Holiday spending is a point of anxiety for many shoppers. Whether it’s that last minute gift that’s causing all the buzz this season or quite simply budgeting for all the new nephews, nieces and grandchildren this year, spending this time of year can easily get out of control if not properly monitored. We’ve assembled a quick list of tips and suggestions sure to lower some of those holiday stress levels!
- Set a Budget
Sure, this one might seem like a total no-brainer but you’d be surprised how often it’s totally overlooked once the shopping season is in full swing. Prairie State Bank & Trust customers already have free access to an online budgeting tool with our Money Maximizer. Set budgets, establish savings goals and so much more.
- One Receipt
Remember, technology can be VERY helpful when managing one’s finances. One Receipt might be just the app we need right now. Allowing you to take pictures of receipts and sync them to your bank and credit card statements, One Receipt also enables you to split your spending into different categories. (this article is a great start for investigating apps to help you manage your spending)
- Rounding Up
It’s easy to get lost in dollars and cents when tax and shipping are at play. Our mind tells us we spent 24.95, but associated fees bring the final price to 33.97. Rounding up is a great way to trick our brains into recognizing the real price. Some banks, such as Prairie State Bank & Trust even have programs where using a debit card will round up the total of the purchase, depositing the extra amount into a separate savings account. Ask about our free “Change It Up” program.
- Think Ahead!
If only it was that easy, right? Maybe it is. Some financial institutions, like us, offer Holiday Savings accounts specifically to help with yuletide spending. Start saving early and be prepared!
- Gift Cards!
Gift cards are, simply put, the best way to avoid overspending. Gift cards are also not the stigmatized holiday item they used to be. With so many game add-ons or DLC (Downloadable Content) available for purchase online, gift cards are now more sought after for children and teenagers. If you’re unsure of which to get, many banks, including Prairie State Bank & Trust, offer their own, which is a secure, reliable choice!
Good luck and Happy Holidays!