Posts Tagged: ‘holiday spending’

How to Get Rid of Holiday Debt FAST

December 29, 2015 Posted by kingcade

We all have a vision of what constitutes “the perfect holiday.”  For many of us, it means countless presents under the tree, our children’s smiling faces on Christmas morning and that perfect meal with our family and loved ones all gathered around the table.  For some of us, making that vision a reality means putting it on credit cards.

If that was you this year, you’re probably wondering the next steps to take before the bills arrive and the interest starts mounting.

Here are some immediate steps you can take to help manage holiday debt in the New Year:

Make January and February lean months for spending.  With the plentiful holiday season behind us, it’s a good idea to start reeling in the spending and extravagance.  That doesn’t mean starve yourself, but it does mean sacrificing on splurges you would normally enjoy (i.e. – dinners out, visits to the salon, shopping, vacations, etc.)

Channel savings directly into those big credit card payments. Take a look at all of your credit card bills and determine which one has the highest interest rate. Make the biggest payment you possibly can afford towards that card, while still allotting enough money to pay your other bills and cover monthly expenses.

Look for zero-interest balance transfers.  BEFORE you send off that big payment, research credit card offers for balance transfers that allow you to pay 0 percent interest on the transferred balance for a certain period of time.  Just make sure you get the transferred balance paid off before the zero interest offer expires.

Sell unwanted items.  You will likely find that after the dust settles, you have some unwanted items and gifts around the house you no longer use or want.  Utilize Craigslist and eBay to sell these items and earn some extra cash.  This money can go towards making bigger payments towards your high-interest credit cards.

Start a savings plan for next holiday season. The best time to start saving for the next holiday season is right now!  If you save just $10 a week (the equivalent of a lunch out or a week’s worth of Starbucks runs) for 50 weeks, you will have more than $500 saved for next year’s shopping.   If you save $20 a week, you will have over $1,000 set aside for holiday shopping next year.  The easiest and most effective way to do this is by setting up weekly automatic transfers through your bank.

Make the holidays more realistic.  Discuss sensible downsizing when it comes to purchasing gifts next year.  Have a budget for gifts and stick to it.  Move to drawing names with family members for gift giving purposes (i.e. – Secret Santa) and discuss arrangements that reduce the challenges on travel for everyone.  The spirit of the holiday season should be about togetherness and giving thanks for all of the blessings we have- not something that causes you to go into debt.

If you are in financial crisis and considering filing for bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Related Resources: http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/my-money/articles/2015-12-22/how-to-quickly-get-rid-of-holiday-debt

Ways to Pay Down Holiday Debt Quickly

December 27, 2013 Posted by kingcade

With the New Year approaching, many of us are inspired to examine our finances and get our debt under control. Below are some ways to pay down debt you may have accrued over the holidays.

Create a list. Make a list of holiday expenditures that were paid for with a credit card. Separate the list by credit card and prioritize the debt based on interest rates. Plan on paying the cards off with the highest interest rates, first.

Stop using your credit cards. Leave the cards at home while you are out to avoid temptation. Even if you earn reward points by using them, stop putting expenditures on these until your finances are under control.

Use your Christmas bonus check. If you received extra money from your place of employment for the holidays, put it towards your debt. Avoid the temptation to spend it on a luxury item or vacation.

Sell unwanted gift cards. You can sell your unused gift cards for cash at an online marketplace and use this money to pay off holiday debt. Make sure you read the fine print on each site before doing this.

Sell unwanted gifts or personal items. Take inventory of personal items and unwanted gifts to sell on sites like eBay or Craigslist. Take quality photos and write captivating descriptions to sell these items quickly.

Save money by transferring balances. If you are eligible for any 0 percent interest credit card offers, consider transferring your holiday debt over to one of those cards. Make sure you know how much you will be paying in balance transfer fees.

Make a weekly payment. Do not wait until you receive your statement in the mail. Be proactive in making your debt payment. Have a goal to make weekly payments, instead of monthly payments.

