Financial adviser says start planning now for holiday months

Financial Adviser says make sure you're working with what you have this holiday season. Danielle Apolinar/WGXA News

MACON, Ga.-- The countdown to the holiday months has begun.

Last year, the National Retail Federation reported that about $656 billion was spent on retail alone during the holiday months.

Financial Advisor Colleen Giffin with Beall Financial said it is important to take into consideration what you can spend during the holiday months. She said it is easy to overspend so setting a budget is important.

"There's never a too soon. It gives you time of course to figure out where you want to go or what you want to do while you're gone if you're traveling," Giffin said.

She also said it's important to prioritize where to allot your money, whether it's buying gifts for loved ones or spending that money on travel plans. She said it's especially important to think about travel plans early and suggested buying plane tickets ahead of time.

"Buying plane tickets typically is better earlier because the closer it comes, the more expensive they get. You don't want to wait last minute for plane tickets," Giffin said.

She said if you decide to spend money on giving gifts, set a budget for what you will spend for each person on your list.

"Set a limit, whatever it may be, so if you're able to be more generous, but someone else isn't they don't feel bad with what they bring to the table," Giffin said.

Giffin said thinking and planning early on can lead to a less stressful holiday season.

"Recognizing that and doing that within your cash flow is going to make that all the easier from an emotional standpoint," she said. "Not only are you allowed to give without worry and stress, but it won't negatively effect you later."

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