Miami - End of year celebration are just around the corner and they can come with a heavy price tag. This means it is time to prepare a personal finance plan and mitigate those end-of-year costs.
Las year Americans spent an average of $770 on end of year activities according to Apprisen, a consumer credid non-profit out of Columbus, Ohio.
"We don't have the numbers on this year's spending, but we do know consumers are using their credit cards more and it is possible that families end up spending more this year," said Jena Castanon, spokeswoman for Apprisen.
The most important part is to be prepared for a high-spending season, Catanon said. To start of your spending-contention plan Apprisenm an organization that helps families reeling their debt and spending, provided some essential advice:
Establish a budget: The best wait to avoid over spending during this season is by creating a detail list of all your expenses and designate a budget or dollar number to pay them off. To start off you can use the amount you spent last year. A budget will help you prioritize your expenses and cut spending on less important areas and increase in others.
Start a saving plan: The most important thing after creating a budget is determining where you will get the money from. Since your everyday expenses don't vanish just because it's the holiday season you may have to start making some cuts in you spending and tighten your belt in the months to come before the end of the year. For example you can reduce the amount of time you go out to eat.
Do your research before the shopping spree: Scout out the the product you want before you go get them, that way you will have a better idea of which brands to buy and where the best prices are hiding. Don't forget to do you couponing to get back those extra dollars.
Use cash or a debit card with a set amount: The plus side in this approach is it forces us to stay within the limits of our budget. If you use a credit card you'll have to fight the temptation of buying more than what you can really pay.
Finally don't forget that the most important part of the end of year season is sharing time with your family and friends. In other words, spending a lot doesn't necessarily guarantee it will be a good holiday season.