4 Money Saving Tips This Christmas
Christmas can be a wonderful time of year. Spending quality time with family, being on holidays, offering gifts to loved ones, and surely the legendary Christmas dinner! It’s indeed a time for giving, and with this comes costs. It’s very easy to overdo it with holidays, presents, and delicious foods; to let your hair down and delight in the spirit of Christmas. The truth is, though, that the silly season sooner or later passes and a lot of us are left with the strain of beefy credit card balances. Some individuals spend months attempting to settle their Christmas debts, while others end up in much deeper water.
While some people have the financial capability to shower their families with extravagant gifts and lavish celebrations, most of us need to be mindful to spend within our means so our Christmas joy can continue smoothly into the New Year. So with this being said, I’d like to share with you some effective ways of celebrating Christmas, without breaking the bank.
1. Set a Budget
While it may sound cliché, it’s paramount that you create a budget and follow it. Create a list of all the presents you’ll be giving and calculate the total amount. Most of the time, it will be a lot more than you believed. Use this as incentive to think outside the box (pardon the pun!) and make some modifications so you can stick to your budget. You could have a yard sale and sell items that aren’t being used anymore, talk with family and friends about a setting price limit for presents, or even consider making gifts yourself! ASIC has introduced a wonderful app to control your Christmas spending called TrackMySPEND (https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/) which I’m certain many of you would find useful.
2. Shop Online
While many individuals find delight in wandering through department stores and basking in the stunning Christmas displays, almost all the same items are available on the net at much cheaper prices. Use comparative shopping websites such as Google Shopping, PriceGrabber, or Nextag to locate what you’re trying to find. These websites are incredibly competitive and will almost always have discounts that can save you a bundle. Despite the fact that shopping online will be more affordable, you have to take extra precaution to ensure you get what you paid for.
3. Rethink your Christmas Cards
If you’re one of the many people who send Christmas cards to all your friends and family, you’ll know that the costs of this exercise can be somewhat expensive. It’s no surprise that only a few of your friends and family will in fact keep these cards so it’s essentially just money down the drain. As an alternative, why not send a family Christmas video message online? There are heaps of apps on smart phones and tablets that allow you to send quirky and amusing Christmas videos that can be sent out electronically at no cost whatsoever. Conversely, you can always create your own Christmas cards with personalised messages and have your kids draw pictures to make them super special!
4. Wrapping Paper
An artistically wrapped gift can make a significant difference, despite being the cheapest of presents. Christmas paper can be fairly costly, so think about buying plain brown paper and adding a festive ribbon from a craft shop which will look a lot better than Christmas paper. You can even re-use brown paper bags that are normally given at clothing stores. On the other hand, consider buying plain red, green, or gold paper which can also be used as birthday presents throughout the year. Always remember, some department stores will wrap your gift completely free, so don’t be afraid to ask!
As you can see, Christmas celebrations doesn’t need to break the bank. Regrettably, however, lots of individuals spend beyond their means and find themselves in financial troubles in the New Year. If you find yourself in this position, it’s better to seek professional advice sooner rather than later. There are many solutions available to you; all you need is the right advice. For any direction on financial hardship, reach out to the specialists at Bankruptcy Experts Geelong by calling 1300 795 575, or alternatively visit our website for further information: www.bankruptcyexpertsgeelong.com.au