The festive season is upon us and as exciting as it may be, if you are not careful about how you spend your money, you may end up broke and start off the new year on a bad note. Having a plan before you hit the malls, buying presents for family and friends and organising a big party, it could be useful to have a clear budget plan in place so you know exactly where your money is going. So here are several ways to keep your spending under control this December:
1. Draw Up A Budget Plan
Many people may find this boring but it will help you in the long run. Allocating a specific amount to certain activities and each person on your gift list is the first step in the right direction. Be careful though not to set up a budget that is too tight or too loose, try and think of everything you will need to do or buy and write it down so you can remember to include it on your budget. Set up a realistic budget but still have a little bit of extra cash on the side for anything you might have forgotten to include in the budget or any emergency/ last minute pop ups.
2. Choose Cheaper Activities To Do
Holiday activities that we do with our friends and families leave us with lifetime memories but you should be careful not be left in debt as well, as some of these activities can be pretty expensive. You don’t even have to leave home to book in at an expensive holiday resort or hotel to have a memorable holiday. There is so much fun stuff that you can do for holidays at home without going anywhere and end up saving a lot of money. These are some of the things you can do at home during the holidays and have fun: Setting up Christmas lights in your home, making Christmas craft & wrapping up gifts, chilling on the couch watching movies & having some snacks on the side, cooking & baking together as a family, having karaoke nights, playing outdoor games e.t.c
3. Keep Track Of Your Spending
Drawing up a budget serves no purpose if you don’t track your spending. Having a separate account for your Christmas savings may be a good idea, this would make it easier for you to separate holiday spending from your day-to-day or monthly expenses. Check your balance every now and then to make sure you don’t go over the limit.
4. Avoid Extras Excessive Spending
It is easy to get caught up in the festive season and see yourself spending way more than you actually have or can afford. Other people even go to the extent of getting loans so they can afford to buy something. Just keep in mind that loans come with interests and paying them back can prove to be a hustle. Cutting back on those unnecessary extras can have a big impact on your bank account.
5. Know When To Stop
Seeing something that you really like at the mall and not buying it can be heartbreaking, but ask yourself is it really worth buying and worth that price? When you have finished buying everything in your shopping list and you’ve double checked, it’s time to stop shopping and go home. This may prove to be difficult for a lot of people but you need to have self discipline and avoid staying longer at the mall just to see what they have as this can lead to making unplanned purchases and blowing your budget.
It’s too easy to get caught up in the spending “spirit” during the holidays as marketing campaigns are make you open your wallet a target in the spirit of Christmas, so it’s hard not to fall prey. With all these tips, don’t forget to have fun and keep your budget flexible.
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