We have all been through that post-holiday debt. It can weigh on us and cause a significant amount of stress. If we lacked a solid financial plan throughout the holiday season, it will feel as if we are spending the upcoming months digging ourselves out of a deep hole of debt.
6 Ways to Budget Yourself: Post Holiday
Luckily, there are ways to structure your spending after the damage has been done and set yourself up for greater success in the new year. Take these tips below and really challenge yourself to incorporate them into your everyday life. You will be surprised at the benefits you will reap when you just incorporate these hacks!
Look at Your Current Habits
Before moving forward with your budgeting plans, it’s important to take a deep dive into what you are currently spending your money on. Look to see if you are able to cut back on anything or, on the other hand, if there are things you cannot live without. Once you have that figured out and worked through, the next steps come naturally.
With a look back on your past spendings and finances, you are able to see where there is and isn’t any wiggle room. For example, your rent money and car payment are things you need to spend your money on right away. But for expenses like the movies or shopping, you may be able to find areas where you can cut back and limit your spending.
Create DIY Decor
When transitioning your decorations throughout the winter and into spring, it can become pretty pricey. It’s common to shift your decor to fit the upcoming holiday and even choose new themes to give your home a fresh start. It can be beneficial to our wellbeing to switch it up as well! There are plenty of ways to decorate on a budget, however, adopting a DIY attitude or repurposing what you already have maybe the most successful way to accomplish saving money.
Take your holiday decor for example. When you invest in versatile Christmas decor you have opportunities to use them throughout your home, all year long. From the string lights to decorative wreaths, you can add so many varying accents into your living space that will flawlessly transition between seasons.
Make Your Meals
It is so important to limit inessential expenses like eating out. You can save so much money just by buying groceries and eating what you make at home! An average meal out is around 12 dollars. Say you buy your meals once a day, for 3 days a week. You are potentially spending around 36 unnecessary dollars each week! Add in those cups of coffee from Starbucks and you are really out-spending your budget.
Another way to cut back on needless spending is by prepping your meals for work each week. Not only will this help you eat healthier, but you will also be saving money by eliminating the want to buy lunch from a local restaurant.
Download an App
In the age of technology, there is essentially an app for everything. There is even one to help you get your finances back on track. When you download a budget app, you can either choose one that structures out your day-to-day spending or one that lets you know when your bank account is running low. After you deep dive into what your typical spending looks like, this is an easy next step. Not only will this help you with short term saving goals, but it can even improve your long term goals so you are better prepared for the next holiday season.
A few of my favorite money-saving apps are:
While this app isn't necessarily “money-saving” it does help your grocery bill stay where it should be. I absolutely LOVE Out of Milk. I've been using it for probably 5+ years now. It syncs between devices so my husband can add something we need and when I'm at the store, I can see everything.
Sell Things Around the House
I’m sure all of our houses need a little decluttering. With spring cleaning upon us, it’s a perfect time. Decluttering will not only help the overall environment, but it can provide you with opportunities to sell items you have that you may not have used in quite some time. Divvy up the piles and decide what you’re keeping, giving away, and what you can sell. You will be surprised by what people will buy from you on eBay! If you want to go a more traditional route, host a good old fashioned yard sale.
Look For Free Entertainment
There may not be a need for you to keep that Netflix subscription anymore! There are plenty of ways you can entertain yourself for free! Head over to your local public library or even just walk through the park. In today's world, it can feel like you need to invest in every streaming service out there especially now that each network has its own! However, taking a break from them for a few months can be nice for your mood and will save you a lot of money.
As you take 2020 by the reigns, think about your finances! Yes, the holidays tend to set us back, however, we can just as easily bounce back and really focus on saving money. Even just implementing one or two of these hacks will propel you towards success for the rest of the year. Comment below how you save after the holidays.