Saving A Buck: Holiday shopping, start now

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

Halloween is just around the corner, but some of you may already be looking ahead to the holiday season and all the shopping that comes with it.

Experts say if you want to save a buck on the holidays this year, start now.

Mindy Geist always starts early.

She said, "I think about it all year."

Geist has already finished several gifts for her family members.

She is making religious wall hangings and other handcrafted gifts for her extended and has already completed several.

She said, "It's just more sentimental and thoughtful than a store-bought gift."

Financial experts say handmade gifts are a great way to save money.

By starting now, you won't feel so overwhelmed come December.

Financial expert Marilyn Geiger said, "I personally love to receive a handmade or homemade gift."

Geiger said simply starting early is likely to save you a buck because there's less pressure.

She said as the holidays draw near, make a list of everyone you want or need to buy for this year.

Geiger said, "As you make the list, write down your budget for each gift and, for sure, don't go over your budget."

Setting limits on the gifts you buy will help avoid impulse buys on items that seem like a great deal.

Another benefit to starting early, many stores are already offering sales and layaway options.

Geiger said, "I'm not thoroughly convinced that Black Friday sales are always the best price."

When you do find a good sale, take the money you saved and put it aside for the next gift on your list.

Another idea, decide now how many gifts you will buy each of your children or grandchildren.

Focusing on quality rather than quantity can help you save.

And consider having the adults in your family exchange names around Thanksgiving to cut back on how much each family spends.