HOW TO AVOID A FINANCIAL HANGOVER
There’s nothing better than seeing our loved one’s faces light up on Christmas morning when they open their presents.
And while giving gifts is a great way to show we care, it’s very easy to spend like crazy.
In the lead up to Christmas with so many additional expenses to account for, careful budgeting is essential.
But, with a little bit of thought and planning, it is possible to have a jolly Christmas without putting a strain on your budget.
TIPS FOR CONTROLLING SILLY SEASON SPENDING: 1. GET EVERYONE TO BRING A PLATE
Hosting Christmas lunch is expensive but you can spread the cost by asking everyone to bring a dish.
2. BE A SAVVY SHOPPER
Set a budget for presents and stick to it. Instead of buying for everyone why not organise a ‘Secret Santa’?
Also use catalogues and shop online to find the best deals.
3. GO EASY ON THE CREDIT
While credit cards are convenient, they can be addictive over the Christmas period and undo a well-planned budget.
Avoid buying gifts with credit, unless you are going to be able to pay off your card before interest is charged.
4. START PAYING OFF YOUR HOLIDAY NOW
If you’re going away over the Christmas break, try to pay off your accommodation costs in instalments before you leave.
5. BAKE IT OR MAKE IT
If you have a talent for craft or baking you can create inexpensive presents such as home-made fruit cakes, rocky road, jams and relishes.
6. BUDGET FOR NEW YEAR EXPENSES
When doing your Christmas budget, don’t forget to factor in some of the big expenses you’ll be facing in the New Year.
If you’ve got children, be mindful that all those back to school costs are just around the corner.
You’ll also have a new round of bills starting to roll in, such as rates, electricity and phone bills.