My six year old daughter was faced with a tough decision today at Costco. She was in charge of getting the bottle of water that we were going to share. She stood there for...
Maximize Your Savings this Holiday Season
This post was sponsored by Regions Bank. All opinions are my own.
I do a lot of holiday shopping. In fact, I do a lot of shopping throughout the entire year. As a result, I have learned a lot over the years about maximizing the money I spend.
Most of us consider this holiday season the most wonderful time of the year! I know that I do but I also know that this can be an incredibly stressful time of year as well. Since December is already here, it is time to get your holiday shopping strategy in place.
The National Retail Federation predicts a 3.7 percent increase in sales this year, with the average American set to spend an estimated $786 in the following categories:
$459.87 on gifts for family
$80.00 on gifts for friends
$26.03 on colleagues
$30.43 on the other people in their lives
Regions Bank, one of the largest U.S. banks with 1,630 branches across 16 states, offers some great insights for consumers on how to prepare financially for the holiday shopping season, which we have added to our tips.
The first way I maximize my savings is by planning exactly what I am going to get for everyone and how much I plan to spend. This handy Christmas Budget List is perfect because it allows you to keep a running total of how much you are spending.
Regions shares, “to prevent overspending, never leave home without a list of what you intend to buy, and be sure you have the money needed to cover your purchases once you arrive in-store.” This list makes it so easy to do!
I save a little amount each month so that Christmas shopping isn’t such a big hit to your budget. We have a separate savings accounts just for holidays and birthdays. Regions recommends, “creating a separate account to fund gift purchases and make regular contributions from your primary checking account in a weekly, bi-weekly or monthly basis.”
Wait for and find the good deals.
I always wait until the right time to buy things especially like toys. Regions suggests, “use timing to your advantage. While things like airline tickets should be booked far in advance, other items — toys in particular — often drop in price during the first two weeks in December. Sometimes it pays to wait, other times it does not, so be sure to check for deals before you head out shopping.”
Whether shopping online or in-store, there’s often a temptation to spend too much on gifts, leading to a case of buyer’s remorse come January. Regions shares that “spending on gifts shouldn’t exceed more than 1.5 percent of your annual income.” Make certain that doesn’t happen to you by following our tips to maximize your savings. And remember, the holidays are meant to warm the heart — not burn the wallet!
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