Assorted South African banknotes and coins. Photo: Pixabay on Pexels.

Penny wise…

Finance probably isn’t one of your favourite topics right now – but your attitude might change after you read this.

It seems that everything is more expensive these days – and by a significant amount, too. At a time when it seems difficult to make it to the end of the month without going into debt, putting aside a little extra to save feels impossible. But, since we are going into July which is Savings Month, it’s a good time to build solid financial habits. These tips may make a difference to your pocket:

  • Track your spending. Finding out where your money goes is the first step toward saving, so download an app that helps you identify where you’re spending the bulk of your income.
  • Pay yourself first. Save, save, save – even if it’s just a few hundred rands, try to stash something away in a separate account before you do anything else. Try to work towards having three to six months’ worth of salary saved.
  • Get your bills paid. Once you’ve done this, you’ll know exactly how much disposable income you have. What’s more, this habit helps you maintain a good credit score (while you’re at it, it’s a good idea to download your credit score – because a healthy credit score will help you obtain a favourable rate if you need to apply for credit. More than that, many cell phone providers, landlords, or other entities won’t consider your application for their product or services without viewing your credit record first).
  • Tackle your high-interest-bearing debt first. That interest tends to mount, so paying off these debts as quickly as you can helps you maintain some control over them.