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How can I recover financially after the holidays?

Now that the holidays are over, you may be feeling the strain on your pocketbook. While this season is meant to be a time for celebration and family, for many people it can bring them perilously close to financial instability. There is hope however when you follow these tips provided by U.S. News & World Report.

Assess how much you’ve spent

Now is the best time to take a thorough accounting of what you spent over the holidays. Check your bank and credit card statements for insight, as well as compile receipts of items you purchased with cash. Along with gifts, be sure to list any other expenses, such as many for food, entertainment, and travel. From here you’ll have a better understanding of how much debt you’re dealing with.

Track spending

Next, track current spending to see if there are any areas where you can cut back. For instance, if you eat out often or can’t live without your morning cup of coffee, be aware that these expenses can add up. Look for ways to reduce spending, such as by packing a lunch or bringing coffee from home. This will give you a little more money each month, which can be put into savings.

Create a budget

A budget will serve as your blueprint for future financial stability. Be realistic when creating a budget, as anything too austere will be hard to stick to. Along with settling recurring payments and other regular expenses, make sure you set aside money for your savings. Even a little each paycheck can add up and will prevent you from experiencing financial issues next holiday season.

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