|January 5, 2018||Comments Closed|
Christmas can be a wonderful time of year. Spending quality time with your extended family, enjoying holidays, giving presents to loved ones, and surely the legendary Christmas meal! It’s indeed a time for giving, and with this comes expenses. It’s very easy to overdo it with getaways, gifts, and extravagant foods; to let your hair down and delight in the spirit of Christmas. The truth is, though, that the silly season gradually passes and a lot of us are left with the burden of substantial credit card balances. Some individuals spend months trying to pay off their Christmas debts, while others find themselves in much deeper water.
Although some individuals have the financial aptitude to pamper their loved ones with extravagant gifts and lavish parties, most of us should be vigilant 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 helpful ways of celebrating Christmas, without breaking the bank.
1. Set a Budget
Though it may sound cliché, it’s essential that you determine a budget and stick to it. Create a list of all the gifts 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 items that aren’t being used anymore, speak with family and friends about a setting price limit for gifts, or maybe contemplate making gifts yourself! ASIC has published an exceptional app to control your Christmas spending called TrackMySPEND (https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/) which I’m sure many of you would find useful.
2. Shop Online
Whilst lots of people find pleasure in wandering through department stores and basking in the dazzling Christmas displays, nearly all the same products are readily available online at more affordable prices. Use comparative shopping websites such as Google Shopping, PriceGrabber, or Nextag to locate what you’re searching for. These websites are extremely competitive and will almost always have discounts that can save you a bunch. Although 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 are among the many families who send Christmas cards to all your family and friends, you’ll have an idea that the costs of this exercise can be somewhat expensive. It’s no surprise that only some of your family and friends will in fact keep these cards so it’s essentially just money down the drain. Rather, why not send a family Christmas video message online? There are loads of apps on smart phones and tablets that allow you to send fun and entertaining Christmas videos that can be sent out electronically at no cost at all. On the other hand, you can always make 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 remarkable difference, despite being the cheapest of presents. Christmas paper can be relatively expensive, so think about purchasing plain brown paper and adding a festive ribbon from a craft shop which will look much nicer than Christmas paper. You can even re-use brown paper bags that are often given at clothing stores. On the other hand, consider buying plain red, gold, or green 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 festivities doesn’t need to break the bank. Unfortunately, however, lots of 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 options available to you; all you need is the right advice. For any advice on financial difficulties, get in contact with the specialists at Bankruptcy Parramatta by calling 1300 818 575, or alternatively visit our website for further information: https://www.bankruptcy-parramatta.com.au/