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HOW TO PAY OFF THOSE HOLIDAY BILLS

HOW TO PAY OFF THOSE HOLIDAY BILLS

HOW TO PAY OFF THOSE HOLIDAY BILLS

The dilemma: You have just about paid off your giant credit card bill from last year’s holiday shopping, and here we are in November. You are about to continue the vicious cycle of overspending for holiday gifts and celebrations. But why? Because ‘tis the season, right? Chances are you are asking yourself, “Why do I keep doing this to myself?”

First, arm yourself with information. Certain goods, including clothing, shoes, toys and household appliances, will be more expensive this year than they would have been otherwise. That means you may want to plan your gift-giving to avoid some of these expected increases.

Some quick tips to help you avoid that year-long payoff cycle:

  • If you use a consumer credit card, use the card that has the lowest interest rate.
  • Create a holiday spending budget, and stick to it. Your dedication to your budget will help you avoid impulse buys, and also dictate how much you can spend on each person on your list.
  • Do a lot of comparison shopping. The same pair of shoes can vary widely in price, depending on where you buy.  Online price comparison sites such as www.shopify.com  and www.shopping.com do a lot of the legwork for you. Take advantage of these services and save money!
  • The economy is booming, so retailers (online and brick and mortar stores) will be fiercely competing for your business. Expect massive sales, especially from the larger, well-known stores.
  • Be proactive by setting up an automatic savings plan for next year’s gift buying. Your online banking service will enable you to have a certain amount of money withdrawn on a scheduled date each month and deposited into whatever savings program you select. A credit-card-free holiday? It is possible!
  • You may want to consider scaling back your spending on high end gifts. It is possible the same recipient for whom you are inclined to buy that $300 pair of boots may be just as happy with a less expensive garment or another type of gift.

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