ALBANY, GA (WALB) - For many people, the holidays rack up credit card bills, leaving you regretting your spending months later.
But whether you are just starting, or almost done, financial advisers want to remind us all to be smart with our money and not to spend more than we can afford.
"I was a spontaneous shopper, another word is irresponsible, but we try not to use that word anymore," smiled Andrew Anthony Nelson as he thought about how he used to be when it came to spending money.
He used to be one of those people who overspent during the holidays.
"I had a reluctancy to always spend more than I bought in," explained Andrew. "So I wasn't disciplined and budgeting."
After moving across the country, and not being able to purchase a new home because of bad credit, he realized his poor spending choices in the past had caught up to him.
That's when he went to Yvette Nelson, the owner of New Freedom Financial, to help him build back his credit.
"I see individuals actually destroy their credit for a couple of months," said Nelson.
Working more than a decade as a financial adviser, Nelson has seen it all when it comes to overspending during the holidays.
"Not paying their bills and they would take their funds to spend for the holidays," explained Nelson.
Nelson said if you are starting your holiday shopping it's important to look at how much you can spend in order to pay your other bills.
"Don't put your automobile payment on hold, pay your credit card debts," said Nelson.
Nelson said she's even seen people hold off on their mortgages to pay for Christmas presents.
"I know they want to buy their Christmas gifts for the kids, but believe me if you can't, honestly can't afford it, your children will understand," explained Nelson.
She said she tries to teach people to save a little money from each paycheck all year to help pay for holiday spending. It's something Andrew said he's learned works well.
"I budget now and don't wait until that particular day to bring myself into a crisis mode," explained Andrew.
Andrew said now he takes more time to think of the consequences before opening his wallet. He said he also talks to his kids, about narrowing down the amount of gifts that they want.
Now, Andrew said he considers what he and his kids need before buying items just because he wants them.
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