Springboard Encourages Consumers to Plan Ahead to Avoid Overspending this Holiday Shopping Season

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Getting organized will help keep the family budget intact and reduce stress.

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We encourage consumers to get organized and create a spending plan before making any purchases.

Springboard Nonprofit Consumer Credit Management, Inc. (“Springboard”) urges consumers to start planning now to avoid overspending this holiday shopping season. Creating a spending plan will help keep the family budget intact and reduce stress associated with overspending.    

“We encourage consumers to get organized and create a spending plan before making any purchases,” said Sheri Stuart, Education Department Manager for Springboard. “With holiday displays underway it’s easy to fall into the trap of making spontaneous and unplanned purchases. Planning ahead is essential to having a happy and stress-free holiday season,” said Stuart.

In preparing to shop for gifts, Springboard offers the following wallet-friendly tips for consumers:

Make a Plan

  • Create a holiday budget and set limits on the amount that will be spent on each item. Be sure to include all of the holiday expenses including decorations, holiday cards, postage, and gift-wrap. After the family budget has been established, make lists of gifts, decorations and food items that need to be purchased.

Plan a Time to Shop

  • Arrange a day to go shopping. Planning a day and time to shop can keep consumers from impulse shopping and buying items that they do not need or would have not normally purchased.    

Be an Efficient Shopper

  • Whether it is the local retail mall or an outlet mall, consumers are encouraged to go where they have a choice of stores and merchandise to choose from. Shopping the malls early is best. Also, malls tend to be less crowded on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

Springboard is hoping consumers will connect with relatives and friends over Thanksgiving. This is a good time to discuss the many variations to a holiday gift exchange. From a theme-based activity that involves everyone in the family, including the children, to a charity-given focus wherein gifts are purchased and then donated to a local organization, there are many ways to make gift-giving memorable without taxing the family budget. Re-discover the fun of “picking” names, where each family member draws the name of one family member and a gift limit is established for the Secret Santa gifts. A survey revealed that 68 percent of people bought gifts for themselves when holiday shopping. This is definitely a budget buster.    

Springboard provides these tips to help manage holiday expenses so consumers will look back at the holidays of 2013 with good memories of joy and celebration, not financial struggles and regret.

Since 1974, Springboard has provided credit counseling services to more than 2 million consumers with debt issues. Visit http://www.credit.org to download Springboard’s “Surviving the Holidays” seminar materials at their web site, or check out other free budgeting courses in the online Financial Instructional Training Academy.

About Springboard Nonprofit Consumer Credit Management
SPRINGBOARD® Nonprofit Consumer Credit Management is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit personal financial education and counseling organization founded in 1974. Springboard is a HUD-approved housing counseling agency and a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, a national organization of nonprofit credit counseling agencies, and a member of the Association of Independent Credit Counseling Agencies. The agency offers personal financial education and assistance with credit counseling, housing counseling, debt and money management through educational programs and confidential counseling. Springboard is accredited by the Council on Accreditation, signifying the highest standards for agency governance, fiscal integrity, counselor certification and service delivery policies. The agency provides pre-bankruptcy counseling and debtor education as mandated by the bankruptcy reform law. The agency offers nationwide phone counseling services and has locations in California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, South Carolina , Massachusetts, Florida and Maryland for in-person counseling sessions. Not all types of counseling are available in-person at all locations, please call for details. For more information on Springboard, call 800.449.9818 or visit their web site at http://www.springboard.org.

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