Do you find that an early Christmas pay cheque just makes things worse for January and the New Year? If so, you agree with nearly two thirds of Britons, who blame the early payday for their seasonal over-spending.
For those that don’t enjoy the early payday, more than half (51%) say it’ll take them up to a year to repair the damage to their finances. It’s not surprising, really, as only 34% of Brits say that they’re capable of setting and sticking to a set Christmas budget.
That payday delivery of Christmas cash doesn’t last long, and 36% of people admit that they’ll need to rely on credit cards or loans to get them through the season’s excesses.
There are six main reasons why Brits think they feel the pinch in January. Do any of these sound familiar?
1. Temptation to overspend (57%)
2. Pressure to have the perfect Christmas (40%)
3. Failure to budget (33%)
4. Being bad at managing money (30%)
5. Refusal to worry about money at Christmas (19%)
6. Losing track of spending (19%)
You might also find that the problem strikes year after year. A whopping 80% of people say they’ll make the same mistake next December.
It doesn’t have to be this way, though! There are a few things you could try to break that cycle and avoid starting the New Year with a depressing mound of debts:
• Start shopping early. Get some of your presents in September, October or even the summer to spread the cost of pricier gifts.
• Save up. Start stashing some cash as early as you can – open another bank account to squirrel some funds away for the Christmas craziness.
• Release the pressure. Spending every penny you have won’t mean you’ll have the best Christmas ever. Remember what’s important – family and friends, not brands and bargains.
• Use credit wisely. There are plenty of credit cards that will enable you to spread the cost of Christmas. Choose a card that offers a long period of interest free shopping, and you’ll find it easier to pay off the debts. But don’t spend more than you can afford to pay back and make sure you can at least make the minimum payments.
• If you do need to resort to a loan or new credit card, use comparethemarket.com to check what’s available and find the best possible deal.
Whether you’ve overdone it this year or are feeling sensibly smug, we hope you have a wonderful festive season. Merry Christmas!