There’s no need to rack up debt just to cover your holiday expenses. Enjoy a stress-free season by keeping your spending in check with these six tips:
1. Create a detailed list of all your expenses
Before you head to the mall or start browsing, sit down and draw up a complete list of every holiday expense you can anticipate. Include all gifts, holiday décor, travel expenses, charitable donations and food costs. Try to keep this list as trim as possible by cutting out any non-essentials and using things you may already have in storage from previous years.
2. Determine how much money you can spend
Once you have all of your expenses written out, work on finding a perfect number that will cover everything on your list and that you can realistically afford. Ideally, this money should come from funds you have set aside just for this purpose.
3. Divide and conquer
Next, assign specific amounts of money in your budget for each expense category and for every person on your gift list. Make sure your numbers will work from both a financial and practical perspective.
4. Track as you shop
You are ready to hit the mall! As you shop, keep a careful account of exactly how much money you have spent and in each expense category. To make this job easier, monitor your accounts from your computer or mobile device with SeaComm’s digital platforms, NetTeller™ and Mobile Branch.
5. Shop smartly and spend less
Keep your spending to a minimum by following these tips:
- Use discount programs, like Benefits Plus®, to get your favorite retailers’ best deals and coupons! Once you upgrade to a Benefits Plus® checking with SeaComm, you will gain access to discounted gift and eGift cards at a variety of local retailers. Benefits Plus® users also have access to a new Cash Back Rewards Program featuring Rakuten! Members have the opportunity to receive 50% more cash back – up to $100 per year, with no minimum purchase requirements. Your membership also includes grocery and prescription savings, identity theft protection, travel discounts and much more. Visit your local SeaComm branch to enroll.
For complete information, terms, conditions and exclusions please visit www.benefits-plus.org or call 866-329-7587.
- Follow the 24-hour rule. Before purchasing anything on the expensive side, wait 24 hours. Sometimes, after sleeping on it, you will find that you don’t need to buy that pricey gift after all. You might even find the same item somewhere else at a lower price!
- Shop with a friend. Take advantage of BOGO sales by splitting the cost of a single item with a friend and each of you taking one item home.
- Shop late. Everyone likes to get an early start on holiday shopping, but prices actually drop in the weeks leading up to Christmas as retailers seek to clear out their holiday inventory.
6. Let SeaComm help
If you are having trouble covering your holiday expenses, or you want to get a head start on next year’s costs, let SeaComm help! Take the financial stress out of the holiday season with a SeaComm Visa® Platinum or personal loan.
As a member, you may already be pre-approved for a personal loan or SeaComm Visa® through our loan pre-approval program, LoanEngine™. If you qualify for a pre-approved offer, you will be presented with it through our SeaComm Mobile app or NetTeller™ in the “My Offers” tab, via email, and/or a letter through the mail. Click here to login to your NetTeller™ to view your current offers! If you don’t have any offers at this time, be sure to check back every 60 days or visit your local SeaComm branch to apply.