The only things you should never skimp on is saving, education and travel. You can take that to the bank.

Run your finances like a business

Your salary gets sliced into so many pieces and before you know it most of it has evaporated and you are left wondering where it all went. 

The simplest way to keep track of you income and expenses is to keep an eye on your bank statement, but if you have more than one account… you’ll need to put in a little more effort. Draw up a spreadsheet or do proper bookkeeping and see where you are wasting and can trim expenses. Make it a set task you do on a weekly basis.

Regularly go through your bank statements. You need to know what is happening. Cut what you don’t need.

Did you know that you should be getting insurance quotes on a yearly basis? Even if you don’t go with another insurer you can use comparative quotes to get a discount. I was with an insurance company for 12 years and eventually ended up paying almost R500 for household insurance a month – even with discounts. Finally last year I moved to Virseker and only pay R119… that is quite a saving! 

When you start adding up all the little savings you’ll be surprised at just how much it is.

Save like there is a tomorrow

Your goal should be to pay off your credit card bills in full at the end of each month and set aside money toward your emergency savings.

Suze Orman

I save on a monthly basis. I have an retirement annuity, 7 and 32 day notice accounts that each get a set amount transferred into it.  Also invested in property and pay extra towards the last few hundred thousands I still owe on the bonds.

Even more important than my own savings are our kids’ savings. Each kid gets a small amount from each of us into their own accounts.

Each month we also put a bit into a 32 day notice account for travels. This is our kitty for international travel so we can take the kids along without worrying about the extra costs.

However, spoil yourself sometimes. Go for that movie, eat out , buy that dress – but all in moderation.

Travel more often

The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.

Saint Augustine

Families that travel together stay together… You don’t have to go to international destinations to travel, you can also explore our beautiful country too!

I have so many fond memories from family holidays in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Botswana with my parents and sister – and I want to continue the tradition.

The more you know the smarter you’ll be with your money

I cannot stress this enough, invest in yourself and your education. Without learning something new and growing your skills you might as well give up on your future (and travel).

You don’t have to do the most expensive courses either. You can choose online short courses that will add to your CV. You can even opt for free courses offered by Google (if that’s your industry).

Point is, never stop being a learner.

Shopping Tips

If you live in a big city like Joburg, Cape Town or Durban you sometimes get the chance to shop directly from big warehouse distributors for everything from make-up to clothes and everything inbetween. Just ask me, there is nothing better than using your favourite (very expensive) cream and not paying full-price.

Wait for the sales. There is nothing wrong with wearing your clothes for a couple of seasons (shock/horror) and there is nothing wrong with buying end of season clothes to update your cupboard. Just shop smart, look for the styles that are timeless.

Don’t buy it just because it is on sale. The rush of finding something that is just such a great bargain can sometimes cloud your judgement. Give yourself a 10 minute breather in the shop before rushing to pay for it.


Susann is a travel, parenting, beauty and lifestyle blogger in Johannesburg, South Africa.

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