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Connecticut BBB Offers Tips for Sticking to Your Holiday Budget

Although retailers are anticipating an increase in holiday spending over last year, Connecticut Better Business Bureau says that doesn’t mean you have to break your budget.

Free Online Holiday Planner Calculator Helps Organize Seasonal Expenses

With the joy of the holidays comes the stress of overs-pending.  Every year, many consumers overspend during the holidays and start off the New Year in debt.  According to the National Retail Federation, “American shoppers will spend just under $750 on average on their holiday purchases this year, with a record percentage of shoppers buying online.”

Although retailers are anticipating an increase in holiday spending over last year, Connecticut Better Business Bureau says that doesn’t mean you have to break your budget.

BBB is teamed up with Clearpoint Credit Counseling Solutions to offer financial tips to help you manage your expenses and stay clear of debt.

To get started, check out our Holiday Planner Calculator, which helps you compartmentalize your holiday budget into categories such as gifts, travel and food.  You set the overall budget, and adjust it depending on your needs and plans for the holiday season.

Here are some other ideas from Clearpoint for sticking to a budget:

Make a list -Jot down a list of the people who – whether naughty or nice - you intend to give a gift to.

Set a Limit - Look at your budget to see how much you can afford to spend in total and then set limits for the amounts you will spend on each person.

Do your research - Many retailers are offering holiday deals, but it’s always a good idea to comparison shop.  Online prices may be better, but don’t forget to factor in shipping costs.  This year many retailers are willing to match prices from online competitors.

Plan your purchases - Decide on what items you will buy online and which items you will purchase at local retailers.  Go to www.bbb.org to check out their BBB Business Reviews before you shop.

Make your holidays merry and bright with a plan, a budget and the resolve to stick to it.  Come January, you can start the New Year with a clean slate instead of a stack of bills and heavy credit card debt.

-Submitted by Howard Schwartz Executive Communications Director, Connecticut Better Business Bureau

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Jimmy Pursey November 29, 2012 at 08:32 PM
Today was a rousing success for me, in that I've successfully demonstrated that the same person who has been posting racial epithets and homophobic insults on all the local news forums for several years now, is in fact, the same person from Bethel who has been obsessively smearing a man named Pete Lerman online for years as well. Also, despite his supposed moral clarity and relationship with our Lord and Savior the poster named Donald Borsch, actually agrees with this racist. So there's that.
Most Popular Poster November 29, 2012 at 08:40 PM
Hey "Jimmy", this aptly describes you: Munchausen Syndrome is an attention-seeking personality disorder which is more common than statistics suggest. Munchausen Syndrome, named after a German soldier renowned for exaggerated tales, is a disorder in which an emotionally immature person with narcissistic tendencies, low self-esteem and a fragile ego has an overwhelming need to draw attention to himself and to be the centre of attention. In Munchausen Syndrome, this is achieved by capitalising on, exploiting, exaggerating or feigning illness or injury or personal misfortune. The opportunities for being centre of attention can be increased if feigning victimhood through alleged victimisation, isolation, exclusion or persecution is added to the equation; the Munchausen person can then depict another person as a victimiser or persecutor and herself as the victim. Presenting himself as a false victim is also a Munchausen trait.
Jimmy Pursey November 29, 2012 at 09:12 PM
Hey Mostie, this accurately describes a tapir: Tapirs have a short prehensile (gripping) trunk, which is really an extended nose and upper lip. They use this trunk to grab branches and clean them of leaves or to help pluck tasty fruit. Tapirs feed each morning and evening. During these hours they follow tunnel-like paths, worn through the heavy brush by many a tapir footstep, to reach water holes and lush feeding grounds. As they roam and defecate they deposit the seeds they have consumed and promote future plant growth.
COSMO P November 29, 2012 at 10:15 PM
I am just curious why the president wants to talk to Romney. Imagine that.
Thomas Soukup November 30, 2012 at 01:22 PM
Because Monica is out of town!

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