1. Make Thermostat Adjustments
One way to help stay afloat throughout the holiday season is to make thermostat adjustments, and create house rules regarding these changes. Everyone loves coming home to a toasty warm house after being out in the colder weather during the day, but it can be costly to heat the house. Can you afford to heat your house to warmer levels while no one is home just so it is warm when you get back? If not, set the thermostat to lower temperatures when no one is home and make it a house rule for other family members to do so as well. If someone is not as warm as they want to be, they should dress in warm layers, or put on a hoodie.
2. Avoid Using Space Heaters
Space heaters may seem like a great way to save money, but they can end up having the opposite effect on your family finances. While small space heaters can be more cost-efficient than central heating, they only effectively heat smaller areas of the house, but not the place in its entirety. Additionally, larger space heaters that produce more heat use as much or more energy than central heat. Overall, it is best to avoid space heaters if you are financially strapped or trying to stay afloat.
3. Increase Countertop Appliance Use/Decrease Stove and Oven Use
Most adults do not realize the amount of energy theirstoves and ovens use. You may be preparing many things that need to be baked or cooked for hours. It may also be possible to cook these things by using countertop appliances such as a Crockpot or an Instapot. An air fryer is also a cost-efficient alternative to baking certain foods in the oven or cooking on the stovetop for more extended periods. You could also consider using countertop appliances while preparing some of your holiday dishes.
4. Make Homemade Gifts/Plan a Holiday Gift Exchange
The purchasing of holiday gifts is one of the costliest holiday expenses. It does not have to be. Most people believe that the spirit of the holidays revolves around love. What says love more than a heartfelt homemade gift? It may be something as simple as a hand-painted canvas, a handmade face mask, or even a homemade piece of jewelry. There is so much room to use your creativity with this. If you do not have a crafty family, you could consider a gift exchange, where every adult in the family participates. With the exclusion of the children in the family, adults may only purchase one gift for the adult they drew and no other adults. Be sure to put a low price limit on the presents to be bought.
5. Use LED Lights to Decorate
Finally, if you use more traditional holiday lights for your decorations and tree, consider switching to LED lights. LED lights are inexpensive, shine brighter than the bulkier conventional holiday lights, and use a lot less energy. Switching to LED lights may help you save money or stay afloat during the holiday season when things are already a financial struggle for many.
Ultimately, Christmas time brings financial struggle to many people. However, there are steps that may be taken to effectively lesson the burden. By following the above tips and advice, anyone can decrease financial hardship.