GREENSBORO, N.C. — According to Experian, more than half of those surveyed feel holiday shopping puts a strain on their finances with nearly 30% saying they are stressed. A chunk of shoppers admits it's hard to stay within their budget.
Ja’Net Adams from Debt Sucks University and Tom Mathews, author of the book “How Money Works” and Certified Financial Educator, answered your questions.
Leave your emotions on the shelf
It’s easy to get wrapped up in the spirit of the season, but when it comes to buying gifts this year, leave your emotions on the shelf and let reason be your guide. This is when you must start using logical thinking in the decision-making process. While your spouse might really like that $1,000 necklace, is that really the smartest move if you don’t have the money?
Make a list and check it twice. Before you head to the store, make a list of each person you need to buy for, and allocate a certain amount of money for each of them. Don’t overspend by even a dollar. This is important because if you start overspending by five dollars here and 10 dollars there, it adds up quickly and you can easily go into debt.
The last thing your friends and family want is to see you go into debt, or further into debt. Remember, there’s no shame in telling people that this year will be a lean holiday season when it comes to exchanging gifts. People will appreciate your honesty and attention to your finances.