How to save more than $3,800 by Christmas

Editor-at-Large · 29 September 2020
The countdown to Christmas is well and truly on which means it’s time to start saving. Here are some ideas to help you make extra cash between now and then.

It’s hard to believe that Christmas is a little more than 12 weeks away! And there’s no denying it can be an expensive time of year – even though things might look a little different this year.

The good news is that if you start now there is still enough time to build up a decent chunk of cash to help with the expenses that come with Christmas. Here are some ideas that could potentially help you save $3,857 by December 25.

1. Sell items around the home

About 85% of Aussies have pre-loved or unused items in their home according to Gumtree’s 10th annual Second Hand Economy Report. The report estimates that Australians could stand to make an average of about $5,800 per household, with approximately 19 pre-loved or unused items in every home ready to sell. Even if you only make half that amount that’s an extra $2,900 you could add to your Christmas fund.

You may want to start by looking for home decor items and furniture that you no longer want or use. The research revealed that not only did these items sell the quickest but they also reportedly made sellers the most amount of money.

Potential earnings: $2,900

2. Find one-time gigs

Another way to make extra cash is to do some odd jobs. A good place to start is Airtasker where you can pick up gigs that don’t even require you to have any special skills. Some of the most in-demand jobs on Airtasker include removals, handyman duties, cleaning, pick-up and delivery and garden/lawn mowing.

If you take just one job each month over the next three months you could potentially make $317 before Christmas.

Let’s break it down:

  • In October you take on a job to assemble a bed and chest of drawers which makes you $175.
  • In November you clean a two-bedroom apartment which takes you three hours making you $84.
  • In December you do two hours of gardening for $58.

These numbers are estimates based on Airtasker’s Task Price Guide.

Potential earnings: $317

3. Take the Coke bottle challenge

The Coke bottle challenge is a little bit of fun. The idea is this: each time you get a $2 coin, you pop it in a Coke (or any soft drink) bottle. A 600ml bottle will hold about $880 when full. Even if you only filled a 600ml bottle one quarter of the way between now and Christmas you could save $220. If you don’t use cash regularly though this one might be harder to achieve. If that’s the case consider transferring $2.60 a day into a separate account and you could make a similar saving (assuming you start now).

Potential saving: $220

4. Sacrifice one expense

Think about ditching one regular expense for the next few months to make some extra money. How many streaming services do you have for example? If you have several, maybe you can get rid of a few and only keep one to save.

Or maybe you have a family pizza night every Friday which sets you back $35 a pop. Give ‘Pizza Friday’ the flick for the next few months and it could net you $420 as there are 12 Fridays between now and Christmas.

Potential saving: $420

Effie ZahosAbout Effie Zahos

Canstar’s Editor-at-Large, Effie Zahos, has more than two decades of experience helping Aussies make the most of their money. Prior to joining Canstar, Effie was the editor of Money Magazine, having helped establish it in 1999. She is an author and one of Australia’s leading personal finance commentators, appearing regularly on TV and radio.



This article was reviewed by Editorial Campaigns Manager Maria Bekiaris before it was published as part of our fact-checking process.


Main image source: Pachai Leknettip (Shutterstock)


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