When Should I Start Saving for Christmas?
Every year it seems that Christmas is coming earlier. Christmas lights are hanging in the centre of town before Halloween has even started, and John Lewis adverts are on appearing as soon as the clocks go back. While this may seem extreme, saving early for Christmas certainly isn’t.
Did Christmas last year cost you a small fortune? A typical family spends £820. Many families struggle from December’s pay-packet alone, so the earlier you start saving, the less you need to put aside each month.
Set a budget
The average Christmas spend per household is around £820, which includes food, presents, travel and decorations, among other expenses.
To begin your budget, figure out who you will be buying presents for and allocate an amount for each person.
If you are hosting dinner, then consider how many people will be coming over and how much you will need to spend on food and drink.
From here, you should have a guideline to work with of how much money you would need to put away each month.
Set money aside each month
Treat saving as the same way you would a bill. Committing to saving a regular sum each month is more effective than leaving it till last minute.
As well as setting away money in a savings account. You can also put your spare £1 or £2 coins into a jar each week, when you have a tidy sum, simply transfer it.
Bank or building society savings accounts
Putting money in a current account or savings account is a quick and easy way to save.
These require you to put money in each month – you can choose the amount – usually by direct debit.
These are good because they are tax- free. Furthermore, since 6 April 2016, the government has announced that savers will be able to take money out of an Isa and replace it within the same year without it affecting their annual Isa allowance, which will make the Cash Isa a more flexible product for festive savers.
Ways of cutting backs the costs
Be a savvy Internet shopper
- Buying top brands at a fraction of the cost- For those who prefer shopping online, there are outlet and clearance stores where you can buy their products but pay a lot less.
- Make yourself familiar with voucher code websites. Bookmark these sites and make sure you keep a look out for discount codes
- Make sure you’re getting the best deal available on your food shopping, using price comparison sites, such as Pricerunner and mysupermarket.co.uk.
Change your supermarket
Buying the festive food can be an expensive business, so make the most of discount supermarkets such as Aldi or Lidl.
Don’t buy too much
How much food are you usually left with every year? Post-Christmas food usually gets thrown away as many New Year’s resolutions start with a new diet. Most hosts like to put on a lavish spread, but in reality you end up throwing most of it away.