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“In the same way that the national government takes a hard look at the state of the economy every February, and puts measures in place to strengthen it, consumers need to reassess their challenges and opportunities annually,” says Old Mutual Head of Financial Education, John Manyike.
“Last year, families were hit hard by the increases in the price of fuel and electricity, as well as the VAT hike. For some people, the situation has become so desperate that they opt for a quick financial fix like a fast loan or rely heavily on credit and store cards to simply buy groceries.”
He points out that this can be a crippling decision, as it only adds to long-term financial strain and starts a vicious debt cycle that is very hard to get out of.
“It is more important than ever to become money smart to ensure you survive month-end Salticrax stress and start reducing your debt.
Manyike offers the following tips for a shockproof household budget:
Manyike adds: “Just like our government does every year at Budget Speech time, the toughest task is facing the reality of the situation and working out an achievable plan. Then work together as a family to keep to the plan, even during difficult months. You can also speak to an accredited financial adviser to help you stay on track.”