This time of year can be really hard on finances, can’t it? For people like myself who live on a low income, sometimes there isn’t quite enough of the family income to go around. I have to admit in previous years, I’ve been all organised and prepared, something which my sisters do still also. But this year I haven’t been quite so good with my finances and I have been left trying to make some extra income to help put towards buying Christmas gifts. Luckily I can rely on the blog to help me with this.
But with some careful planning and cutting back on non-essentials, it doesn’t need to be a huge added expense to your finances. There are many ways to help you not only trim the fat from your expenses each month but also find some bargains to keep the cost of present buying down.
Check Your OutGoings.
This is one of those things people always go on about, isn’t it? But really, it’s the easiest way to save some money each month. Look for things like subscriptions you don’t use anymore, gym memberships you forgot to cancel and so on. If you don’t use it regularly stop paying for it. Likewise with your bills. Check your broadband and TV package. If you can save some money there do it.
Compare your credit cards/loans or any other financial agreements and see if you could save money by switching providers or consolidating your debt. Do the same with your utilities and see if switching providers could prove to be a cheaper option for you.
Stick to a Budget.
This is possibly the most important thing when it comes to controlling your spending over the Christmas holidays. Know beforehand what you want to spend and stick to it. I have a set amount for all members of my family and plan out when I am buying my gifts so as not to spend too much at once.
Check for Bargains.
Whether you prefer to buy online or in store, it makes sense to check for the best deals before you leave home. The Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals may be finishing but there always offers on. With stores vying for your money it goes without saying shopping around is the best way to get what you want for less. Don’t forget to factor in delivery costs when shopping online.
Though, not the best way to tackle the holiday season, credit options are always there for people who may need it. Again, make sure you can afford the repayments before you agree to any kind of financial commitment. You can arrange this online and pay via online instalment loans to repay what you have borrowed.
Though a little too late for this Christmas, it is worth your time looking into options for next year.
Paying into a savings fund with family or friends with one person who you trust to keep a check on the accounts until you require the funds. This is usually the job of my mum. Alternatively set up a Direct Debit to a national saving company where you can order products or vouchers for Christmas and pay towards it throughout the year. This also applies to buying presents throughout the year too. Picking up items in sales or on offers during months with less expense could help you reduce the amount you have to spend during November/December. We do this in January for upcoming birthdays in March!
What do you do to plan ahead and prepare your finances for the Christmas Season to help reduce the cost?