Festive Period Debt
The festive period is often one that is looked forward to by many people, but for others it can also be a time that is feared. While the holidays can be the most wonderful time of the year, it can also be hard on our purse strings, with people often feeling the pressure to buy the most wanted toy on the market for their kids or the most luxurious present for their loved one.
However, it doesn’t have to be this way. The fact of the matter is, there are ways to have a great time during the festive period without having to fear the running up of unnecessary debt.
Ways to avoid Christmas debt
During the holidays many people seem to put the blinkers on and pull the credit cards out. You don’t often think about the bills that will be arriving in the new year nor do you want to, but you should.
However, if you shop this way, you run the risk of regretting your spending when January comes around and those you bought presents for will feel guilty for taking what you gave them.
With that in mind, the best way to avoid running up debt during the festive period is to firstly make sure all your main bills such as your mortgage, electricity, council tax and phone are paid before anything else. Ignoring these for the sake of festive purchases will only cause you trouble further down the road.
Once you have taken care of these bills, it’s best to sit down and plan out your holiday spending. To make sure you do this in a way that won’t come back to haunt you, you can follow these simple steps:
- Set a budget and stick to it – Write out all of your expenses and take them away from your income. What’s is the money you can use for festive spending. Make sure any holiday costs that you include in this do not go over this amount, including future credit card payments.
- Plan ahead – Save a little each month to give you a buffer for extra spending. This one of the smartest things you can do as the less you have to find during the holidays the better off you will be.
- Spread the cost – Purchase gifts throughout the year help give you less to buy when the festive period rolls around. If you see the perfect holiday gift on sale in July and you can afford it, don’t hesitate. No one will know or care when you actually bought it.
- Keep track of your festive spending – Keep a ongoing record of expenses and always compare it to your budget. If you find yourself exceeding your budget, put on the brakes; your purse will thank you for it later.
- Avoid hidden costs – Keep an eye on your bank balance and credit limit to make sure you don’t face any penalties, overdraft charges or interest. Hidden expenses can be a budget killer so it’s good to avoid them as best you can.
In order to avoid getting into unnecessary Christmas debt, it’s also an option to have a garage sale. This way you can clear your house of things you no longer use and earn holiday spending money in the process. You might also consider taking on a seasonal job to help you earn some extra cash for this time.
Another option is the Christmas loan, although you need to be sure you’ll be able to repay this completely within the often short time given to you or you could find yourself in hot water.
At the end of the day, should you overspend on the holidays and require Christmas debt help there are many counselling agencies out there who can help. Just keep in mind that the best course of action is not to overspend to begin with.
If you’ve found yourself feeling the January blues when it comes to money, contact us today. We can give you free, helpful advice on how to bring your situation under control in the least painful way possible.
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