Christmas is around the corner and between now and then it can be painfully expensive. There are also a lot of birthdays and events to go to in between however you don’t want to start off the New Year with financial woes.
Here are a few things you can do and decisions you can make to ease your way into 2017 without money being a worry.
Halloween has already proven how skillful retailers can be when it comes to turning an event into profit for their company. Businesses are now outdoing themselves to reach consumers; they are on TV, Spotify, radio, Twitter and more. Before you buy into any event it may be worth asking yourself how willing you were to buy into it before it was marketed to you. Avoid letting advertisements play on your emotions and on your bank balance. Sales and discounts can make you feel as if you’re onto a bargain but watch out for impulsive purchases.
Stay out of financial trouble
It’s vital that you can afford everything you’re paying for and in order to maintain your outgoings, you may want to reconsider taking on any new financial responsibilities. For example, if you have a credit card and you make sizeable payments towards clearing your balance you may want to consider giving a little less and begin to pick up the pace again from the end of January. If you have an overdraft facility, you may want to tighten your budget so you don’t incur additional fees because, during the Christmas period, every penny counts.
If you haven’t already started saving for Christmas you may want to start doing so depending on your holiday plans. Create a mindset that saving is as mandatory as paying your phone bill and realise that every amount helps. Regardless of the frequency in which you get paid, you can save money by cutting down on weekly expenses and adding that towards your Christmas funds. Whether you input some money into a savings account or you put it into a jar, it all helps. The more you save now, the less you will have to put into a separate savings account in the run-up to the holidays.
Point cards, vouchers, and coupons
If you shop at the same place regularly and you don’t have a points card for that retailer, now is the time to get one. Until Christmas, you will be spending a lot of money so it’s important that you make your money work for you. If you have a Sainsbury’s Nectar card, shop at Sainsbury’s as often as you can and the same concept goes for if you have a Tesco club card or Superdrug card or Boots card. Make all of those points add up and then wait until the end of the year to use because that is when it will make the most difference to you and your budget.
Write it all down
From birthdays you want to attend to people you want to give presents to, make a list. From that list, derive how much you are willing to spend ensuring you write down a minimum number and a maximum number. When we want to give to those we care about, it’s easy to want to spend as much as you can, however, it’s more important that you spend as much as you can afford in alignment with your income and fixed outgoings.
We are asking questions on how you are saving for the holidays on Twitter, join in the conversation!
This post was written by Bola.