Hello and welcome to our blog, we are aiming to make this the place to go for financial tips and advice. For this first post realising their is only 77 days until Christmas! We have put together some money saving tips...
1) Save NOW!
According to polls the average family tends to spend around £900 on Christmas. Could you afford to take £900 or £450 from one pay packet and still meet all your other outgoings? Most people can't and this is why people end up borrowing. Why not put money aside each month now, at no cost to you? Much better than borrowing and paying back next year with interest.
Work out the budget and put money aside from each pay packet.
2) Buy Stuff Early!
Sales and offers happen throughout the year, so as long as you know the people you need to buy for (make lists!), buy presents when you see a bargain and put it in the cupboard for Christmas.
Take advantage of the various vouchers, sales and bargains that happen throughout the year. Often people forget all of these shopping principles in the mad rush around Christmas.
3) Cashback Credit Cards
Some credit card companies pay you every time you spend. Sometimes with the ability to earn up to 5% back on your purchases. The trick here is to buy stuff on them and pay them back in full each month. You do your regular spending and replace the cash, cheques or debit cards.
American Express's Platinum Everyday is a good example, paying 5% cashback (max £100) on all spending in the first 3 months. Getting one of these for the Christmas period means you can earn money back when buying your presents. Although always remember the huge APR you will have to pay if you don't pay the amount off in full.
4) If you REALLY have to borrow, get a 0% Card
Some people will always borrow at Christmas, regardless of any advice. If do, make sure you get a long 0% on spending credit card, you can get some cards that has no interest for up to 18 months. Plan repayments so they are cleared as early as affordable into next year and definitely make sure you don't go over the period when the 0% ends.
If you can't currently afford Christmas and you can't even get a 0% card, it might be worth really cutting back this Christmas and just enjoying the family.
5) Plan for Next Christmas in January!
To be honest the best time to save cash for Christmas is in January. Everything is sold off super cheap and their are many many bargains to be had.
Remember, if you're trudging around the January sales to pick up any decorations or Christmas items (that won't perish) for next year. With plummeting prices, its the perfect time to buy.
It might also be worth starting a savings fund, putting cash aside every month. So when next Christmas rolls around, you'll know exactly how much you have to spend and no borrowing worries.
These are just our top five, keep checking back at the blog for more tips throughout the next couple of months!