How To Prepare For A Financially Stress-free Christmas

"I find that it helps to break down the big picture into smaller achievable tasks and to recognise and celebrate these achievements along the way."
-Katherine Hann
November 22, 2016

How To Prepare For A Financially Stress-free Christmas

By Katherine Hann

How To Prepare For A Financially Stress-free Christmas

How to Prepare for a Financially Stress-free Christmas

When it comes to Christmas, I know many of us want to be generous to those who matter to us but when January comes around so does the financial stress.

Show yourself some Christmas love by keeping your spending in check and starting the New Year on a great financial footing.

Just follow these 3 steps and make each Christmas Season a joy for you and your family and friends.

1. Work Out How Much You Can Afford To Spend on Christmas

Look at your finances from now until Christmas. Hopefully, this means you’ll look at your budget.

If you haven’t started budgeting yet, check out my blog on Budgeting-How to Make it Exciting!

Whatever you do — do something! The first step to creating a financially stress-free Christmas is knowing what money you have, which means you need
to budget.

2. Take Inventory of Christmas Expenses

Make a list of all of your Christmas expenses, here are some examples:

Presents – List who you’re buying for, what you want to buy, and how much money you’ve allocated for each person.

In my family we put a limit on the amount you are going to spend on each other and organise a Kris Kringle where you purchase for one person only.

Decorations – lights, tree, ornaments, candles, stockings and other holiday house decorations.

Food – Christmas dinner, Christmas breakfast, food for parties, holiday treats for the neighbours and friends. Write a list for each
function you are hosting including a budget for all food and alcohol and make sure you stick to it.

If you are traveling – List costs like flights, car service, tyre check, petrol and travel insurance and shop around for deals early.

3. Fill in the Gap

Now, compare what you can afford with what you project your holiday expenses to be. Address any gap between what your projected Christmas spending is and
what you can afford.

Keeping track of your festive spending is the best way to avoid going over your budget this Christmas.

Try the ASIC Moneysmart TrackMySPEND app to nominate a spending limit for different
types of Christmas expenses and track your progress while you shop.

I wish you all a safe and Happy Christmas with your loved ones.