Did you blow it financially this past holiday season? As in: you’re left with some empty boxes and a few extra cases of eggnog, but you literally have no idea what happened to the budget? And where did all this credit card debt come from?
It happens to all of us. As you pack up the Christmas lights and procrastinate bill payments, consider the following post-holiday recovery plan from Portage Bank.
5 Steps for Getting Back on Track After the Holidays:
- Don’t beat yourself up. We all overspend at times, especially during the holidays. Keep in mind that it’s better to live generously towards your loved ones. Another person might pride themselves on scraping and saving throughout Christmas. Maybe they can now afford to take out a new insurance policy come January, but that is small comfort if the holidays were miserable for those around them.
- You will never regret creating sweet memories for your children, friends, and family at Christmastime. The great news is you can always start again with your financial goals. We’ve got your back.
- Take advantage of sales. January is an excellent month for scoring on some of the year’s best sales. Holidays done, many pre-Christmas prices have dropped. Some businesses failed to sell their holiday quota and are eager to move merchandise by dropping prices.
- Another fantastic attribute of January and February is that there is relatively little going on for many people, which means less demand on the budget. Many sales and not as many costs make a win-win for those trying to find their financial footing again.
- Try meal planning. The primary area in which most overspend is on groceries or eating out. Create a one-month challenge to spend less in this category by planning ahead. Shop sales, fill your pantry with discounted items, and plan meals around your great finds. Make a competition with a friend and see who can make it 30 days without eating out!
- Want to go all in? Some people find that taking one day to create 10-15 freezer meals keeps them out of financial danger. If you have a freezer full of delicious orange chicken or sweet and sour pork, you will feel less tempted to hit the last-minute drive-through. There are many great freezer meal ideas online.
- Get ahead of debt. If you did have to dip into those credit cards during the holidays and are now facing some extra debt, make a priority of attacking it. Cut up the cards or lock them away, so you are not tempted to use them again. Do all you can to pay off your debt so that it doesn’t remain a noose around your neck for the next year.
- This may require you to take on a side hustle for a few months, but you will ultimately thank yourself. Despite the recession, there are many job opportunities due to the labor shortage. Remember, there is nothing more liberating than getting out of debt.
- Start investing for next Christmas now. The best way to avoid this problem is to start saving now. Even if you only put a small amount aside, you will be surprised at how fast it grows, and you can face the next holiday season stress-free.
Take advantage of our competitive Money Market Account rates. Investing and building wealth can help you prepare for coming expenses and recover from past ones.
Need help navigating inflation or setting up our online baking? Portage Bank has made it easier than ever to recover your financial footing after whooping it up during the holiday season. Contact us and find out how you can get ahead and stay ahead financially in 2023.