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The holiday season is still a few months away but planning ahead can save you money and the stress caused by last minute shopping.
- Start by limiting your spending on unnecessary items such as going out to eat and shopping for cute clothes or shoes. Take the money you would have spent on these types of expenses and put it aside for holiday shopping. Putting money aside each month will give you cash to spend on gifts saving you from charging purchases and racking up credit card fees.
- Make a list and stick to a budget. Decide ahead of time who you plan to buy gifts for and how much you are willing to spend on them. Write this information down along with gift ideas for each person. Check weekly ads to locate items on your list and purchase them when they go on sale.
- Use layaway for larger purchases. Many stores offer this option that allows you to pay a smaller portion each week for these items until the item is paid off. There is often a small service fee associated with layaway but it is usually significantly smaller than what you would pay in interest when paying by credit card.
- Planning early allows you time to make some of your holiday gifts which can reduce the cost to you significantly. Check out websites for easy to make presents. Pinterest is a wonderful source for ideas on homemade gifts.
Planning early and sticking to a budget will save you time and money which will make the holiday season pleasant and stress-free.