Americans spend over $800 on holiday gifts, according to the American Research Group -- and that money doesn't grow on trees. It has to come from somewhere -- and going into debt for holiday shopping isn't the wisest money move. It can damage your credit scores and leave you struggling to keep up with your normal, fixed expenses. (You can see how your credit card spending affects your credit scores for free on Credit.com.)
Here are some easy steps to ensure you have all the money you need (and the tools to shop smart) this upcoming holiday season.