Posted by: Jaime Faulkner on Monday, December 5, 2011 at 8:48:31 am
The winter holiday season is almost
here. Soon we will be busy with holiday activities--cooking, decorating and
socializing. We'll also be shopping for gifts for family and friends, but
unfortunately may overspend. Then in the New Year, when the bills start rolling
in, reality and regret will strike.
Here are some tips on how you can
enjoy the season without inducing an overspending hangover in January.
a list of everyone on your gift list. Try to limit it to close family and
friends, and set a maximum amount to spend for each recipient. Calculate
this total; if too high, revise the individual limits to keep the total
you have overspent already, review the list to see where you may be able
to give meaningful gifts without spending. Consider giving personal
"coupons" for specific chores-for example lawn mowing,
babysitting, cooking a meal or hand car washes.
some people enjoy the hustle and bustle of shopping malls, you may prefer
to stay home and shop online, which saves on travel expense. To maximize
the value of virtual shopping, look for free-shipping promotions. Another
option is to check with nearby retailers to see if they can save you on
shipping costs if your item is shipped to the store, instead of to your
people use credit cards for their holiday shopping in order to increase
frequent flier miles and other rewards offered by their credit card
company. There are benefits to this strategy, but keep in mind that will
need to budget for the charges arriving in January; they will need to be
paid off to avoid incurring large credit card interest.
might opt to use cash for Christmas shopping. Decide on an amount for each
person, total the amounts, and take cash from your checking account.
Divide the cash into your predetermined amounts for each person, and place
the cash in envelopes with each person's name and amount on the envelope.
Take these envelopes with you on your shopping excursion. Stick with your
list, and when the cash is gone, it's gone.
social media outlets such as Twitter and Facebook, you also may be able to
find additional money-saving coupons and discounts.
you have adequate storage space, one of the best times to do your
Christmas shopping is in January, when retailers are clearing out their
merchandise from the holidays. Along this line, think of shopping for
stocking stuffers during the year, as these trinkets can become costly if
bought during the holiday rush.
To make the most of your holiday season, sit back and
take a moment to enjoy the meaning of the season and the opportunity to gather
with family and friends and all those you hold dear. Then take a deep breath,
and shop wisely.
Source: Indiana Bankers Association - November 15, 2011