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Surviving without your 13th cheque

By Isabelle Coetzee

Every year you depend on your 13th cheque to reduce your debt, pay school fees, or even whisk your family away to the beach.

READ: Best ways to spend your 13th cheque

But according to Hedley Lamarque, financial planner for BDO Wealth Advisers, certain businesses may soon revoke their policy on year-end bonuses.

“A decline in exports and manufacturing output, the credit downgrade and continuing political turbulence, among other factors, have placed significant pressure on the economy this year, and there is no end to the recession in sight,” said Lamarque. 

As a result, she believes, organisations that are having a difficult year may be forced to rethink paying their staff annual bonuses.

As a result, “The onus is on individuals who have been used to receiving a 13th cheque to plan for the possibility that this might not happen and start to take steps to maximise the income they know they can count on – their monthly salary,” Lamarque explained.

In order to save money towards your self-imposed 13th cheque, Lamarque suggested the following:

  • If you don’t need a private banker, you can save a lot of money by making use of banks such as Capitec, whose fees are very low. Alternatively, choose banks that have good loyalty programme, such as FNB with their eBucks rewards.
  • Another good money-saving tip is to ask your insurer for a review of your current premium, especially if you have not claimed for a few years. In most cases they will reduce your premiums and, if they don’t, then consider getting quotes from other insurers to see if you can get better rates (Do this through Justmoney by clicking here).
  • Online shopping, using sites like Takealot, can also generate savings as they normally have very competitive pricing on most items and free delivery. Subscribing to their daily deals means that they mail you their specials every day which offer very good discounts.

Nolene Parboo, head of Standard Bank’s transactional products and retail banking, agrees that, “If you don’t get a bonus at the end of the year, you can create your own by putting money aside every month to pay for year-end expenses and treats.”  

“Invest this money in your bond, collect all your silver coins at the end of each day, or open a special savings account for this purpose,” she adds. 

 To compare savings accounts through Justmoney, click here

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