There’s no doubt that Christmas is a time when the purse strings get loosened and we all tend to overindulge. A combination of expensive presents, festive decorations and all those festive get-togethers can blow a hole in the strictest of budgets. Here are some quick tips to take ownership of your Christmas splurge and to get your budget back on track.
- Own your Christmas spending and try to learn from it. It might be a painful process, but take the time to go through your expenditure and add it all up. Try to identify areas of expenditure that you can perhaps reduce next Christmas. There is no point in dwelling on what has happened. Learn from it and move on.
- Understand what the damage is. Have a close look at your bank balances and assess the damage – are you going to be in a position to meet all your monthly commitments. If not, you may have to look at ways to bring some extra cash into your account. Selling off second-hand goods on Gumtree or eBay is one way. If all else fails, it may be necessary to seek short term finance, but be sure to know exactly what the extra commitment will do to your long term goals.
- Reset your financial goals to align with your current situation. Do you need to go on a savings plan? Do the credit cards need paying down?
- Impose a no-spend policy until you’re back on track. This means not spending on unnecessary items. You can extend this policy to mealtimes and eat at home rather than buying takeaway.
- Look at ways to earn a little extra cash – the gig economy offers multiple opportunities to earn a little extra in a variety of ways. You’re sure to have some skills that other people are willing to pay for.
Once you’ve implemented these strategies you may find that you will not only get control of your initial binge, but by the time next Christmas comes along, you will be much better placed to deal with the spending demands placed upon you.