Hidden Holiday Costs and How to Beat Them
It’s not uncommon to overspend during the holidays. In fact, according to a 2018 survey conducted by Bankrate.com, more than two in five Americans feel pushed to overspend on holiday gifts alone! So, if you’re trying to not overspend this holiday season, here are a few tips to help keep you within – or better yet – under budget!
Decorations. There is something to be said about decorating your home for the holidays – bring on the twinkling lights, garland, and nutcrackers! While these decorations are beautiful, remember that adding to your décor or replacing items can get expensive. To keep costs low in this category, try picking one or two items a year to replace / add to your collection.
Electricity. Speaking of twinkling lights, so many beautiful lights probably means a hike in your electric bill. How much you ask? In some cases, it could be $50 or more depending on the amount of lights and the size of your home.
How do you save? If you haven’t already, switch to LED lights. Maybe this is the one item you replace in your collection this year. While it may be an investment at first, your electric bill will thank you later. You can also use a timer, so your lights are only on a few hours per night.
Wrapping and Sending Gifts. This one is a biggie and is often overlooked. Wrapping paper, gift bags, and other accessories like ribbons, tags, and bows all add to the cost of gifts; not to mention the cost of mailing gifts and cards.
Look for retailers that offer free shipping promo codes or free site-to-store pickup (most retailers are even offering curbside pickup due to the pandemic). For any gifts you are planning on sending out yourself, plan ahead so you can avoid priority of rush shipping charges. As for wrapping paper and other accessories, you can purchase these on sale in January and save them for the next holiday season.
New Holiday Outfit. Everyone deserves a little something for themselves during the holidays, and an entire holiday outfit (or two, or three), could break the bank. Like decorations, limit yourself to one new item – a new holiday sweater to jazz up last year’s pants or a new pair of shoes to take your look up a notch. Whatever it may be, if you’re a Perks Checking ™ or Perks Plus Checking™ member, you can use our Perks mobile app to save on your next purchase!
No matter what holiday you’re gearing up for, you can help keep your season merry and bright by making sure that you consider some of these unexpected extras in your holiday prep.