According to the South African Reserve Bank, the most recent household debt-to-income ratio in South Africa stands at 75.1%. The added pressures that the pandemic years placed on consumer pockets, compounded by the unstable geopolitical climate mean that for the majority of South Africans, over-spending on Black Friday and the Festive Season is not a wise option. South Africans need to become more aware of how the financial decisions they make today, will impact them in the months and years to come.
Here is how you can stop yourself from overspending this Black Friday and Festive Season:
- Draw up a plan of action: Strolling mindlessly through the mall with beautiful window displays and price call-outs beckoning you into shops is a recipe for disaster if you are prone to overspending. You need to know what you need and where to get it. Do your research before going to the mall and know where you can get the best deals. Make conscious shopping decisions rather than being swept up in the spirit of a ‘great festive deal’.
- Write a list: A shopping list keeps you focused on what you going to buy.
- Have a budget: Whether it be Black Friday shopping, festive food shopping, gift shopping or even picking a holiday destination be realistic, know what you can afford. Draw up a list, decide on your maximum budget and allocate spending for must-have items and then a small amount to use freely to treat yourself to something special. Armed with your list and your budget, don’t budge on the deals and promotions that brands push during this time of year.
- Shop around with your loyalty programmes: Looking for alternative payment solutions like loyalty programmes can save you some money, but be guided by what’s already on your list and visit the websites and social media pages specific retailers to identify whether there are ways that you can use cashback or discount deals to hack your way to some bonus savings.
- The big question: Do I want this or do I really need this? Differentiate between what you need versus what’s nice to have. Get an item that would be most impactful in your life. The same applies to buying gifts for others. Do they need the item or are you buying something you’d actually want yourself.
- Sign up for the newsletters: Get first-hand information of festive deals and follow select retailers on the various social media platforms so that you know exactly what’s on offer and where.
- Shop online: Avoid the long queues and in-store temptations. Just click away with the online bargains.
Before making a credit purchase, calculate these two vital factors: how long it will take for you to pay the item off and how much interest will have accumulated by the time the item is paid off.
Don’t become a festive overspending statistic. Financially, it will make January far less stressful. If you would like to start 2022 with a clean slate by tackling your debt, reach out to our team of qualified debt counsellors. DebtCare offers a free online assessment to everyone wanting to investigate Debt Counselling as a solution and need help getting out of their financial situation. Our Debt Counsellors are ready to answer any questions you may have about Debt Counselling. Call us on 0861 977 873 or email email@example.com.