Festive Hangover? Have a New Year’s Financial Detox
Many of us are still suffering from financial hangovers from the Christmas period after spending far too much on gifts, decorations and food in December. It’s probably dawned on some of us that January (and possibly February) will be a hard month in financial terms. Whether you need to replace a broken household appliance or simply want to treat yourself, you can do it without breaking the bank and this guide will tell you how!
Never pay full price for a product ever again. The recession has meant that people can no longer be frivolous and care free when spending because we simply don’t have as much disposable income as we used to. Discount vouchers have created a type of shopper that simply will not buy items unless they can get some sort of discount. Before buying anything always check online to see if you can get a discount off the product whether it’s in the form of a printable voucher to take into the store or an online code to punch in at checkout.
Compare products before you buy
Never buy a product in the first store/website you see it. Unless it’s a specialist or exclusive product, more than one retailer is likely to stock it and you could find it cheaper elsewhere. Always compare retailers online before you make a decision of where to buy. Other retailers could have the product you’re after in their sale or could be promoting it. Put the name of the product and model number into a shopping comparison tool which will bring you back all the retailers, prices and models to choose from to ensure you get the best deal.
Look for alternatives
Many people buy products because of the brand that is associated with it or because it’s the first of its kind to hit the market. This can be a massive mistake as there are always alternatives and new companies hopping on the bandwagon. Take the iPad for example; the first tablet of our generation came onto the scene in April 2010 with a hefty price tag. A few months later Samsung announced their plans to release the Galaxy tablet with a smaller price tag. Try to look for alternative products before buying the one you had your eye on, you may find a cheaper and more appropriate product with a bit of shopping around.
Shop second hand
This obviously depends on what you’re buying, but don’t rule out the thought of buying something that is second-hand. Most products that are on sale have been purchased by their previous owners and hardly ever used, and you’re likely to pay half as much for it. You can buy second hand products on popular sites like Amazon, and buy and sell second-hand stuff on online market sites such as eBay.
Consider next Christmas NOW
It’s never too early to start saving for next Christmas, and the sooner you start putting money away the easier it will be toward the end of the year. Even though you may not want to think about the holidays right now, it’s always best to have it somewhere on your radar. When out shopping always look out for small gifts for relatives and friends that you can put away until December. This will help to dramatically reduce the financial burden of the festive period if you start early. Some shops also offer savings programs which you can use throughout the year, especially shops like supermarkets. They will issue you with a card which you can add money to each time you shop, leaving you with a nice sum at the end of the year to spend on groceries for the festivities. Ask your local supermarket if they run a program like this as it will help you massively when December comes around.