Image courtesy of bplanet / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
And not to rub it in or anything, but our holiday season is going to be, like, so stress free.
Wanna know how we did it?
Of course you do.
So we’ll give you an early Christmas present; our top secret strategy to being done Christmas shopping by July.
1. Shop the day after Christmas.
While you just started thinking about Christmas shopping when you saw the title of this article, we’ve been thinking about Christmas constantly. Not that we are Christmas fanatics or anything. We just love a good deal.
And when is the best time of the year to get a deal? Nope, not Black Friday.
The day after Christmas of course. We were halfway done shopping for Christmas 2014 on December 26, 2013.
We take advantage of the fact that stores are trying to get rid of their holiday inventory. This results in radical markdowns, all in the name of shelf space.
Last year we had the best luck at Bed Bath and Beyond and Walmart.
BONUS: When you go to Walmart right after Christmas, buy items when the sales are 50-60% off. Then, when sale prices go to 70-80% off, return the item and buy it back immediately with the new sale price. This ensures that you’ll get the items you want, and at the price that’s super low.
2. Only shop the clearance rack.
Whenever you’re out and about, always check the clearance rack. By constantly looking for a deal, you’ll run across gifts for the loved ones in your life.
We go shopping on Sundays because we like to get some exercise and scour for deals. Every store we go into, we head straight for the clearance rack. If we see something that’s a good deal, and we don’t need it for ourselves, we try to think of someone else that would be excited about the gift.
For example, there were a whole bunch of organic gummy candies on sale for $1 for each bag. We don’t eat too much candy, but we do have to buy a gift for my brother. So guess who is getting a box full of gummies for Christmas? He’ll be pumped, and the candy will be gone within the week. I guarantee it.
3. Don’t be selfish.
I eluded to this in #2, but I guess I’ll just come right out and say it.
Stop being selfish.
When you’re looking at sales racks, don’t just look for yourself.
I have a tendency to only look for things I want, and definitely don’t need. But Jacob has me trained to look at a clearance rack as an opportunity to mark some names off our Christmas list. I’m kidding myself if I think I need anything else, but what we do need is a nice gift at a rock bottom price.
4. Garage sale it.
We’ve already revealed that we shop for Christmas gifts at garage sales. We get some super nice stuff, too. In fact, the last garage sale gift we gave was met with overwhelming enthusiasm.
Refer to #3, and don’t be selfish when you’re at a garage sale too. Keep an eye out for the stragglers on your list that might be hard to buy for.
We never know what to get Jacob’s brothers for Christmas, but if we keep our eyes peeled at garage sales, we sometimes come across a gift that is unexpectedly perfect.
5. Stalk dealnews, Slickdeals, and Kmart/Sears.
Jacob is a daily dealnews stalker. You have to check it in the morning, otherwise the really good deals are gone, but we have gotten some great deals by keeping up with this site. They do all the hard work, which is actually finding the deals, and their readers capitalize.
Slickdeals is an online forum for frugal people. You can find trending deals from all over the net, often before they are even posted on sites like Dealnews.
Kmart and Sears will give you Shop Your Way points like crazy for 3 months if you sign up for the VIP membership. You will usually only accumulate under $6 in free points at one time, but if you use those points to shop the clearance section online or in store, you can get items completely for free.
In fact, this past Sunday, Jacob got 2 pairs of jeans for free. They were marked down to $20, were over 90% off clearance price, and he had $6 in free points to cover the $3 that he needed for the jeans. This time we weren’t shopping for someone else because, well we’re done Christmas shopping! (Sorry. I just had to say it one more time.) However, you can use Shop Your Way points to buy for someone else, no problem.
How close are you to being done Christmas shopping? Do you have any top secret techniques for Christmas shopping on the cheap?