How Much Can You Afford To Spend For The Holidays?

By Susan Tompor
Detroit Free Press

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Before you head out on that holiday shopping spree, TAKE A BEAT! As Susan Tompor points out, there is no need to bust your holiday budget. A little thought and creativity could go a long way this holiday season.

Detroit Free Press

Will it be a very merry or a very wary holiday gift-giving season?

So far, many of us have not been able to climb out of the agitated, argumentative state that the presidential election has created in our communities.

Some even might have a hard time imagining sitting around the table for Thanksgiving dinner.

No matter, bright shiny objects are lining up on store shelves now. Ready. Willing. And more than able to coax consumers into ringing up big bills for the New Year.

Glitter, it would appear, is the next new big thing. Sequined sweaters. Sequins on pants. Sparkles on reindeer. But if you mindlessly chase all the bling, you could find yourself in a financial squeeze in 2017 when the bill comes due.

Here’s how to avoid being tripped up by the gilt this holiday season:

-Not to be a downer, but aren’t you already carrying a big debt load?
Before you play Super Santa and promise more than you can afford, why not re-examine the bills that are already weighing you down.

We hear talk every year about how the average consumer is likely to spend $800 or $900 on the holidays.

The National Retail Federation said Americans plan to spend an average $935.58 during the holiday shopping season this year.

Nearly six in 10 plan to spend an average of $139.61 on just themselves, up from 4 percent last year. If so, it would mark the second-highest level of holiday-love that we’ve lavished on ourselves in the survey’s 13-year history.

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