7 Ways to Keep Your White Christmas Out of the Red

It’s beginning to look a lot like holiday crunch time and chances are you’ve waited until now to buy gifts and holiday items. That means that there is likely only two pay periods left before Christmas and your regular monthly bills still have to be paid. Yikes!

There is still time to make a plan and not overspend.

Here are a few tips to avoid putting everything on credit and taking years to pay it off (if at all) with expensive revolving interest rates:

  1. Pay your normal monthly expenses (make these a priority)
  2. Set an overall holiday spending limit and stick to it!
  3. Make a gift list, assign a dollar amount and cross people off when the gift is bought.
  4. Keep receipts or get gift receipts (in case it needs to be returned),
  5. Pay with debit/cash. Yes, credit gives time and points but it’s easy to overspend.
  6. Be creative. Give free babysitting, dog walking or cooking a meal as a gift.
  7. Give back. Donate to a charity in someone’s name.

Most importantly - keep it all in perspective.

Make the holidays about giving and not about the actual gift.

The people you care about probably already know how you feel and the gift, while appreciated, may be long forgotten by Easter.