• Friday, June 21, 2024
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Detty December on a Budget

Detty December on a Budget

It’s that time of the year again when you may feel it is not out of place to reward your soul with some “enjoyment” and give yourself a break from the hustling and bustling of the year. The popular ‘Detty December’ trend suggests that it is time to have more fun than you have had in all the other months of the year combined. The flickering Christmas lights are everywhere and various shows are lined up from now till the New Year.

The holiday season is an expensive time for many people and it is easy to get carried away and spend lavishly, only to spend the first part of the New Year doing damage repair exercises for your budgets. While it is great to enjoy yourself during the holidays, it is extremely important to spend your money wisely during this period. Here are a few tips that can help manage your finances better during the period.

Plan a Budget
It is very possible to have a ‘detty december’ and still be in a good place financially by the New Year if you have a planned budget. From food, drinks, tickets for shows, hangouts and new outfits, this budget will accommodate all your expenses for the period. Importantly, a budget isn’t a magic wand that will suddenly make all of your money behave. It’s on you to tell your money where to go and then follow through with that plan. If it’s not already budgeted for, don’t spend the money.

Lock your savings
After saving diligently for the past 11 months, it would not be wise to spend it all in one week. After drawing up your budget, another thing you can do is lock up your savings from withdrawal. Savings apps like PiggyVest, Carbon, Cowrywise and other great apps that allow a ‘lock-in’ feature would be great as it helps to stop thinking about it for the moment. You would be glad you did in January.

Lockdown your January expense
A good way to prevent overspending during the holidays is to keep a record of all the bills that will be due in January. After creating a budget and locking in your savings you should do a reverse technique and estimate your January spend, then transfer it to an account that you wouldn’t have access to until when you need to pay the bills in January. This should include rent, subscriptions, utility bills, transport costs and many others.

Read also: A Christmas like no other

Share bills with friends
Going out with friends is a smart move in the holiday season. You will be killing two birds with one stone. You get an opportunity to spend quality time with them and bond and you can also share the bills with them. Share meals at the restaurant or go with the food platter which is usually inexpensive when in a big group.

Avoid the clearance sales trap
During the festive season, there is always a surge in clearance sales; this is most times a trap. You must have seen that somewhere during this season as most vendors are trying to sell off old stocks with mouth-watering deals like 20% and 50% off their usual price. Everyone loves a good deal but it is important to understand that you don’t have to buy it even though on sale. There is this impulsive desire for most people to buy things during the period because it is seemly cheaper. If it’s not in your budget, don’t buy, you mostly don’t need it. Then there is the countdown trap, watch out for sales that are only 5 days or even 24 hours. Don’t let a countdown rush you into buying anything! Remember the offer, save some money, and be ready for it next time if you can’t afford it right now. There will always be other sales.

In conclusion, most people humorously say January is the longest month of the year, especially regarding their finances. I have a theory; it feels that long because most people have spent all their money during the holiday season and now it is so difficult surviving in January. Therefore it feels like the end of the month when they get their next pay is so far away.

As much as we want to enjoy Christmas, it is important to avoid overspending and start the New Year financially strong.