No matter how well you prepare, there is a very good chance you will have an unexpected budget hiccup or two every month. Our debt counselors know these things happen. And since each month varies, so will those surprise expenses. Here are a few unexpected October budget items that you can plan for to avoid debt.
6 Unexpected October Budget Items
Pumpkin Picking, Apple Picking, and More!
Fall is one of my favorite times of the year. I especially love pumpkin apple and pumpkin picking. However, these fall activities cost money. Depending on the size of your family, and the size of your pumpkins, it could cost quite a bit of money for an outing. Plus, no one is going home without cider and other tasty treats. Making sure you have a little extra in your entertainment fund is an excellent idea if you plan to do some of these fall activities.
Halloween Costumes & Candy
Your kids need costumes. The neighborhood kids need candy. These are a few other unexpected October budget items to remember. You may need to purchase flashlights and a pumpkin to collect the candy. Even if you make the costumes yourself, you may need extra supplies or accessories to complete the outfit. Finally, if you live in a big neighborhood, you will have to purchase a lot of candy to give way.
Fall and Thanksgiving Decorations
Decorating your home for fall and Thanksgiving is a lot of fun. Maybe you recently bought a new home or have rented your first apartment, and you want to buy some new decorations. This is a great idea, but you have to make sure you have money to do so. Set a budget and stick to it. It’s hard to say no to all the cute decor items once you’re shopping!
Heating Bills & Home Weatherization
The next item to consider is your home’s heating costs and the cost to prepare it for the winter months. Depending on where you live, you may need to invest in some plastic for the windows, heavier drapes, duct insulation, etc. Plus, your heating costs will start increasing during October. Preparing for the increase in utility costs is an important budget adjustment. This is a necessity, unlike some of the other items on this list.
As the weather gets colder, you and your family will need warmer clothing. If anyone changed sizes or things were worn out from last year, you will need to purchase a few new items. Keep an eye out for Columbus Day sales! Check out thrift stores or host a clothing swap with friends to reduce costs.
Christmas Presents or Savings
Finally, it’s time to start buying Christmas presents! Or, at least you should start aggressively saving for those purchases. As the holidays roll in, you will need to be as prepared as possible to avoid credit card debt. It’s not too early to think through your Christmas list.
Keep these unexpected October budget items in mind as you start preparing your October budget. The more prepared you are, the better chance you have of avoiding consumer debt. Remember to prioritize necessities and getting out of debt over the fun budget items.
If you’re struggling to pay off debt, ACCC can help. Schedule a free credit counseling session with us today.