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Credit Card eZine - News and Articles about Credit Cards

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Get Over Your Post-Holiday Financial Slump

[January 21st, 2014]

If the holidays left you feeling financially overextended and facing a pile of bills, not to worry: this is the season for shaping up. Here’s how to get over that post-holiday slump and get your finances back on track.

  • Go on a spending diet. After indulging in a bit too much gravy and pie, many of us go on diets after the holidays. Likewise, after spending more than our budgets allowed during the holidays, it’s a good idea to go on a spending diet. Vow to not buy anything extra for a month, or maybe even two. Every time you have the impulse to buy something you don’t really need, make yourself wait a day. Chances are, after 24 hours you’ll come to your senses. Buying that new dress or the latest smartphone upgrade won’t feel nearly as good as getting out of debt.
  • Make your finances work harder. Just like going to the gym in January to work out your muscles, give your money a workout this season. See a financial advisor about investing some money, socking it away in savings, or otherwise making your money work for you. If you have accounts that are just sitting there, earning pennies per quarter, see about moving those funds around so they can earn more.
  • Transfer a balance. Many people run their credit cards up during the holidays and can’t quite pay them off come the New Year. But there’s no reason to pay interest on that balance while you try to pay it down. If your credit is in pretty good shape, you will have plenty of 0% APR balance transfers to choose from. Look for a no-fee or low-fee balance transfer offer. Terms are often up to 18 months, interest free. So transfer that balance and pay it off faster, without the penalty of paying interest.
  • Make some financial resolutions. Set a goal for the New Year, whether it’s saving up for the down payment on a home, learning to invest, asking for a raise, or starting your own business. Nothing ventured is nothing gained, so go out on a limb this year. Set your sights high and make this your bank account’s best year ever.
  • Apply for a rewards credit card. If you haven’t been taking advantage of all the free frequent flyer miles, free hotel stays, gift cards and other perks you can get from a rewards credit card, now is the time. Think about what you’d most like to use your points for and then look for a card that offers high value rewards in that category. If you’ve never used a frequent flyer credit card before, for example, this is a great time to try one out. Many cards offer great sign-on bonuses, so find one that will give you the most bang for your buck.

Following these tips will soon get you back in great financial shape. But losing that holiday weight is up to you!

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