4 Top Tips to start building your Christmas savings stocking today
The earlier you start saving for Christmas, the more you can reduce your stress levels as the festive period approaches. There’s no doubt that Christmas can be very expensive. Trying to deliver a great family Christmas can seem exhausting, but you can start making changes today to increase the chances of yours being fantastic. Let’s look at four top tips for boosting your Christmas savings right now.
Work out how much you need
One of the biggest steps to take when saving for Christmas is working out how much cash you need. Think about how much you want to spend on presents, days out over the festive period, food, drink, decorations and all over Christmas-related costs. Once you have a clear figure for your Christmas budget, financial planning gets so much easier. You may wish to prioritise one area over another or make cutbacks if you don’t have a lot to spend. For instance, you could socialise at home and make your own decorations to make your cash go further. Are there any expenses you could cut out altogether?
Keep track of your spending
Recording your Christmas spending can make it much easier to stay within your budget. Some people keep hold of their receipts, whilst others use lists and spreadsheets. Christmas costs are less likely to spiral out of control when you manage your money properly. You could withdraw a set amount of cash each week to stay in your budget or simply set a spending limit for each 7-day period. A free budget template (one is available for download here) can also help you keep on top of your spending
Make the right switches
There are several changes you can make to your spending habits to boost your festive finances. Could you switch to another energy supplier? You may be paying more for household running costs than you think. You may be able to stick with the same provider but move to a cheaper tariff. You can also reduce your weekly food bills by switching to supermarket own brands for your kitchen staples. Alternatively, you could start using a cheaper supermarket if you’ve not made this change already. You may also be able to get better deals on things like mobile phone contracts and your home broadband.
If you have any valuable items sat in a cupboard and don’t have much use for them, you can exchange them for cash. This has helped many families to raise much-needed cash in the run-up to Christmas. However, it is worth remembering that this can be very time consuming, and you may not be offered the price that you want. No matter how valuable something is, there is no guarantee that someone will want to cough up this sum. Nonetheless, online auction sites can help you generate extra cash and mean you’re not just restricted to local buyers.
Christmas doesn’t have to be a huge drain on your finances. By starting saving now, you can avoid feeling strapped for cash once the festive period is over.