Three Critical Rules of Money Management

coins_2Happy New Year!  We hope that you have had a fantastic time over the Christmas/New Year period and enjoyed a least a few days off.

It’s (late) January, a time for reflection about last year and looking ahead at self-improvement for this year.  Once you have worked through the diet and exercise goals (they always seem to be fairly near the top of my list), there’s the money planning for the year.

Here are the Three Critical Rules of Money Management that you need to incorporate into your planning.

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Christmas Shopping – Try a different approach

Only two days until Xmas.  For Kiwi’s it’s the start of our summer holidays.  There is always the mad rush to finish work for the year, as well as  getting the Christmas shopping done.

Xmas gifts compressThen of course there is the food for the day to organise, whose house are we going to and what is the weather going to be like.

After all rushing arround many of us head off to our favourite holiday spot, battle the other holiday makers in the traffic for a bit of rest and recreation in the sun.

I love shopping!!  So for me Christmas shopping isn’t a chore.  It’s an event that requires planning and usually starts in October and runs right up until Xmas Eve.  I always seem to find that little extra something for someone in the family and OK, sometimes for myself as well.  Whilst this is all great fun, it does tend to blow the Xmas shopping budget, so this year I resolved to do things differently. Continue reading

It’s Christmas, let’s go shopping!!

Don’t you love this time of year, Christmas is coming, so it’s all about spend, spend, spend, shop, shop, shop and worry about paying for it next year.  I am sure it is not just us girls who feel like this. How do we survive this sensory overload that seems to compel us to spend more money than we have?

Xmas

The pressure to purchase Christmas presents for everyone is huge at this time of year.  All our children or grandchildren need the latest toys; men need the latest gadget, and every girl regardless of age need jewellery, that’s what the advertisers tell us…

Here are a few tips to help you save money when you go Christmas shopping.

  1. Spending is emotional. When it comes to money, typically our feelings rule our actions, thoughts come later. Neuro scientists say you make spending decisions up to 10 seconds before you are consciously aware of them.  So before opening your wallet count to 10 slowly!
  2. Don’t use credit cards. Credit cards separate the pleasure of spending with the pain of paying; we are natural optimists and tell ourselves we can pay the whole credit card off when it falls due.  Then the boundaries slip a bit, one month becomes three, then six and in the meantime the interest cost is increasing.  Research shows that credit card users significantly underestimate how much they owe, one study showed cardholders admitting to $4 out of every $10 they owe, don’t fall into that trap. Continue reading