Is holiday spending stressing you out?

Is holiday spending stressing you out?

The holiday season is one of joy and happiness most of the time, but it’s also a very expensive occasion.

There are gifts for family and friends, extra food for entertaining, and extra trips to the local vineyard for that host’s gift after an unexpected invitation to a holiday party. It may seem like dribs and drabs, but it can really add up to a big bill. While you would probably prefer to pretend those big balances don’t exist, the best way to deal with debt is getting out of it.

Make a list

List each person you need to purchase a gift for, and some gift ideas, but most importantly, assign a dollar value beside each person’s name. It may seem odd at first but if you have a budget in mind per gift, before you do your shopping, you are much more likely to stay on budget and your shopping will be more focused and less impulsive.

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Trim the list

If you are having a tough year financially, are there friends or acquaintances that you can remove from your list? Or instead of a purchased gift, how about some baking or a get together with friends in lieu of gifts?

Start early

It may be too late for this year but starting early either by purchasing gifts or setting aside cash each month, to relieve stress and financial burden can make your holidays much more joyful.

Don’t forget the other expenses

During the holiday season, it’s not just about the gifts. How many parties or gatherings will you be attending? Do you need a new outfit? What about extra food and alcohol purchases? Think of some ideas to reduce the costs associated with the season.

Here are some practical ideas:

  • Look through your closet first. Is there a dress you’ve forgotten about? How about a buy and sell group, maybe something new to you? Borrow from a friend or sister and they can do the same with you!
  • How about a potluck for a gathering or the main meal? There is absolutely nothing wrong with asking everyone to bring a dish to help fill out the table. Your day will be less stressful and your pocketbook with thank you.
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When you’re trying to get out of debt, a vacation to somewhere exotic is just not in the cards. Or it shouldn’t be ON your cards, anyway. Let’s face it, we have some pretty wondrous sights locally to enjoy. Becoming a local tourist lets you connect with the area around you and save a small fortune!

Remember to enjoy the season, the spirit, and the gifts, just do it on a budget and within your means.

Please contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation if you are looking for help with budgeting your finances.

D Thode & Associates, British Columbia

Office Locations & Service Areas

BC Interior - Kelowna, Kamloops, Penticton

Lower Mainland - Vancouver, Burnaby, Surrey, Chilliwack