NMLS# 3151

Monday, November 4, 2013

Money Saving Tips in Time for the Holidays

The holidays are approaching fast.  Just 25 more days until the annual Black Friday madness and only 51 more days until Christmas arrives.  

This means it's time to whip out your gift bags, wrapping paper, and bows and start some Christmas shopping.  However, let's be honest, the more time you wait to shop the more money you are likely to end up spending.  Therefore, getting started now could end up saving you quite a bit of money.  Here are some tips on how to get started now and help save you money along the way so you don't break your bank before the holidays hit:

Decide on your budget now

Your holiday budget is likely to be similar to what you've spent in past years.  Right away you should set aside an amount to spend and try to stay within those means the best you can.  By having a set number in your mind of what to spend, you are much less likely to come home with extra receipts and bills.

Request that your kids and family write out  there gift wish lists now.  Start by buying the biggest items first and save some of the smaller items to be used as stocking stuffers.  

Reallocate your funds

You're likely to put some of your Christmas shopping on high rate credit cards which means monthly interest that could potentially make it all cost more.  Now is the time to stretch your dollars.  If you normally go out to lunch, start packing a home lunch so you can set aside that $6 to $8 you would normally be spending. That little bit of extra money adds up faster than you would think.
Averaging $7 a day - 5 days a week - 4 weeks a month = $140 a month in extra savings!

If you're not very good at saving money, set up automatic deposits into a savings account so that each time you are paid you are required to put aside $50 or $100.

Start your shopping now

Save time and money by getting a head start on your shopping now. If you buy a few items over a period of a few weeks as opposed to a lot of items in just one day, you'll have a better grasp on your budget and avoid racking up high credit card bills that will hit you later down the road.

Also, by hitting the stores before big Christmas sales begin, you have a better chance of all your gift items being in stock and ready for purchase.  Remember that most of the bigger stores like Best Buy and Walmart will price match to competitors and also refund your money if sale prices change within 30 days of your receipt.  This allows you to do more of your shopping in one store without having to run all around town for presents.

If you have any money saving tips before the holidays, we would love for you to share them below.  

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