Tired of scrambling to get a gift?
Try Stocking Up!
Stocking up on gifts and cards is something I’ve done over the past couple of years and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been so glad I can grab something from my “stash” instead of rushing out to get a gift for a birthday I forgot.
I don’t stock up just for the sake of stocking up. The whole rational behind stocking up is to buy things when they are on sale, and be prepared and not have to rush around finding a gift at the last minute.
Choose Your Method—or use both!
There are a couple ways to approach stocking up:
1—Buy items specifically for certain people. You know you are going to get your best friend a gift for her birthday, and it seems like you always see the perfect gifts when you are out and about, but when you go to actually get her a gift, you can never find that perfect thing. Well, buy it when you see it and check it off your list!
2—Buy a few items that would work for almost anyone. If you have a school-aged child, you probably get invited to at least 5 kids’ birthday parties each year. Buy a few girl and a few boy presents and save yourself the last-minute gift buying rush on your way to the party.
I find that the best stocking up method is a combination of the two methods above. It’s good to have some “generic” teacher gifts and home-goods items that can be used for almost anyone, plus some gifts that you know you’ll use for specific people/occasions.
Organize Your Stash
Keep an inventory of what you have. What you don’t want to do is stock up on a bunch of gifts and then forget what you have and never use them. Duh-oh! The whole point is to save money and time, not buy a bunch of items that never get used. The inventory list doesn’t have to be anything elaborate. For example, I simply write down a description of the gifts on a piece of paper that I hang at my desk so it’s always fresh in my mind.
Crap! I forgot the card!
How many times has this happened to you? It’s definitely happened to me many a time. I have the gift, but realize as I’m wrapping it that I don’t have a card. Include cards in your stash. Stock up on birthday (for both men and women), congratulations, thank you, and blank cards that are good for almost any occasion.
Here’s a tip: Most of the cards I buy are blank inside, even if they say “happy birthday” on the front. This way I don’t have to worry about having the right type of card, but then the tone of the phrasing inside is wrong for the person I want to give it to.
You Have Enough On Your List
—Do Yourself This Favor
Stocking up can save you time and money in the long-run. Start slow. The only time I really buy a lot of items to stock up with is just after a holiday. I definitely don’t want to pay full-price for something that is going to be marked 75% off the next week. If you buy one year in advance for seasonal items, you can save a lot of money.
Do you have your own stash? Do you think having your own stash is a good idea? Comment below and let me know–I’d love to hear from you!
To learn how to build this into your budget, check out the helpful tips over at Stay At Home Money Manager. Mandy talks all about how to build gift giving (and shipping!) into your budget.
P.S. Zulily always has GREAT deals on gifts–sign up for their updates and stock up when you see something great! (*This page contains affiliate links–I get compensated if you click through my site–which is cool so I can stock up too!)