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Love shouldn’t break the bank

By Kemberley Washington ·
Thursday, January 31, 2013
Posted: 12 pm ET

With Valentine's Day right around the corner, many people are seeking the ideal gift for the perfect someone in their lives. If you are in a financial position to do so, by all means do it big!

But a night of dining, entertainment and flowers can really break your budget if you are trying to make ends meet.

Do not let this Valentine's Day break the bank. Here are some thoughts about what can you do to keep your money in check this year.

Get creative

It may not sound like much, but thinking outside the box can help save money. In the process, you will also earn kudos from your valentine.

Consider planning a special day at home. Create a spa day by simply transforming your home into a spa. Decorate your home with rose petals, candles and chocolates to give it a special feel. Set up stations to include separate areas for pedicures, manicures and massages.

At the end of the night, complete things with a candlelight dinner and surprise your valentine with a favorite meal.

Plan ahead

Get ahead of the game by seeking out gifts now. The longer you wait, the more your gift may cost.

Take time to list a few items you would like to give. Then, do a little research online to find the lowest prices. Determine which companies have sales or coupons that can cut the cost of your gift. Apps such as ShopSavvy can help you find the lowest price in your area.

Remember, this holiday comes once a year. If you are not in a position to be a blessing this year to your valentine, consider saving a few dollars each month for next year. This way, next year will not catch you by surprise. But more importantly, whatever you do, don't break the bank.

Remember: your choice, your future!

Kemberley Washington is a certified public accountant and business professor. She writes a personal finance blog at Follow her on Twitter and on Facebook.

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February 01, 2013 at 8:29 am

The holidays are over and now the bills are due. Here comes Valentine's Day. How about saying I love you in your actions. I would get a kick out of my co-workers whose husbands/beaus would send these huge, overpriced bouquets, then find out they broke up two to three months down the road. Hallmark and FTD put so much pressure on couples.

January 31, 2013 at 12:43 pm

Rose "pedals"?