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Tips to Keep You From Going Broke This Holiday Season

If you're like most Americans, your Christmas list gets longer every single year, and according to the Federal Reserve, the average consumer has over $15,000 in credit card debt. How can you do Christmas without going into the red?
"When you write that check or you pull that cash out of your wallet, there's some realization there exactly how much you're spending." - Shawn Wall, Financial Advisor of 20 years
If you're like most Americans, your Christmas list gets longer every single year, and according to the Federal Reserve, the average consumer has over $15,000 in credit card debt.  How can you do Christmas without going into the red?

WFFT's Brooke Welch has some tips to keep you from going broke this holiday season.

According to Business Insider Magazine, the average person will spend over $700 dollars on Christmas gifts and additional hundreds on food, decorations, cards, and stamps. 

"I've always said, you don't want to have a holiday hangover, that you're not aware of after the season", says Shawn Wall who is a Financial Advisor with over 20 years of experience and the holiday hangover he is referring to is holiday season debt.

"A lot of times it that's been funded with credit cards, you pay 1, 1.5, or 2 times the amount for your previous Christmas's with interest on credit cards, layaway service fees, and interest free financing.  There are many ways to accumulate debt.

Wall says the best way to avoid unnecessary spending is to have a plan.

"Think you need to go into Christmas with a plan.  I think it's very good to have a budget and a lot of times I think it's good to have even a list of gift ideas, so that I'm just not wandering around a mall."

Some other spending tips.  Having a plan so that you can price compare, a budget so you know the amount you can spend, doing a gift exchange instead of buying for every person at a get together, setting aside money monthly to save for Christmas, and avoiding credit cards.

"When you write that check or you pull that cash out of your wallet, there's some realization there exactly how much you're spending."

If you follow these tips, hopefully you won't be paying for Christmas 2013 into 2014.
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