December 3, 2018

How Should I Fund My Holiday Shopping?

Q: I’ve made my gift list and I’m checking it twice. But, I’m getting a bit panicky just thinking about how I’m going to pay for all this stuff! What’s the best way to get me through this expensive season? 

A: Relax! You can keep your budget and your sanity, too! You can do it without having to dip into your savings or rack up a high-interest credit card bill that you’ll be paying off well into 2019. Instead, learn about your choices so you can spend responsibly and keep your holiday cheer all through the season. 

Let’s explore your options and take a look at why they may or may not be right for you.   

1.) Choosing the right credit cards

It’s never a good idea to rack up debt. However, if you can get your hands on a credit card like Interior FCU’s Visa Platinum Rewards Card that offers cash back and no annual fees, you’ll have the best card around. 

Nice: By making holiday purchases with your credit card, you’ll be able to earn more and more cash back, gift cards, merchandise, and much more. 

Naughty: Don’t go this route if you have a poor track record of paying down your credit card bills. You might end up carrying that balance well after the intro period ends. You’ll then be hit with super-high interest rates that will make your holiday expenses go much higher. 

2.) Personal loans 

Anytime you need a pile of dough, you can visit the Interior FCU website to apply for a personal loan. Our representatives are always happy to help, and you can walk out with the money you need to fund your holiday shopping shortly after starting your application. 

Nice: Like all of our lending products, our personal loans have low interest rates, which makes the payback plan affordable for almost any budget. 

Naughty: If you’re already carrying a load of debt and unpaid loans, don’t take out another one just to get you through the holidays. Consider lower cost gift ideas and focus on paying off debt.  

Man and Woman Window Shopping

 

3.) Skip-a-Payment 

Here at Interior FCU, we understand that the holidays can be super expensive for our members. That’s why we offer you our own gift this time of year: the option to skip a monthly loan (signature or vehicle) or credit card payment to give you that extra cash flow. It’s more breathing room in your budget, just when you need it most! 

Nice: When you choose Skip-a-Payment, you’ll be able to pay for those presents without adding to your credit card balance or taking on new debt. No high-interest bills to haunt you through the first part of 2019! 

Naughty: When you choose to skip a monthly loan payment, you are essentially moving that payment to the end of the loan’s life. Every Skip-a-Payment will make the loan’s term one month longer. Consider this: If you skip just one payment a year on an auto loan, the loan will be six months longer than you’d originally anticipated. 

4.) Holiday Club Account 

Don’t wait until Black Friday to start thinking about your holiday shopping. Pay a little bit toward this expensive season all year long by opening a Holiday Club Account. This way, when November rolls around, you’ll actually look forward to buying all those gifts instead of dreading it. Put the cheer back in your holiday season by opening a Holiday Club Account today! 

Nice: Holiday Club Accounts offer you a way to pay for your holiday shopping ahead of the season, instead of playing catch-up on your bills in the coming months. It’s the perfect way to take the stress out of the holidays! 

Naughty: If you want to open a Holiday Club Account to help you make it through this season, you’re a little late. But, it’s never too early to start thinking about next year! 

5.) Deferred-interest financing 

If you’re buying several large purchases at big-box stores, consider signing up for the retailers’ deferred-interest financing. Many chain stores offer customers this interest-free financing option so they can walk out with their purchase today, and pay for it tomorrow. 

Nice: Deferred-interest financing works just like an interest-free line of credit, only it’s exclusive to the store selling the item. If you don’t like the idea of opening another credit card but you need that interest-free option, this can be the perfect solution for you. 

Naughty: If you neglect to pay off your bill before the interest-free period expires, you’ll be slapped with sky-high interest fees. Worse yet, you’ll have to pay interest retroactively for the entire interest-free period. 

If you’re still struggling to get through the holiday season, we can help! Call Interior FCU today to hear about our personal loan options to delete your holiday shopping stress. We’ll show you how to stay in the black when your holiday expenses have you seeing red. 

 

RELATED: Skip-A-Payment: Free Cash Flow with a Summertime Break from your Loan Payment  

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