Worse than New Year Resolutions or being over served NYE is the Christmas spending hangover.

When it comes to holiday shopping, the good news is 65% of Americans set a holiday budget, according to Coinstar’s 2017 Holiday Survey. On the negative side, 77% of the 2,000 people surveyed expect to exceed their budget and only 37% will put a post-holiday budget plan in place to recover.

Of the 77% of those surveyed who expect to go over budget, most only expect to do so by modest amounts. In fact, combining those who expect to go over by no more than $50 (31%) and those who plan on being $51-$100 over (21%) accounts for more than half of consumers. Another 15% plan to be $101-$250 over their budget while 10% will spend more than $250 more than they planned.

It may be 20 weeks until Black Friday, however, today is the day to take the steps necessary to eliminate the January 2019 blown budget and have another overspending hangover.

Here are five money tips from the Financial Olympian for Christmas, Hanukkah, or whatever the holiday is that you and your family celebrate.

  • DO YOUR SHOPPING NOW – About one-third of U.S. shoppers (33%) have made holiday shopping a year-round event. It is always a great time to check out the clearance racks. It may be 103 degrees in the shade, but the merchants are already looking to move the summer merchandise to have room for fall and back to school.  A simple trick to know what is on sale now is to check the Nordstrom Sale Calendar
  • AMAZON PRIME DAY – Is coming soon: July 16 to be exact.  This may not exactly qualify as a national holiday, but it does come every year. And it’s widely celebrated. And there are presents, kind of.  This year, it will take place in less than two weeks.   This is Amazon’s version of Black Friday or Cyber Monday, but a GREAT time for you to be looking for discounted deals on gifts now instead of doing this over the holidays.  There is a catch – it is only for Amazon Prime members.  Am I getting a good deal?  Go over to https://camelcamelcamel.com/ and copy and paste the URL of the item you want to buy.  Check the results.
  • MOM KNOWS BEST – Go sign up at Momdeals  This is a virtual goody bag of deals everywhere.  DIY, Freebies, Secret Menus, Deals, and  It may take a little work, but since when is anything really free?
  • GO TRAVEL –  Not today, October is the time to get the best deals for holiday airfare and lodging. It is the time to set the dates you want to go and set your Airline Travel Alerts.  That’s when Google Flights price alerts come in handy!  You can track prices for flights, to help you decide the best time to book.  Google will even email you when your ticket price drops!
  • START SAVING NOW – Rather than wait till the holidays have arrived and putting everything on your credit card and then having the January overspending hangover start today to save. Step one is to set a budget.  If your budget is $1,500 then you need to start saving $75.00 per week or just under $11.00 per day.   Make it simple and keep from accumulating credit card debt that charges you 15% or more interest on your outstanding balance.

If you are ready to create a financial plan for yourself, then click below and get started.  You enter your information with a simple 6-step guided process, see a net worth summary, and track budgeting, spending, and cash flows.

Create Your Personal Financial Plan

Michael Tannery CPA, CDFA® AIF®

Registered Principal

Tannery & Company

Tax – Accounting – Wealth Management

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