Last updated on August 28th, 2021 at 11:37 am
Last week I went through the steps of how to create a prioritized Christmas list. With your prioritized Christmas list in hand it is time to get down to work at discovering income to pay for gifts or supplies to create gifts from places you might not have expected.
Creating a Christmas to remember on a super tight budget requires you to do some inventory. A top to bottom household inventory to be exact–and don’t forget the garage and backyard storage shed.
How To Do A Top To Bottom Christmas Stash Inventory Of Your Home
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Grab a notepad and a pen and first make a list of every area of your home. From kitchen to bathrooms to storage areas. With that list in hand, as well as more paper and a pen, start hitting each of those areas you listed.
In the printable pack that goes along with my Christmas On A Zero Budget mini eBook you will find a household inventory printable to help you go through your house from top to bottom, finding items to sell and items that could be repurposed to create gifts. You can get more details about that eBook and grab your copy by going here and signing up for my newsletter.
You want to view the contents of those areas with fresh eyes that are willing to look at things in an out of the box way. You are looking for items that are either potential things to sell or potential materials to make gifts.
An Example Of How To See Your Items As Either Money or Supplies
Let’s say the first room you go to is your closet. You see that pile of jeans you have been hoping to fit back into for years now. Those jeans have more value to creating a Christmas to remember on a super tight budget this year than they do sitting there making you feel guilty about that Christmas sugar cookie you indulged in.
The tricky part is deciding which category the jeans should land in. Are they a designer brand that you could resell on eBay for a pretty sum that could help out the Christmas budget? Or do they have more value in the material? As in you could take them and make potholders for all the gals at work that they would love.
This is how you need to view each and every item in the spaces on your list. Could you sell it? Could you reuse it somehow to create a gift for others?
Of course, what you come up with is going to depend on your talents. You might be able to look at the broken down shed and see the old wooden siding as perfect material for whimsical homemade signs for everyone on your Christmas list for only the cost of paint to write the sayings and string to hang them from.
I, on the other hand, might have no talent in that area (honestly I don’t–my handwriting skills could be beaten by preschoolers) so the value for me would be in tearing down the shed and reselling the wood through Craigslist to someone who can make those cute wooden signs.
Go from room to room in your house and property looking through every nook and cranny, taking stock of everything you already own. Collect everything you are willing to part with and then decide: sell it or recreate it.
This post will help you gather as much as possible to resell & repurpose
If You Struggle With Letting Go Of Items Ask These Three Questions
Am I holding on to the item just because I spent good money on it?
If the answer is yes, it is time to face the truth–the money is already wasted. Using it to help provide for Christmas will help you get some use out of it.
Does it suit who you currently are?
You might have bought all that material when you were into quilting, but are you still into it? Or does the thought of quilting right now sound as about as relaxing as getting a tooth pulled. Only keep items that suit the current you and let those that don’t fund your Christmas.
Is it collecting dust?
If the item is collecting dust then chances are it has been quite a while since you have used it and it probably has more value being sold or remade into items that bring joy to someone you love.
Don’t Forget Those New With Tag Items
Pretty much every household has some brand new items with tags still attached. Perhaps it was a gift you received that just wasn’t you? An item you bought only to discover you had one like it already? Something you bought as a gift for someone and then you stashed it and forgot all about it?
Whatever the reason, these items can make great gifts–just make sure not to give the ones that you got as gifts to the same person or to someone within the same circle of friends.
It should go without saying that these new with tag items should be given as gifts only if you look at it and you automatically think to yourself “so and so would love this”. Otherwise they are better off sold.
Having Problems Seeing Potential In Your Belongings?
Engage In Disengaging Activities To Get Your Creative Brain Working
My best out of the box thinking comes when I am able to disengage my brain and just let it wander. For me this happens most often when I am out walking, running or biking, but for others it might be while you wash the dishes or while you are taking a shower.
To take full advantage of disengaging brainstorm activities make sure you have a way to document your ideas at all times. For the longest time I used the note section of my iPhone, but recently I switched over to using the google docs app on my smartphone.
If you simply cannot decide what to do with some of the items you found that you are willing to part with, just set them aside for now. I will discuss other places you can find ideas for your items later in this series.
Don’t forget to dig into your kitchen cupboards
You kitchen cupboards might be holding the ingredients to make multiple gifts. Perhaps you recently bought a bulk sized container of coconut oil and you would gladly be willing to use some of it up in creating sugar scrubs for gifts for your children’s teachers.
If you like to made edible gifts, my no bake Christmas series has 6 simple recipes that are all gift worthy and contain ingredients you just might have in your cupboards.
Psst…I am going to tell you where to resell your items next week.
If you are wondering how or where to sell the items that you collect to resell, don’t worry! I will be covering that very topic next week. Make sure you sign up for my weekly newsletter below so you get the link to the post
View the rest of the How To Plan A Christmas To Remember On A Super Tight Budget series here.
How To Plan A Christmas To Remember On A Super Tight Budget: The Series
Week Five: Half Of What You Need For Christmas You Already Own (you are here)
For a list of 52 different websites, apps, and stores our thrifty family uses to help us keep our expenses low, click here to visit our Thrifty Tools Resource Page.