Personal finance expert Mapalo Makhu shares tips to help improve your financial life through healthy saving habits.

With 2022 comes new goals, which may mean greater expenses. We got advice from personal finance expert and author of bestselling book, ‘You’re Not Broke, You’re Pre-Rich’, Mapalo Makhu to learn how we can fund these goals while trying to maintain a healthy financial life.

  1. Define your goal

It all starts with defining your goals and what you aim to achieve. These typically consist of  long-term, short-term and intermediate goals and should be divided as such. 

  1. Analyse your spending habits

Go through your monthly statements to review where and how you have been spending your money over a month or two, and then prioritise your needs over wants. 

Your Capitec banking app will come in very handy here as it can help you easily track your spending and provide you with insight into how much of your money is going to food, transport, personal wants etc.  

  1. Draw up a budget using the 50/30/20 rule

A budget is a roadmap to tell your money where to go. It can help you make better financial decisions, prepare for emergencies, get out of debt, and stay focused on your long-term financial goals.

“One budgeting method that you can use it called the 50/30/20 budgeting rule – where 50% of your budget is allocated to needs (i.e. rent, transport etc), 30% is your wants and what you enjoy (.i.e. eating out, entertaining, buying expensive clothes, luxury items and hobbies) and 20% is for paying off debts and saving towards your goals.” explains Mapalo.  

  1. Spend less than you can afford to

Whether it’s buying a house, a car or booking a holiday, buy something that is lower than you can afford so that you still get to enjoy the simple things in life, like that movie ticket or quad biking experience.

“One habit that I would say South Africans need to break, is living beyond their means. This isn’t simple, because salaries aren’t increasing as much as inflation and salaries have been under pressure, but you can start looking at alternative ways to live within your means. Like starting a side hustle to increase your income, and again, going back to your budget and seeing what you don’t need to be spending money on,” adds Mapalo.  

  1. Find a balance

Working towards your financial goals should be empowering but realistic. Finding a balance that includes a little ‘fun money’ will enable you to stick to your budgeting and saving goals. 

“If you want to become good with your personal finances, you should leave money for enjoyment. Then it makes it worthwhile. It makes it feel like, you know what? – I am on the right track. I’m trying to do the right things. And yet I still get to enjoy myself.”

  1. Use tools that make life simpler and help you keep track

There are lots of resources to help empower you through this process like the Capitec track spend tool we’ve already shared with you, as well as their savings account options and even the Live Better Academy – a fantastic online resource to help you take control of your financial future  and build financial health through 4 free courses on budgeting, saving, etc.

Now’s the time to empower yourself and take the necessary steps towards your goals. Remember, it’s all about balance. By following that 50/30/20 formula you’ll be well on your way to reaching those financial goals while still enjoying the simple pleasures. 




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