The holidays are a time for joy and celebration, but it is also an important time to manage your finances wisely. Here are some tips to help you enjoy the holidays without breaking the bank.

Set a budget: See how much you can afford to spend on gifts, decorations, special activities, extra food costs from hosting parties and other holiday festivities – and set that as your budget.  Remember, the holidays are about spending time with loved ones and creating memories, not just spending money.

Make a list: Create a list of those you’d like to find a gift for, as well as what you would like to get them.  Placing a max limit for each person/item helps you stay organized.

Get creative: Personalized homemade gifts are always very special. Not only are they often more meaningful, it’s cost effective.

Don’t procrastinate: Start your holiday planning and shopping early. Last minute buying in a rush can lead to spending more money than expected.

Look for a deal:  Look for sales, compare prices from different stores, and look for coupons to get the best deals!

Track expenses: Keep an itemized list of your purchases to help you see where you are at in your spending. Tracking how expenses are comparing to your budget lowers your chances of overspending.

As you embrace these heartwarming tips, may your holiday season be filled with love and joy, and debt free!