Goals from Lewis McGugan, Marcus Tudgay and David McGoldrick earned Forest all three points, with Palace never fully recovering from Dean Moxey's first-half red card.
Freedman said: "I am disappointed with the result, but for us to finish where we have from where we were when I took over is a huge success.
"I will have discussions next week about budgets but my early signs are we will be going the way of bringing young players through.
"I will try and stabilise the club over the next few years and build it slowly.
"I don't see us buying ?1million players, we are not geared up for that yet."