Avoiding Christmas Debt

It may be the most wonderful time of the year, but it is also the most expensive. Christmas presents, Christmas food and Christmas experiences are all lovely, but they cost money, money we often don’t have. Christmas is the time of year when credit cards are maxed, store cards are opened and debts are accumulated, debts that we will then be paying off right into the New Year and beyond. There are things you can do though, to keep the spending, and therefore the debt, at a more manageable level.

Sort out the debt you already have

If you already have loans, credit and store cards that you are finding hard to manage payments for, it may be worth sorting out these debts before you increase them and take on others. An IVA ( Individual Voluntary Arrangement) could be an answer, allowing you to only pay what you can afford. To find out more information about IVAs click here.

Set Your Budget

For all the important things in life, whether it be getting married, moving house, booking a holiday, it is always sensible and practical to set a budget. Christmas is no exception. It is too easy to get carried away with the whole excitement of the festive period, buying heaps of presents that then sit under the bed for the next six months. Aim for quality over quantity and stick to that budget.

Shop Around

Whatever you are buying, you need to shop around rather than buying it at the first store you see it in, The Internet obviously has lots of bargains, but stores are now competing, with whole weekends dedicated to discounts that are often store wide. Also, look for things like the Boots Star Buy, a promotion that M&S has also started to embrace, 3 for 2 offers and buy one get one free or half price bargains.

Wait for Black Friday

If you are planning on buying anything electrical, or at the top end of your budget, then it could be worth waiting for Black Friday. Some stores are already offering early Black Friday deals, but it is worth signing up for email updates for key stores, and watching sites like Amazon who have some great Black Friday deals each year which can help you make huge savings.

Make sure you are savvy with the cash this Christmas.

Make Groupon a Regular Part of a Financial Life

It’s easy to approach your personal finances just like people have for dozens of years: save, pay off debt, invest, etc. While these are timeless skills that won’t go out of fashion anytime soon, it’s easy to forget about modern resources that make saving money easier. Case in point: Groupon. Groupon is one of the few money-saving resources that has stood the test of time on the internet. While countless other websites have gone the way of the dinosaur, Groupon is as good as ever. Here are ways to save through many of the businesses they promote. All of these will be familiar, and some of them are probably businesses that you use regularly. By taking advantage of Groupon’s deals, you’ll save money all the time.

Toys “R” Us: If you have kids, you’re no stranger to Toys “R” Us. This longstanding toy retailer is a favorite for kids all over the country, and you probably shop there at least once or twice a year, if not more. Kids toys are pricey, and it’s easy to break the budget if your kids have a taste for the new and the exotic. The best way to save is to use Groupon’s coupons for Toys “R” Us. Like so many Groupons, these change frequently. Sometimes they are related to specific items that the toy giant sells. Other times they are related to savings that you can secure store wide. Whatever the case, the savings are great to get, so set up a notification whenever Toys “R” Us Groupons are announced.

eBay: We’ve all experienced the excitement of watching an auction clock count down to zero, waiting to see if we won the item of our dreams! Whether or not you are an avid eBay user, you’ll no doubt appreciate the savings that the site can bring into your life, with or without the additional savings from Groupon. If you regularly buy name brand or hard to find items, eBay is a no-brainer. With the additional savings from Groupon, it’s even more so that way.

Hotels.com: If you or someone you love is a traveler, discounted services through Hotels.com will come in real handy. Use these discounts to make your next vacation more affordable, to improve your digs during your next business trip, or to create a staycation to be remembered forever. Hotels.com offers accommodations for all budgets, so there will always be something you can afford. With the savings Groupon offers, you may even be able to up the ante next time you have to book a hotel.
Groupon has so many other deals, for so many other companies, that there wouldn’t be room for all of the information in fifty short posts like this. If you want to find out all of the ways that Groupon can improve your personal finances, you’ll have to head on over to their site and look around. Explore randomly, then search for businesses that you regularly use. You’ll be sure to save.

Money saving home ideas – Electric Radiators

I’m continuing with my posts dedicated to helping you save money on your heating bills and am now turning to electric radiators. Electric radiators are an easy way to add heat to any room, and yet they can help you save money on your bills, as much as 50% in some cases.  They can be fitted in any room, and, in the case of towel radiators, they can also be a super stylish addition to the general look of the room too.

But it is not just about the home. We recently purchased electric radiators from Best Electric Radiators for our caravan in Wales. The gas fire heats most of the living area, but the bedrooms could be chilly at night, even in Summer, and in Winter they were so cold we tended to close up in late October. We added a couple of small electric radiators to the bedrooms because they were an easy option – all you need is a plug socket, but these will mean we are able to use the caravan throughout the year rather than just in summertime.

Slimline Digital Electric Radiator from £199 click to visit Best Electric Radiators

Slimline Digital Electric Radiator from £199 click to visit Best Electric Radiators

So why are electric radiators so energy efficient? The ones from Best Electric Radiators employ an intelligent control system that allows it to heat your room, and then just top the heat when it is needed, meaning that you are warm and comfortable, but not hot and overheated.  As you just plug the radiators in, you can also unplug them when they are not in use, so you are not heating the whole of the house when you are settled in one room. Once you go into another room, the lightweight high grade aluminum means that the radiator will deliver warmth very quickly. In short, these radiators deliver the heat you need, when you need it, and no more.

Classic Chrome Electric Towel Rail from £149 click to visit Best Electric Radiators

Classic Chrome Electric Towel Rail from £149 click to visit Best Electric Radiators

When it comes to electric towel rails, they make a stunning addition to any bathroom, dazzling in shiny chrome, they just look so sleek. They also come in a range of sizes, which is great if you have a very small bath or shower room, or maybe an en suite in need of heating.

What sort of heating do you have in your home?

*This is a collaboration post