With the lights on the tree and treats on the table, there is still a lot to be done before Dec 25 arrives, and for most of us shopping, and spending is on that list. But don't flush that budget down the toilet, debt is no way to bring in the new year. Here are 5 easy last min tips to stay on budget this holiday season.
1- Make a shopping list. Retailers know how to push product, and impulse buys around the holidays is a huge money maker for them. Avoid the trap. Make a list and stick to it.
2- Set a limit. It's easy to let your emotions get the best of you when it comes to holiday shopping. Set a cap on your holiday spending and divide it accordingly. Plan ahead, and you'll come out ahead. It's really that simple.
3- Pay in cash. Using a debit card can be convenient, maybe too convenient. It's easy to push your budget aside when you have a card in your pocket. The concept of money is much more tangible if you use cash instead of plastic. When paying with cash you're much more likely to stay on budget and make your money really count.
4- Shop online. Online is a great shopping option, not only can it be done from the comfort of your own home, you can also edit your virtual cart over a 24-48 hour period. This gives you the ability to double think your purchases, rather than impulsively purchasing and suffering the wrath of buyers remorse. Fill your cart, then think about it.... before spending your $$$.
5- Wrap a lot. A great way to stretch those pennies and fill under the tree is to wrap a lot. If you have a Christmas gift that has several parts to it, wrap them in separate packages. Your gift receiver will have more fun opening several packages than a single one. It'll fill that tree skirt and fill time spent opening gifts Christmas morning.
The Holidays can be a stressful time of year, especially if money is tight and having many to buy for. Make a plan and stick to it. Avoid using credit and paying for Christmas for the next 10 months.
Give yourself the relief of starting the new year, out of debt and with money in your pocket.
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