Christmas is coming, and although the goose may becoming fat, your bank balance probably won’t be. It’s that time of year when ends become harder to meet, with a double-whammy of extra costs and possibly reduced income all hitting the season.
It’s therefore helpful to take a step back and look at ways to be more proactive and make sure you’re not only still in the black in January, but nicely so. A few small steps and adjustments can pay serious dividends later on.
Therefore, here are 5 top tips to get into action and reign-in your cash this festive season:
1. Diligent Deliveries
During this time of gift-buying and ordering, just watch out for the true costs of these being delivered hitting your pocket.
From speed and laziness when ordering online you can default to excesses and duplicate delivery charges, and even where they do get delivered on-price, you may end up incurring all kinds of additional costs simply collecting them from somewhere at a different time.
Ideally know what these are, try and arrange them all at the same time and place for the greatest savings.
2. Expected Expenses
It’s worth going over the distinction between what costs are personal to yourself, and what are legitimate business expenses – not only when you’re running a business and considering business-deductible expenses, but as an employee where certain costs may be part of an expenses claim.
Any increased travel and social time and costs may well be legitimate business expenses, and in addition make sure the timing of these being paid is not delayed from the slower Christmas period.
Even the timing of your salary may need to be considered in December where a beneficial earlier payment date then may well mean a longer period in January in order to catch up with the usual payment dates.
3. Predictable Property Costs
We all live and work in properties of some description, and of course they cost money to run. The winter periods can unfortunately see these ratchet up, whether higher heating and lighting costs, or allowing for repairs and breakdowns that can occur.
See what things can be controlled better to keep these within budget, whether efficient bulbs, lowered heating levels, and even a guaranteed-cost for services and repairs.
4. Happy Holidays
Work patterns can be different during this time of year, right from unpredictable illnesses and sick-leave, to taking additional holiday over the Christmas period and having to use-up holiday allowances.
Depending upon whether you’re an employee or a business owner, you’ll see this from different perspectives. It’s also a balancing act between savings in usual working-life costs, verses additional costs from not being at work.
Where you can plan for these things, think through the consequences, in addition to having any back-up plans for things not being straight forward.
5. Calculated Car Costs
If you’re driving a vehicle, whether you own car or any form of business vehicle, then you’ll know what large costs these can incur anyway. Right from the essential insurance and servicing costs, to ongoing repairs and fuel.
Well, bad weather unfortunately often means more issues, therefore plan and see what you can do now in order to manage these most effectively over the next few months.
A good service with essentials like a battery-check and antifreeze in the water can help reduce the likelihood of breakdowns later on, and even joining a vehicle recovery service can help reduce these risks.
Also looking at other forms of transport can help, not only with less potential problems and additional fuel bills from long-winded journeys, but simply less hassle.
Making Your Bank Balance Swell
As you head into the busy festive season, these small tips can help keep a tighter rein in your hard-earned money. If not, then it may be a merry time this side of Christmas, but that can soon change in the New Year.
So where these are applicable, not only make a note but make sure actions are in place to see them happier in reality, to then enjoy the season ahead.