The end of the year presents an excellent opportunity to spend time with friends and family. If you’re hosting your loved ones for some holiday entertaining, it can be tempting to go all out, but a big holiday celebration can get expensive quickly. That’s bad news if you’re working with a tight budget or you’re trying to stick with your savings goals. The holidays are already an expensive time, so you don’t need entertaining to put you in the hole. Instead, use these easy tips to help you host an awesome holiday celebration on a budget.

First and Foremost, Create a Budget

Budgets are great. They help you spend consciously and stay on track for particular goals. If you aren’t already making a monthly budget for your life expenses, you should do so. (There are some great budgeting apps available that can help, like Mint or You Need a Budget.) Add holiday entertainment as an expense and budget a set amount that you can comfortably spend on holiday entertainment. Working off of a budget will help you keep all of your expenses in order and prevent you from splurging in any one area of party planning.

Give Your Guests a Mission

When you go to a party, you probably ask your host, “What can we bring?” That’s because it feels polite to show up to a party with something. If you don’t give your guests any direction, they may bring a plant for you to take care of or a random bottle of wine that no one touches. This is a money-saving opportunity. Give your guests a mission. Have them bring their own alcohol, or appetizers for the party, or a favorite game that they like to play. They’ll feel better about showing up with something, and you won’t spend needlessly.

Choose Entertainment Options You Already Have

As part of your holiday party planning, you may want to incorporate some entertainment into the evening. While games and activities can liven and loosen up a party, they don’t have to be extravagant or expensive. In fact, you probably have some board games or entertaining activities in storage that you haven’t used or thought about in some time. Go for entertainment options that you already have — even consider repurposing some of them — to keep your guests enthralled and your budget reasonable.

Don’t Go Crazy on Decor

Most people appreciate a good theme, and decorating your house with cute trinkets and ambiance for the holidays can be fun. You don’t want decor decor to eat up a huge portion of your budget. Your guests will focus much more on the company and libations they’re enjoying than they will the decor. That’s not to say a little bit of thoughtful decorating can’t add a lot to your party, just don’t let it hijak your budget.

Work with The Swanson Group and Your Home-Buying Budget

Saving for a home takes work and diligence, but you can do it! When you’re ready to start looking for a home, work with The Swanson Group. This real estate team has decades of experience helping families find homes in the Omaha area. Start your search by contacting The Swanson Group in Omaha, NE at 402-679-6566.