Tips for preparing a holiday spending plan

By Lauren Payne - bio | email feedback

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) "For every thousand dollars you are in debt, credit card debt, it could take you a year to pay that thousand dollars off," said Financial Specialist, Susan Campbell.

Before you dig yourself into debt during the holidays, experts say have a plan of action, a spending plan, before you hit the stores.

"Have an idea of what you're going to be spending whether it's for gift giving, travel, and food expenses," said Campbell.

Financial specialist Susan Campbell says it needs to be an all inclusive holiday budget.  She adds, know your limits, and track what you're spending so you don't overspend.  Campbell adds when you're ready to make a purchase, she says use cash.

"Cash is a little bit harder to let go of than credit cards.   You swipe those credit cards and you don't think about the limits," said Campbell.

Campbell says if you would rather use a card, make sure it's one with a lower interest rate and try to pay it off the following month.

"That's going to avoid getting all of those finance charges and getting you in debt," said Campbell.

Campbell says start shopping and comparing now to find the best deal.  She says waiting too long might lead to desperation and spending more than you planned to.

"You have to know how many people you're going to buy for.   If it doesn't fit in with the budget you have set forth, you just have to start scaling back a little bit," said Campbell.

Campbell says don't be swayed by the holiday sales hype.  She says make a plan and stick to it, and she says this is one of the most important things to remember--

"...know your limits, know what you can afford to spend," said Campbell.

©2010 KAIT All rights reserved.