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SA's No 1 Insurance Blog

Do you feel like you wasted a lot of money in 2018 without even being aware of it?

If your answer is “Yes”, join the club. We aren’t into New Year’s resolutions, but we have spent some time thinking about ways we could plug the potential leaks in our budgets and enjoy more “money mileage” in 2019. Most of us can expect nothing more than an inflation-adjusted salary increase this year so looking after each Rand will be important.

Here are potential leaks you need to check that could save you as much as R4 000 a month.

The cost of banking

What is your bank giving you in exchange for taking your money?

Not much is the answer. When last did you take the time to check your bank charges? Chances are you are spending hundreds of Rand each month on unnecessary fees.

Do yourself a favour and pull a recent bank statement. Tally up all your charges and if it’s running into hundreds of Rand decide to half that amount by chatting to your bank about the right type of account for you. If you don’t get much luck with your bank, consider switching.

Potential saving: R200 a month.

The cost of using the competition’s ATM

Withdrawing money from another bank’s ATM can bring tears to your eyes. Paying R10 for the privilege is a bitter pill to swallow. Or what about paying R5 for requesting a simple balance statement? Withdrawing money from the wrong ATM can cost you big bucks over a year. Be mindful and rather pull more money from your ATM than always looking to make smaller withdrawals at any ATM because it’s convenient.

Potential saving: R100 a month.

The hidden cost of having too many credit cards

How many credit cards are in your wallet right now? If there’s more than one, then ask yourself why. Are there any costs involved in owning all those credit cards? You better believe it!

If you have more than one card its costing you money you could be saving. Consolidate and stick with one card. It just makes financial sense.

Here is the quick price comparison table of the entry-level credit cards afforded by the major South African banks.

If you have 4 credit cards it is costing you R200 a month.

Bank

Min SalaryActivation FeeMonthly FeeInterest RateLoyalty Programme

Standard Bank

R5,000R166.45R50.44Personalised

UCount

ABSA Bank

R4,000R166.45R46.04Personalised

NA

Nedbank

R5,000R189.65R46.30Personalised

Greenbacks

FNB

R7,000R175R48.00Personalised

eBucks

CapitecR3,000R100R35.00Personalised

NA

Potential saving: R200 a month.

Overpaying for your car and home insurance

No insurer is going to give you a discount unless you ask – so ask! Yes, they can always say no, but nothing is stopping you from shopping elsewhere. If you’re the type of person who pays their car insurance premiums every month and who seldom claims, then you’re the ideal candidate for a discount.

Potential saving: R500 a month.

Overpriced life insurance

You can save if you switch but be careful with this one. Unlike car insurance, there is more to a life insurance policy switch than meets the eye. A new set of medicals are going to be required and that can be tricky if you aren’t in the best shape of your life.

Nevertheless, if your life insurance is becoming unaffordable, and another insurer is offering the same cover – or even better – at a price within your budget, then seriously consider it.

But please, get professional advice before making that decision. We’re talking about your dependants future here.

Potential saving – R500 a month.

Having too much medical aid cover

You’re on the most comprehensive plan available but can’t remember the last time you needed it. Or maybe you’ve ignored the cheaper network hospital option only because you want the freedom of choice when it comes to hospital choice.

The difference in cost between a networked and a non-networked option varies, but on one medical aid, it was R600 a month for a single member. Add a partner to your plan, and it jumps to an R1, 000 a month.

Ask your medical schemes broker if there isn’t a more cost-effective option available to you.

Potential saving – R500 a month.

Eating out

Enjoying that cup of coffee at your local coffee shop everyday costs anywhere between R20 and R25.
Two a day to keep the doctor away plus a tip gobbles up R50 every day.
Multiply that by five days a week, and you’re out of pocket R250.
Over a month it costs R1 000

Your coffee habit could be costing you R12 000 a year. Scary stuff, and we haven’t even gotten to restaurants and fast foods outlets.

Potential saving – R1 000 a month.

Ignoring the specials

How often do you make use of the month end specials at your local supermarket? Take 5 minutes to scan the pamphlet and notice the items you use regularly. We are suggesting you become a coupon crazed monster, but if you can shave 10% off your monthly grocery bill that’s something to aim for isn’t it?

Potential saving R500 a month

Getting a better deal on the money you owe

What if you aren’t getting the best deal on the money you owe? Take the person with a 20-year bond. What if they could reduce their interest rate with just 1% elsewhere?

On a 20-year bond of R500 000, the difference between a monthly repayment based on a 10% interest rate versus a 9% interest rate is R327. What could you do with an extra R327 every month?

Potential saving R500 a month.

These aren’t the only cost-cutting measures available to you. They are ones we came up with. Let us know how you plan to find more money in your personal budget this year.

Can we help you with anything? Leave your details below and we will be in touch.

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