If you are one of the many people that associate the holidays with overspending and putting yourself in debt then it may be time to make some smarter spending choices. It’s especially easy this time of year to begin feeling stressed and overwhelmed about not having the funds to afford gifts for everyone on your shopping list. Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to go into debt in order to show your friends and family how much you care. Below are some tips that will show you that with some careful planning and a little craftiness on your part, you can enjoy the holiday cheer without the financial stress that usually accompanies it.
Stick to your Budget
This is where most of us go wrong. Instead of frivolously rushing out to purchase the latest and greatest items for everyone on your list, take the time to sit down and plan out some smarter decisions. Make a budget and make sure you stick to it.
Break Down Your Budget
Take that budget writing and list making a little further – break down the budget to individuals instead of the group as a whole. Plan on spending more money on your parents than you do on your second cousins and make sure your list reflects that. It’ll make deciding on what gift to get a little easier as well.
I don’t know who came up with the “5 P’s,” but they definitely had the right idea – Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance. Instead of waiting until December (when several stores raise their prices) start Christmas shopping early. If you see something in September or October that you know your mother would love and it happens to be on sale – get it! You’ll thank yourself later.
There are tons of sites out there now, Pinterest being a major one, which will help you settle on the perfect homemade gift for anyone. Not only does this save you money, but it also adds a personal touch that makes everything a little more special.
Use the Internet to Your Advantage
Ordering from the comfort of your home can work to your advantage in more ways than one. On top of it being fast and easy, it also makes it a lot easier for you to comparison shop. An added bonus is that by doing the shopping at home you’re making it easier to resist temptations like eating out or making impulse purchases.
Make the Most of Free Holiday Activities
Most communities offer things that the whole family can enjoy without having to spend a dime. Things like plays, parades, caroling, or even making some homemade decorations can help get the whole family in the Christmas spirit without you having to break out your wallet.
By following these tips you can keep the holidays enjoyable and get rid of extra stress that usually comes along this time of year. You don’t have to go into debt to have a wonderful Christmas season!
If you find yourself struggling with debt or would like to find out about becoming debt free, call Debthelper at 800-920-2262, or visit @ www.debthelper.com.