After a long year of working, there’s nothing better than treating yourself over the holidays! There’s no greater time to finally get the things that you’ve been wanting, and to have the fun that you’ve been craving – you deserve it right?
Then there are still all of the parties to attend, the presents to buy for your friends and family, the Christmas decorations for your house, the big meals, and all of the other many things to spend money on over the festive period.
It doesn’t matter how smart you may be when it comes to shopping and budgeting, the holidays are expensive! In order to enjoy yours to the maximum, it is important not to overspend and put yourself in a position of feeling guilty.
Here are our top tips for getting through the costly holidays without breaking the bank.
Set Out A Realistic Budget
In order to spend wisely, you first need to know exactly how much money you have available. Before you even start getting into the festive holiday spirit, it is important to plan out a budget for the costly time ahead.
Start by writing down the essential things you will need to spend money on. From there, make a list of things you want to treat yourself with. See how much money you have available to allocate to each area on the list. Solid budgeting is the key to efficient spending – but remember to always be realistic.
Keep Your Eyes On The Sales
When buying gifts for your loved ones, make sure to look out for the sales happening throughout the year. Naturally, as the holidays start getting into full swing, prices often rise all over the place.
So instead of waiting for the last minute to buy expensive gifts, do your gift buying when all of the sales are happening around you. Whether it is online or in store, buying things during sales are always a great way to save some extra money.
Review Previous Spending
A fantastic way to start cutting down on unnecessary expenses is to look back on what you spent last year. By reviewing previous holiday expenditure, you can see where you may have overspent, or even recall spending that you felt bad about.
By finding out where you may have overdone it last year, you will know exactly where to cut the spending this time around.
Either check back on previous credit card statements or just think about what you felt guilty over buying. This will really help you with the way you spend money over the holidays.
Lock Away Your Credit Card
As we all should already know, credit cards can be very dangerous! When the holidays start, put your credit card away. This will allow you to think twice about spending the money that you have available and will keep you clear of those annoying credit card debts.
If needed, you can bring your credit card back out near the end of the holidays as an emergency, but only when the bulk of your spending is done. This will really help you to save money in the longer run, and it will even free up your finances more for next years holiday!
Don’t Be Afraid Of DIY
If you usually end up spending way too much on festive decorations and setting your house up for the holidays, getting into DIY is a fun and effective way to cut down on spending.
There are so many easy and affordable DIY ideas out there that can help you turn your home into something to be truly proud of. Not only will this keep you busy, but it will also help to reduce your unnecessary expenses in a big way.
The DIY approach can also be applied to wrapping gifts, making cards and hosting parties. There are so many small things that you spend money on which can be easily made by yourself for nothing. Try to DIY wherever possible in order to keep your holiday budget on track.
Track Your Spending As You Go
Never wait until the holidays are over to realise just how much money you spent! As you shop for things throughout the holiday, keep a list of what you have spent. Keeping track of where your money is going will help you to realise when to stop or what to cut out. It is always important to be on top of your spending as it is happening.
Your holidays are a time to enjoy yourself, treat yourself, and most importantly to relax. Any overboard spending can really ruin this time for you or put you into a position that will take the festivities right out of your holiday. Follow these simple guidelines and your wallet will enjoy the holidays just as much as you!