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At Progressive, we understand that you want to have the best Christmas you can with your family, but that can come with a high financial cost. It may only be October but spreading the cost over a few months is one of the best ways to make the festive season more manageable! So, we’ve outlined some of our top tips to help you save for Christmas, and make sure you are able to have the Christmas you deserve, without breaking the bank.
By starting your Christmas shopping a couple of months in advance, you won’t have to rely on December’s salary to pay for everything. Make a list of everyone you need to buy presents for, and what you’re going to get them, then plan out what to buy each month between now and Christmas. That way, you’ll know how much you’re going to spend and when, so you’ll be able to make sure you don’t go over budget
With Black Friday becoming increasingly popular, and Cyber Monday also gaining prominence, the pre-Christmas sales are lasting longer and longer. Some retailers now have offers on for weeks before Christmas, so when you’re looking for presents, shop around to find the best deal, rather than just buying your gifts from the first place you find selling them.
Shopping online can sometimes prove cheaper than the high street, but watch out for shipping costs, particularly when having deliveries sent to Northern Ireland, as sometimes free delivery will not apply here. If you can’t avoid shipping costs, try buying everything you need from the same website at once and therefore you’ll only be paying one delivery fee.
Many of us have intentions of saving but end up spending the money on a takeaway or a new outfit instead without realising. By setting up a direct debit into your savings account, especially if you schedule it for the day you get paid each month, you’ll be less likely to notice the money is out of your current account. You may also be less likely to take the money out of your savings account once it’s gone in. If you don’t already have a savings account or feel the one you have isn’t exactly what you’re looking for, find out about the range of savings accounts we offer at Progressive.
Discuss setting a spending limit for presents with your family, partner or friends. If you have a large family or friend group, you could also consider doing a Secret Santa, rather than buying a present for everyone individually. That way, everyone will be spending an amount you’re comfortable with, and you’ll be able to put more money towards your food or entertaining over the festive period. This also means you won’t have to worry that your friends and family are spending more on you than you are on them.
Every time you buy something, why not round it up to the next 50p or pound and send what’s left to your savings account, if you pay by card, or put it into a coin jar if paying by cash? You’d be surprised at how much you could gather up over a month or two.
It can be really tempting to go out every night of the week around Christmas, particularly if friends and family from other areas or countries come home for a week or two. With so many online bloggers and influencers providing recipe ideas, as well as supermarkets offering increasingly varied options, it could be a fun idea to have your friends over for food and drinks at home, instead of going out somewhere. You could even ask all guests to cook one item each and have a prize for the best dish to make things a bit more competitive!
We’d love to talk you through the mortgage process and help you find a suitable product. For more information or to apply for an account, you can call us, email us, pop into one of our 12 branches. We look forward to hearing from you.