‘Tis the Season to be Overextended!

Toronto, Nov. 16: Your family has decided to do a ‘Secret Santa’ this year rather than buying holiday gifts for everyone; except, while you were at the mall you couldn’t resist buying them each a little something. We can get into big trouble when we shop impulsively. Focussing on how these purchases impact our financial situation in the here and now rather than in the New Year is very important. If we have them today, they will still be there tomorrow. Creating holiday spending guidelines is the best gift we can give ourselves.

“Paying for purchases with cash or debit will help control what people spend this holiday season,” says Jeffrey Schwartz, executive director, Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada. “Retailers and credit card companies try very hard to create a spending frenzy for consumers at this time of year and it’s important to resist their tempting offers.”

Schwartz always recommends creating an annual budget for your household. It is important within this budget to allocate enough money to cover your holiday season expenses. As well, remembering these few simple steps will help insure you stay on track with your spending so the only things under the tree will be holiday gifts!

  1. Deck your halls with only what you can afford. Beautiful holiday season displays are everywhere and the temptation may be great to update your decorations; remember on December 26th all of those items will be on sale for 50% off!
  2. Tis the season to be creative with your gift giving. Make it yourself or suggest to friends and family they too reduce their holiday spend by participating in a ‘Secret Santa’ gift exchange or putting a limit on the amount of money spent per gift.
  3. Don we now our already owned gay apparel! Tempting as it might be to buy new outfits for the family to wear during the holidays, perhaps only purchasing updated accessories will spruce up everyone’s wardrobe.

Let’s make this your season to be jolly by keeping your household finances in order! Avoid impulse holiday shopping and stick to your holiday budget.

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