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Christmas shopping puts stress on some shoppers

Posted at 4:51 PM, Dec 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-01 21:16:40-05

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — It is safe to say we tend to overspend or blow a budget when shopping for our loved ones, but this may not be the year for that.

According to a report from Credit Karma, one third of those surveyed said they did not feel financially prepared to face the holidays and 23 percent said they will go into debt just buying gifts.

This can create a lot of stress at a time that is meant to bring joy.

Sticking to a budget has never been easy, but this year’s supply chain issues along with inflation means it is more important to keep in mind how much you can spend without risking financial stability.

“Debt probably is more of a concern this year, considering how the job market is working right now,” said Clayton Alexander, Communications Specialist at Better Business Bureau Central California and Inland Empire.

Clayton Alexander with the Better Business Bureau said lists are your friends this year.

“Figure out what sort of prices each product will be and what is kind of deal and what sort of prices you are looking for that you think that might be a scam.”

He said to also have a list of backup gifts for each item as some may be more expensive than originally thought due to unique inflation issues this year.

You should also research the gifts beforehand to know exactly what store you are going to, and check online for availability as well as price matching policies.

While there are price alert systems out there where you can track an item and it notifies you when it reaches a certain price. He advises to be extra careful when using those.

“While it seems like a great way just to find the best sort of deal on the product you are looking for, unfortunately, the system itself does not filter out scams as much as you like. So unfortunately, a lot of scams get advertised through that sort of system.”

At the Outlets at Tejon, despite the Black Friday sales being over, they have seen heavy foot traffic continue and expect that this month as we get closer to the holidays.

“I think a lot more people are willing to spend some more times looking for those deals, going to places where they know they are going to find some good discounts. And I know because we are an outlet center and many across America do have coupon books, so I always encourage people to come into guest services and get your coupon book and that has some additional discounts to save some money,” said Becca Bland, Marketing Director at the Outlets at Tejon.

For those who are tired of being financially stressed during this time of the year, the Valley Strong Credit Unit has club savings accounts that can be set up as a Christmas club account.

There are no monthly fees on these accounts which can be opened with just five dollars.