How To Avoid Debt Around The Holidays
If you’re already stretching your paycheck to pay for regular household expenses, then December can be a financial nightmare. The costs of buying gifts or attending parties can throw a wrench into your budget—and you may end up overusing your credit card and getting deep in debt.
Christmas cheer shouldn’t end up with a bankrupt New Year. Use these tips to keep your spending in check, and avoid accumulating debt around the holidays.
Avoiding Debt Around The Holidays
Make A Budget And Commit To It
To make a budget, write down all possible holiday expenses, from big-ticket items like travel and gifts to smaller expenses that are easy to miss but add up: tips, cab fares, contributions to the office party, etc.
Set a total holiday budget, and then divide that amount among the categories. You’ll have to set priorities. For example, if you really want to travel home to see your family, be willing to cut corners on other things so you can afford it.
You can use anything to plan your budget: paper and pen, an app, or an Excel sheet. The most important thing is commitment. How many times have you created a budget and then given in to temptation because of a big holiday sale?
This year, you have to really mean it—it’s the only way to avoid debt around the holidays.
Research Cheaper Alternatives
You may be short on cash, but you have an abundance of information and creativity. Go online to find out if there are cheaper ways to celebrate the season.
For example, there are many travel hacks that tell you how to save on airfare, recipe blogs that share budget-friendly holiday dishes, or community events that don’t charge entrance fees. It only takes a few minutes to do an Internet search, and you can control your spending and still have fun.
Make It A Group Effort
You shouldn’t feel like avoiding debt around the holidays is a solitary battle. Get the family involved. Gather everyone and announce your goal of saving money. Ask them to help you find the best ways to have fun without spending a lot. As they say, two heads are better than one!
You can even ask for the help of family and friends. Invite them to have a potluck party at home instead of going bar-hopping, or do a Secret Santa instead of buying gifts for everyone. Since they’re also feeling the pinch of inflation, they’ll probably readily agree to this idea, and help you think of fun alternatives.
Don’t Give Into Peer Pressure
One of the biggest reasons for debt around the holidays is that you are pressured into buying or doing things you don’t really want to. You feel compelled to buy a nice gift, attend a big party (and buy nice clothes for it) because everyone else is going, or decorate the house so it’s as nice as the neighbors.
You’re an adult, and this is your life and your money! Why allow other people to dictate your choices, especially since their approval doesn’t pay your bills?
You have your own goals (which are to avoid debt around the holidays) and your interests and preferences, too. Stick to your budget, and spend your money on things that give more value and enjoyment to your life.
Focus On What’s More Important
The holidays are not about buying more things or showing off your new outfits and decorations. It’s about spending time with the people you care about, celebrating your faith (if this is a religious holiday for you), or celebrating your heritage through traditions and rituals.
You don’t need to spend money to do that. So even if you’re on a very tight budget, and can’t buy a lot of things, that doesn’t mean that the holidays won’t be special or meaningful. In fact, this is the best time to remind yourself that the best things in life are free.
When To Get A Holiday Loan
You shouldn’t use credit for frivolous, unnecessary expenses like gifts, parties, or Black Friday sales. However, there are circumstances when you really do need extra cash with a personal loan.
For example, you may need to buy medicines or get medical treatment (people do tend to get sick more often during winter), address a house or car repair, or pay for a sudden spike in your electricity bill because of heating costs.
Or, your paycheck may get delayed and you have to wait an extra week or so to get the money you were expecting—and meanwhile, your refrigerator and gas tank is empty.
In these cases, you can get a payday loan to fill that financial gap. This is a small loan that acts like a cash advance on your next paycheck. You can borrow from $100 to $500, and you don’t need a high credit score or collateral to qualify.
To get a payday advance, just fill out the online form on our Utah Title Loans, Inc. homepage and one of our loan representatives will call you to explain the payday loan process and answer your questions. Then, go to our branch to submit the following documents:
- Driver’s License or a government-issued I.D.
- Your most recent pay stub
- A blank check from your active checking account
Processing takes only 30 minutes, and you get the money the same day or the next business day—just in time to pay for any urgent expenses.
Get Started Today!
To get started on your inquiry, simply complete the online form to submit your payday loan request now! Our representatives are waiting to assist you with your financial emergency today.
Note: The content provided in this article is only for informational purposes, and you should contact your financial advisor about your specific financial situation.