2016 – Exercise Financial Discipline or Sink

2016 is going to be a difficult year for some of us. The weak Rand, the drought which will result in even higher food prices, rising inflation, increases in interest rates – those of us who own houses have already started feeling the pinch of higher interest rates on our bond repayments, high water and electricity prices, retrenchments, above inflation school fee increases, etc… South Africans love debt, we are almost addicted to it. The sad thing is we get into debt that makes us look good and makes us grow poorer e.g. nice cars, branded clothes, etc… As schools open next week, some of us don’t even know how we are going to pay the fees, buy uniforms and other necessities for our children. Even professionals, well educated people, are now going for debt counselling.

A few tips on how to make it through 2016

  • Cut up your credit cards
  • Cut up your clothing store cards and other shopping cards & leave your ID at home so you don’t use your ID to buy on credit [ been there, done that so I know 🙂 ]
  • Track your spending by drawing up a budget and actually stick to your budget
  • Buy only what you need – forget about Wants for a while. If you have no discipline, keep away from shopping malls
  • Think twice before you buy the car of your dreams – love the one you have just a little longer. It is possible to drive a 12 year old car & have fun while doing it, trust me I know
  • Are you driving alone to work? Consider using public transport or forming / joining a lift club
  • Consider a home-sharing arrangement so you get help paying off your home loan
  • Review your insurance costs – have you thought of Hippo as an example to try and reduce your insurance costs?
  • Are you paying gym fees and yet you are not going to the gym? You know what to do
  • Think twice before you make that phone call – WhatsApp could be the way to go
  • Take a very close look at your Cellphone contract – I just cancelled mine and will be migrating to what promises to be cheaper. I had nightmares just thinking about “what if I end up suffering the consequences of the billions in a fine that I have no control over?”
  • How much is the cost of your hairstyle, manicure, pedicure? Is it worth it?
  • DSTV? Do you really need it?, etc….

Credit Card

This is a picture I took after one of my customers cut the last 2 of his credit cards. He had 4 credit cards when I first met him. I will share more about his story in the future. Please note that I do NOT give individual advice on debt management. If you are struggling with debt, get a copy of the book and you will know what to do after reading the book. I only do debt management for individuals whose companies contract me to give holistic financial advice to their employees and the company pays me a high hourly rate for the service

Why Pearl is having a good start to 2016

I had a meeting a few days ago with a customer who told me she is so calm this January because she used her bonus to pay school fees, buy school uniforms and stationery in December last year already. She also used her stokvel money to buy vouchers so she will be using the vouchers to buy her groceries for the first few months of this year. I hope you will be copying what this customer did so that you too will have a good time at the beginning of each year. If we start the year on a positive note, we are likely to have a good year but if we spend all our money on Christmas gifts, shopping and other nice-to-haves, then we are likely to panic at the beginning of the new year and that could set a tone for a stressful year.

What are you doing on Saturday, the 5th of March? Save the Date

Phumelele is now a Financial Advisor. If you need a financial advisor, you can contact her office at or call 011 781 3351 or 063 034 2532

Debt to Riches cover








The book is available at CNA, Exclusives, Adams and other bookshops for only R134 a copy. Over 14 000 copies have been sold to date.


Phumelele Ndumo

Financial Advisor

BCom, H.Dip Computer Auditing, Masters in Business Leadership

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