Can you believe it’s already October? Halloween is fast approaching, and the neighborhood is becoming more and more ghoulish as each night passes. For many families, this holiday means spooky fun but also additional spending. Costumes, candy, and decorations can really add up, but it’s doesn’t have to be that way.

If you’re currently trying to reduce your debt or just want to save money, it doesn’t mean you have to forgo the holiday fun. You just have to be a little more creative! Whether you’re a Halloween fanatic or have plans for other fall festivities, here are a few ways you can save money this October.

What would Halloween be without some awesome costumes? Your first instinct may be to go out and buy the coolest one you see, but as we all know, the best costumes are often homemade. It’s not exactly fun to see someone else wearing the exact same thing you’re wearing – it’s way cooler to be unique!

Why not head to the local thrift shop or craft store and see what you can put together instead. A little imagination goes a long way. Besides, half the fun of Halloween comes from the preparation, including costume-making!

Not a DIYer, or even a thrifter? If you don’t feel up for the challenge of making your own costume, perhaps do a swap with friends. It’s a win-win, frugal solution, because nobody has to spend any money on new costumes, but everybody gets to be something different.  You don’t have to break the bank to look spooktacular!

Candy is another big Halloween expense. I know I’m not alone in admitting that I buy more candy than I originally plan to buy, because I always end up eating too many pieces before Halloween! It’s a bad habit – both for my teeth and my wallet! Note to self: Practice self-control and watch my sugar intake!

Halloween sweets can get quite expensive. While you don’t want to be the house that gives out gross candy, you also don’t want to waste $30 on treats that will be on sale the next day! Estimate how many trick-or-treaters you will have and purchase accordingly. If you live in a “low-traffic” area, don’t go overboard by buying too much candy.

If you live in a “high-traffic” area, I’d suggest making a trip to Costco or another bulk warehouse store. Shop early before the higher Halloween prices roll in, and you’ll get a better deal on those treats.

Pumpkins are the quintessential Halloween decoration, but a trip to the pumpkin patch can set you back anywhere from $15 – $60+. From what I’ve seen, it’s typically cheaper to purchase your pumpkins at the grocery store. I just got mine yesterday – 3 for $8.99! Nobody will ever know the difference, so go ahead, and save yourself a few bucks right there.

And just like costumes, some of the coolest decorations are homemade. Get crafty this season – you’ll have the most awesome, decked-out house on the block!

There are plenty of money saving options for all budgets, regardless of what you choose to do this season. Try to save as much as possible now, because Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years are right around the corner.

If your finances are tight, follow these tips and you’re bound to have fun this Halloween AND stay within budget! What are your ideas for saving money this season?