Black Friday has come and gone. How did you do? With so much misery caused by the pandemic this year, folks are looking to spread some good cheer, and I expect holiday gift spending to hit records. According to Adobe analytics, weekend shopping surged almost 22% to a record $9 Billion this year. Cyber Monday is expected to be the largest digital sales holiday in U.S. history. That is a good thing for the U.S. economy, but we want to make sure that it is not bad for your economy.
Here are the three things you should do to make sure you do not start the new year with new debt:
- Set a budget. Decide how much you can afford to spend this season without going into debt. In other words, when the charge card bills come in in January, you want to know you can pay all the bills in full. Commit to the budget. An alternative is to spend cash and not charge for gifts.
- Make a list. Use your smartphone to make a list of people you intend to give gifts. By using your smartphone, and track as you make progress. Save the list and you’ll have it ready next year!
- Assign dollar targets. Assign target gifting amounts next to each name on your list. Keep a running total and make sure it does not exceed your budget. It will bring joy to others and keep you out of the red.
A little bit of organization and planning goes a long way towards keeping your finances in check. By following this plan, you will start the new year knowing you have not created any new debt, and that is a very nice feeling!
Follow The Welch Group every Tuesday morning on WBRC Fox 6 for the Money Tuesday segment.
FOX 6 TALKING POINTS
Best Money Strategy for Holiday Spending
- Set a budget
- Make a list
- Assign dollar targets
Stewart H. Welch, III, CFP, AEP, is the founder of THE WELCH GROUP, LLC, which specializes in providing fee-only investment management and financial advice to families throughout the United States. He is the author or co-author of six books, including J.K. Lasser’s New Rules for Estate, Retirement and Tax Planning- 6th Edition (John Wiley & Sons, Inc.); THINK Like a Self-Made Millionaire; and 100 Tips for Creating a Champagne Retirement on a Shoestring Budget.
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