Patterson State Bank wants to make your holiday season merry and stress-free by sharing these great budget tips that will help keep you on track with your spending.

Review last year’s spending

How much did you spend on holiday shopping last year? Taking an inventory of last year’s spending and making note of how long it took to pay for it can help you budget better this year.

Make a list of purchases

Before you start shopping, make a list of everyone you plan to gift this year. Be sure to write down each name, what you want to purchase, and the cost of the gift. Doing this gives you a clearer picture of how many gifts you need to purchase and the total cost.

Go bargain hunting

Look for bargains once you’ve made your shopping list. The earlier you start, the more time you have to take advantage of sales. You can also avoid shipping costs when buying multiple items from the same online retailer by purchasing all the items at once.

Don’t impulse shop

Stick to buying only what’s on your list and avoid impulse shopping. Forget to put someone on your list? Be sure to adjust your purchase amounts for others once you add in the person you forgot if you want to stick to the same overall budget.

Save your receipts

Total your receipts daily or a couple of weeks before the holiday to get a clear picture of your actual spending. Doing so can help you determine if you can afford to spend more and how much.

Be careful with credit card purchases

Take only the cards you need when you go shopping and keep credit card purchases to a minimum. Make sure you regularly check your statements for any unauthorized spending and report any suspicious activity immediately.

Following these budget tips will help bring more discipline into your holiday spending and help ensure a more financially stress-free season.

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