Make a commitment to save for specific things every month. We know, life is a roller coaster with different stages and varying priorities, but trust us, there are certain universal saving goals that you just can’t ignore.
Cultivating a savings habit is like a magic pill that takes away the stress from those big, expensive, long-term goals. Imagine a life where you’ve got this cosy financial cushion to fall back on, protecting you from the need to take out a loan or maxing out your credit and store cards. Sounds amazing, right?
So, let’s dive right in and chat about what every South African consumer should be saving for. We’re going to spill the beans on some practical tips to help you craft a sturdy savings plan that has got your back. Come on, what are you waiting for?
Let’s kick-start this journey towards a more secure and rewarding financial future, starting with the must-save-for items on your list.
Things to Start Saving for Now
Are you ready to take control of your financial future? Have you ever considered what it might feel like to have a solid savings buffer, allowing you to enjoy life’s luxuries or handle unexpected expenses without worry?
The spotlight shines on the vital items that should feature on every savings list, spanning from retirement to emergencies, and even extending to those small luxuries that add a splash of joy to life.
Here’s the deal: a lot of South Africans aren’t prepared for retirement. And when we say a lot, we mean a whopping 59% of people who took our recent retirement 2023 survey admitted to having zero retirement savings or plans. Can you believe that? And only a tiny 4% feel fully prepared. Sure, over half have some kind of pension plan or annuity, but get this – 40% said they fear retirement more than death. Yikes!
So, what’s holding us back?
The cost of living is a biggie, with 63% saying it’s their main roadblock. Unemployment or unstable income (16%) and high debt (12%) are also culprits. Retirement planning is crucial, and it needs to be on everyone’s radar.
Accidents do happen, and life has a funny way of throwing curveballs when we least expect it. Unforeseen events like medical emergencies, car trouble, unemployment, home repairs, and vet bills can quickly rack up costs that run into the thousands. And without a savings cushion?
Well, people often find themselves resorting to credit cards or loans, and that’s a rabbit hole that can lead to years of financial recovery. Being proactive is the way to go. Saving for those inevitable rainy days before they happen is not just smart, it’s essential. Ideally, one should aim to have three to six months’ worth of living expenses tucked away in savings. Even better? Nine months. Now that’s being ahead of the game.
Alright, let’s chat about luxuries. We’ve all heard the saying: “Cut back on the fancy stuff, especially when money’s tight.” But hey, who doesn’t want a little luxury in their life? A flat-screen TV to binge-watch your favourite shows or a dream vacation to unwind. And guess what? There’s absolutely nothing wrong with wanting these things.
But here’s the secret: save for them.
Yes, that’s right. Instead of swiping your credit card, why not stash away a little cash each month? Open a separate savings account and dedicate it solely for your luxuries – that vacation, the new car, or even that dream home. It’s worth the wait!
It might not seem like a big deal, but let’s be honest, saving for gifts is actually quite essential. Whether it’s birthday presents for the kiddos (and, of course, those parties that they’ll never let you forget), Christmas and anniversary gifts, or just tokens of appreciation for friends and family, it all adds up quickly. And without some proper budgeting or a little saving on the side, it’s easy to find oneself reaching for that store credit card.
But there’s a better way. Setting up a dedicated gifts fund and contributing to it regularly is the smart move. That way, when those special occasions roll around, there’s already a fund ready and waiting. No stress, no debt, just the joy of giving.
It’s a fact that clothing accounts rank among the top three debts that South Africans have a hard time repaying. So, here’s a thought: why not save for the family’s clothing needs before the bills pile up?
It’s actually not that tough. We all know when we’ll need a new pair of work shoes, or when the little ones are going to outgrow their clothes. So, let’s get proactive and set aside a little cash every month. And hey, while we’re at it, why not plan the shopping around sales and discounts? It’s a win-win – staying stylish without breaking the bank. Trust us, your wallet will thank you.
Saving money is essential for a secure and fulfilling life. By understanding what to save for and creating a targeted savings plan, you can achieve your financial goals and enjoy peace of mind. It’s time to take control of your financial future.