3 Tips to Help You Reduce those New Year Credit Card Bills!

December 11, 2014

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Do you procrastinate? I know I do! I could do it for the Olympics!!

I have been meaning to write this on here for the past week or so, but always found something more important that needed doing, actually probably more urgent if I was truthful, because I’d procrastinated about that too!!

Sometimes procrastinating can be really expensive; both financially and/or just personally. If you don’t stop doing something that is harmful to you, eg smoking it ticks both of those boxes. As soon as you stop, you save money and also start to improve your health. But what I am focussing on here is money.

I have had several conversations recently, with people who intend to deal with their money shit, “in the New Year”!

Great idea you might think and in principle, it is! However, as the graphic says, time is money! The longer you delay taking at least the first step, the more it costs you. At this time of the year especially.

If you are spending without having any real plan or budget, and no really clear idea of where it has been, or is all going, you could be in trouble! This is particularly if you are doing all this spending on credit cards! The New Year will bring some nasty surprises when those credit card bills come in! Trust me I know these things!!

So here are three tips to stop the flood and, depending where you are with the Christmas shopping, lessen the shock of those New Year bills.

  1. Make a plan now! I mean, as soon as you have read this, or at the very least today! The sooner you start the less it will cost you. Detail your income from now until the end of December. If, you have already been paid, then use the balance in your account now. Then put down all of your planned spending until the end of the the month. This should include gift buying, food shopping, meals out, alcohol, parties etc! It is an expensive time of year! If at the end of that you estimate that you will still have money in the bank or your wallet, well done you!! If not, go over it again and you have two choices – either reduce your planned spending or increase your income!! To help with this you can go to my website, Financial Clarity and download a copy of the Holiday Planner developed by Karen McCall.
  2. Stop using your credit cards. I mean NOW! Using credit cards allows you to be completely oblivious to your spending or have your head in the clouds or, deep in the “money fog’ as I like to call it! If you won’t be able to eat unless you use your credit cards, then that’s OK but make a plan for when you are going to use them and for how much. eg I will spend $100 at the supermarket or grocery store. Then just use it for that and NOTHING more!
  3. Shop with a list or even better do all your shopping online! This means that you are in control of your spending. You buy just what you need and spend just what you have planned. You are not tempted by the slick marketing of the retailers or by your own desires!!

…and most of all have a wonderful Christmas, happy holidays and a healthy and abundant 2015

If you think you need more help than this don’t hesitate to contact me jill@financialclarity.co.nz or +64 21 211 5327

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