|January 5, 2018||Comments Closed|
Christmas can be a wonderful time of year. Spending quality time with your extended family and friends, going on holidays, offering gifts to loved ones, and certainly the acclaimed Christmas lunch! It’s unquestionably a time for giving, and with this comes expenses. It’s very easy to go overboard with holidays, gifts, and enticing foods; to let your hair down and indulge in the spirit of Christmas. The truth is, though, that the silly season sooner or later passes and many of us are left with the stress of substantial credit card balances. Some folks spend months trying to repay their Christmas debts, while others find themselves in much deeper water.
While some people have the financial aptitude to shower their loved ones with costly gifts and lavish parties, the majority of us need to be careful to spend within our means so our Christmas joy can smoothly sail into the New Year. So with this being said, I want to share with you some helpful ways of celebrating Christmas, without breaking the bank.
1. Set a Budget
Whilst it may sound cliché, it’s extremely important that you create a budget and follow it. Compose a list of all the presents you’ll be giving and calculate the total amount. Most of the time, it will be far more than you imagined. Use this as incentive to think outside the box (pardon the pun!) and make some revisions so you can stick to your budget. You could have a garage sale and sell possessions that aren’t being used anymore, talk with friends and family about a setting price limit for gifts, or even contemplate making gifts yourself! ASIC has released a great app to monitor your Christmas spending called TrackMySPEND (https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/) which I’m confident many of you would find helpful.
2. Shop Online
While lots of people find enjoyment in strolling through department stores and basking in the spectacular Christmas displays, almost all the same goods are available online at more affordable prices. Use comparative shopping websites such as Google Shopping, PriceGrabber, or Nextag to find what you’re searching for. These websites are extremely competitive and will nearly always have discounts that can save you a bundle. Even though shopping online will be cheaper, you should take extra precaution to ensure you get what you paid for.
3. Rethink your Christmas Cards
If you are among the many people who send Christmas cards to all your friends and family, you’ll comprehend that the costs of this exercise can be fairly expensive. It’s no surprise that only some of your friends and family will actually keep these cards so it’s basically just money down the drain. Instead, why not send a family Christmas video message online? There are numerous apps on smart phones and tablets that enable you to send quirky and enjoyable Christmas videos that can be sent electronically at no charge at all. Conversely, you can always create your own Christmas cards with personalised messages and have your children draw pictures to make them super special!
4. Wrapping Paper
An artistically wrapped present can make a powerful difference, even with the cheapest of gifts. 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 much better than Christmas paper. You can even recycle brown paper bags that are commonly given at clothing stores. Conversely, consider purchasing plain gold, red, or green paper which can also be used as birthday presents throughout the year. Remember, certain department stores will wrap your presents for free, so don’t be afraid to ask!
As you can see, Christmas festivities doesn’t have to break the bank. Sadly, however, many people spend beyond their means and end up in financial turmoil in the New Year. If you end up 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 support on financial difficulties, talk to the specialists at Bankruptcy Tablelands by calling 1300 818 575, or alternatively visit our website for additional information: http://www.bankruptcy-tablelands.com.au/