|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 acclaimed Christmas meal! It’s undoubtedly a time for giving, and with this comes expenses. It’s very easy to overdo it with family trips, gifts, and extravagant foods; to let your hair down and enjoy the spirit of Christmas. The reality is, though, that the silly season gradually passes and many of us are left with the stress of beefy credit card balances. Some people spend months trying to settle their Christmas debts, while others find themselves in much deeper water.
While some folks have the financial aptitude to shower their loved ones with expensive gifts and lavish celebrations, many of us should be mindful 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 paramount that you create a budget and stick to it. Produce a list of all the gifts you’ll be giving and calculate the total amount. The majority of the time, it will be a lot more than you figured. Use this as motivation to think outside the box (pardon the pun!) and make some changes so you can stick to your budget. You could have a garage sale and sell items that aren’t being used any longer, talk with friends and family about a setting price limit for gifts, or perhaps think about making gifts yourself! ASIC has launched a wonderful app to monitor your Christmas spending called TrackMySPEND (https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/) which I’m confident many of you would find beneficial.
2. Shop Online
Even though lots of people find excitement in wandering through department stores and basking in the enchanting Christmas displays, nearly all the same items are offered on the web at much cheaper prices. Utilise comparative shopping websites such as Google Shopping, PriceGrabber, or Nextag to locate what you’re searching for. These websites are remarkably competitive and will generally have discounts that can save you a bunch. Despite the fact that shopping online will be more cost-effective, 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 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 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 plenty of apps on smart phones and tablets that allow you to send fun and entertaining Christmas videos that can be delivered digitally at no charge whatsoever. Alternatively, 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 exquisitely wrapped present can make a dramatic difference, despite being the cheapest of gifts. Christmas paper can be fairly 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 commonly given at clothing stores. In contrast, consider buying plain green, red, or gold paper which can also be used as birthday presents throughout the year. Don’t forget, many 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 folks 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 advice on financial hardship, speak to the specialists at Bankruptcy Dubbo by phoning 1300 818 575, or alternatively visit our website for further information: http://www.bankruptcy-dubbo.com.au/