The holidays are fast approaching, and it’s the perfect time for peace on earth and goodwill towards men—which doesn’t mean you’re off the hook from creating a budget. You definitely don’t want to lose your reins on your wallet, because in this time of giving it is very easy to over extend yourself.

According to this year’s projections by Gallup, “Gallup’s latest measure of Americans’ Christmas spending plans finds U.S. adults projecting they will spend an average of $720 on gifts this year, up slightly from their $704 estimate in November 2013, pointing to an OK holiday season for retailers.” With that in mind, as you wrap gifts and tie pretty bows, don’t forget to hunker down on your numbers and keep these tips for creating a budget in mind.

  1. Plan it
    The secret to the success of anything lies in its planning, and creating a budget during the holidays is no different. A well-planned holiday budget keeps you and your family in check, so that everyone is poised from the get-go to not overdo it.

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