background image
I can help you reach your milestones and all the mile-pebbles
To start a conversation, call me at (410) 588.5874.
Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. Member FINRA
Lenora Hammett
Financial Advisor
309 George Street
Bel Air, MD 21014
(410) 588.5874
by lenora hammett,
ameriprise financial planner
Traditionally, the holiday
season is a time
of indulgence.
The combination
of gifts, travel and
entertaining can result in big
end-of-year expenditures. But this year,
in light of declining investment portfolios,
sinking house values and a shaky job
market many consumers will be looking
for ways to toast the season without
breaking the bank. If you, too, want to
avoid over-spending, here are some tips to
celebrate more frugally:
Set proper expectations
Make sure everybody in your family is
onboard with the cost-conscious approach.
Have a frank discussion with your spouse
about spending limits. Make sure your
children understand that your plans for the
holidays will focus on fun that can be had
without spending a lot of money. You may
even use this as an opportunity to explain
the fundamentals of household economics
and involve them in setting holiday spending
priorities for the family.
Plan ahead
Take time to write down a list of gifts you
hope to purchase for family and friends.
Knowing what you want ahead of time may
help you avoid making poor decisions and
impulse purchases once you hit the stores.
Track your spending
One of the best ways to keep spending under
control is to set a limit. Once this number is
chosen, see if you can come in under budget.
Track all of your purchases and be certain to
hold onto receipts. You might also request
gift receipts where available and tuck them
inside cards or gift boxes.
Get a jump on the season
Given the forecast for below-average
consumer spending, many retailers are
cautious to avoid stockpiling large inventories
this holiday season. If you shop early, you
will be more likely to find what you're looking
for at a reasonable price. Conversely, last
minute shopping could result in spending
more than you planned, particularly if you
are determined to buy specific items.
And finally . . .
These tips are about gift buying. But rather
than making gifts and packages the center
of your holiday celebration, try putting more
emphasis on spending quality time with
family and friends. Encourage games and
conversation; you may be surprised to find
how little you miss the excesses of years past.
This column is for informational purposes only.
The information may not be suitable for every
situation and should not be relied on without
the advice of your tax, legal and/or financial
advisors. Neither
Ameriprise Financial nor its
financial advisors provide tax or legal advice.
Consult with qualified tax and legal advisors
about your tax and legal situation. This column
was prepared by
Ameriprise Financial.
Financial planning services and investments offered
through Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc.,
Member FINRA & SIPC.
2010 Ameriprise Financial, Inc.
All rights reserved.
Holiday Fun Can Be Affordable
HHT-090-01 Nov-Dec10:harford'sheart winter08 10/20/10 4:21 PM Page 50