Many people experience post-holiday blues for a variety of reasons. Some feel depressed because social gatherings stop happening. Others get depressed because they have bills coming in the mail and not enough income to pay them. If you fall into the latter group, you’re not alone. Better than half of consumers overspend and about a third of those lose sleep over it.
If you don’t have the money to pay your credit card bills in full, you’ll end up paying much more because of additional interest. Thankfully, there are a few ways to avoid adding 20% or more to the original purchase price. If you cannot borrow money from a family member, applying for a small personal loan will benefit you. Companies like Harrison Funding specialize in offering consolidation loans, with less stringent requirements than traditional banks. This will allow for one monthly payment at a lower interest rate.
Preparedness for the Future
Getting caught in the same scenario of too many gifts to buy and not enough money to pay for them is something you can avoid in the future. Planning ahead, by opening a savings account designated for funding the upcoming holiday, will do two things. First, you’ll have the money set aside to buy gifts early and enjoy sales. Second, you won’t use your credit cards, so what you pay is the original cost only. There are no future bills with compounded interest.
Benefits of a Household Budget
Creating and sticking to a household budget will help you financially. It lets you see where you spend money and the amounts. This allows you to reel in wasteful spending and put a focus on achievable short-term and long-term goals. A budget also includes all your bills, even those that come due only once or twice each year. This reduces unexpected expenses and makes it possible to pay your bills on time.
Achieving Financial Goals
At different points in your life, you need to set money aside for personal goals. You may need a new car, want to buy a home, or plan for your retirement. Remaining true to your budget will make all these goals possible. As your annual income goes up and you pay off loans, so does the amount you apply to special savings accounts.
If you have piles of credit card and loan bills, you may not think it’s possible to live life debt-free. Outside of a home mortgage, it is possible. Some people even pay off their mortgage 10 to 15 years in advance. It’s all about how you manage your money. Eliminating debt starts with a non-use of your credit cards and a willingness to control unnecessary spending. Some people use their tax returns to pay down existing credit cards and loans. This will help to reduce the time it takes to pay off the debt completely. If you don’t get a refund, you can take on a second job or apply for a credit card that allows balance transfers.
Separate the Wants From the Needs
People often fall into serious financial times because of their spending habits. They don’t understand the difference between something they want versus something they need. When money is tight, the needs take priority, and, unfortunately, anything you want will have to wait. Controlling impulse spending when you know you don’t have the money to buy something, is the first step to financial freedom. In the short-term, showing restraint will afford you a bright, financially sound future.
Peace of Mind
When you pay your bills by their due dates, you keep your credit score in good standing, avoid unnecessary late fees, and experience peace of mind. You no longer dread checking the mail and you eliminate having to dodge collectors’ phone calls.
The holidays should be something you long for, not stress about, and regret. By establishing a household budget, reeling in spending, and setting both short- and long-term goals, you can enjoy the holidays each year.