Don’t Break the Bank – 5 Ways to Save Money this Holiday Season

Don’t Break the Bank – 5 Ways to Save Money this Holiday Season

Keep on top of your budget during the holidays, without becoming The Grinch   We love the holidays – there’s nothing like spending time with your family, overindulging on food, kicking off our flats and relaxing from our busy lives for a little while. But doing the holidays right requires more than finding that perfect Turkey recipe. For many people, the holidays result in a financial hangover that you can’t sleep off (just in time for New Year’s!). No need to fear! We’ve developed some ways to help you keep on top of your budget during the holidays, without becoming The Grinch: Make a plan The only surprises this season should be the awesome gift you just got or how much Eggnog Uncle Jerry drank. You can avoid the shock of an empty wallet by planning ahead. Before you dive into these busy weeks, map out what you expect to spend (gifts, food, travel). If you haven’t already started shopping for gifts, you can set a specific limit so that you know in advance how much you will spend. Make sure it’s within your “fun” budget , because cutting into necessities can lead to a never-ending spiral of debt. Volunteer! So your whole family is in town, and normally this would be the perfect opportunity to go out to dinner or to the movies. But won’t that cut into your budget? You can avoid the spending (and dreaded movie lines) by volunteering. It’s a great opportunity to bring the family closer together while also doing something worthwhile for the community. Homemade is the new Tiffany’s Whip out your arts and...

How to Get the Most out of Your Money

“Just Spend Less” – Here’s Why Most Advice on Saving Money Sucks (and what to do instead) Okay, we’ll be the first to admit that spending less than you earn is actually very good advice. But is it realistic? Spending less is great, if you can actually do it. But what good is good advice when it’s almost impossible to follow? You might as well type “start climbing” on a piece of paper, dress it in a fancy book cover, and sell it at your local Barnes and Noble as The Insider’s Guide For Conquering Mount Everest. Great advice needs to be more than “just do it” (sorry, Nike). Don’t worry though; we’re about to give you a (relatively) easy fix to get your money on track. Avoid a financial diet “I love dieting” –said no one ever. That’s the problem with saving money – most people approach it like a diet. A budget is framed by what you can’t spend – but who actually wants to deprive themselves of money (or chocolate cake)? Pinching pennies is no real way to get ahead, and tracking every single dollar you spend just feels like a chore. Having zero flexibility (i.e. $200 for groceries) isn’t going to leave you feeling very wonderful. That’s why you need to avoid a budget at all costs. Yes, you read that right. Here’s what you need to do instead: The 20-50-30 plan is a fun and flexible way to account for your savings. First – calculate your monthly take home pay (the amount you keep after taxes). The 20 is the percent of your money used...