TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 27, 2013) - According to Today's Parent, Easter is the second biggest gift-giving holiday of the year, next to Christmas. From candy and clothing to flowers and food, Canadians go all out on Easter - often with little regard for family finances.
"If you haven't included Easter as a line item in your household budget, the holiday can break your budget in a hurry," says Jeffrey Schwartz, executive director of Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada. "Just like any other time of year, it's important to live within your means and focus on family rather than things."
With Canadian household debt at an all-time high of 165 per cent, over spending on family dinners, travel expenses, gift giving and treats from the Easter Bunny could send many Canadian families down the rabbit hole when it comes to their finances.
Instead of spending a fortune this year, Consolidated Credit offers these tips keep the Easter Bunny from breaking the bank:
Homemade treats - Put the Easter Bunny on a budget by making your own homemade treats this year. Instead of emptying your wallet on name brand candy and treats hit up a bulk food store and make your own for a fraction of the cost.
Focus on experiences - As always, holiday memories and traditions last longer than store-bought gifts. Spend the holiday with family and focus on experiences you can all enjoy.
Make a list - If you're hosting a family dinner or brunch for Easter, be sure to make a list and look for coupons before you hit the grocery store. To avoid impulse purchases, only buy what you need. Or better yet, host a pot-luck and have everyone pitch-in with the meal.
Cash is king - One of the best ways to stick to your Easter budget and avoid credit card debt is to pay cash for everything. Shopping with cash makes it difficult to overspend - once it's gone, it's gone!
Get creative - If you really want to keep the Easter Bunny on a budget, but don't want to take the fun away from younger children, think outside of the Easter basket. Leave a personalized letter from the Easter Bunny, or a trail of Bunny paw prints that lead to a single Easter gift. The memories you create will last a lot longer than a pile of chocolate eggs.
About Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada:
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada is a national non-profit credit counselling organization that teaches consumers about personal finance. For more information, visit www.consolidatedcredit.ca or call the toll-free phone line at 1.800.656.3920.