Everywhere you look there are signs, ads, and messages urging you to buy holiday gifts. Fast forward to January. That’s when those credit card bills from your holiday spending sprees begin to roll in. How will that look for you? Pretty picture or not so much? Now’s the time to make sure you’re keeping an eye on your spending, to avoid starting the new year in the red. Here at Your Consumer Services, a debt management company, we’re experts at helping you pay off your debt and stay on financial track, which is why we’re sharing this guide with you: Tips on Surviving Holiday Debt.
We’re coming fresh off the heels of two very popular shopping days – Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and hopefully, you didn’t overdo it. But if you did, we get that. We know how alluring those ads can be coming at us, one after another – radio, TV, online. It seems that every other Instagram post was selling something. Plus – having a job and seeing money roll in can make shopping very appealing. But you’re stronger than that, so stop, and take a deep breath. You can do this. We’re here to help you.
SURVIVAL TIP: Make a List
The first step – make a holiday shopping list and check it way more than twice. Write down the name of everyone for whom you’re planning to buy a gift and stick to that list. Don’t forget to include any gift exchanges, for example from the job, your fitness class, etc. And when you’re out shopping, and you spot something cool, if it doesn’t fit someone on your list, keep it moving.
SURVIVAL TIP: Create a Budget
Once you’ve created a gift list, set a budget, along with a gift amount for each person on your list. Here’s a little sub-tip, carrying cash instead of credit cards makes it easier for you to stay on your budget. However, if you do decide to use plastic, make sure it’s a credit card that lets you earn cash back.
SURVIVAL TIP: Track Your Spending
Know exactly where your money is going. Consider getting a budgeting app. There are many good ones on the market. Some of them cost just a few bucks, while others are free. If you have to buy an APP, that’s not so bad since it’ll help you otherwise save money.
SURVIVAL TIP: Get Creative with Your Gifts
You don’t have to buy a gift from a traditional store. You can find some hip goodies at thrift shops and consignment shops and save a ton of money. And don’t forget to hit up your local community holiday bazaars, where local artists and others come to hustle their products. And here’s your chance to make it personal. Think home-baked goods, a piece of your artwork, or perhaps gifting a service such as starting a social media page for someone or giving someone a make-up lesson. You see where we’re going with this, right? And do you have a gift from someone that you never used? If so, you can always re-gift it.
SURVIVAL TIP: Pay Yourself First
Before you even think about shopping, be sure to pay yourself first. The best way to do this is an automatic deduction straight from your checking account to some type of savings account. And don’t touch that account!
Stop Struggling Financially
If you’re already close to being in over your head with debt from credit cards, school loans, taxes, and more, why would you want to add to that? Hopefully, our Tips on Surviving Holiday Debt will help. We can also help with credit debt. We want to help you improve your financial situation, but we need your help. Before you add on to your debt from holiday spending, think about paying it off, which is easier than you think. Call us. We can teach you how to pay off credit card debt, and more.
Your Consumer Services offers private credit counseling through one-on-one chat. There’s no upfront cost for clients. You can connect with a live person from a non-profit willing to provide reliable information and help you with debt reduction. You can also email us. Our debt specialists are waiting to hear from you and can answer all of your questions.