Life has many seasons, and you can’t always plan for everything that life might have for you each year. There is a saying “Life is what happens to us while we are making other plans” and just like with anything, we are well aware that life has its ups and downs, and being prepared for those ups and downs can put you in the best position to keep on rolling. Things like Christmas, birthdays, or a change in job can put pressure on your financial plans; so how do you account for changes like that?
Well for the Christmas period it really is different for every person, some spend it with immediate family, others have larger extended families they spend time with and have to buy for, and others may have friends they spend their holidays with. Think about that number, and then a hard limit on how much you would spend on a person. The range of expenditure will vary from person to person, depending on their relationship with you and their likes or dislikes, however, having a rough guideline can help you keep your budget under control. From there, the best thing to do would be to add it all up, and of course it might change as the year goes on, but you’ve set yourself a rough savings goal. Here at TWiCE, we have some members of the team who buy items in the sales for family members and friends throughout the year, so that when Christmas or unexpected birthday invites arrive, they are prepared for, have kept to their budget and everyone wins.
We also have members of the team who believe that setting up a separate Christmas or gift fund account works well. They set aside money every month towards their holiday fund goal. Even if you don’t have a great amount of disposable income, it is possible to skim money off your account every month and slowly your savings will grow. What exactly do we mean by skimming?
If you’ve ever ended up carrying a lot of pocket change around, it weighs down your wallet or purse and generally you just want to put it someplace else. Some people will go and put that shrapnel in a jar and save it for later. It’s the same thing, but with your general bank account. Say you’ve got £204.76 in your account, rather than leave it there, round it down to the nearest £10, so £200. Skim that £4.76 and put it into your savings account. There’s no strict time frame as to how often you should skim on your account, some do it each day, some each week, some each month, it all depends on your financial circumstances. It may not seem like much, but it all adds up and every little helps.
If you’d like to learn more about effective budgeting and planning for what life has in store, it might be worth finding out a bit more about what TWiCE does for everyone in the community.
- Tom L
Disclaimer: The above information does not replace financial advice. Please ensure you seek independent financial advice before making any decisions regarding your finances. We also recommend that you carry out your own research to ensure that this is right for your own unique circumstances. Please note that we sometimes link to other websites but we cannot be held responsible for their content.