6 things to do right now to get ready for Christmas

We know, we KNOW it's still only November, but slowly getting ready for Christmas now, including shopping Black Friday, makes for a low-stress festive season...

Christmas gifts
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

For some, Christmas planning and decorating starts on the first day of December, or exactly 12 days before Christmas Day for luck. For us here at Realhomes.com, those dates fly out of the window, and money comes out of their wallets way before the minus temperatures hit and Michael Bublé takes over the radio.

Don't get us wrong. It's not that we love prepping for Christmas miles in advance. What we do hate is the last minute panic, the stress buying, the wrapping of gifts at 2am on Christmas morning and the shelves empty of turkey when we've not yet done our turkey-shopping. 

So, we reveal our secrets for getting ready for Christmas now – or at least starting to – so that we can enjoy the big day in style. 

1. Shop Christmas gifts on Black Friday

Black Friday shopping bags

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Black Friday is fast approaching and it's the absolute best opportunity to get your shopping done a) at a discount and b) early. So, if you can face getting your list done right now, you can start popping buys into your basket, ready to press 'pay now' over the weekend shopping bonanza at the end of November. Like to buy local? Lots of local stores will have their own sales around the same time, so browse now, buy later. You can bookmark our page for all the latest deals. 

2. Get guest beds and bedding sorted now

Bedroom by Oak Furnitureland

(Image credit: Oak Furnitureland)

You've just about got time to order that sofa bed you've been toying with the idea of buying for ages (there are tons of mid-season sofa bed sales on now and great deals to be had). 

While you think about it... have you got enough pillows, duvets and bedding? If not, the Black Friday sales are the time to order those. Or, of course, you could ask your guests to bring their own bedding if they're coming by car. Find all the best bedding sales in our guide.

3. Start adding all those extra bits to your grocery list

Christmas crackers

(Image credit: Keep This Cracker)

You know, napkins, cranberry sauce, extra dinner plates. Whatever won't go off and can be stored (even if under the bed for now) can be ordered in advance. Make a list, tick them off as you go along and you'll find your Christmas lunch shop sooo much easier. 

Crackers? We think there's a great excuse to do without this year (difficult to recycle, full of plastic toys), but if not, why not shop eco-friendly, reusable crackers online? We like Keep This Cracker's range (above).

4. Make sure the TV works

People watching TV at Christmas

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Yeah, we know, seems obvious, but if yours is on its last legs, it's time to replace it. Or rather, Black Friday is the time to replace it. You don't want to be trying to do it on Christmas Eve. Use our TV sales page to find the best deals going. 

Need extras, such as the best streaming device? We've got a buying guide for those, too.

5. Make your home smarter

Wiser by Drayton smart thermostat unit

(Image credit: Drayton by Schneider Electric)

Everyone needs a little help around the home, Christmas or not, and what better help than someone who won’t talk back to you, and will do exactly what you ask? Smart home gadgets are taking over household to household in the UK; whether it’s a smart speaker to help with your to-do lists, a video doorbell so you don’t miss important Christmas present deliveries or a smart thermostat to ensure you never enter a freezing cold home again. Use our guides to find the best buys. Best time to buy? Er, Black Friday obvs.

6. Get the boiler serviced now

It's not all glamour, you know! However, you do know that your boiler will, undoubtedly, choose Christmas Eve to break down. So, getting it serviced in advance is a really, really wise move.