The holidays have come and gone, and the bills from the holidays have rolled in. If you find yourself facing the post-holiday spending blues, don't worry—there are plenty of ways to get your finances back on track!
Here are some tips to help you spend wisely and save better in 2021:
#1: Review your holiday spending
After you've packed away all the decorations and wrapping paper, take some time to analyze your holiday spending. What did you spend in total? What did you spend it on? List out all your expenses for gifts, food, travel, decorations and anything holiday-related.
If you used credit cards for holiday shopping, review your statements to determine how much you owe. Try to pay more than the minimum monthly payments, especially on high-interest rate credit cards. The faster you can pay off your balance, the less interest you'll have to pay back over time!
#2: Create your 2021 budget
The beginning of a new year is a perfect time to start fresh with a brand new budget. A budget is simply a way to plan your purchases and payments so you can keep your spending within your means. If you don't have a budget already, try a
printable budget worksheet or digital budgeting tool like
Money Management, available through Wright-Patt Credit Union's (WPCU) Mobile and Online Banking.
#3: Boost your savings
If you spent more than you planned this holiday season and dipped into your savings, it's important to rebuild as quickly as possible. Set a savings goal and schedule automatic transfers to your savings account around your paydays or on a weekly or monthly basis.
If you received additional income recently, such as a raise, tax refund or stimulus, put your extra income to work! You can use these funds to boost your savings or ramp up your holiday debt repayment efforts.
#4: Look for creative ways to save
Get your finances back on track with creative savings opportunities. Here are a few ideas:
#5: Start planning and saving for next year
It's not too early to begin planning and saving for next year's holiday celebrations! Putting small amounts in a separate
savings account each week will help make your holiday shopping more manageable.
As you think about next year's holiday season, ask yourself:
If you're happy with the amount you spent on the holidays, use it as a starting point to save for next year. If not, you can always approach your holiday spending differently in 2021. The key is to make a plan and stick to it—you can do it!
Save better in 2021 and beyond
WPCU is here to help you achieve your financial goals, no matter how big or small! Find more budgeting tips and tools, including helpful
interactive learning modules, by visiting our online