Australians feeling less financial strain this Christmas

christmas_piggy_bankAccording to Mortgage Choice’s 10th annual National Consumer Sentiment Survey, 40% of Australians are expecting to spend less during this year’s festive season.

This is significantly less than this time last year, where over half (52%) of Australians indicated they would spend less at Christmas. In 2011, similar to this year, 41% highlighted their intentions to cut back on spending during the festive period.

This year’s results were in line with the survey’s wider findings which revealed the majority of Australians are ‘comfortable’ with their current financial situation.

When asked about their spending habits for this year’s festive season, most respondents said they planned to spend ‘about the same’, which reinforces the idea that most Australians feel comfortable about their finances.

Across Australia, Victorians are less likely to change their spending habits this festive period, with 61% stating they would ‘spend the same’. These are slightly higher than the 56% in NSW and SA, 55% in WA and 49% in QLD.

Today, Australians tend to be a lot savvier with their money. They are reluctant to out-spend their means which ensures they feel comfortable all year round.

Australian’s Spending Intentions

In fact, when asked how they would spend a $2,000 windfall, more than a third (34%) said they would put the money straight into their savings account, while a further 22% said they would use the windfall to pay off their credit card debt and 17% would inject the money into their mortgage.

Less than 20% of respondents said they would ‘spend’ the money, suggesting Australians would prefer to have savings or less debt hanging over their heads.

It is reassuring to see Australians are keeping their spending under control as this should certainly make for a good start to the New Year.

DANIEL EIGENMANN. Daniel is the franchise manager for Mortgage Choice in Perth and the Western Suburbs area. Daniel is an Authorised Credit Representative of Mortgage Choice Ltd (CRN# 446566).