Yes, it really is that time of the year again, and personally, we can’t wait for a fresh new financial start! Why not ring in the new year with our top 8 financial resolutions to make 2021 the year of a fuller, happier wallet?
8 FINANCIAL RESOLUTIONS TO KICKSTART 2021
1. Create clear resolutions
By simply saying “I want to have more money”, you are making it hard for yourself to solidify your goals. Rather start with small goals like “I want to pay off half of my debt by the middle of the year, or, I want to save for a holiday in September”. Having clear, concise financial goals for the year is imperative to making your financial resolutions a success.
2. Build an emergency fund
Too few South African adults have cash savings to help pay for unexpected or emergency expenses. This can lead to borrowing money at exorbitant rates from illegal credit providers and falling further into debt. Have the discipline to create an emergency fund to help with those unexpected accounts.
3. Start a Retirement Annuity Fund (RA)
If you haven’t done so already, open an RA and start contributing to it. Not only does it offer great tax advantages, but it will ensure that you save up for the future, as it only pays out after you reach a certain age.
4. Create a separate savings account
As soon as you get paid each month, place a small amount in a separate savings account that you are not allowed to touch. This will make saving for that holiday much easier – you can even arrange for some accounts to be “ instantly inaccessible”, in other words, you would have to request a withdrawal from the bank (which usually takes a few days) to touch that money.
5. Keep the change
Yes, all those two rands add up at the end of the month. By keeping a money jar in your car or at home, you’ll be surprised at how quickly small change turns into enough to cover your next grocery trip. Think of it like a piggy bank for adults!
6. Start using a personal finance app or software
There are some excellent apps out there that will help you keep track of your daily and monthly budget. Having a clear picture of your finances is an important part of reaching your financial goals, and keeping track of how much money goes towards haircuts, takeaways and after-work drinks will help you realise where your money is going.
7. Stay in the know by reading financial books or blogs
Committing yourself to reading up on the latest financial trends is essential to growing your financial know-how. Try reading at least one financial book a month, especially local books on finance, or follow some of South Africa’s leading financial blogs.
8. Prioritise your debts
Make a list of what you owe and decide how to go about paying it off. Perhaps you want to start small with a store account – once you’ve gained confidence, you can tackle your bigger debts, for example that credit card you’ve swiped once too often during the holidays…
If you are trapped by debt, paying it off should be your top priority, and you should consider applying for Debt Review to help consolidate your repayments to your credit providers. Visit www.debtline.co.za to talk to one of our expert debt advisors today.