Oh December. Although it comes with festivities and joy in abundance, the reality is that it comes at a price. Amid the Cost of Living Crisis, even just buying presents for friends and family is proving to be a struggle this year for so many people – and this is before considering the cost of decorations, food, activities, heating, electricity and so much more. According to the Bank of England, the average UK household spends 29% more in December compared with the rest of the year.
Being mindful of how you can make your December pay cheque last comfortably into the new year is something we all want to know how to achieve – now more than ever! In this blog, we suggest some ways you can get the most out of your December income.
How can I make my December pay cheque last?
Planning through budgeting
We may sound like a broken record at this point, but budgeting is one of the most important ways to keep on top of your outgoings. Being prepared with your money for January will put you in good stead for the difficult financial reality of the new year. With our handy budgeting guide, you can be organised and start to plan for the new year. This way, you know what to expect and can plan your finances accordingly. Make sure to account for all your essential expenses such as rent, food, electricity and gas, transport, pension and whatever else you need to cover. Once you have dealt with all the necessary outgoings, you can then budget for any extra non-essential expenses like leisure activities, clothing, meals out and more. It’s important to be realistic about how much you think you’ll spend, because otherwise you run the risk of being out of pocket.
Paying off credit debts as soon as possible
To afford the luxurious spend which usually accompanies Christmas, it’s a good idea to plan to pay off those credit debts as soon as possible. With the rise of methods such as Klarna and other Buy Now, Pay Later providers, credit is quickly becoming a more popular spending option. While this may seem like a great alternative at the time, using credit options can land you in debt if you do not keep up with the repayment demands. Planning to pay off any outstanding credit debts as soon as you have been paid allows you to have a clearer picture of what your finances are looking like for the upcoming month. If you are currently struggling with debt, you can even use our debt advice tool for free. This is all online, so you won’t need to speak to anybody over the phone!
Make some spending changes
We wrote recently about how you can save money this Christmas on things like presents and Christmas dinner, but who’s to say these ideas can’t be carried over into January? Everybody understands that the cost of living right now is a struggle, but many of our tips can help you save money all year round. Whether it is baking presents, regifting, planning your weekly food shops or using more cost-effective cooking methods, there are lots of great tips to help you keep costs low over January and beyond. December’s antics may also affect the amount you are able to put into savings, so it is worth altering your expectations when it comes to your savings. Hopefully, this will only be a one-off and you can get back on track again for the new year.
Stagger your spending
Though it may be exciting to have some money in your pocket after a very expensive time of year, the worst thing you could do is spend it all at once. Staggering the amount of money you spend across January is crucial in making your December pay cheque last. The reality is, most people will also be feeling the crunch and will be reducing their spend too – so you’re not alone! Once again, planning your month can help you organise where your December pay cheque is going. If you want to organise a meet-up with family and friends, try and work out something which doesn’t cost much and which doesn’t align with any other existing plans you may have.
Get in touch today
December can be a tough time when it comes to managing your finances, but that’s why we’re here to help you get through it. By following these money saving tips, you can make your December pay cheque last and develop healthy spending habits. You can get in touch with our friendly team today to find out more, or use our free debt advice tool to get you started.