Oh no, you didn't.
Did you give in to the urge to splurge on Black Friday? Well, it's payback time and I've got the fix for when you've scratched the itch to spend. The steps are simple and the savings are real if you buckle down and deal with the dent in your finances. Let's do this!
1. Take inventory of your finances
Gather all your credit statements and take inventory of your spending. Add up what you owe across credit cards (and your line of credit) and tally the total. Aim to pay more than the minimum balance and tackle the higher interest debts first to minimize the amount of interest you'll pay. It's not a deal if you're paying 19% interest every month, so make a monthly plan to reduce the total before the New Year.
2. Take inventory of your home
Could your Black Friday purchases replace something you no longer need? Take a tour around your home and find the stuff taking up space. Listing your gently used goods on Kijiji, Craigslist, Facebook Buy and Sell, or eBay can earn you some serious dollars from the second-hand economy. Putting that cash on your credit card will get you out of the hole sooner.
3. Make a Flipp-ing awesome list and stick to it
Use Flipp's Shopping List feature to stick to the stuff you need while avoiding the pulse of impulse spending. If an item is not on my holiday list then I don't buy it.
I also share my Flipp list with my husband so we can collaborate on our grocery needs and achieve our holiday spending goals. With Flipp we stay in step when shopping separately so we don't both come home with too much milk or the same box of gift-wrapped Lego. Hey, it's happened!
4. Survey the sales, match deals to your list
With your gift list in check it's easier to find what you need and at a price you can afford. Every month I use Flipp to search the clothing sales so my four-year-old daughter has warm threads to keep up with her lengthening limbs. I've also listed a few toys knowing Flipp will find me a digital flyer deal or match me with a printable coupon.
5. It's not "savings" unless you save it
With a holiday list in hand and a handle on your splurge spending, use the grocery and gift savings found though Flipp to contribute to your Tax-Free Savings Account, pay down debt, or add to an emergency fund. Spending less on the things you need can help you save up for the things you want.
Kerry K. Taylor is a consumer expert at Squawkfox.com.