BMO Harris Bank Financial Tip of the Week: Holiday Budgeting Tips

      BMO Harris Bank Financial Tip of the Week: Holiday Budgeting Tips

PR Newswire

CHICAGO, Nov. 8, 2012

CHICAGO, Nov. 8, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- As part of BMO Harris Bank's ongoing
commitment to financial literacy and Helping Make Money Make Sense, BMO Harris
is providing weekly financial tips. This week's tip gives you advice on how to
create a holiday budget.

From the North Pole to the Midwest, this time of year, everyone is making
lists – and yours should focus on your holiday expenses. Setting a budget
helps you prepare for these extra costs and knowing what to expect can help
give you peace of mind.

Unfortunately, many people make the mistake of not planning ahead. This often
leads to overspending and paying off a hefty credit card bill throughout the
next year. However, a bit of advance preparation and budgeting can help you
avoid these situations.

BMO Harris Bank recommends including the following in your holiday budget:

  oAll gifts – big and small – Include anyone you may need to purchase a gift
    for, such as your spouse, children, parents, best friend, boss,
    babysitter, etc. Making a list helps you avoid forgetting anyone as well
    as decide how much to spend on each person. This way you won't end up
    spending $100 on one of your kids and only $50 on the other ones. Also,
    remember to set aside a small amount for wrapping paper, ribbon, gift tags
    and other trimmings.

  oCards and postage – Whether you buy boxes of cards at a discount store,
    print them off on your home computer or use photo cards from a photography
    studio, you need to account for the expense. Don't forget to include
    postage – depending on how many cards you send each season, this could end
    up being a significant expense.

  oDecorations – Decking your halls for the holidays can add up. Trees,
    wreaths, garland, ornaments and yard decorations should all be included in
    this section of your budget.

  oEntertaining – If you're hosting a formal dinner party, casual open house
    or intimate family gathering, chances are you'll encounter expenses such
    as food, beverages, invitations and favors. Make sure all of these are
    included in your budget so the only thing unexpected is an extra guest or

  oTravel – Airfare, lodging, car rentals, dining out and tips need to be
    included within your travel budget. Even if you are only driving to your
    sister's house a few hours away, make sure you account for gas expenses.
    With today's prices, even a simple day trip can add up quickly.

For more helpful tips visit,

Helping Make Money Make Sense is brought to you by BMO Harris Bank, WGN, CLTV,
WGN AM 1070, Chicago Tribune, RedEye and Hoy.

About BMO Harris Bank

Based in Chicago, BMO Harris Bank N.A. provides a broad range of personal
banking products and solutions through over 600 branches and approximately
1,300 ATMs in Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Minnesota,
Nevada, Arizona and Florida. BMO Harris Bank's commercial banking team
provides a combination of sector expertise, local knowledge and mid-market
focus throughout the U.S. Deposit and loan products and services provided by
BMO Harris Bank N.A. Member FDIC. BMO Harris BankSM is a trade name used by
BMO Harris Bank N.A. BMO Harris Bank is part of BMO Financial Group, a North
American financial organization with 1,600 branches, and a retail deposit base
of approximately $180 billion.

SOURCE BMO Harris Bank

Contact: Vanessa Hall,, +1-312-461-6543
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