Budgeting & Saving

Audio: How to Avoid Holiday Overspending

The holidays often seem to sneak up on us, which makes it easy to overspend. Need a few ideas to help make sure your holiday budget covers everything it should? Listen in to make sure you include two often-forgotten expenses when 'making your list' of all the things to budget for. Have some special holiday traditions of your own that add some expenses? Don't leave those off the list, either.

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Welcome to Credit 101. Simple answers to the most common credit questions like: How can I avoid spending too much over the holidays?

For some festive folks, it happens every year: they pledge to keep their spending in check, but come January they're under a mountain of credit card bills that financed a busy and eventful holiday season. Want to be on good terms with your credit in the New Year? Make sure you set — and stick to — a budget for seasonal fun. If you've been burned in the past and are vowing to not re-make old mistakes with your spending, here are a few things you'll want to make sure your holiday budget includes:

It might be that this was the year you bought your first new place, and you're keen to give it some festive spirit, or maybe you just need to replace that box of ornaments you dropped when putting them away. Know how many halls you plan to deck, and once you set a budget, keep to it! Post-holiday sales are a great way to up your game for next year.

Holiday parties
Even if it's a catered gig you're attending, don't forget to include the cost of a hostess gift you might need to bring, new threads you may want to wear (or need to rent if it's a formal affair), and a driver or car service to make sure you get home safely after some holiday cheer with friends or co-workers.

When your budget accounts for all the ways the holidays can drain your wallet, you've covered your bases. Don't let the holidays find you without a spending strategy to keep things merry and bright.