy:
- How many kids are in your neighborhood?
- Are you participating in the teal pumpkin trick or treating?
- Will there be trick or treating events prior to Halloween?
- Do you want to be home this year?
How many kids are in your neighbor?
It is good to have an approximate idea of how many kids will be trick or treating at your house. Growing up in a neighborhood with a lot of kids, we had several bags of candy and still came up short some years. However, the kids have grown up and in that same neighborhood, my mom is lucky to get through one small bag.
Dynamics change, so ask around if you are new to the area so you will know what to expect.
No need to tempt yourself with bags left of your favorite candy.
Are you participating in the teal pumpkin project?
The teal pumpkin project is a way to raise awareness of food allergies for children and includes them in trick or treating by providing a non-food trinket or toy instead of candy.
You can learn more about this project and how to register your house by checking out the FARE (Food Allergy Research and Education) site.
Whether you want to participate in this project or not, cheap toys can sometimes save you more money than expensive chocolate. Check out the clearance sections at Walmart or Amazon’s small inexpensive assortments of Halloween toys.
If you are going the toy route this year, buying tricks (toys) on amazon costs around 9 cents a toy. Here is an example of an assortment of 150 Halloween toys.
Will there be trick or treating events prior to Halloween?
You may be wondering why this matters?!?
This may be the most important money-saving hack for Halloween yet! Because it’s FREE!
Check out the local community trick or treating events, church Trunk or Treats, or work Halloween parties. All of these places can be gold mines for free candy.
Like we are talking so much candy if you and your kids ate it all you would be sick! So why not recycle?
Let your children trick or treat at these events and get as much candy as their heart desires, then (after picking out your favorites) use that candy for Halloween night! You can assure your child that they will be getting much more candy trick or treating that night anyway.
This is my favorite option because you have less candy to fight with your kids about eating and you don’t have to contribute to the billions of dollars spent on candy each year!
Do you want to be home trick or treating this year?
This is a serious question when you are wanting to save money or spend some time with family that lives further away. There may be some years that giving out candy just doesn’t work for your family or your budget. That is OK!!
Go visit some family and just participate in the Halloween festivities. Sometimes people (me included) get so caught up in trying to keep up with the Jones, that we don’t realize that it is ok to do something else.
Remember, Halloween is much more than the candy you give away.
3. Cozy up and Read a Book on Saving / Goals
Summer is over, school is back in session, and routines are getting a bit less crazy (for some of us at least). It is time to head to the library and check out that book or audible book that you have been wanting to read about goals or saving money.
Remember saving money is more about your mental status then your financial status.
As the weather starts to cool down, cozy up to a fire or your favorite blanket and educate yourself on who and where you want to be financially or mentally.
Knowledge is power. Don’t ever underestimate the power of taking time to get focused on your goals or doing a self check if you are still on coarse.
Check out my recommendations for some of my favorite books on finances and mental health.
4. DIY your Halloween Decor.
Oh, the power of black spray paint. Do you have any old decor that you are planning on getting rid of anyway? You would be amazed how a little paint can transform a jar, book, basket or even typewriter (I’ve seen someone paint on and it looked awesome), etc. into something old and spooky.
If you don’t know where to start here are a few places that have free or cheap Halloween decor ideas.
- 42 DIY Halloween Decorations by Amanda
- 25 DIY Halloween Decoration to make this year
- 30 DIY Halloween Decorations that are actually cool and easy
- 50 DIY Halloween Decorations that will make your home the spookiest on the block
Needless to save there are hundreds of options for FREE or CHEAP Halloween decor. Before you mosy on over to Target to see what cute new Halloween decorations they have, check out these DIY options and save money this Halloween season.
5. Find places that give away FREE pumpkins
Check your local pumpkin patches and see if there are free pumpkins to take home with admission. Here is a website that helps to locate local pumpkin patches. If you are going to pay for Halloween activities for your family, take advantage of the free promotions they offer.
Having a realtor friend or a dentist office that does fall events is super helpful this time of year. Businesses often have free events for clients, family, and friends to say thank you.
These events often include a $5 voucher or free pumpkins to take home for your family. Keep a lookout for these events and register early to make sure you get a spot.
Lastly, if you have dirt and time, plan on growing your own pumpkins for next year. Pumpkins are easy to grow and would be a great opportunity to teach your kids the whole growing cycle.
How fun would it be to have your kids pick the pumpkins they grew on there own and decorate them! Save money and grow pumpkins
6. Make your own Holiday cards
I love getting holiday cards! I remember, as a kid, there was nothing better than getting a card in the mail with my name on it. Well, things haven’t changed much in my adult years. I still get excited when I sort through the ads and bills and find a card with my name on it!
You don’t need to stop sending thoughtful cards! I think the world needs more of them. However, when you are trying to save money this Halloween, this may be one of the easiest things to do to save. Make your own card.
How to make your own greeting card
- Get paper. Just your standard card stock works great.
- Fold paper
- Decorate your card with love. stickers, stamps or old fashion crayons or markers work great.
If you want to get a little techier, there are some awesome programs like Canva that you can make your own card for free. All you need is a printer for a personalized Halloween card that comes from the heart.
7. Eat at home and Shop your Pantry
How much do you spend on groceries each month? How much do you spend eating out each month? If you don’t know the answer to those two questions the chances are it’s too much.
When we don’t have a financial goal or budget and spend aimlessly, we spend extra money on this and that. Unfortunately, this and that can add up to hundreds more than we wanted to spend that month.
This month of October commit to making food from home and using what you already have in your pantry first.
It may sound like a no brainer, but let me tell you, when its already 5 o’clock and you and your kids are hungry it’s so tempting to run over to Little Caesars and get a few pizzas, breadsticks and a side of cheese bread.
Let’s save the $25 on one meal and tighten up the budget.
Here are some ideas to save over $100 this month on groceries
- Budget for groceries
- Meal plan
- Shop your pantry
- Buy generic
- Use a coupon app like Ibotta
- Eat before you shop
- Stick to your list
Having a budget is not about what you CAN’T have, it’s about what you would RATHER have in the long run.
This is an exciting time of year! Too often we get caught up in the excitement and switch back to our autopilot spending ways, doing what we have always done. Don’t get sucked in!
This year you are going to save hundreds by tweaking a few simple things and being prepared.
Let’s not over complicate things.
If you follow these steps you WILL save money during Halloween this year.
Above all, you will propel yourself to finish the #last90days strong. Changing, growing and living your best life (while saving money), one day at a time!
What are some ways you are saving money this Halloween season? Help us to save more with your ideas! I would love to hear from you. Leave a comment below.
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