|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, giving presents to loved ones, and of course the grand Christmas meal! It’s undeniably a time for giving, and with this comes costs. It’s very easy to overdo it with holidays, gifts, and heavenly foods; to let your hair down and delight in the spirit of Christmas. The fact is, though, that the silly season gradually passes and many of us are left with the stress of beefy credit card balances. Some folks spend months trying to settle their Christmas debts, while others end up in much deeper water.
Although some individuals have the financial capability to pamper their loved ones with classy gifts and lavish functions, most of us need to be mindful to spend within our means so our Christmas joy can smoothly sail into the New Year. So with this being said, I’d like to share with you some helpful ways of celebrating Christmas, without breaking the bank.
1. Set a Budget
Though it may sound cliché, it’s paramount that you set 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 far more than you figured. Use this as motivation to think outside the box (pardon the pun!) and make some alterations so you can stick to your budget. You could have a garage sale and sell belongings that aren’t being used any longer, speak with friends and family about a setting price limit for gifts, or perhaps think about making gifts yourself! ASIC has launched a marvelous app to keep track of your Christmas spending called TrackMySPEND (https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/) which I’m certain many of you would find valuable.
2. Shop Online
Whilst many individuals find delight in strolling through department stores and basking in the spectacular Christmas displays, nearly all the same goods are offered on the internet at much cheaper prices. Use comparative shopping websites like Google Shopping, Nextag, or PriceGrabber to locate what you’re trying to find. These websites are very competitive and will generally have discounts that can save you a bundle. Whilst shopping online will save you money, you will want to take extra precaution to ensure you get what you paid for.
3. Rethink your Christmas Cards
If you are among the many families who send Christmas cards to all your friends and family, you’ll know that the costs of this exercise can be relatively expensive. It’s no surprise that only few of your family and friends will in fact keep these cards so it’s virtually just money down the drain. As a substitute, 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 entertaining Christmas videos that can be delivered electronically at no cost at all. Conversely, you can always make your own Christmas cards with personalised messages and have your kids draw pictures to make them super special!
4. Wrapping Paper
An exquisitely wrapped present can make a powerful difference, even with the cheapest of presents. Christmas paper can be relatively costly, so look into purchasing plain brown paper and adding a festive ribbon from a craft shop which will look much nicer than Christmas paper. You can even recycle brown paper bags that are typically given at clothing stores. Conversely, consider buying plain gold, green, or red paper which can also be used as birthday gifts throughout the year. Don’t forget, a number of department stores will wrap your gift for free, so don’t be afraid to ask!
As you can see, Christmas festivities doesn’t need to break the bank. Unfortunately, however, lots of individuals spend beyond their means and end up in financial hardship 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 advice on financial difficulties, talk with the specialists at Bankruptcy Bendigo by phoning 1300 818 575, or alternatively visit our website for further information: https://www.bankruptcy-bendigo.com.au/