United African Stokvel takes the concept of saving seriously, as we do each member joining our digital stokvel. It is especially important now, during the current pandemic and economic uncertainty, that we make choices benefitting our future.
To help you make informed decision, let’s take a look at some important factors to consider when saving money and spending less.
Start by saving
There is nothing wrong with wanting to spend your hard-earned income. You are entitled to treat yourself as you see fit, using your money in any way you want. At the same time, one of the best ways to spend your money and treat yourself, is by putting away some of that income into savings.
You don’t have to start big, as the old saying goes, every little bit counts. Consider the following:
- Keep track of all your spending: This includes groceries, rent, petrol, take outs, airtime/data, essentials such as bread and milk (outside of groceries).
- Cut out non-essentials: Once you know where your money is going, find expenses you can cut out completely or spend less on.
- Start Save: Put aside the money you would spend on non-essentials into a savings account or similar.
To Ask Yourself: Do you have a savings goal? How much are you able to put aside every month? What is the amount you hope to save for?
Where possible, don’t fall into debt
The cost of living has increased over the years, with shiny new gadgets, cars, household items and entertainment clawing for our attention at every turn. The cost of living also extends to medical bills, school fees, and so many other necessary expenses.
We can be tempted to get a loan or perhaps buy what we want on credit. While this may seem like the best way forward, you may find yourself with less money quicker after debit orders, and unable to put money aside.
- Spend Wisely: While some people can step into a dealership on foot and drive out in a car all paid for, many of us can’t cough up that kind of money up front. Same thing goes for a house. Either find something affordable or wait until you can afford it or something similar.
- Buy Smart: Consider saving up for something rather than buying impulsively. Not only does this give you time to think about your purchase, but if you decide not to buy any more, you now have all that money saved up.
- Be Debt Free ASAP: If you’re already caught in the cycle, try to pay off your debt first and foremost where possible. You can’t save if you don’t have money to save.
To Ask Yourself: How much would you need to sacrifice each month to pay off your debt faster? Can you afford an extra expense and still save?
Prioritise your future
The current COVID pandemic has really shown the world how uncertain things could get very quickly. There were many who believed their jobs were secure, only to find themselves out of employment and without employment benefits, such as a pension fund or medical aid.
Considering where you are now, how certain is the future of your business, company, or even income?
- Start with Short-Term Saving: Your monthly savings goal don’t have to be radical or extreme when you start. Take a look at what you would need for the next 6 months to a year and save towards that. As you achieve these smaller goals, you build the habit needed for long term saving.
- Prioritize Long-Term Saving: Long term saving doesn’t just include pension funds and retirement, but also your children’s education, down payment on a home, and anything else that would be longer than 5 years or so. Write these down and work towards them each month.
To Ask Yourself: Do you have an emergency fund to take care of your living expenses, such as rent, groceries, or medical emergency? Start by saving towards your emergency fund and grow from there.
Use the right savings option
There are plenty of ways for you to save money every month, from depositing it into the bank in a savings account, to using a “piggy bank”. One of the popular methods used by many South Africans (and Africans too), and the platform we are using, is through a stokvel.
A stokvel is usually a small group of people who bring a certain amount of money every month over an agreed period of time. Each member gets the lump-sum of money each month on a rotating roster.
United African Stokvel uses this same concept to help members put money aside each month, according to the term they choose. However, UASV offers rewards on the saved amount, meaning our members get rewarded for saving.
For example, saving R500 for 6 months gives the member a total of R3180.31. We have 12 savings options currently available:
- Regular Stokvel from R200 to R5000
- 60 Month Stokvel
- Flexible Lobola Stokvel
- Maternity Stokvel
- Friends and Family Stokvel
We have a team of dedicated consultants available to help you build a plan that suits your needs. Contact us so we can call you back and get you started on saving for the future.
United African Stokvel is always looking for ways to help our members. This blog is intended to help our members think about their finances in a different way. This information is not intended to be a substitute for a financial advisor, you should consult with a financial advisor before relying on this information.