• Becky Goddard-Hill, Author and blogger

Top Tips to Save Money Post-Christmas

Following the hustle and bustle and often expensive festive Christmas season, the New Year is the perfect time to think about ways to save a penny or two.

Here are some of our top tips:

Consider that just because something is half price it does not mean you need it and if you are being honest with yourself, do you even want it? mBefore you purchase a sale item, ask if you would be buying it anyway. The answer will probably be no.

Do you buy take-away coffee for yourself or treats for your child each time you go shopping?

Note down everything you spend over a week. You will be amazed at how much is spent on unnecessary items. Changing small spending habits makes a big difference.

You don’t have to join the gym to get fit in the New Year – think more creatively and frugally. Walking is free, fresh air is fabulous and leaving the car at home saves you money.

Get out your diary and start planning an affordable social life. Invite friends over for dinner dates at your house; organize babysitting swaps with friends or perhaps a weekend visit to a relative by the sea. If thrifty good times are planned in advance, last minute overspends can be avoided.

Holidays does not mean just the cinema and play centers. It can mean storytelling, crafting at the kitchen table and good old-fashioned indoor and outdoor play.

If you were given gifts for Christmas that are unwanted, why not assign them to someone else for a birthday treat. Wrap, label and pop in your present drawer to save you money later on.

Over Christmas you have probably eaten far more than you normally would and in many families food will have been wasted. The best way to avoid waste is to meal plan to ensure food is used before it spoils. Ensure this becomes a new habit for a new year.

If you received a new iPod or iPhone this Christmas, do consider selling your old CDs. If your new phone also has a built-in camera and video recorder, perhaps you can sell on your old camera? Embracing your new technology can save you money.

Putting money away each month into a savings account will be a real blessing for your child’s future - a small amount soon adds up. If you do this via monthly via bank transfer you can’t ‘forget’ or allocate the money to something else.

By Becky Goddard-Hill,

Author and blogger, Baby Budgeting

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