Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Why not make a New Year's Resolution to avoid a Christmas debt hangover next year?

What is the real power of New Year’s resolutions? This morning I started to carry out mine which have to do with more jogging. However, there is nothing fantastic about it, as New Year’s resolutions mostly have to do with goals aimed at improving one’s physical health. Nevertheless, the UK Office of Fair Trading(OFT) has recently set a more remarkable challenge for consumers by urging people to begin thinking now about saving for next Christmas, somehow aimed at improving consumer financial health.

Accordingly, the OFT is providing practical advice to people wishing to avoid the financial strain they may have faced this Christmas as part of its Save Xmas campaign. Top tips include: (1) plan early - be realistic about what you are going to need for next year and budget accordingly, (2) look at your options - find out about the pros and cons of post office, bank, building society and credit union savings schemes, as well as Christmas clubs, supermarket stamps and hamper schemes and(3)take action - choose the best option for you, and start putting some money aside. See more details at OFT website.

Despite prevention of over-indebtedness and consumer insolvency is a necessary approach in UK and any other Member State, not agreement has been reached on whether it should be encourage to treat consumption on the basis of earned income instead of expected income. See final report of the Group of Specialist for Legal Solutions to Debt Problems(CJ-S-DEBT) launched in 2006.

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