Shortages may require earlier start to holiday shopping and planning

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The holiday shopping season seems to come earlier and earlier each year and this year is no different.

Even though it’s not quite Halloween yet, a local financial advisor says now is the time to get started on holiday gift shopping.

"Looking for deals now, rather than waiting until Black Friday is going to be really important,” Oakmont Advisory Group’s David Hicks said.

This comes as demand and prices for gifts are nearing all-time highs while supplies are limited.

"We have supply chain issues everywhere,” Hicks said. “We’ve been hit by massive disruptions this year. We have container shortages. We’ve had floods, we have had COVID infections setting off closures. Now over in China and Europe, their energy crisis is further putting a crimp in our supply chain."

According to Hicks, there is a chance some items may not even make it to the shelves in time for the holiday season. To prepare, Hicks recommends shoppers start by making a list and creating a budget for gifts with a bit more cushion than usual because it is like they are going to cost more this year.

If some presents are too expensive, apps like Affirm, Afterpay, Zip and Sezzle, allow customers to buy items now and make payments for them over time.

"Often times, interest rates are a lot lower than putting it on a high interest rate credit card,” Hicks said.

Hicks also recommends not waiting to make purchases.

"If they’re available to get right now, I’d go ahead and purchase those,” he said. “So that way you’re not having a holiday season without gifts under the tree or without gifts to give to your friends and loved ones.”