Not your run-of-the-bill savings tips

2014-07-07 16:03
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Cape Town - With National Savings Month kicking off in July, how to preserve our hard-earned rands will be the question on everyone’s minds. It is a fact that South Africans do not save enough. For example, did you know that only 6% of South Africans will retire comfortably?

Saving has little to do with how much we earn. Wilfred Moyo, investment and economic strategist at Metropolitan, explains: “It has been shown that the more we earn, the more we spend. Unless we learn how to better manage our finances we will still find ourselves in the red every month.”

Moyo shares a couple of not-so-common yet practical tips on small changes you can make to enable you to save extra money every month.

Have a goal

It sounds simple, but if we know exactly what we are going to do with the money we save, we are that much more inclined to put the money away in the first place. If you sacrifice something every month but know that the reward will be worth it, it starts feeling less like a sacrifice and more like part of journey.

Beat the clock

Remember Trolley Dash? Time to apply it to real life.  Set yourself a reasonable but short time limit when grocery shopping – say 20 minutes. This will force you to stick to your grocery list and avoid spending hours debating the merits of chocolate chip versus oatmeal in the biscuit aisle. Never buy groceries on an empty stomach. Everything will look good and you will end up spending more than necessary.

Food for thought

While on the topic of food, get in the habit of making your own lunches to take to work. Instead of buying lunch, a few extra minutes of your time to prepare a lunchbox will save you money. Takeaway lunches cost anything between R20 – R50 a day, adding up to a hefty amount every month!

Feeling flush?

Sounds a bit gross, but one way you can save on your water bill is through displacing water in your toilet's tank. Place a capped plastic bottle filled with some sand in your toilet's water tank. The bottle will displace enough water to save around two litres each time you flush, cutting your bill significantly.

Lay-bye yourself a holiday

Why not chat to your travel provider or store owner about purchasing your holiday trip on lay-bye? This means they hold the deal or item for you while you pay a set amount towards it over a specified period of time, until it is paid in full. Once paid in full, the item or holiday is yours.  This way you can achieve that dream holiday and tick it off your bucket list!

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