Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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How to avoid holiday shopping debt

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BATON ROUGE - A recent consumer report says two out of three shoppers will end up in debt because of holiday spending. But experts say making a plan and sticking to it can keep you out of that statistic.

Certified financial planner, Chad Olivier, says shoppers need to set aside how much they can afford spend on gifts.  Then comes the hard part: don't go over that amount.

"The big problem is people put a lot of things on credit cards that have high interest rates," he said. "Then it takes them years to get them out of that debt from this one Christmas."

He also says don't get sucked into the "Buy now, pay later" nature of credit cards.

"You see the big ticket items and you think you're getting a great deal, but if it's not in your budget don't buy it," he said.

But if you've already swiped your credit card one too many times this season, Olivier says it's not too late.

"Get a plan in place, pay those high-interest credit cards off now," he urged.  "You can't ignore it, it will just eat you away."



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