I love Christmas from the time spent with family and friends through to the gorgeous decorations and delicious food. But there’s no doubt it can be a drain on the finances, especially if you have kids. Finding the cash for Christmas can be difficult and can leave you with a headache afterwards. But there are some tips to help with getting your finances organised and still enjoying the season.
There are various financial concerns for the modern family and budgeting out what you have available can help offset some of these during the festive season. It’s easy to get a bit excited and end up spending more than you meant to but if you work out a budget and stick to it, then you can avoid the January blues.
There’s nothing wrong with using credit to pay for Christmas but always try to get the best rates for your borrowing. Look at the rate you are paying on your credit card – is there a better rate out there? I often take a card with 0% interest for twelve months then when the time is up, look to see if I can get another card and swap the balance. But I always cancel the old one or there is the temptation to have two cards on the go and I can’t always afford double the minimum payments.
Make use of special offers and vouchers
We all know that Black Friday and Cyber Monday see some spectacular deals but there are also a lot of other deals over the Christmas period that are often not based around big ticket items. Use websites for price checking to see the best deals at any time on food and Christmas presents.
Voucher websites are also very handy and there are some good ones. Hot UK Deals and Top Cashback are just a couple of examples of websites that offer vouchers and discount codes that can save you real money or get you cashback deals on items you want to buy that can then be used against other items.
Start planning for next year
One of my pre-New Year resolutions is to try and plan my finances for next year a little better. Sure, you always want to increase your income in 2017 based on 2016 but with the way the economy is going, this might not happen. So, I want to take a proactive view on my finances and look to start saving for the Christmas period right from January.
Saving account rates aren’t great at the moment but if you shop around, there are deals to be had. And if you can put money in and not touch it for most of the year, there are also other options that might see the cash grow a nice little amount come December. But either way, you will have the lump sum of cash you need for those presents and food and we may all be able to just use credit cards for those super deals, rather than for normal shopping.