November is here and the cold weather is teasing us. That could only mean one thing: the holidays are near.
Everyone is bracing themselves for the holiday pounds from the delicious holiday food, but few are planning for holiday pounds from something else: credit card debt.
Using your credit card during the holidays isn’t forbidden, but having a plan will ensure you won’t get yourself in trouble.
Create a budget
Budgets are a crucial tool that all households should have nonetheless. If you have one or not, start by creating a budget for your holiday spending.
This way you allocate money that you know you have to your holiday budget, and only spend that amount.
You may also want to create separate budgets for gifts, gatherings (if you’re hosting) and holiday parties. You could also separate the lists by families and even friends, depending on how many people you have to buy gifts for.
The budget should include the name of each person or family that you are planning to purchase a gift for. Then, add a column for gift ideas, and lastly, insert a column for the estimated amount.
Create a section or a separate budget for holiday gatherings that include your grocery list, decorations necessities if any, invitations if needed, and anything else you may need.
For all of your budgets, create an estimated cost column and an actual cost column. When you purchase something on your list/budget, add the actual cost and keep track of where you save and overspend so it can balance out at the end.
Using a credit card
Purchasing holiday necessities with your credit card(s) is not forbidden. But just like regular credit card usage tips, it’s best to only purchase an item with a credit card if you can pay the full amount at the end of each month or when the payment is due.
It’s crucial to not only be cautious of the holiday pounds on your waist but also in your bank account.
It’s easy to go right back into debt during the holidays. But stay strong and discipline. Create a budget. Plan ahead. Use your credit cards wisely.
Refer to these credit card tips for your holiday shopping.
For more tips and question, call The Credit Repairmen at 210-520-0444.