Falling snow, longer nights and carols playing on the radio all mean one thing: Christmas movie season is here. Did you realize that classic Christmas movies are full of money management lessons? Grab a mug of hot cocoa and cozy up to your favorite holiday flick. You just might learn something about money management for the holidays, and through the rest of the year!
1. “It’s a Wonderful Life”
Who can forget watching the residents of Bedford Falls file into George Bailey’s home carrying their own savings when the Building & Loan business fell into debt? This timeless classic offers countless financial lessons, not to mention George’s own lifelong career in mortgages and lending. When it comes to money management, it’s crucial to have a reputable and honest source of guidance, even if he or she doesn’t have wings! Just like George faithfully served his community and later relied on his friends and neighbors during his time of need, surround yourself with trustworthy friends and advisors who have your best interests at heart.
2. “Jingle All The Way”
What parent didn’t sympathize with Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character during his wild goose chase for a Turbo Man action figure, the hottest toy of the year, for his young son Jamie? Obviously, it’s smart to begin Christmas shopping months in advance, as the obnoxious neighbor Ted would point out. However, it may be even more rewarding to avoid consumerism altogether. Remember how Jamie gave Myron his limited-edition Turbo Man doll since his dad ended up becoming the real Turbo Man in the parade? A huge part of fiscal responsibility is appreciating what you have now, even if it’s not exactly what you had in mind at first.
3. “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation”
It feels great to receive a Christmas bonus like Clark Griswold was used to getting, but always keep in mind that bonuses generally aren’t a guaranteed part of your salary. It’s fun to plan a Hawaiian vacation and to put money down on a swimming pool, but until that money is in your bank account, don’t think of it as yours to spend. It just may save you the future embarrassment of an outburst in front of the entire family!
4. “Home Alone”
Even if you don’t accidentally leave your eight-year-old son home alone this Christmas, it’s never a bad idea to have an emergency fund. In fact, many financial experts suggest having up to six months’ worth of basic living expenses set aside. Hopefully, the McCallisters took this advice because it can’t have been cheap to fix Buzz’s destroyed bedroom and all the damage to the floors! Kevin also demonstrates the importance of careful planning. He didn’t improvise his defense against the Wet Bandits; Kevin strategized as he waited for them to come back at night. Whatever your financial goals may be, the first step is making a plan and sticking to it; money management is much more attainable with a plan in place.
5. “A Christmas Carol”
Banker and money lender Ebenezer Scrooge probably could have written a whole textbook on how to be frugal. But, the most time-honored lesson he taught generations of viewers and readers was part of his overnight transformation from a cold-hearted miser to a caring employer and generous member of his community. Scrooge learned that hoarding wealth only earned him enemies instead of respect and that giving to others is infinitely more rewarding. If Scrooge was able to change his mindset, there’s certainly hope for everyone, even without the help of Christmas ghosts!
6. “How The Grinch Stole Christmas”
No other holiday movie drives home the true meaning of Christmas quite like “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” The Grinch learns this lesson at the last minute, just as he’s about to drop a sleigh full of Whoville’s stolen gifts off the edge of Mount Crumpit. His heart ends up growing three sizes, and the Whos learn that Christmas means far more than fancy lights and expertly wrapped presents. As the Grinch himself puts it, “Christmas doesn’t come from a store.” When you spend money this holiday season, be certain you’re spending for the right reasons, not just to outdo the neighbors.
7. “The Santa Clause”
Always read the fine print before making a financial decision. Scott Calvin, despite being a successful toy industry executive, apparently forgot this lesson and wound up becoming the next Santa Clause! Whether you’re applying for a new credit card or shopping around for a personal loan, make sure you understand the terms before signing anything. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably has a catch. Don’t be ashamed to ask for clarification before committing. It could mean the difference between red silk pajamas and a red velvet Santa suit!
Choosing the Right Lender
Scrooge and George Bailey would both agree that when it comes to borrowing money, it’s critical to find the right type of loan for your needs and to shop around before deciding on any one offer. LoanConnect’s convenient Personal Loan Search Engine makes this process fast and secure, so be sure to start exploring your lending options today.