You're down to eight shopping days before Christmas rolls around. Right now, some of you are probably panicking with that list you haven't started on. Some of you may also be realizing your Christmas budget is dwindling.
We got our hands on a “$600 Christmas Mistake" report from DaveRamsey.com. It breaks down signs to look for to make sure you don't end up in financial trouble after Christmas.
This is how it happens. You get carried away in shopping mode and before you know it -- you're out of cash. You might be tempted to pull out your credit card right about now.
According to the National Retail Federation, nearly 40 percent of shoppers said they expect to use their credit cards to buy gifts this year. The report also shows shoppers plan to spend an average of $800 on presents. Here's where Ramsey's advice comes in.
Let's say your credit card has an 18 percent interest rate and you pay the minimum payment each month. Ramsey said it would take you seven and a half years to pay off that balance.
By the time you are done, that $800 worth of gifts turns into $1,400. That's an extra $600 you weren't planning on. And that is why it's called the "$600 Christmas mistake.”
Ramsey said the best thing you can do is set up a budget at the beginning of the year to avoid turning to your credit card in a last minute holiday jam.