How I'm Paying for Christmas 2014

I recently had an idea for how I will fund future gift-giving.  From now on, I will be using the cash back from my credit card.

I know many frugal people are anti-credit card, but I am definitely not one of them.  I use my credit card to pay for ALL of my bills and spending each month, with the exception of my student loans and mortgage (because they don't allow that option).  Here's what I love about this:

1) Paying for everything with my credit card provides an easy way to track spending.  I do not have the patience for entering every expense into an Excel spread sheet or spending program, but I still am able to track each purchase by simply looking at my credit card statements.

2) I get cash back.  Since May, I've gotten $309 back just from using my credit card for normal purchases and bill paying.

Obviously this is not recommended for people who freak out and can't control their credit card spending. I am a person who spends way more with cash in hand than with debit or credit, so this works for me.  I know there are studies that say people spend more with credit cards than they would with other forms of payment, but I haven't found this to be true for me.  I monitor my credit card balance daily which provides a reality check for how much I'm spending.

I've already moved my cash back to a savings account that is earmarked for gifts.  I'm excited to already have a great head start on next year's gift budget!!!


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