5 Easy Ways to Boost Your Holiday Budget Now

coinstar blog post imageWith the holidays in full swing, Americans across the country are busy decorating, prepping for parties and shopping for gifts. While setting a budget and sticking to it is crucial, many people get wrapped up in the spirit of the season and end up overspending. In fact, a recent survey from Coinstar found that consumers who set a budget typically blow it by an average of $140. Instead of cutting back or letting credit card debt destroy your financial goals in the New Year, I’ve put together several easy ways to boost your holiday budget.

Cash in on clutter.

Is your home filled with unwanted and unused stuff? From kid’s clothing that is a few sizes too small to old gadgets to sporting goods, this is the perfect time to turn such clutter into cash and boost your holiday budget. Sell clothing and shoes at sites like thredup.com and cash in on old sporting goods at 2nd Time Sports. Finally, sell unwanted gift cards for instant cash via a Coinstar Exchange Kiosk at your local grocery store.

Exchange coins for gift cards.

For those who have been collecting spare change and coins, you may have more money than you thought sitting in a jar. In fact, a large mason jar filled with shiny coins holds an average of $62. Don’t let those coins go to waste! Exchange them at your local Coinstar kiosk for a no-fee e-gift card to a popular retailer like Amazon or Toys R Us.

Redeem rewards.

Now is the time to cash in on points and miles. Review your credit card and travel reward options as you may be able to redeem those credits for popular holiday items or gift cards. Make sure to compare redemption offers so you maximize from those rewards.

Take on a side hustle.

Assuming you don’t have the time to commit to a part-time retail gig, there are easy ways to make money on the side. At TaskRabbit.com, you can help people in your area with odd tasks like building Ikea furniture or grocery shopping. Since many families need extra childcare this time of year, sign up as a babysitter at SitterCity.com. If you love animals, search for dog walking or dog sitting opportunities at Rover.com.

Give your opinion.

Cash in on your opinion by taking online surveys at MySurvey.com. You can also rate music and write reviews for new songs and videos for points to redeem toward cash or gift cards at SliceThePie.com. Watch Youtube videos or play new games for points toward gift cards at Swagbacks.com.

Make sure to put the extra cash you make into a separate account to be used only for holiday needs so you know how much you can afford to spend on gifts, decorations and other holiday goods.

Andrea Woroch

Andrea Woroch is a nationally-recognized consumer and money-saving expert who regularly contributes to leading national and regional news stories. She has appeared on NBC's Today Show, Dr. OZ, Good Morning America, FOX & Friends, MSNBC, CNN, ABC News with Diane Sawyer, and been quoted in New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Money Magazine, Kiplinger Personal Finance, Better Homes & Garden and many others. Andrea also enjoys writing articles for various personal finance and lifestyle websites and blogs. Andrea is passionate about sharing ideas and tips to help you live on less without having to sacrifice. She says making a few small tweaks to daily and monthly spending is all you need to do to achieve your dreams within your means. Follow Andrea on Facebook and Twitter for daily savings tips and check back for new videos, magazine stories and blog posts all about saving money!

Save for the things that matter

Without giving up the things you love

Want your family’s financial future to feel safe and secure? Download my Easy Family Budget Worksheet and take control of your family’s finances in just 10 minutes!