Financing your journey off the grid – a financial adviser can light the way
8 Feb, 2023

Financing your journey off the grid – a financial adviser can light the way

Bertie Nel, Head of Financial Planning and Advice at Momentum

Load shedding has come to shape our everyday life. Although first introduced in 2007, South Africans have in recent months experienced the worst of it with power outages sometimes lasting more than eight hours and taking a toll on household finances.

According to Bertie Nel, Head of Financial Planning and Advice at Momentum, “load shedding significantly impacts South Africans’ daily routine, overall mood, and – more importantly – their personal financial plans.”

Generators, inverters and going completely “off the grid” through solar are all forms of backup measures to help alleviate the impact of load shedding. However, Nel says while these plans ensure you have light, they might leave your finances in the dark if you don’t plan for them.

Going off the grid can cost up to R200 000, depending on the different off-grid levels you are looking for. The more independent you want to be, the more expensive it becomes. “Whatever option you choose, it will significantly impact your finances. But there are ways to approach such a major expense in a financially cautious way without breaking the bank and your budget while ensuring that your long-term financial plan remains on track.”

Nel says South Africans should plan before rushing into “going off-the-grid”. He advises South Africans to consider the below before going off the grid:

1. Consider your financial position

According to Nel, before making any major financial commitment, it is important to look at your financial position. Go through your bank statements and look at your budget. This will guide you in terms of how much money you’re spending monthly.

2. Do product research

He says there are numerous ways you can finance your transition to off-the-grid so before jumping into an option just because someone you know recommended it, do your own research and weight all the pros and cons of your options.

3. Pay attention to debt

“If you are considering credit as a means of funding your transition, pay close attention to your pre-existing debt and try, where possible, to settle it before getting into more debt,” he says.

“Additionally, it is also imperative that you speak to your financial adviser; everyone needs sound advice to kickstart their journey to success, or off the grid, based on their unique circumstances,” Nel concludes.



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