• Jaco Prinsloo

20 Tips to improve your finances in 2020

Use the new year as a chance to improve your financial health by adopting some resolutions around your finances. We’d all like to be healthier and wealthier, so cutting back on unnecessary expenses and saving or investing more are goals we should all be aiming for. Here are some steps on how to relook your finances:

1. Start the year with the end in mind.

Decide what you want to achieve personally, physically and financially in 2020 and set daily, weekly and monthly goals aimed at your end goals.

2. Make a smart investment

A book can be the most entertaining investment you make. Pick up one of the several great books available from local authors packed with great financial advice, tips, and tricks for South Africans and enjoy some holiday reading with a purpose.

3. Have "the talk"

Financial problems can cause stress for you and your loved ones. Make time to discuss your financial situation, fears, and hopes and get everyone in your family with you on the journey to financial freedom.

4. A goal without a plan is just a wish

Set up a budget to serve as the plan on how you are going to spend and save your money. A budget is a great way to keep track of your expenses and determine how much you have for expenses, savings and discretionary spending.

5. Check your credit score

Once a year you can check your credit score online for free. See how creditworthy you are and look for ways to improve your credit score. A better credit score helps you get lower interest rates on loans.

6. Inspect your insurance

With another year gone, you and your assets are a little older. Review your short term insurance to make sure you are not overpaying based on last year’s asset values and adjust your risk cover policies to make sure you are sufficiently covered against life's surprises.

7. Reward yourself

Reward programmes are an easy way to get “free money” from savings on purchases and free goodies for positive behavior. Just double-check that the price you pay for the reward programme does not exceed the benefits you receive.

8. Compare your fees

Request, confirm and review your banking and investment fees to make sure you are getting the most value for money.

9. Schedule a meeting with your financial planner

Meet with your financial planner to go over your investments, update him or her on what has changed in your life – marriages, birth of a child or death of a spouse - and ensure your current investment plans are still in line with your financial goals.

10. Don't forget about your tax-free savings account

You have until February 29 to invest up to R33 000 into your tax-free savings account for the current tax year. Don't miss out on this opportunity as once it has passed, the opportunity to use this investment vehicle in the tax year is gone.