Sunday, 6 January 2008


However much you want to spend on food, drink and presents at Christmas nothing, nothing, nothing about Christmas is worth getting into debt for. Spending does not equal happiness (especially when the bills arrive in January). After all, it really is the thought that counts – and the thought that counts with me is that the credit card companies and banks won’t be making a single penny out of me at Christmas (or any other time of the year!).

Debt advice specialists are advising this simple way of affording Christmas:

  • Work out all your monthly outgoings (mortgage/rent, bills, food, petrol, fares, etc.
  • Work out what you have left per month (this is your “disposable income”).
  • Double your monthly disposable income - and that is the total amount you can spend on next Christmas. So if you have £100 disposable income left every month – you only have £200 IN TOTAL to spend on next Christmas!
  • For 2 months put that sum away in a savings account. Only use this money for Christmas!
  • Make a list of everyone you have to buy for in a small notebook you keep with you. Start looking out for presents now in the sales (if you really have to go) and in charity shops. Note down the price of anything you buy and keep a running total – this way you will be sure not to exceed your budget for Christmas.

If this sounds harsh, then the alternative is even harsher – getting deeper into debt every year – and, worse having absolutely nothing to show for it!

So give it a try – especially if you are one of the millions who are still paying for last Christmas!

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