FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla-Halloween is big business. Ghosts and goblins emerge in October and “Trick-or-Treaters” of all ages open their wallets to spend.
Seven out of 10 people are planning to celebrate Halloween and spend a record amount of $8 billion, according to the National Retail Federation 2012 Halloween consumer spending survey. While this high sales estimate is good news for retailers, for consumers it may translate into a haunting financial situation.
The average person will spend $79.82 on costumes, candy, and decorations. This amount is up from last year’s $72.31 and from 2010 when people spent $66.28. Many Americans are feeling the constraints of the slow economy but they still want their Halloween to be filled with jack-o-lanterns, costumes, and frightful decorations.
Consolidated Credit offers these tips to control spending during Halloween:
•Make a list and create a budget: The first step is deciding what is necessary for Halloween. List costumes, decorations, candy, baking supplies and other expenses. The purpose is to limit spending and create a budget so you will know exactly what you”ll need.
•Start up a pumpkin bank or collection in your household. It is not too late to throw loose change into a pumpkin bank daily from now until October 29th or 30th. Use the money collected to pay for Halloween expenses. Using a pumpkin shaped bucket will make it fun and serve as a reminder of what the savings are for.
•Don”t shop with credit cards: Bringing credit cards with you to the store can greatly increase the chance of impulse buys. Taking cash is the easiest way of buying the items from the list without overspending.
•Shop after Halloween for next year: When consumers buy a costume right after Halloween, their friends may think they are crazy, but it”s never too early to start planning for next year. Many stores have sales for up to 90 percent off after the holiday is over. People should use this opportunity to collect a few items to use for the following year.