This holiday season, you would always be looking for ways to save money especially when you find the need to host a party for family and friends. You might already be having a hard time with all your holiday shopping and now you have to start planning for a party. With a few days left in the month, this could be a stressful ordeal that can also take its toll on your finances.
TheGuardian.com even goes to define this part of the year as consumers having an “Acute seasonal spending panic.” This is because of all the people in their lives that they have to buy gifts for and if you add having a party at home then this panic can build up. It can take away and suck all the holiday cheer from under you.
Save money with these party tips
Being able to save some money with your party is not like saving money while on a date with your spouse. Here are a few things you might want to look into when planning a party for the holidays and you are running a tight ship.
- Trim your guest list. Hosting a house party for officemates, friends and relatives will be a challenging task. It is the season for it but no one ever said that it will be easy. You can choose to host on party after the other or put them all in one big affair. The challenge for parties is that after you list down your guest list, you are left with the struggle of paring it down to either fit inside the house or for budget purposes. The smaller the list, the more you can save money but it is a balance with getting too few and ending up with a boring event. Stick to the people that you know to make the party meaningful and relevant for the holiday season where family is key.
- Your menu should work around your budget. When you host house parties for the holidays, there is always the tendency to show off with the food you will offer. The tastier and grandeur your variety is, people perceive you are a classy and a well-off family. But if this is a stretch and you have to bend over backwards just to get the best food, you might be digging your own debt grave. Put together the food choices early on and try to stick to finger foods and refreshments . Sending the menu out to your guest early on gives them chance to prepare.
- Time the party just right. One way to get away with light snacks and drinks for a party is to time the event just right. This will help you save money with your food expense. You can host the party before or after a main meal to be able to serve light snacks and refreshments. If you time it during lunch or dinner then you would need to serve up heavy meals for all your guests. Again, the idea is to let all your guests know in advance so they can eat a heavy meal before heading out to your party.
- Repurpose old decors. Decorations can be laborious and CBC.ca even shares of a business sprouting because of this need. You need to bring the spirit of the holiday into the party and one way to do that is decorating your house with Christmas decors. Of course this mind sound a small thing but once you start to shop and look for the right accents to to pull off the party, you might be surprised that they tally to a big amount. Save money by taking your old decors and using them again. Just clean them up and mix and match them so you can have a great decor around the house.If you come up short then you at least just have to buy a few that can complement what you already have at home.
- Come up with a theme for the party. This is one of those things that you can use to breathe in more life to the party. It helps everyone plan their clothes or costume for the party. On your part as the host, you get to look at what decors you have and align the theme with it. You can also look at using a pajama party theme so you do not have to dress up elegantly.
- Buy supplies in wholesale to save money. You will need supplies for the party and to be able to save money on what you need for the party, it is best to buy the supplies in wholesale to save on cost. Those plates, cups and other party necessities will come off less expensive when you buy in bulk. If it will be too much for what you need, ask around and check if you have family and friends who needs to buy the same supplies for their own parties and team up when you head on out to wholesale stores.
- Plan you music ahead of time to save on DJ. Big parties meant for hundreds of crowd would need non-stop music to get them going and that is a band or a DJ’s job. And the organizers would have that in their budget but when you are hosting a house party, getting a DJ would be a little too much. What you can do to save a few dollars is to plan your music ahead of time and either burn a CD or simply put them in a USB stick and hit play and loop. You do not have to worry about music the whole night.
- Be creative with your party favours. It is the host’s job to give guests some favours to bring home just like it is done in weddings and other parties where they get to take home small tokens of appreciation for coming to the party. To save money, you can look at approaching this part of the party with a little DIY flare. If you can bake cookies or cupcakes then you already have an option with your giveaways. You do not have to buy expensive items to give away for the party. Look at simple things that would make you visitors
Worst case financial scenarios with house parties
Now that you have a few ideas on how to manage your expenses for that holiday party at home, here are a few examples of the complete opposite. Try to stay away from these mistakes to prevent getting into too much debt for the holidays.
- Going overboard with the designs and food. Know your limitations with design, decors and food by coming up with a budget. It is to try and give your guests a great time and at the end of the day, that is what it is all about but no to the point that you spend more than what you can afford just to please other people.
- Charging everything to credit. There is nothing wrong with using your credit card but you need to learn how to use it to your advantage. If you charge all your holiday party expenses to credit and you do not have any plans of paying for the full amount before the year ends then you are going to be in big trouble. Credit card minimum payments slowly kill finances because you end up paying a higher price for the items with all the interest and fees attached to it.
- Taking out a loan just for the party. This is just showboating because if you need to take out a loan just to show off to your family and friends then it might be better to not have a party at all. Do not take out a loan but rather exercise the creative side of your brain and look for alternatives in hosting a party without taking on debt.
- You end up with home renovation expenses because of damages to property. You need to know the people you are inviting to the party. You can have plus ones but bringing the whole neighbourhood to your party is a big no no. Make sure to let your guests know about this so you do not end with more people whom you do not know in your own party. You might end up having to clean up and fix a lot of broken stuff around the house if they get too rowdy. Time.com recently shared an article where guests trashed a house which they renter through Airbnb.
There are a lot of ways to save money this holiday season when you are planning to host a party. Just make sure that you give your guests an event they can remember with family fun and cheer without having to go in debt for it.