|January 5, 2018||0|
Christmas can be a wonderful time of year. Spending quality time with friends and family, being on holidays, offering presents to loved ones, and of course the grand Christmas lunch! It’s undeniably a time for giving, and with this comes costs. It’s very easy to overdo it with family holidays, gifts, and enticing foods; to let your hair down and indulge in the spirit of Christmas. The reality is, though, that the silly season sooner or later passes and a lot of us are left with the stress of beefy credit card balances. Some folks spend months attempting to repay their Christmas debts, while others end up in much deeper water.
Although some individuals have the financial ability to pamper their families with expensive gifts and lavish functions, most of us need to be watchful to spend within our means so our Christmas joy can continue smoothly into the New Year. So with this being said, I want to share with you some effective ways of celebrating Christmas, without breaking the bank.
1. Set a Budget
Even though it may sound cliché, it’s critical that you create a budget and stick to it. Create a list of all the presents you’ll be giving and calculate the total amount. The majority of the time, it will be much more than you envisioned. Use this as motivation to think outside the box (pardon the pun!) and make some refinements so you can stick to your budget. You could have a garage sale and sell things that aren’t being used any longer, speak with family and friends about a setting price limit for presents, or maybe think about making gifts yourself! ASIC has published an excellent app to track your Christmas spending called TrackMySPEND (https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/) which I’m positive many of you would find beneficial.
2. Shop Online
Although lots of individuals find enjoyment in strolling through department stores and basking in the spectacular Christmas displays, nearly all the same items are available on the internet at much cheaper prices. Use comparative shopping websites like Google Shopping, PriceGrabber, or Nextag to find what you’re trying to find. These websites are extremely competitive and will almost always have discounts that can save you a bunch. Even though shopping online will be more affordable, you should take extra precaution to ensure you get what you paid for.
3. Rethink your Christmas Cards
If you’re one of the many families who send Christmas cards to all your friends and family, you’ll understand 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 virtually just money down the drain. Instead, why not send a family Christmas video message online? There are loads of apps on smart phones and tablets that allow you to send quirky and enjoyable Christmas videos that can be sent electronically at no cost at all. Additionally, 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
A beautifully wrapped gift can make a remarkable difference, despite being the cheapest of presents. Christmas paper can be relatively costly, so look at purchasing 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. Alternatively, consider purchasing plain gold, green, or red paper which can also be used as birthday gifts throughout the year. Always remember, a few department stores will wrap your gift for free, so don’t hesitate to ask!
As you can see, Christmas celebrations doesn’t need to break the bank. Regrettably, however, lots of people spend beyond their means and find themselves 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 assistance on financial difficulties, get in contact with the specialists at Bankruptcy Emerald by phoning 1300 818 575, or alternatively visit our website for further information: http://www.bankruptcy-emerald.com.au/