Have a thrifty and fabulous New Year!

Summer is in full swing and there's a lot of excitement about the festive season and 2017 that is on our doorstep. The new year is welcomed with open arms and 2016 is greeted with a sigh (in some cases a sigh of relief). A new year brings the potential for renewal and growth. It is, after all, why new year's resolutions are so popular. One of the most common new year’s goals will definitely involve a financial aspect – whether it includes saving more or spending less.

Have 2016’s financial responsibilities left a hole in your pocket? No need to worry – Zeeva shares a few handy financial tips that you can start applying this coming 2017:

The best way to kick-start the new year is to have an easy and manageable budget in place. It is important that a budget stays in balance - when expenses do not exceed income. Keeping their budget in balance will enable women to get their 2017 finances under control. Zeeva encourages women to keep an eye on their budget on a regular basis. They should also ‘refine’ their budget by eliminating luxuries (restaurant dinners or expensive clothes) and replacing it with essential payments (medical aid fees for example) instead. These days many people make use of convenient mobile apps (such as 22seven) to have their budget in close-range. A budget should therefore not be a burden to women; on the contrary, it is a great asset. Women must ensure that their budget is visible and that they are proactively involved in their finances to avoid unnecessary spending.

Nowadays, women can educate themselves on money saving options by doing research on financial websites or by asking their friends about their savings techniques. Women must commit to a savings lifestyle by pinpointing saving opportunities beforehand. They can save by keeping track of available bargains and to also do their homework before they go shopping at certain retailers. The most important aspect of saving is to take the first step and to actually get started. By proactively focusing their efforts on saving, women can prevent more debt and this will translate into valuable long-term financial habits. These habits range from a small amount of money that is put aside, up to formal savings ‘vehicles’ such as endowment policies or a savings account.

Get creative and take on a few do-it-yourself projects throughout 2017 and see how much money you can save. Remember home repairs don't necessarily have to be done by a man and it will also save you the hassle of finding the most reliable person for the job. For example, your stove’s element isn’t working anymore. Are you going to save by replacing the element yourself or are you going to pay R 500 (more or less) for a contractor’s callout fee and on top of that an installation and parts fee? There are many local and international DIY websites that you can use, like: EasyDIY.co.za, Pinterest, The Family Handyman and The Home Handyman.

It is not a bad idea to talk about your financial situation and goals. Say it as it is and reach out to your friends and loved ones - they might have wonderful advice to give or could direct you in finding the best financial expert to assist. Zeeva also encourages you to get a financial planner’s advice before you kick-off 2017. If it so happens that you are being haunted by 2016’s over-indebted bills and you need a trustworthy woman who speaks your language, contact the Zeeva team for more info about their successful debt review program.

The new year should be a time of celebration. So get excited, put on your high heels and grab 2017 by the horns. Make use of the above financial tips to have yourself a thrifty and fabulous new year.

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