At Voorpos Financial Services, we believe that everyone has the power to achieve their goals. Whether it is for yourself, your business, or your family – we are here to assist. Our team is driven, dynamic and determined, and we have a passion for what we do.
Let’s just fess up and be honest. It is almost impossible to save money nowadays. You have your bond or rent to pay, car/transport costs, school fees, debt, living expenses… the list goes on and on! And then, with all your best intentions to start saving, something inevitably comes up. Old Murphy’s Law ensures you find yourself back at the starting block, with possibly even more debt.
The good news is (and yes there is good news) that nothing is impossible! You can obtain financial wellbeing. However, it does take effort, sacrifices, and self-discipline to get there. And the best time to start is RIGHT NOW.
Adopting healthy financial habits is like planting your own vegetable garden… You start small with just a few seeds, and over time you start reaping the rewards. But it does take time and you must be committed to taking care of your financial garden. If you do, it can grow and yield great results.
The first step is to look at your current spending habits.
Organise your spending into categories, such as Debit Orders, Leisure, Dining Out and Groceries. This will help you get a clear idea of how much you spend on things you don’t need… such as takeaways. (Not what you wanted to hear, right?)
As much as we feel we “deserve” these treats, all the little expenses add up to a big fat surprise at the end of the month. Rather focus on reinforcing good spending habits throughout.
For example: If you buy a cappuccino, sarmie, or a snack three days of the week for only R35, it adds up to R105 per week. This amounts to R5,460 per year! Instead, try and make your own food and drinks at home or the office.
Now, work out a budget according to your spending habits and see where you can cut back.
Here is one of the easiest budget methods to split your income:
50% -> Needs (Bond/Rent, Electricity, Water)
30% -> Wants (Entertainment, Shopping and Netflix)
20% -> Savings
*NOTE: Every person is different. Consult your financial advisor for assistance in this regard.
#2 SET SAVINGS GOALS
Start by thinking what you want to save for.
It could be anything from a vacation, planning for retirement or just saving for those rainy days. Whatever it is – make sure it is worth making small sacrifices for. This will keep you motivated. Think Short-term (1 – 3 years) and Long-term (4+ years).
Short-term goals can include an emergency fund, a vacation or a down payment on a car.
Long-term goals can include your child’s education, a down payment on a house or retirement.
Saving just R500 per month adds up to R6,000 per year! And once you see it grow, it will encourage you to save even more. Set small achievable goals along the way and reward yourself for disciplined spending and systematic saving.
#3 GET RID OF DEBT
Focus on paying off your debt – even if you do it little by little. More importantly, make a concerted effort to avoid making more debt.
Credit cards are the biggest culprits! Do not spend the money you pay back monthly.
Now, take a moment to calculate how much you spend on interest every month… We know - the results can be somewhat frightening! So, here’s how you can start lowering your debt:
Begin with your smallest debt and work to your biggest.
For example: Let’s say you owe R500 on your Credit Card, R1,000 on your Overdraft and R5,000 on a Personal Loan. Start by paying R100 on each loan account every month. Once the smallest debt (in this case the Credit Card) is paid off, add that R100 to the second smallest (the Overdraft) amount. Now you pay R200 on the Overdraft and R100 on your Personal Loan – keeping your monthly amount the same. Once your Overdraft is paid off, you can continue to pay the full R300 on your Personal Loan until it is in paid in full.
#4 WATCH YOUR MONEY GROW
By this stage, and if all goes according to plan, you should have some savings stashed away and have your debt under control.
Now you can start investing your money smartly. Our advice is not to put all your eggs in one basket. Rather divide your savings into a tax-free savings- or notice account, a unit trust, property and a retirement fund – it all depends on your goals and how readily you will need the money. Once you’ve started to invest your money, it can continue to grow as you make more adjustments to save.
So, what is healthy money habits?
In short it comes down to understanding that your future needs are more important than your current wants. It is a decision you have to make every single day. And if you act wisely and make practical choices, you should be able to break the cycle of living from pay check to pay check.
Remember that our Financial Advisors are here to help you along the way. We have proven methods to help you keep track of your plans, budget and savings. Our experts can also help you invest your money according to your needs, financial situation, and savings goals. You are welcome to contact us anytime – we are here to help! #DisMosVoorpos
Are you ready to start saving and reaching your financial goals?