|January 5, 2018||Comments Closed|
Christmas can be a wonderful time of year. Spending quality time with your family, being on holidays, giving presents to loved ones, and certainly the famous Christmas dinner! It’s undoubtedly a time for giving, and with this comes costs. It’s very easy to go overboard with holidays, presents, and delicious foods; to let your hair down and enjoy the spirit of Christmas. The fact is, though, that the silly season inevitably passes and many of us are left with the strain of large credit card balances. Some families spend months attempting to settle their Christmas debts, while others find themselves in much deeper water.
While some people have the financial capability to pamper their families with costly gifts and lavish celebrations, most of us need to be vigilant 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
Whilst it may sound cliché, it’s vital that you set a budget and adhere to it. Write 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 incentive 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 items that aren’t being used any longer, speak with friends and family about a setting price limit for gifts, or maybe contemplate making gifts yourself! ASIC has launched a terrific app to control your Christmas spending called TrackMySPEND (https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/) which I’m certain many of you would find beneficial.
2. Shop Online
While lots of folks find pleasure in wandering through department stores and basking in the lovely Christmas displays, almost all the same goods are readily available online at more affordable prices. Take advantage of comparative shopping websites such as Google Shopping, Nextag, or PriceGrabber to find what you’re looking for. These websites are exceptionally competitive and will nearly always have discounts that can save you a bunch. Whilst shopping online will save you money, you will need to 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 family and friends, you’ll understand that the costs of this exercise can be quite 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. Instead, why not send a family Christmas video message online? There are heaps of apps on smart phones and tablets that enable you to send fun and enjoyable Christmas videos that can be sent digitally at no charge whatsoever. Then again, 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
A beautifully wrapped present can make a powerful difference, even with the cheapest of presents. Christmas paper can be fairly expensive, so contemplate purchasing plain brown paper and adding a festive ribbon from a craft shop which will look a lot nicer than Christmas paper. You can even recycle brown paper bags that are often given at clothing stores. In contrast, consider purchasing plain gold, green, or red paper which can also be used as birthday gifts throughout the year. Remember, certain department stores will wrap your presents free of charge, so don’t be afraid to ask!
As you can see, Christmas celebrations doesn’t need to break the bank. Sadly, however, lots of people 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 options available to you; all you need is the right advice. For any direction on financial problems, get in contact with the specialists at Bankruptcy Newcastle by phoning 1300 795 575, or alternatively visit our website for further information: https://www.bankruptcy-newcastle.com.au/