January is often difficult for many people, especially those who are paid monthly. Most companies make January’s payment just before Christmas which means you need to make it stretch at least a week (sometimes two) longer than normal. If this is you then here are a few tips for getting through January.
Tips For Getting Through January
The biggest problem for most people is they see being paid early as a bit of a pre-Christmas bonus. I’m sure many of us are guilty of that last minute Xmas shop before the big day, grabbing a few extra presents for the family. This, however, can then lead to us being a bit short on the run up to our next payday. Well, it’s time to get ahead of the game.
Put Bill Money Aside
This first one is really simple. Make sure you put all your bill money aside before you spend any of your January wages, this can be in to a separate account or move the remainder of the money into a new account. This ensures that the important things that you NEED to pay for are sorted before you accidentally spend a little too much.
Do A Big Cupboard Shop
At the end of the month, it tends to be the food shop that suffers. Be prepared by filling your cupboards with items that have a longer shelf life. Items such as pasta, rice, baked beans, chopped tomatoes, soup, beans and pulses have a long best before on them. This means you will always have meals in the cupboard, even during the tightest of weeks.
I might be slightly biased here, being a vegan, but reduce your meat intake and use dried beans and legumes for meals instead of meat. Lentils make a great substitute for mince in lasagne, cottage pies and spaghetti bolognese, a bag will cost you around £1 and make 3-6 meals depending on the size of your family.
Also, frozen and tinned fruits/vegetables are just as good (if not more nutritious) than fresh and they last longer.
Try A No Spend Month
There are several bloggers who do a no spend week or month where they only buy what they need. This will definitely help stretch the money and you might end up with a nice pot at the end of it to treat yourself.
Resist The January Sales
I know they’re tempting, that’s what they’re designed to do but avoid the sales unless you REALLY need the thing you’re buying. At the end of the day, most stores have regular price drops anyway so even if you miss it in the January sales it’ll probably pop up again later down the line.
Most Importantly, Just Be Sensible…
I know it sounds obvious but just being sensible is the best way to get through January. That extra Christmas present might make your child or family member happy on Christmas day but it’s never worth not being able to put your heating on for, or struggling to buy in food.
Do you have any tips for getting to the end of January in one piece?