Be Merry. Be Bright. Set a Budget, spend it Right!

Black Friday weekend has officially begun! But before you head out on your holiday shopping extravaganza, make sure you have a budget to follow so that you don’t overspend. According to recent reports, Canadians are expected to spend an average of about $1500 on holiday gifts and travel this Christmas.

Don’t get caught up in the hype and be smart with your finances.

Here are five quick tips to help keep your spending in check:

  • Make a Plan - Making a list and checking it twice is always good advice. A plan will help you identify who you need to buy for and give you an idea of how much you are going to need to spend. You may also want to have an idea of what you will be getting each person on your list prior to hitting the mall, to help avoid spontaneous spending.
  • Create a Budget and Stick to it! - By determining in advance how much you can afford to spend on your holiday gifts, you will be better equipped to stay on track and keep your spending under control. Allocate a limited dollar amount per person and take advantage of holiday sales as much as possible.
  • Don’t Procrastinate, Shope Early! - Last minute shopping always results in panic spending. When you have time to think about your purchases, you can take advantage of sales, online shopping conveniences, and ultimately, stick to your budget.
  • Debit All the Way - Here’s a sure-fire way to avoid the January blues, pay by cash or debit instead of putting gifts on credit card. This way, there will be no anxiety or surprises when you get your next statement.
  • Try “Secret Santa” - If you have a large family and lots of people to buy for, a good option is to draw names and determine a spending limit per person. This will cut down on costs considerably and the best part is, everyone gets to open something come Christmas morning!

Happy Shopping!

  • Financial Planning