Change your spending habits. Be prepared to cut back. Tighten your grocery budget and keep household expenditures low. Keep track of how much you are saving each week/month.

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If you are in a financial crisis and are considering filing bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Tips for Smart Holiday Spending: Part II

December 13, 2013 Posted by kingcade

With the holiday shopping rush officially here, we thought it was important to do a follow-up posting on our smart holiday spending series. We hope these tips will help you make smart financial decisions this holiday season and help plan financially for the New Year.

1.) Create a realistic and affordable budget. Decide on an amount you are willing to spend per person and do not exceed it.

2.) Shop with cash and use a ledger. This will keep you in touch with your spending; you could even spend up to 20 percent less.

3.) Avoid impulse buying and last-minute shopping.

4.) Pay off any holiday debt as soon as possible, so you do not accrue additional interest. This is especially important with store credit cards.

5.) Think outside the box. Consider gift alternatives like a breakfast, lunch or just a day together. Handmade gifts are also cost effective.

6.) In the New Year, start saving the amount you spent this year on holiday gifts and open a separate account for next year’s holiday expenditures.

7.) Comparative shop and take advantage of Christmas discounts immediately after the season. This is the best time to purchase gifts for the following year.

If you are in a financial crisis and are considering filing bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Related Resources: http://www.mpnnow.com/article/20131207/NEWS/131209958/?tag=2

Tips to keep your Holiday Spending in Check this year

November 27, 2013 Posted by kingcade

With the holidays upon us, below are some simple tips to avoid overspending this year.

1.) Set a budget you cannot exceed. Instead of using debit or credit cards to make your purchases this year, rely on cash only to buy gifts. Once the green is gone, you’re done! If you are not comfortable carrying cash, put the allotted money on a pre-paid card, such as the American Express Prepaid card, which charges no purchase, activation or maintenance fees.

2.) Surf the web smart. A recent study done by the California Institute of Technology revealed that customers are willing to pay about 50% more for products in stores than online. Dealnews.com is a great website that shows the day’s best prices on specific types of items.

3.) Give more gift cards. With gift cards you spend exactly the amount you intend. Sites such as GiftCardGranny.com and PlasticJungle.com sell gift cards from popular retailers at a discount.

4.) Reorganize your list. If you feel overwhelmed because you have to buy presents for every niece, cousin and uncle. Consider setting up a gift exchange, so that each person buys one gift with a set dollar amount. At the website Elfster.com you can invite others to a “Secret Santa” exchange. This site will then make gift assignments at random.

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The holidays can be a stressful time, particularly financially. The financial obligations that accompany the holiday season can result in people spending more money than they could afford. If you are in a financial crisis and are considering filing bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Consumers Avoid Credit Card Spending This Holiday Season

November 28, 2010 Posted by kingcade

As many consumers remain unemployed and are filing for bankruptcy at record rates, finding the extra cash for holiday shopping could prove difficult.

As we mentioned previously, fewer consumers will be turning to credit cards to purchase their holiday gifts this year. Financial experts say this trend will result in less spending overall, as consumers tend to spend less when they use cash than they would if they use credit. The good news is that many retailers are attempting to offset this revenue by offering sales and promotions.  However, how will the move away from spending affect our fragile economy? Without a doubt, the decreased spending will slow economic recovery. Still, while these responsible financial habits may thwart economic recovery in the short-term, economists say the “spend less, save more” mentality will benefit the economy in the long run. For example, consumers who save often have more money to spend in retirement. This can be a good situation for both the consumer and the economy.

Still, the financial security of the future seems quite far off for some struggling families. Many will become overwhelmed with the costs associated with the holidays, including food, decorations, gifts and travel. A director of an organization which provides debt and foreclosure counseling urges these individuals to be honest about their situations. She recommends telling family and friends there is a budget for the holidays, saying most people understand the holiday season is not about money and material possessions.

Source: The Salt Lake Tribune “Retailers brace for shopping shift away from credit cards,” Lesley Mitchell, 20 November 2010