"Don't Become a "Debt-head" for
Improve Your Spending Techniques, Avoid Using Credit
Cards and Prevent Debt
RELEASE: November 2001
CONTACT: Paul S. Richard, ICFE Executive Director
|San Diego, CA. There will be many temptations to
spend using your credit cards this holiday season. Consumers however are
warned not to become "debt-heads" by the Institute of Consumer Financial
Education, (ICFE) a San Diego based non-profit consumer group.
A "debt-head" is a person who gets all charged up during the holidays and
often ends up paying for this year's Christmas over the next two or three
Avoid using credit cards for holiday purchases because they have a message
and that message is "spend!" says the ICFE. Many consumers report that they
spent more than fifty percent of what they had originally planned using
credit cards for holiday gifts. The strong messages to spend often leads to
indiscriminate credit-based spending decisions and committing future income
not yet earned. This could make the holidays last for a year or longer, but
without the celebrations.
To improve holiday spending techniques, try the
Plan ahead using a list noting gift suggestions and
Begin setting aside available dollars now for
Start looking early for bargains. Consider swap meets,
garage sales, etc.
Spend cash only. Avoid credit cards and writing a lot
Give gifts that don't cost out-of-pocket money
(baby-sitting, car washes).
If you give money as a gift, a U. S. Savings bond
costs half its face value.
Save on greeting cards and postage by only sending to
Make gifts at home: baked goods, picture collages,
arts and crafts.
It is easy to over-spend, especially during the
holidays, and research shows that 30 cents of every take-home dollar goes
for household and grocery items.
The ICFE has available online at:
http://www.financial-education-icfe.org a MONEY HELPS section.
To get the packet by mail, please send $1 plus a Self
Addressed, Stamped 60 cents Envelope (SASE) to:
ICFE Money Helps
PO Box 34070
San Diego, CA 92163-4070
The "Money Helps" Packet includes:
(1) "ICFE Spender's
Profile" which helps people identify dangerous spending habits"
(2) "15 steps to improve spending"
to spend smarter for household and grocery items"
(4) "How to
set up and implement a spending-plan";
(plus a budget worksheet) for personal and/or family finances
to take to reduce indebtedness" and more
About the ICFE:
The Institute of Consumer Financial Education (ICFE),
founded in 1982 by the late Loren Dunton - creator of the "certified
financial planner” (CFP) designation - is dedicated to helping consumers
of all ages to improve their spending, increase savings and use credit
more wisely. The years between 1984 and 2000, the ICFE was also known as
the National Center for Financial Education (NCFE).
The ICFE is a nonprofit consumer education organization that has helped millions of people through its education programs and Resources. Over
one million "Credit
/ Debit Card Warning
Labels” and "Credit
/ Debit Card Sleeves” are in circulation world wide.
The ICFE's on-line help for consumers who spend too much
was featured in PARADE Magazine (June 9th, 2002) in the Intelligence
Report section. The money helps and tips are from the "Money
Instruction Book," a course in personal finance, which was completely
revised and updated in 2002 and is positioned to become among the premier
programs in the new bankruptcy and debtor education initiatives.
The ICFE's "Do-It-Yourself Credit File Correction
Guide," now in its Twelfth Printing, is in use by thousands of consumer credit and debt
counselors in addition to tens of thousands of consumers. It received a
"buy” rating in July, August and November from nationally syndicated
financial columnist, Humberto Cruz in his column, "The Savings Game".
BottomLine Personal newsletter gave the Guide a "Send For” rating in
September 2001. The ICFE and our do-it-yourself approach to credit file
correction was featured on NBC Nightly News on 04-30-02. The Spanish
edition of the Guide premiered in January 2002. Syndicated columnist,
Robert Heady also gave the ICFE Guide a "buy” rating.
The ICFE Web site at: www.financial-education-icfe.org helps consumers with
mending spending, learn about the
proper use of credit, budget and expense guidelines, how to set up and implement a
spending-plan and also access financial education courses and videos and how to
teach children about money. Other ICFE services include a
free eNews, and an
on-line resource center of financial education
learning tools, including videos, books and personal finance courses.
Consumers may learn more on the Internet about the "Do-It-Yourself
Credit File Correction Guide" here, or fill out our request
form, indicating your areas of interest.
For more information contact Paul S. Richard ICFE Executive Director at 619-239-1401.