5 Holiday Planning Strategies To Minimize And Lower Debt

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Wouldn’t you agree there could be nothing worse than receiving your credit card bill in January only to discover you can’t possibly meet the minimum payment?  This happens to thousands of Canadians every holiday season, but this year you can make a difference.  You can learn how to manage your holiday budget and minimize the risks of incurring more credit card debt.  For many, indulging in spending has become a bad habit, but finance education can dramatically reduce these adverse living habits.  The holidays don’t need to be stressful at all, not if you plan early and stick to a financial strategy that works.

Now, according to researched statistics, each generation of Canadians have a distinct shopping style.  For instance, Gen Xers will be making more holiday purchases online than those within the Y Generation.  They appear to be wiser shoppers as well, using Apps to price compare and research products before making purchases.  However, while some shoppers appear to be more budget aware than others, the majority of Canadians end up with a Holiday Shopping Hangover due to flamboyant purchases and impulse shopping.  In fact, one in five Canadians throughout British Columbia believe themselves to be “binge shoppers” and impulsive.

The holidays are a time for merriment, but that can be hard to have when financial woes take hold. Because 59% of Canadians over spend at the holidays and end up with remorse and guilt, that holiday cheer can turn into holiday stress pretty quickly.  The following 5 tips we are going to share with you can help keep you accountable and on track with regard to your holiday shopping.  Smart planning and spending strategies will ensure you don’t max out your monthly budget and face anxiety and stress instead of holiday cheer this season.  Let’s take a look.

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The Top 5 Holiday Planning Strategies To Save You Money

One very critical point to make here, before we delve on in to the several other financial strategies for the holidays is this:  you need to itemize for every individual on your list.  This not only helps with keeping stress low, but it ensures you stay on budget and stick to your shopping strategy for savings.  If you list each person you have to buy for, and put a limit on the amount you’ll spend (and stick to it) you’ll remain on budget and won’t be broke come the end of December.

Strategy 2:  Utilize Your Smart Phone Apps

Your smart phone can be a great guide to savings.  From taking advantage of groupon to other excellent money savings apps–you can do price comparisons using tools like “red laser” “retail me not” and even more.  You can also take advantage of social media to find great deals. Yet, remember, a deal isn’t a deal if you go over your original budget, so keep that in mind.

Strategy 3:  Purchase Inexpensive Gifts First

Start shopping by purchasing the least expensive gifts first.  Research has shown that when a shopper sees small items add up quickly they are more likely to pull back on those purse strings.  You then go purchase the big items on your list.  This might help you save more money by not splurging on cheaper items and considering this to be okay.  Remember, even small items can add up into the hundreds when you over spend.

Strategy 4:  Shop During Off Season

You can purchase holiday merchandise during off season and get more than 50% off when you do so.  If you have a good idea of what your list of recipients like and want, this is a great ay of saving a ton of money.  And don’t forget, you can get many holiday decorations and necessities directly after Christmas at 75%!  Just imagine already having everything you need for the next holiday season!

Strategy 5:  Engage In Gift Exchanges

Engaging in gift exchanges can save you money and be sure, this is an excellent option for those who simply can’t afford to purchase the more expensive gifts.  A gift exchange can be a great deal of fun too, and making purchases for others with friends can actually be socially engaging!

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