JACKSON, Tenn. — ‘Tis the season to get your holiday shopping started. And with inflation impacting prices on everything, you can use tools that will give you the biggest bang for your buck.
Financial advocate Colleen McCreary says the first tool is to make a list of each person you are buying a gift for. And then, create a budget following the 50-30-20 rule.
“50% of all of your income should go to the essentials,” McCreary said. “30% goes into what I call the fun bucket, and then 20% should either go to savings or paying down debt. The fun bucket is for dining out, going on vacation, or buying gifts for your family.”
McCreary says consumers can save on their purchases with deals, and those deals have already started.
“If people have a list and they know who they are shopping for, what they can do is be on the lookout,” said McCreary. “So take a look, maybe once a day. I always tell people limit your spending and shopping time to a specific point in time during the day so you are not tempted all day long and overspending.”
And depending on what type of rewards program you are a part of, there are ways to earn cash back.
“A lot of companies offer that along with their credit cards, or you can look at some sort of shopping sites that online while you are shopping, like a Honey or Rakuten, that will actually give you the coupon codes as you are shopping,” McCreary said.
And she says the most important tool is to have a conversation with family members, and be realistic about what you can contribute this holiday season.
“In many cases, the pile of gifts is not actually what the holidays are all about, and having a real conversation about everybody picks one or two nieces and nephews and that is who you are shopping for, that can go a long way to help potentially everybody in your family.”
You can also find deals by signing up for coupon email lists and downloading coupon apps.
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