Black Friday is swiftly approaching.
Shopping for the upcoming Christmas season the day after Thanksgiving has become a tradition for many families. They will hit the stores in droves searching for great deals on the perfect gift. It can be an exciting time but one where you do not want the excitement to set you back financially.
“Black Friday has become more of an experience,” said James Ferguson, a Certified Financial Planner and Managing Partner of Roan Capital Partners. “It can be a way to find great deals. I’d say do your research in advance and know roughly how much you want to spend. Don’t get caught up in the moment.”
Roan Capital Partners wants to offer some tips on Black Friday shopping and how to stay financially secure during the holiday.
STAY ON BUDGET
With all the great deals on Black Friday, it can be tempting to pick up more items than you planned on getting. But it’s important to stay on budget, especially when that budget may be limited by a fixed income.
Roan Capital advises to plan and work out a specific budget for gifts. Avoid overspending on items you do not need even if they appear heavily discounted.
Ferguson recommends making a list of people you are going to buy gifts for and do some research ahead of time to figure out the best deals.
It might be a good idea for some to speak with their bank or credit card companies and have a spending limit set on the cards for Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Ferguson said it is a good way to minimize the spending.
AVOID OPENING A STORE CREDIT CARD
Even though you want the holidays to be great for everyone, you should not go into debt to purchase gifts. Even if they offer great discounts, leaving the holiday season owing money on a credit card is not a good idea.
“I know they can give you some decent discounts if you have the discipline and the money set aside,” Ferguson said. “But I can tell you for 9 out 10 people it’s not going to make much sense.”
Onee recommendation, if possible, is to take only cash and leave the credit cards at home. This will help you stay on budget and avoid purchasing any unnecessary items. As long as you know in advance how much you want to spend, this could be a viable option to keep you on the right track.
PLAN AHEAD IF USING RETIREMENT SAVINGS
Roan Capital recommends planning in advance if retirees plan on using retirement money to shop on Black Friday. Ferguson said if people are planning on going that route, planning should be done throughout the year.
Ferguson said the earlier to plan, the better. This way cash flow can be figured out throughout the year.
“We set goals in January and work to achieve those throughout the year,” he said. “It can put you at a major disadvantage if you go way overboard with spending on Christmas and the holidays. You begin the year poorly and that usually means you’ll finish the year poorly in a financial sense. No need to put undue stress on yourself.”