Monday, September 29, 2008

Common Holiday Budget Busters has an interesting article on some common budget busters. A common theme among a lot of these traps they spoke about is a lack of planning. If you start now, you can avoid making a lot of these mistakes out of a lack of time and sheer frustration.

In addition to their list I would add a few of my own:
  1. Gift-Giving for the wrong reason. Are you giving a gift to impress the recipient or is it something that you really want them to have and you really feel that they would appreciate and enjoy? Are you spending money you don't have to impress people you don't like? Are you giving out of obligation?
  2. Trying to support too many worthy causes. Each year around the holidays there will be numerous charities, worthy causes, those in need whom you can contribute to. I have a weakness for the kids and need and giving trees, and I am a firm believer in sharing the wealth. However, when money is tight, you really haveto plan which causes you will support this year, otherwise you will not be prepared to say no when someone approaches you with yet another cause to support.
  3. Trying to buy "enough". I made this mistake so many times with my kids. I would get my Christmas shopping done ahead of time. Then around 2 or 3 days before Christmas, I would wonder "Did I buy little Johnny enough stuff?" or "Johnny has 4 things under the tree, Suzy only has 3", and off I would go running out that the last minute to get Suzy that last gift. Don't do this, make your list and stick to it.
  4. Not making a budget. Again, this is a failure to plan.

Here is Bankrate's list, click here to go to their site to read the whole story.

1. Don't make a list
2. Act like Santa Claus
3. Go overboard with gift cards
4. Grab the first thing you see
5. Wait until the spirit moves you
6. Put it on plastic
7. Buy now, pay later

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