|January 5, 2018||Comments Closed|
Christmas can be a wonderful time of year. Spending quality time with your family, going on holidays, giving gifts to loved ones, and of course the legendary Christmas dinner! It’s unquestionably a time for giving, and with this comes expenses. It’s very easy to go overboard with getaways, gifts, and heavenly foods; to let your hair down and indulge in the spirit of Christmas. The truth is, though, that the silly season ultimately passes and many of us are left with the stress of sizeable credit card balances. Some individuals spend months trying to repay their Christmas debts, while others find themselves in much deeper water.
While some folks have the financial ability to shower their families with classy gifts and lavish celebrations, the majority of us should be cautious 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 reliable ways of celebrating Christmas, without breaking the bank.
1. Set a Budget
Though it may sound cliché, it’s paramount that you determine a budget and stick to it. Prepare a list of all the gifts you’ll be giving and calculate the total amount. Most of the time, it will be a lot more than you imagined. Use this as incentive to think outside the box (pardon the pun!) and make some revisions 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 even think about making gifts yourself! ASIC has released a wonderful app to keep track of your Christmas spending called TrackMySPEND (https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/) which I’m positive many of you would find beneficial.
2. Shop Online
Whilst lots of people find excitement in wandering through department stores and basking in the dazzling Christmas displays, almost all the same items are readily available on the net at much cheaper prices. Use comparative shopping websites like Google Shopping, Nextag, or PriceGrabber to find what you’re looking for. These websites are extremely competitive and will nearly always have discounts that can save you a bundle. Even though shopping online will be more affordable, you must 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 family and friends, you’ll know that the costs of this exercise can be fairly expensive. It’s no surprise that only 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 loads of apps on smart phones and tablets that allow you to send quirky and amusing Christmas videos that can be sent electronically at no charge at all. 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 artistically wrapped present can make a significant difference, even with the cheapest of presents. Christmas paper can be relatively expensive, so look at buying 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. On the other hand, consider purchasing plain green, gold or red paper which can also be used as birthday presents throughout the year. Remember, various department stores will wrap your presents for free, so don’t be afraid to ask!
As you can see, Christmas festivities doesn’t have to break the bank. Sadly, however, many people spend beyond their means and find themselves 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 advice on financial difficulties, talk to the specialists at Bankruptcy Sydney by calling 1300 818 575, or alternatively visit our website for further information: http://www.bankruptcy-sydney.com.au/