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How to manage your money in 2013

15 November 2012, 11:24

The new year is around the corner, which means you need to get your financial act together. Here’s how.

The year is almost at its end, which means you should already start planning your finances for 2013. And if you haven’t? Don’t worry.

We have some expert tips for you.

1.    Tough times need tough measures

It’s no secret that the global economic situation isn’t exactly ideal at the moment. But this doesn’t mean you have to lie down and surrender. There’s always something you can do to ease the burden of financial instability. So, start with changing a few old habits. Forgo the extra chocolate bar; go for dinner (only) once a month, and car pool to work to save a few Rand. Who knows, you may even lose some weight and make some new friends while trying. 

2.    Cut the waste and share responsibility:

Ask your family to help you bust your household budget in 2013. Everyone should  turn off the lights when not in their room to save electricity, or swap clothes with friends to get a new ‘do’ instead of rushing to the Mall for a new outfit. A lot of little things could make a big difference.

3.    Save, even if it seems silly.

Putting away something as small as R20 a week can make a big difference in your life, beacuase it will get you into the habit of saving a portion of your salary every month.

Also, try to find smart ways to cut back on unnecessary spending like bank fees. For example, with Capitec’s Global One MasterDebit card, all swipes are free – be it at a bar, a retailer or a petrol station. Added up over a year, that’s a chunky saving.

4.    Make a back-up plan

You never know when you will need that spare cash for a rainy day, so save save save.

5.    Revise your numbers

Identify your big ticket items and make provisions for them – be it schooling, savings or home expenses. Once that’s taken care of, you can treat yourself a little – guilt free!

6.    Keep your house in order

If you have any debt now, don’t freak out and try and pay it back all at once as it’s just not smart; instead tackle it one month at a time.

7.    Be disciplined

Be prudent when it comes to your finances; don’t blow your budget on a fancy outfit or new shiny gadget. Sure, treat yourself every now and try to be disciplined with your bucks.

8.    Seek out value for money

Don’t buy that flashy car if you don’t have the money for it. It may make you feel good now, but at the end of the day it’s you who will be paying it back in financial ruin.

9.    Learn from your mistakes: 

No one is perfect. If you’re in debt and have made some bad financial choices, note them and then take action. Denial will get you nowhere in a hurry.

10.    It takes hard work to achieve economic wellbeing

There’s no quick-fix for your financial wellbeing. It requires dedication, discipline and above all responsibility to yourself to take action and develop good habits that allow you to live free from debt and savings flush.

- Women24

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