According to a recent study conducted by Fairfax media, many Australian credit card holders will be paying off their Christmas spending up to 3 months after the tree is packed up. Only 28% said that they would pay off their debt straight away and 1 in 4 said they will be still paying off debt 4 months later. These are alarming numbers and is the reason it is important to have a financial plan heading into Christmas as remember, nothing stops that holiday feeling quite like a debt you can’t repay!

Here are our 5 financial tips to ensure you come out of Christmas in the best possible shape.

  1. Avoid paying on credit – this is an obvious one but will see you come out of the Christmas period in a lot better financial shape. Try and use only your liquid cash, even it means buying slightly ‘cheaper’ presents. At the end of end of the day people won’t care anyway!
  2. Set a budget for Christmas. With Christmas a few weeks away still, it is not too late to sit down and write a clear budget. It is easy to get carried away and spend, spend, spend over Christmas but if you have sat down and made a clear budget, this is a sure way to avoid this.
  3. Pay your January bills in December. This will take the stress away when you come out of Christmas knowing that the next month’s expenses are taken care of.
  4. Track your spending. Download a spending app or use your online bank statement to track your spending throughout so there will be no surprises come the end of December.
  5. Plan for next Christmas now. The best way to get ahead at Christmas is to plan well in advance. Start by putting as little as $20 aside each week from now until next year and come next Christmas you’ll be set!

Remember Christmas is a fleeting time, but this doesn’t mean it has to be a fleecing one!

On behalf of everyone at MASU we wish you are a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!