MEMPHIS, Tenn. — For those fully engaged in the holiday season, the term “indulgence” can be applied in several ways; from the dinner table to the cash registers ringing up gifts for friends and loved ones.

April Douglass has done her fair share of shopping.

“I have six kids and I have a pretty large family,” she said.

Now that she’s through the season of giving, she is shifting her thinking to saving.

“I want to spend on things I need, not want. Because of inflation, I’m pretty sure everybody is feeling it,” Douglass said.

LaToya Brewer, VP Regional Branch Administrator with Hope Credit Union, cautioned people to avoid temptation.

“Do not get into new debt!” she said. “Almost on every corner we have payday loan companies with the flashy lights, which make it attractive for consumers.”

Instead, she said a new year is the best time to make new financial goals.

Consider these tips:

  • Buy more groceries; limit the number of times you eat out or how often you buy coffee or fast food.
  • If you ever need help, go to a reputable institution like Hope rather than a quick fix loan center.
  • Write down a budget.
  • Save a small amount like $20 a month or per paycheck.

“Anything extra, put it into a separate savings account where you have it labeled for something specifically whether Christmas club, vacation account or emergency expenses,” Brewer said.

Keep in mind, it may not be as hard as you think to get a loan at Hope.

“It’s not solely based on credit when we look at profiles. We look at the entire picture. We want to hear your story to hear what impact have you had and what can we do to help you,” Brewer said.

For shoppers, financial resolutions are top of mind.

“I’m looking at probably a little minor recession. Stay out of credit card trouble and just live within my means,” Nate Henssler said.

“I can’t afford to buy the things I want. I can barely afford to buy the things I need,” Douglass said.

Given the climate, they know these tips are even more important come 2023.