December 11, 2017
Chances are you've made your holiday shopping list and budget. Great! Now, you need to stick to it.
A new survey from T. Rowe Price finds that most parents – 72 percent – did create a specific holiday budget last year. But more than half – 58 percent spent more than they intended. That’s a problem.
"Parents who are shopping in stores exclusively were the ones that weren't sticking to their budgets,” said Judith Ward, a T. Rowe Price senior financial planner. “The ones who were shopping mostly online had a better chance of sticking to their budgets.”
Ward says if you shop in a store, you really need to resist impulse purchases.
"You go down the aisles with all the cool little grab-and-go things and it's a more social environment, too, so that's where we see the parents are getting in trouble – where they're not sticking to their budget because of the in-store purchase activities,” she said.
Ward’s advice: Make a list and use it every time you go holiday shopping.
"Take that list with you and cross things off the list as you buy,” she suggested. “Keep track of how much money you are spending.”
If for some reason you happen to go overboard for one person on the list, you’ll need to make adjustments for others.