You may think Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, but your finances may disagree. Holiday expenses can build up quickly, from presents to decorations to travel, and many people find themselves starting out a new year facing a large amount of debt. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be that way. By adding money to a credit union savings account throughout the year, you can be ready for holiday spending without having to accrue additional debt. Follow this advice for year-round Christmas savings.
Open a Christmas Club Savings Account
At GCS Credit Union, our Christmas Club savings accounts make holiday planning easy. There is no minimum balance or monthly fees. Simply deposit money into the account throughout the year as you wish and take advantage of the competitive interest rate to help your money grow. You can even set up a direct deposit into the account from each paycheck to help your put aside more money. The account automatically reaches maturity on October 15, when the balance will be transferred into your checking account. There is no penalty for early withdrawal, if you happen to need your money for other expenses or want to start shopping early.
Choose a Savings Target
After the holidays, consider sitting down and evaluating your expenses. Decide if you overspent, hit an ideal amount, or wish you had spent a little more in some areas. This evaluation will help you set a target for your savings account for the next season. Even if it may not be practical for you to save the full amount before the season begins, having a target that will allow you to come out of Christmas without debt can be a good starting point.
Take Advantage of Direct Debit
Set up a direct debit from your checking account into your savings throughout the year. Even transferring a small amount of each check will allow your balance to build up quickly, and when the transfer happens automatically, you won’t be tempted to skip it.
Christmas Club accounts are just one of the many ways GCS Credit Union in O’Fallon can help you take control of your finances. Call us today at (618) 797-7993 to learn more about credit union membership.