The festive season has a strong effect on most people. This is often the time when credit is applied for. Cashiers urge us to take home leaflets that tempt us into spending more than we budget for and we have difficulty resisting. Those who are trying to rebuild their life after bankruptcy have an even more difficult time resisting.

If you have just been discharged from a bankruptcy, read on to discover some of our best advice.

Resist applying for credit soon after your discharge.

Try to live on a cash-only basis for as long as you can, especially over the festive season. Every credit inquiry you allow will lower your credit rating.

Use debit cards instead of credit cards when you do your Christmas shopping.

This should be your new preferred way of spending; you can only spend what is available in your bank account. This means you won’t be tempted by all the fancy Christmas goods on display.

Find other, creative ways to give gifts to friends and family

There is no reason why you should buy everyone expensive presents. Spending time with the people whom they love might be enough of a gift.

Have a ‘spending freeze’ during the holidays.

Decide on the total amount you would like to spend and try not to go over it. This could be a fun exercise for the whole family. You could even try to see who can give the most creative low cost gifts.

Buy Christmas cards in bulk, or throughout the year.

You could also make them yourself if you feel creative enough.

Be someone’s ‘Secret Santa’.

You could do this with a group of friends, or with your family. Everyone has to buy someone else a present. This saves you from buying everyone a present asyou only have to get one gift.

Have a cookathon with your friends or family.

Do this even if you can’t cook very well, it will be fun to learn! It’ll save everyone money, and there is no need to go to an expensive restaurant.