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Teens – Get Money Smart


You are young, full of energy and life has countless possibilities. “Now is the perfect time to get smart about money because what you do now will have long-term positive effects on your life,” says Alfred Ramosedi.
Image: Alfred Ramosedi, African Bank Group Executive: Sales and Marketing Image: Alfred Ramosedi, African Bank Group Executive: Sales and Marketing

“To always HAVE money, you have to pay attention to it. Making money is different to earning money. When you earn it, you are trading your time and energy for money. You work an hour and get paid for an hour. The ultimate goal is to learn to make money. Yes, of course, initially you need to earn it but what’s important is to make your money work for you by growing it through savings and investments. The younger you start the better. Making money also involves building businesses that will ultimately mean you can write you own pay check and not have to be dependent on a job. We need young entrepreneurs, so get creative,” encourages Ramosedi.

He offers these helpful tips to get your started…

Track your spending

If you are using debit cards to purchase goods it’s easy to lose track of just how much you are spending. Keeping a record you can refer to often acts as a good handbrake and puts a check on unhealthy spending patterns. Find the tracking mechanism that works best for you. You may want to start with a monthly statement from your bank where you can check how much you spent on what during the month.

Develop financial discipline 

All over the web, there are tons of tips telling you not to carry very much cash. It’s assumed that if you don’t have it, you won’t spend it. But the truth is there’s a chance that you’ll actually spend more when you’re using your debit card or a credit card.

Here’s what to do:

  1. Decide how much cash is safe to carry in your wallet.
  2. When you want to buy something, ask yourself this question, “Can I do without it today?” If you can, don’t buy it. Most of the time you’ll quickly forget about the item and  you’ll have saved the money you would have otherwise wasted.
  3. If you’re saving up for a larger purchase, make sure you deposit money into your savings account on a regular basis so it can accumulate safely. Only when you have more than the amount you need should you buy the thing you’ve been saving up to buy.

Pay attention to your minutes and texts

In other words, know your phone plan! You don’t want to experience the shock of a higher than expected phone bill. Keeping tabs on your minutes and texts help keep your phone bill in line each month and helps keep you in line with your parents too!

Take your own lunch

Taking your own lunch from home is a lot healthier and a whole lot less expensive than spending it all at the tuckshop. Adults in financial trouble quickly admit that eating out is often their biggest mistake financially. Once they stop eating out all of the time, it’s amazing how easy it is to pay their other expenses and have a little money to save and invest each month. If you start this money-saving habit now, you’ll be a lot less stressed later.

Teach yourself

You’ve probably learnt a little about money, saving and investing, creating businesses, etc., in school or at home. But if you really want to be financially successful in life, it’s up to you to teach yourself about these important topics and practice them in the real world.

There are hundreds of great websites with simple ways to cut your expenses and save money.

Spend some of your Facebook time learning about money and how to save it. Learn how to get and keep more money in your pockets rather than putting it into others’ pockets.

Speak to financial advisors. Ask your parents to help you set up an appointment and spend time asking questions about growing your money.

“We hope all of you, our future young customers, had a very happy Youth Day and we encourage you to be creative and innovative in your money saving strategies,” concludes Ramosedi.

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