4 Tips to Avoid Overspending This Holiday Season

Tips to Avoid Overspending During the Holidays

avoid overspending

The countdown to Christmas begins! As I have already mentioned, I shop year round to get the best deals on gifts. Plus, I make several homemade gifts which you can read about in our Holiday From the Heart Posts from last year. Below you find a few more tips to avoid overspending this holiday season.

How To Avoid A Holiday Spending Hangover

By Mrs. Not Made of Money

Although the holiday season is a magical time of year, the frivolity that goes along with it can wreak havoc on your financial plan. No one wants to deny themselves or their families the fun and celebration that goes along with the season, right? Before you know it, you find yourself spending more money than you intended to spend, charging purchases you can’t afford on credit cards, and spending the months after the holidays staring at the pile of debt you’ve added to your life.

This year, though, you could stop the holiday spending hangover by pledging to get through the holidays without incurring any new debt. I know it will be tough, but I think you can do it if you follow these steps.

4 Tips to Avoid Overspending

Write up a holiday list.
Begin by determining how much money you can spend on your holiday festivities this year. Next you’ll need to list everything that you plan to buy this year. Don’t forget to account for special family dinners or travel plans. Finally, you should assign a dollar amount to each item on your list. Take care, though, that your list doesn’t add up to be more than the budget you set in the beginning of this step.

Pay with cash for everything.
Paying with cash serves two purposes. For one thing, paying with cash keeps you from charging something with your credit card (with the promise to pay your statement in full) and, then, getting sidetracked when the bill comes. Secondly, paying with cash encourages you to get the most for your holiday dollars. There’s just something about handing over your hard-earned cash that makes you think twice about each purchase.

Share entertaining costs with friends and family.
Don’t feel like you have to prepare and pay for a huge meal for your holiday celebration all by yourself. Instead, why not go potluck? Sharing the expenses of your get-togethers will keep the cost of entertaining from being to burdensome for anyone and allow you to skip some of the stress of preparing for the party.

Don’t fall victim to panic purchases.
The most carefully-planned holiday budget can get totally trashed by panic purchases. You know what I mean, right? Maybe your neighbor surprises you with a Christmas gift, so you feel like you have to get him one. The problem is that you didn’t plan to get him a gift, and there’s no room in your budget. Instead of rushing out with your credit card to get him “something,” offer him a sincere thank you and let the matter go. If you really feel like you have to reciprocate in some way, you could always take him a plate of goodies from your holiday baking later.

How To Avoid A Holiday Spending Hangover was reprinted with permission of NotMadeofMoney.com

For more tips check out these Alternative Gift Wrap Ideas.

Check out our Holiday Gift Guide for Gift Ideas.

Find out how you can make your Gift Packaging Stand Out.

 

Topic: Avoid Overspending




Comments

  1. Heather P says

    Another thing that we do is keep a list on Google Docs and share with my husband. For example, once a purchase was made for gifts for my kids/family/etc (esp. b/c I shop year year round as well) this keeps things in one place and I know what has already been purchased(and perhaps where it is stowed away)

    • Madame Deals says

      Heather,
      I am so impressed! You are way more organized than I am. I just throw my gifts in big plastic bins in my room. I am sure your Google Doc comes in real handy though! There are many times I can’t remember where I put a gift or who I bought it for. Thanks for the tip!
      Renae

      • Heather P says

        Don’t be THAT impressed – the reason that came into being was for the very reason you mentioned! Necessity is the mother of invention! There have been too many times (and even still occasionally) that gifts don’t make it to the list and are stowed in “a very safe place” and promptly forgotten until a great clean out…at which point another gift has been purchased in its place. I make myself feel better by saying that I am just that much more ahead for the next time! One of the other great things that I have to avoid the holiday hangover is a little grace & mercy for myself…I AM only human, after all!

  2. Yvonne says

    Last year we started a Christmas club at our credit union. We had a preset amount withdrawn from our paychecks once a month. We didn’t even miss it. We will have access to the fund in early November. This will be our Holiday budget for gifts, decorations and menu.

  3. says

    i wish i had read this before christmas. i currently in the process of paying off charges on my card which i wouldn’t have if i just paid in cash!

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