Going over your budget during the holidays is easy to do. An easy way to avoid going broke is to actually set a budget and don’t put everything on your credit cards.
#1.) Overspending Just to Impress: This one’s really common with young adults who feel like they have to prove to their parents that they’re doing okay financially. However, boyfriends and husbands tend to do this too.
#2.) Buying Presents for Too Many People: You don’t have to give a gift to every co-worker, neighbor, and friend on your list, especially if you’re on a budget. A cheap and easy way around this is to bake some cookies or brownies and put them in a nice holiday tin that you can get from the $1 store. It’s still a gift, shows you care, and you save a lot of money.
#3.) Spending the Same Amount on Each of Your Kids: It might seem fair, but the fact is you just don’t have to spend as much to make a 2-year old happy as you do with a 12-year old.
#4.) Remember the Little Things In Your Budget: The obvious things in your budget are for the presents. But don’t forget that the little things add up and can put you over your budget. Things like decorations, shipping costs, higher utility bills, and the money to cover any parties add up quickly!
#5.) Last Minute Shopping: It can put you over-budget because it doesn’t give you enough time to pick out anything thoughtful and in your actual budget. You end up overspending to compensate for your last-minute planning. Retailers love to see you coming because they know you have to get something! There are usually extra shipping costs to speed up delivery too, so try and ship gifts by the middle of December.
#6.) Blinded By Bargains: Even though it’s a great deal, it might not be the right steal for you. Some people, me included, have a hard time walking away from a great offer. Just because it’s 70% off, do you really need a 2nd toaster?