It’s been a year filled with lots of changes, and you might find yourself in a different financial situation, forcing you to find new ways of making your money go further. There is, of course, ample advice you can find through a simple google, but it can be tough to filter the useful information from the noise.
We’ve done a bit of research and found some helpful tips from the investment pros of the world (specifically Warren Buffet). We’ve also added to these tips with tried and tested methods used by the Naked team.
Unsubscribe from your favourite brands’ emails
Marketers know how to pull the strings of your bank account. Remove any temptation you might have when it comes to clicking on ‘biggest sale now’ or special offers that pop into your inbox. You’ll thank yourself in the long run.
Sleep on it before spending
It’s so easy to convince yourself that you need something. But as we all know, there’s a very big difference between really needing something and just wanting it. So take the night to think about it and if you think you still really could do with this item, then go for it.
But if you do need something, try to plan so that any big purchases fall on days like Black Friday or Cyber Monday.
Be mindful of electricity and water use
Try and remember your mom’s tone of voice every time you leave a light on. Electricity and water levies are increasing little by little, more and more often. You could save a buck or two by being conscious of your use – and it could help the environment too!
Keep an eye out for specials at restaurants and on your food delivery apps
When splashing out on a nice meal or takeaways, always keep an eye out for specials and buy-one-get-one-free deals.
Make budgeting your friend
Using an app like 22seven could help with the admin that budgeting brings. You can link up all of your accounts to it, as well as set limits to your spending so you receive push notifications to help keep you on track.
Buy from your local grocer or farmers’ market
Big-chain grocers can cost a lot more than your little local grocer or farmers’ market in that you might be inclined to buy ready-made food and goods that you don’t necessarily need. Supporting the smaller guys won’t just make you feel better, but will also help you stick to your list.
“Don’t save what is left after spending; spend what is left after saving.” – Warren Buffett
It’s so easy to go on a spending spree the minute your salary hits your bank account and then only be left with pocket change – or worse, nothing – to add to your savings at the end of the month. Set up automatic transfers to your savings on the same day you get paid, so that you aren’t tempted to spend that money.
“If you buy things you don’t need, you will soon sell things you need.” – Warren Buffet
When you allow yourself to be overly impulsive with your spending habits, you will end up with a bunch of material things and a huge minus sign showing on your bank balance. This will force you to get rid of necessities to free up cash, when you need to make ends meet. That sudden rush of serotonin after clicking ‘purchase’ is great, but it turns into regret faster than you may realise.
Have a strategy to tackle your debt
Step one to saving is always to eliminate debt, however with car financing, property bonds and credit cards it may seem impossible to eradicate all your debt before saving. Nevertheless, if you have any form of debt you should always keep it at the top of your list of where to put any extra money at the end of the month. Every extra cent you put into a long term loan now could save you plenty of money in future.
There are many strategies out there to help you tackle your debt – two great ones that we can recommend checking out are the avalanche and the snowball methods.
Assess your monthly subscriptions
Check your services like Netflix, Showmax, DStv, Spotify, Medium and whatever else comes off your account every month. You may find you are paying for things you rarely use. Consider cancelling the ones you don’t use and for the ones you do use, if possible, why not convert to a family plan to split the costs with friends or family.
Live within your means
This is a hard one. Society puts a lot of pressure on us to live a lavish lifestyle. With social media it sometimes feels like everywhere you look someone is getting a brand new AMG or partying away on a yacht. But looks can be deceiving; flashy lifestyles typically come with crippling debt. So unless your godfather is Elon Musk, you might want to take it easy.
Secondhand for the win
Secondhand doesn’t always mean old and beaten up. Gumtree, cars.co.za and Marketplace are fantastic and legitimate sources (most of the time) for some amazing deals.
Analyse your fixed costs once a year
Things like cellphone plans and medical aids hike their prices as much as they can year on year. That’s why it’s important to shop around annually and see where you can save on these recurring costs. In most cases you are likely to get a better deal elsewhere. Otherwise, contact your current provider and negotiate a lower price.
Marie Kondo your life
Marie Kondo is a renowned tidying expert and author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up – definitely worth a read if you haven’t read it already.
Her mantra is, “If it doesn’t spark joy, let it go,” and there’s something refreshing about it, even if it seems slightly cheesy. A good solid spring clean is a great way to declutter your life with the added bonus of being able to sell your pre-loved items to make some extra cash.
“Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.” – Warren Buffet
Sometimes we talk ourselves out of starting a savings nest egg or investing in our future because we don’t know where to start and it all seems so daunting. But even if you start a savings or investment account with just R5 today, and continue to work on putting something small away every month, you will be rewarded for it in the long run.
10x investments has a funky tool that can show you what saving money each month might look like in the future.
Don’t forget to treat yourself now and then
Having said this, don’t deprive yourself of nice things all the time. Everyone needs a treat now and then. Treating yourself in moderation will help prevent you from going on massive splurges when you’ve been keeping it frugal for too long.
Saving money and spending less always sounds easier in theory but at the end of the day it’s small habits that make the big change. We hope these tips will help make your money go further.