Break the Overspending Cycle this Holiday Season
The holiday season is undoubtedly the time of year when most people overspend the most, with the majority of Americans estimating they will spend roughly $930 on holiday gifts in 2022, according to Statista. This is the highest consumer estimate for holiday spending in the last 20 years. With the amount we spend going up each year, how can we possibly break the overspending cycle?
At this point in the year, there isn’t much time to save up, but there are a few ways to grab the reins and take control of your spending.
First, start with a list of gift recipients. Try to write down every person you plan to purchase a gift for, even the smallest gifts. Next, determine how much you have to spend without borrowing money or racking up credit card debt. This is your holiday budget. Take that amount and determine how much you can afford to spend on each gift recipient, based on what you have available and how many gift recipients you have on your list.
If your budget is lower than expected, instead of borrowing money or charging gifts on a credit card, try a new gift giving approach.
- Find Ways to Celebrate That Don’t Involve Gifts- Experiences can be just as valuable as gifts. Spend the day baking with friends or family, making home movies, building snowmen, or looking through old photos.
- Give Group Gifts- Instead of purchasing gifts for each family member, give group or family gifts that can be shared or used together. Board games, a gift certificate to the movies, and food gifts are great for groups!
- Try Your Hand at DIY Gifts- Making something to give as a gift can be much more personal, not to mention lots of fun! There are so many different ideas for DIY gifts, from edible items to ornaments and so much more. Look for craft ideas online using supplies you may already have on hand, or items you can purchase inexpensively.
Another way to make sure you don’t overspend this holiday season is to be proactive and don’t wait until the last minute to shop. Many people wait until the end and then purchase all of their gifts at once without spreading out their purchases or looking for the best deal. We’re not saying you need to start in July, but it helps to spread your purchases out over several months.
Thinking of doing most of your shopping online to avoid impulse buys and long lines? Make sure you factor in shipping when you plan your purchases. Many retailers offer free shipping around the holidays, but not all do. Also, there are several websites that offer cash back rewards on your purchases if you sign up for an account and start at their website, such as Rakuten.com. There are also companies that will get you refunds on purchases if they arrive late or if the price drops within a certain amount of time after you make your purchase, such as Earny.com. Bottom line, this year make it your goal to break the overspending cycle and shop smart!
Once you finish your holiday shopping, get a head start on next year by saving! There are many different ways to save, from a savings account to a holiday club account. Club accounts are a great way to save for the holidays and earn interest on what you save. You can set your savings budget and save a little each paycheck throughout the year.
If you opt for a savings account, try to find an interest-bearing savings account. This way, not only are you saving money from your paychecks, you’re also earning interest! The rate of interest you’re able to earn depends on the type of account you have and the rates at your bank. Citizens Savings Bank has several interest-bearing savings accounts to choose from.
Another option for saving is a certificate of deposit, or CD. Generally, CDs earn a higher interest rate than money markets but there is one big difference. A CD requires you to commit to leaving your money untouched for a set amount of time. The idea is to save, so you’re discouraged from taking money out. Your money isn’t held hostage, you can always get it, but most banks will charge an early withdrawal fee if it’s before your term is over. There are many different terms you can choose from ranging from 91 days to 72 months, so you have that flexibility. Obviously, the longer you choose to leave your money alone, the more interest you earn.
If you’re looking for the best savings option for your unique financial situation but aren’t sure where to start, contact us today. Our experienced banking professionals can help you find the perfect account to fit your lifestyle and budget.
Citizens Savings Bank has multiple locations throughout Lackawanna, Wayne, and Monroe Counties. For branch locations and hours, visit our website. We also have a Customer Support Team ready to answer any questions you may have. Call us today at 1.800.692.6279 or email [email protected]. Member FDIC.