'Plan ahead of time what you're going to do'

cash in wallet
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ROSEBURG, Ore. -- Halloween is Wednesday, but already, Christmas decor is showing up at some stores.

A survey by the National Retail Federation estimates the average consumer will spend 4.1% more than last year on Christmas.

A lot of shoppers put more than they can afford on their credit cards.

Craig Jackson of Jackson Financial Services, says there are ways around overspending. "Have a budget, you know, plan ahead of time what you're going to do," Jackson said. "If you're going to buy presents and want to be lavish, set a dollar amount. Don't put it on your credit card, cash and checks work great. Don't over extend yourself, because that's how you get in trouble."

Financial analysts says lay-away programs can be a great way to budget your money.