For many families, the countdown to Halloween starts about now. With a few weeks away until the holiday, we can already feel our budgets hurting. It's amazing how expensive one night can be. Between costumes, candy and decorations, we're looking at potentially hefty expenses. All that money spent for one outfit and one night? It's almost as bad as prom season. (For other ways to save, see 6 Simple Ways To Save This Halloween.)

TUTORIAL: Budgeting Basics

Of course, we can always decide not to celebrate. Forgo the costume and candy for now, and spend the money on something else. We can always save money by reusing costumes from last year. If you have kids, however, skipping the holiday is out of the question. Money should never stand in the way of your child's Halloween.

Here are six of the most common Halloween budget killers, coupled with tips for outsmarting them:

New Costumes
Prepackaged costumes are not always worth the premium. Instead of spending $50 to $100 on a costume in a bag, use your creative instincts to create your own. Leverage your kids' creative imaginations to design your family's costumes. If you're savvy with a sewing machine, buy some fabric and put your ideas to work. Otherwise, shop around on eBay and at thrift stores for second-hand items. As a family, find creative ways to make the most of what you have around the house, too.

Premium Supplies
This year, when you're shopping for Halloween party supplies, be smart about what you're buying and where you're shopping. Instead of seeking out Halloween-specific supplies, look for items that you can reuse throughout this fall season. Step outside the Halloween section to seek out generic items without the Halloween premium. You can even try the dollar-store to find the basics that you need.

Disposable Items
If you are shopping for Halloween supplies, look for items that you can reuse in future years. The costs may be higher upfront, but over time, your investment will be a wise one. Store your items in a place where your decorations will be free from harm or damage, and keep them in a vacuum-sealed bag. You can even make your own decorations to reuse and use this experience as an opportunity to build some great family memories.

Unnecessary Props
In the world of decorating, less can be more. Instead of splurging on every imaginable prop, focus on the ones that deliver the effects that you want. Take a minimalist approach to making a statement. You don't need an over-done home to have fun with your family.

The Assumption That You Can't Shop Around
With less than a month left until Halloween, you have plenty of time to plan your budget wisely. If you find a great deal on a costume right now, you should absolutely take it. If you're up to it, you can also wait until the very last minute when many Halloween stores dramatically drop prices. With time on your side, you'll also have your pick with top second-hand marketplaces like eBay and Amazon marketplace.

Remember that you can also shop around for items like candy, and when you do shop around, compare items by price-per-ounce to make sure that you are buying the most for your money spent. Costco and are both great places to buy wholesale candy. When you shop around, make sure that you scour the web for online coupon codes.

As with your costume, candy is an expense that allows you to get creative. Chances are that you and your kids will be attending a number of Halloween-related events and parties. Save this candy, and reuse it for the night of Oct. 31. You can also reuse candy from the night itself: take your kids trick or treating early, and redistribute the candy that they ultimately won't eat. When trick-or-treaters come to your home, distribute candy yourself so that you can moderate how much people are taking. That way, you'll have enough candy to last the entire night.

The Bottom Line
For adults and kids alike, Halloween is an amazing holiday. Most likely, the night will be expensive, but you shouldn't let money stand in the way of this night of fun that only happens once a year. Find creative ways to save, and make the most out of your budget.

Related Articles
  1. Personal Finance

    The Ten Commandments of Personal Finance

    Here are the simple financial Ten Commandments that, when faithfully followed, can lead to a secure economic future.
  2. Professionals

    Project Manager: Career Path & Qualifications

    Learn more about what project managers job, the qualifications necessary for the position and the most common careers for these professionals.
  3. Personal Finance

    How Tech Can Help with 3 Behavioral Finance Biases

    Even if you’re a finance or statistics expert, you’re not immune to common decision-making mistakes that can negatively impact your finances.
  4. Savings

    These 10 Habits Will Help You Reach Financial Freedom

    Learn 10 key habits for achieving financial freedom, including smart budgeting, staying abreast of new tax deductions and the importance of proper maintenance.
  5. Budgeting

    How Much Will it Cost to Become President In 2016?

    The 2016 race to the White House will largely be determined by who can spend the most money. Here is a look at how much it will cost to win the presidency.
  6. Budgeting

    Six Most Popular Hobbies You Can Do For Free

    Does your budget not allow you to have expensive hobbies? Here are six great ideas for occupying your free time without spending money.
  7. Home & Auto

    This Is How You Could Live in the Philippines on $1,000 a Month

    Consider what your life might be like in the Philippines on a $1,000 budget, and determine whether this Southeast Asian country is for you.
  8. Home & Auto

    This Is How You Could Live in Thailand on $1,000 a Month

    Discover what kind of life you can lead on $1,000 per month in Thailand, one of the top expatriate and tourist destinations in Southeast Asia.
  9. Personal Finance

    5 Reasons Inmates Should Be Taught Financial Literacy

    Learn five reasons why financial literacy is a great way to prevent inmates from relapsing into a life of crime after release from prison.
  10. Home & Auto

    How Much Money Do You Need to Live in Mexico City?

    Learn how much it costs for four types of expatriates to live in Mexico City, including students, job hunters, professionals and retirees.
  1. How does a bank determine what my discretionary income is when making a loan decision?

    Discretionary income is the money left over from your gross income each month after taking out taxes and paying for necessities. ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. What is the range of deductibles offered with various health insurance plans?

    A wide range of possible deductibles are available with health insurance plans, starting as low as a few hundred dollars ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How do I know how much of my income should be discretionary?

    While there is no hard rule for how much of a person's income should be discretionary, Inc. magazine points out that it would ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What proportion of my income should I put into my demand deposit account?

    Generally speaking, aim to keep between two months and six months worth of your fixed expenses in your demand deposit accounts. ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. How do I use the rule of 72 to estimate compounding periods?

    The rule of 72 is best used to estimate compounding periods that are factors of two (2, 4, 12, 200 and so on). This is because ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. How much risk is associated with subprime mortgages?

    A large amount of risk is associated with subprime mortgages. Since the mortgages are specifically for people who do not ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Trading Center