Keep the Sparkle in your Holidays
Many people know the saying “give until it hurts,” however, the pain of over-spending during the holidays is unfortunately common to most of us. Follow these simple tips to keep the Holidays festive and avoid the shock of “Gifter’s Remorse”:
- Set a budget and follow it: This is common sense, but it can be hard to do when the spirit of giving is in the air. One way to accomplish this is to set a spending budget by friend or family member and stay within it. Remember that the gesture is a meaningful gift as well!
- Do research and shop smart: Whenever possible, shop at retailers who match prices, hang onto your receipts, and peruse advertisements looking for reduced prices on any items you purchase. If you find the item cheaper elsewhere, show the ad to the retailer to claim your “price-match credit.”
- Purchase group gifts whenever possible: Group gifts such as movie tickets, fruit baskets, dining certificates, etc. can be shared and enjoyed by many, further spreading the Holiday cheer!
- Link your checking account to a savings account: Just in case you get a little too generous and exceed your budget, talk to your bank to link your account’s debit card to a savings account to avoid any potential over-draft fees.
- Check your balances for suspicious activity: Whether you use your bank’s credit or debit card for purchases, be diligent and review your balances daily to look for unauthorized charges and notify your bank immediately if you discover something afoul.
- Donate to a charity: Lastly, if funds are limited or you just want to avoid the large crowds, consider donating to a charity. Most charities appreciate receiving even small amounts of money, or donations of food (i.e. canned goods), clothing, or even your time.