Christmas is creeping up, warn budgeting groups
An Invercargill budgeting service manager has urged Southlanders to avoid a financial headache and start saving for Christmas now.
Christmas is 20 weeks away, which for people who get paid fortnightly is only 10 pays.
Jubilee Budget Advisory Service manager Simon Tierney said yesterday Southlanders should save all year round, not just for Christmas, but for all goals.
Everyone should have three goals: short-term, mid-term and long-term.
"Christmas can feel like you're saving for one day but if you're only saving for one day it can get very depressing for the other 364 days."
People tended to delay Christmas shopping, but shopping early could help with the budgeting, he said.
However, Christmas was not just about gifts but also food, holidays and school uniforms - January was one of the advisory's busiest months, he said.
"Stand firm on what Christmas means to you - is it family, holiday, Christian belief - enjoy the time of year for what it means to you, not because adverts are telling you what you should buy from them."
Federation of Family Budgeting Services chief executive Raewyn Fox said Christmas costs could build quickly. "That's only a problem if you haven't budgeted for it. The best time to budget for Christmas is right now."
A simple solution would be to put a small amount each week into a savings account, she said.
"If you put aside $10 a week now into a savings account, you'd have over $200 by the time you need to do your Christmas shopping. That $200 could go a long way."
- © Fairfax NZ News
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