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Save Money, Stay Merry

Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year. Families gather together to open gifts, eat a nice dinner, and spend the holidays together. When it comes to gifts, it is important to know what each person likes. Does this person like cars? Does this person like makeup? Yes, gift choice is crucial this time of year, but it can be inexpensive.

To avoid making pockets hurt or breaking the bank, make a budget plan for gifts ahead of time. Determine how much money one is willing to spend overall and how much to spend purchasing each gift for the person. In addition, track your budget. Know how much money one has spent to reduce the risk of overspending and ruining your budget for January.

Another way is to choose spending time with family over expensive presents. Some, if not all, people believe spending time together is more thoughtful and enjoyable than receiving a physical present. Learn to value experiences and time spent together rather than worrying about what they may want to receive.

Make sure to begin shopping early. Do not wait until the last minute! Find deals and sales throughout the year. Be mindful of who one is buying for, and the stress and spending costs will be lower than expected. This year, instead of worrying whether or not one will have to tackle a neighbor for a sweater to give to the aunt, be mindful and start Christmas shopping early.

According to the National Retail Federation, holiday retail sales during 2019 grew about four percent over the same period in 2018 to $730.2 billion. That is a lot of money to be spending on the Christmas holiday. Retailers may claim they have amazing deals with an all-new low price, but do not be fooled. The real goal they are attempting to reach is to be part of the $730 billion holiday cost. Maintain a budget, and Christmas will be cheaper.

This year does not have to cost three paychecks and rent to have a wonderful winter holiday. Be cost effective with purchases, and maintain spending costs and budget. Christmas is to spend with family, not to see who has the coolest or most expensive present. Follow the budget and develop a smart shopping strategy, and everything will flow smoothly and be cheaper. Remember: Shop smart, and Christmas will be inexpensive and more magical.

This Christmas, Seniors Hallie Lane and Cindy DeLeon will have a magical holiday due to smart budgeting.
This Christmas, Seniors Hallie Lane and Cindy DeLeon will have a magical holiday due to smart budgeting.

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