ATLANTA, Ga. - Alright, it's time to talk Christmas. Christmas shopping anyway. Every year the day after Labor Day I say, "It's almost Christmas."
I recently reminded you to make a holiday budget. If you haven't done it, do it now. Decide what your holiday budget is.
INCLUDED IN YOUR HOLIDAY BUDGET
- Christmas gifts
- Party clothes
- Holiday meals
When that's done create a Christmas Club account. It's really less of a club than it is a short-term savings account. You set aside Christmas spending money each week so when it's time to go Christmas shopping your wallet isn't shocked.
Now, you can sometimes find banks that offer these accounts, but credit unions are where you find them most often. You can have your money directly deposited or drop by weekly to deposit it yourself. Often there are early withdrawal penalties, so check that date. The good part of this is that if you are tempted to dip into it early, you can without paying a price.
If you start today saving $42 a week, you can have just more than $500 by Christmas. That's easier to do than pulling $500 out of your account Christmas week.
You can even make it simpler by putting money in a jar. But remember, don't touch it until you go shopping.