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How to Buy the Perfect Gift on a Shoestring Budget

Posted on December 04 2019

Buying gifts for others can be rewarding, or it can be stressful. If you haven't prepared for a holiday or other gift-giving occasion, you'll most likely be stressed out and at a loss for ideas. There are a few ways you can prepare so that you'll be ready to buy the perfect gift — at the perfect price:

1. Pay Attention

My dad would always use this simple, yet underused, method for buying gifts. Whenever a holiday or a birthday approached, he'd closely examine what we talked about and what we hinted towards. Sometimes, he'd get a perfect gift and we wouldn't even know how he came up with the idea. He'd do the same for my mom every year, and she'd always be amazed.

By paying attention to the person you want to buy a gift for, you'll be able to understand what they really want. Maybe they're constantly talking about something they have difficulty doing at home or something that's broken. Pay attention and write down ideas as soon as they come to you.

2. Look for Solutions

This is a good method when you're with someone on a regular basis. It delves a little bit deeper into the gift-buying process. Finding solutions to problems around the house can be a great way to buy the right gift. My wife and I both recently used this method.

My wife loves getting back massages. After giving one, I was locked in as the go-to masseuse for life. The only problem with back massages at home is that they're difficult to do comfortably on a couch or bed. When her head is turned to one side, it changes the alignment of her whole body, making for a less-than-ideal massage. So I turned to the internet to find a pillow with a hole and air holes in the middle. Now, she can put her face down comfortably while getting a massage.

3. Get the Right Price

I shopped around on a few sites to find the right price for the pillow. Once I found the cheapest possible price, I made the purchase. Amazon is a great place to start for many gifts.

My wife and I often work very different hours. This means we sometimes don't get a chance to talk for a couple of days at a time. We'd been leaving each other messages on the mirror with dry erase markers as a clever way to communicate. This had become difficult to clean off, so my wife came up with a solution. For just a few dollars, she bought a picture frame and put a few stickers on it. It's working wonderfully as a new spot to write messages to each other.

Sometimes, DIY is the best way to save. Many websites, such as Pinterest, offer DIY solutions and projects that can make great gifts.

4. Get it Right

By paying attention and looking for solutions to problems, you can find the perfect gift for a friend or family member. You can save money by shopping around and looking for DIY ways to make the gift work. By following this process when buying a gift, you can ensure it'll be perfect.

Written by AJ Pettersen for MoneyNing and legally licensed through the Matcha publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@getmatcha.com.

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