We understand that you might still be sleeping off your Halloween candy binge, but we would like to take this opportunity to gently remind you that it’s November. Yes, already. Before you know it, you’ll be in another food coma, sleeping off Thanksgiving dinner. And by the time you fully recover from that one, it will likely be Tax Day.
As the holidays approach, life can feel like it’s being fast-forwarded like that Adam Sandler movie Click. But don’t skip over your finances. This month especially can make or break your money goals.
To keep you on track, we’ve rounded up advice to help you manage your holiday shopping, make a little extra money and prepare yourself for the funky housing and job markets. We also sprinkled in a couple of PSAs about health insurance and other benefits you should know about this month.
Remember, remember these money tips for November:
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1. Plan your holiday shopping wisely
This will be a holiday shopping season unlike any other. With supply chain issues abound, consumers should expect shortages on common holiday items such as toys, turkeys, booze and electronics. Aside from shortages, these supply chain issues can cause prices to spike. For example, TVs this year will likely cost you about $100 more than normal — even with a holiday deal.
So should you start your holiday shopping early this year? Yes and no. Some experts warn certain electronics that aren’t ordered ASAP might not arrive by Christmas. But starting early can have downsides if you’re not careful with your budget: Research from Deloitte shows that consumers who start their holiday shopping before Thanksgiving outspend those who wait until after Thanksgiving by about 23%.
To keep spending down, be picky with what you’re purchasing this month, and be aware that even with a Black Friday or Cyber Monday discount, you might not be getting as good a deal as you might think. And on those days in particular, go in with a game plan of what you want. If you simply browse looking for good deals, you’re bound to buy something you don’t actually need.