Holiday Inventory: Look Before You Buy

Holiday Inventory: Look Before You Buy

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The further you get into the holiday season, the more urgent things become. Gifts to buy! Houses to decorate! Food to bake, parties to attend, projects to complete—it’s all a little much sometimes, isn’t it? A big mistake busy people make during the holidays is buying things on impulse, especially things that are necessary for the season.

Before you shop, though; do a quick house cleaning and take an inventory. Whether you’re decorating, gift-giving, or looking for ways to entertain guests, you might be surprised what you already have. One less shopping trip is not only good on your wallet, but on your schedule, too!

Holiday Inventory List by Category 

An inventory is a check of what you should have (or in this case, what you need) over what you actually have in front of you. Cleaning is vital to knowing where everything is, so if you need some help getting straightened up, cleaning services are a great help.

Once everything's clean and in order, modify this list (below the break) for yourself or make one of your own, and check to see what you have and what you need to buy before you ever leave the house to shop.


  • Ornaments
  • Tree topper
  • Tree skirt
  • Candles
  • Tablecloth
  • Centerpiece


  • Wrapping paper
  • Tape
  • Gift bags
  • To/From nametags
  • Gift boxes


  • Games
  • Movies
  • Snacks

Thrifty Tip: Be Creative!

If you don’t have wrapping paper, but you have brown mailing paper, comics from the newspaper, or white paper that can be decorated, consider turning that into unique, homemade gift wrap.

Consider laying out craft supplies for the bored kids visiting your house (or your own bored children!) for something new to do, and making ornaments is a great way to spend some time as a family while saving a little money.

Whatever you do or don’t have, the most important part is having a good time as you celebrate with your family and friends!

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