The holidays are a wonderful time to spend with family and friends. And, everyone wants to experience the joy of giving.
But, sometimes people go overboard with giving outside of their means. And, this leads them to a lot of credit card debt stress in the New Year.
Here are 5 tips to avoid debt this holiday season.
1. Make a List
The first thing you need to do is to make a complete list of everyone that you will need to buy presents for this year. Make sure to really think and remember everyone. You don’t want to forget someone and then not have money budgeted for them later.
2. Make a Budget/Plan
You need to make a budget. Quickly go down the list and put a dollar amount out beside each person. Make sure that the amount is reasonable. They do not all have to be the same dollar amount. But, hundreds of dollars on one person is not a reasonable amount.
3. Research online first
When you come up with gift ideas you would like to get for people, make sure to research them online first. This way you will know what the best price is for that item. It might be that it is cheaper online, so buy it online if so. Just make sure the shipping doesn’t cause it to be more than the in-store price. If you do purchase it online though, make sure to pay with your debit card not your credit card!
4. Only pay with Cash
Which brings me to number 4. Only use cash when shopping. Do not charge your purchases! If you cannot afford this, then you need to adjust your budget above until you can. There are also layaway programs at many places you can utilize.
5. Give Homemade Items
You can save money and lower your overall budget by making some homemade gifts. You can give just homemade gifts exclusively, or just use them to supplement your other gifts until you feel more comfortable homemade gifts. Here are some links to some great homemade gift ideas below:
Just remember that the holidays are about enjoying time with friends and family. And, that it is spending that time together that matters more than the gifts. You shouldn’t create stress that will linger on after the holidays are over. You can still give, without going overboard and being regretful. 😀
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