The amount many families spend during the holiday season is more than the national average. According to new figures the splurging tends to range from $1,500 to $2,500 per family, though many families spend a great deal more.

“Often a fair portion of this goes toward rashly bought gifts that will either only offer short term enjoyment, be neglected eventually or make their way to the garage sale or St Vincent pile before the new year is out,” said Erik Bigalk, founder and creative director of Smart Solutions PR.

Bigalk argues that instead of the usual Christmas splurge, families ought to “buy less, give smaller, but more meaningful gifts, eat less and healthier and gift [their families] something that can keep on giving for years to come – a property.”

His advice is echoed by Marion Mays, founder and director of Thalia Stanley, a property investing mentoring firm. Mays suggests that instead of indulging this holiday season, families should instead channel their holiday funds into the purchase of investment property. According to Mays, the holding costs for a thoroughly researched and well-bought investment property can be as little as $20 per week.

“If you think about what a property can do in terms of return, growth, taxation, savings and creating an asset for the whole family to benefit from in the long term, it surely outweighs the short-term joy of living it up big over the festive season,” Mays said.

According to statistics derived from ASIC’s Money Smart website, the majority of Australians either blow their savings on the Christmas hype (60%) or charge their expenses on their credit cards (20%), leading to debt.

“Looking at the world we live in, it seems that we don’t really need more consumerism, as in consuming more stuff, but smarter use of our buying power. Be it more meaningful and sustainable gifts or purchases, or why not something more substantial like an investment property?” said Mays.

Mays said December is a great time to look for and buy property, before the New Year’s resolution-makers jump onto the bandwagon and begin to property-shop in early 2017. By starting early, you’ll have access to great properties before other buyers come swooping in.

“The beginning weeks of the new year are always extra busy when it comes to the property market, be it for investment or home occupiers. Why not beat the rush, get in early and put a property under your Christmas tree this year?” Mays inquired.  

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