The holiday season is a great time of year for enjoying the company of friends and family. However, in the excitement of the season it is important to be aware of common financial and legal issues. These tips may help you avoid some common headaches so you can enjoy your holiday season.
Tip #1 - Make good choices to protect your budget.
It may feel like holiday fun comes down to hosting the best party or buying the best gifts. However, avoiding bills or paying only the minimum is a bad idea since you will owe twice as much after the holidays. Before the spending starts, set a budget and stick to it.
Tip #2 - Don't fall for new credit offers.
Credit card debt always increases during the holidays. Many retailers offer special incentives for signing up for store credit cards at checkout. Twenty percent off or zero interest for fifteen months may seem like a great deal. However, a holiday checkout line is not the best time to read a credit card's "small print." Be careful and review the credit card's rates and terms very carefully.
Tip #3 - Protect your smartphones and tablets.
Tablets and smartphones are a popular target for thieves. Don't leave your smartphone or other electronic device on the seat of your car when parked. Always password protect your devices. Also, be careful of free open Wi-Fi hotspots by setting your phone to only join approved networks. Scammers sometimes set up free wireless networks in public places to lure users to log on. Joining the network could enable the scammer to track data, including credit card numbers or other financial information, going to and from your phone.
Have a safe and happy holiday season!