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4 budgeting strategies you need in your life

Finance & Money

Posted on Monday, February 11, 2019

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Irrespective of whether you are a numbers person, the truth is that you need to have a household budget that works for you. It doesn’t have to be a complicated budget planner with rows of numbers and intricate details (unless that’s your thing) – it can be something simpler and more convenient.

There are many ways to organize your money and ensure that you have enough to cover your expenses, and, who knows, perhaps even put a chunk into savings each month.

Finding the right personal budget planner for you depends on where you are in life, your goals and your financial habits. Take a look at the 4 different budgeting strategies below and try them out this year. Maybe one will work for you!


  1. The cash envelope system

It’s an oldie, but a goodie. With the envelope system, you do your day-to-day spending on things like groceries, eating out and miscellaneous purchases with cash that is drawn out and allocated to specific envelopes, while your monthly bills come off your account via direct debit.

This system works well for:

  • People in debt who need to control their spending
  • People who want to see where their money is going each week
  • People who don’t have access to credit cards
  • People who are single and don’t have to share the envelope money with anyone else
  1. The budgeting app system

 There are a number of great budgeting apps available to South Africans. Once you have done your research and chosen the one for you, download it and link it to your bank accounts. This system will provide you with constant reminders and updates about where your money is, what it’s being spent on and how much you have left.

This system works well for:

  • People who do everything on their phones
  • People who like to see their money whenever they want
  • People with multiple accounts who want to monitor and switch between their different accounts 
  1. The 50/30/20 system

This system splits your income into three categories every month. You spend 50% of your take-home pay on needs, such as bond payments, bills, groceries, etc. 30% is spent on wants which include, for example, a new rug, eating out and your pot plant obsession. The final 20% should be used for debt repayment and savings, so this amount can go toward paying off your credit card debt or toward saving for an upcoming holiday.

This system works well for:

  1. The multi-account system

This budgeting strategy essentially uses bank accounts as your money envelopes. Open an account for each goal you are saving towards and allocate a sum of money to each account monthly. For example, if you have a separate debit card just for eating out, you won’t overspend. Accounts for your emergency fund or an impending tax bill is a good way to put money out of sight and lower the temptation to spend.

This system works well for:

  • People who are saving for several goals
  • People who find that money burns a hole in their pocket – rather put it out of sight!


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