Deck the Halls, I Have No Money!

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Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la. I’ve broke the bank, it’s just so funny. Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la.

Sound familiar?

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. The snow begins to fall, creating a beautiful white blanket over the city. Christmas spirit is at an-all time high, as everyone around you starts preparing for the merry holiday. You make your way into store after store, enjoying the joyful cheer of Christmas music played on the radio, as you pick out an abundance of presents for your loved ones (and let’s be real – a few for yourself).

It’s time to check out. The cashier is full of energy (*cough* commission *cough*), smiling at you excitedly, as she rings through your purchases. You smile back nervously, hoping your card doesn’t decline…

‘Tis the season! Yes, it is certainly the most wonderful time of the year, but for many of us it can be the most financially stressful time, as well. Christmas shopping is always fun, but breaking the bank? Not so much.

We all want to treat our family and friends to some pretty rad presents, but your bank account shouldn’t be feeling the pressure from Father Christmas. As much as you want to be putting every cute stocking stuffer in your cart, you have to slow down on the spending. Racking up your credit debt in order to pay for Christmas presents? It’s not worth it. Avoid the ghost of Christmas Debt and spend smart this season.

Smart Christmas Spending Tip #1: Kris Kringle with the Fam

Switch it up with your family this year. Rather than everyone buying for everyone, try something different. Attempt a Secret Santa family session, where each person is only required to buy a gift for the person’s name they drew. This eases the financial burden for everyone, and makes for an exciting surprise come Christmas day.

Smart Christmas Spending Tip #2: BRB going on Vaca

Is Christmas spending tugging on your budget’s heartstrings, because you had other things planned for the year? Maybe you wanted to put some money away to go on vacation, but now gift-spending is a priority. If that’s the case, see what everyone around you is thinking. Maybe your significant other is feeling the same way. Instead of buying each other gifts, agree to put that money towards a vacation – or something you’ve both wanted to do together. Buh-bye new hair straightener, hello beach!

Smart Christmas Spending Tip #3: The Limit is Always Zero!...or $25

Budgeting is key. Setting a strict amount on how much you’re going to be spending on each person can make all the difference. Maybe it’s $100 per person, or maybe it’s $25. Whatever it is, planning and budgeting ahead of time, allows you to work the cost into your budget, and will not hit you with any unexpected surprises on your credit card statement. Plan ahead, budget, and stick to it – it’s that simple!

After all, Christmas is all about spending time, not spending money…right?

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