How to Budget for the Cost of Christmas Next Year …

How to Budget for the Cost of Christmas Next Year

 

Christmas can be one of the most expensive times of the year but with a well thought-out plan, a positive attitude and a solid budget, there’s no reason not to survive and to sail into the New Year without a financial hangover. But what few people realise is that the best time to start planning and budgeting for Christmas is just after the previous one has finished … so , in other words, RIGHT NOW! I learned this lesson a long time ago. After years of frustration, stress and maxing out the credit card, I decided there had to be a better way, so this is what I did.

 

Early in January, I downloaded my Christmas Budget Planner and then prepared a budget. It’s totally free and you can get your copy by clicking on the “free to download” button below.

 

 

 

 

I gathered my receipts and credit card statement, thought about everything I had purchased for Christmas just gone and created a list of everything I bought. Then I added 10% to account for price rises/inflation and then recorded those amounts on my Christmas Budget. It was a fairly simple process because everything was still fresh in my mind. That list then became the basis for my Christmas Savings Plan. I totaled all the amounts together, divided this by the number of weeks left until Christmas and arranged a direct debit from my pay (or other income source). This amount was then automatically deposited weekly into an online account that had no card access. When Christmas rolled around, it was all covered.

 

Setting up a direct debit works well because the money goes straight to the account and you’ll find, once you get into the habit, you won’t even miss the money. Seeing your account build from week to week is a great feeling and will help relieve your stress knowing that you’re actively preparing for Christmas. Having a Christmas Account also gives you the flexibility to purchase items throughout the year when on sale which will also help you achieve your goal of being “on budget”.

 

A small amount deposited each week can really add up over the course of the year but if the number you come up with is higher than you anticipated, you can readjust the budget accordingly by either decreasing the amounts you’ve allocated to different items, cutting some things out altogether or finding a way to increase your Christmas budget.

 

Now this plan will only succeed if you don’t touch the Christmas Account, you accurately estimate your expenses, you’re disciplined and you follow through with the plan. It will also help to prevent overspending as you will have set very clear limits.

 

So tell me, do you plan ahead for your Christmas spending?

Comments

  1. This is such common sense I’m surprised I haven’t ever done it. I’m about to go through my Christmas receipts so I’ll start the process. It will be interesting to see how much I’ve spent and then how much I have to deduct for the next 50 or so weeks! xx

    • I can tell you from experience, it’s a great feeling to get to Christmas knowing that all your expenses are covered! It can also be a real eye opener to see how much your spending and then a wonderful challenge working out where to cut back … good luck, Charlie x

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