There's no denying Christmas can bring the worst out in people and by the day's end there's often someone left annoyed with another family member.

Christmas Day is often a day jam-packed with emotions and of course stress, particularly for those who have taken on the duty of cooking for hordes of people.

But one of the biggest household stresses that doesn't just rear its ugly head on Christmas Day is one that doesn't discriminate at all on it's arrival date.

And that big stress is money.

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If you've ever ended up in a roaring argument with your partner or a family member about family finances you're certainly not alone.

Disagreements about the handling of cash are often a major cause for divorce.

Added financial stress can often be prominent at this time of year with those expensive presents lists to tick off, fancy family holidays to book and some play money to spend on wining and dining.

But regardless of what you do put under the Christmas tree this year there shouldn't be the pressure to splash cash like it's going out of fashion, as they say it's the thought that counts.

But if your other half does wheel out some extravagant gifts this Christmas, it may leave you questioning how they afforded they present and are they simply wasting money.

Just this week a financial adviser contact told me one of this clients had not fully disclosed to his other half that he had tens of thousands of dollars in credit card debt.

Surely hiding this significant financial secret can only last for so long?

We all have stories of mismanagement of money to share, from the blatant blowing of cash on crap or compulsive lying on what money is being spent on.

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When the person closest to you can't save a dollar or spends money like it grows on apple trees, having a saver and a spender in a relationship can lead to be resentment.

The Christmas and New Year period is definitely the perfect time for many to put their feet up and reflect on the year that was.

But it also is the opportune time to review your finances and see if you can relieve some financial stress in 2018.

Keeping up with the Joneses should not be a focus in the new year, instead it should be turned to making sure you have a financial buffer in place in case something does go wrong, for example you become sick or lose your job.

A debt collector recently told me those families with the flash house and the four-wheel drive parked in the driveway are sometimes those that are the worst off.

They are simply relying on credit and living well beyond their means.

Tuck into your Christmas lunch but make sure you allow for some time over the festive break to take a good hard look at your finances to make the new year is a little less financially stressful.

Merry Christmas.