By James Vigne
Consider this scenario…
You get your first job and then a month later your very first salary. You’ve worked hard to earn it and excitement begins to flood your body. “I’m rich!” you think aloud as your mind begins to race with all the ‘bucket list’ items that seem almost within reach. What now? Well, actually something very important has just happened. You have become a member of a prestigious group of people. You’ve become a tax payer.
What do you do now with that first paycheck? It’s an important question to ask because how you view money will set the groundwork for the success or failure of your financial future.
The truth is, money will either use you or you will know how to use it. It is important that you take control of your personal finances from day one. But where to start? The first step is budgeting. Preparing a budget may sound like such a trivial thing to do, but it is the humble budget that will empower you to take charge of your finances.
A budget forces you to break down your expenses and prioritise what is most important. Budgets show you the items or the kind of lifestyle you can have right now and encourage a future mindset, helping you set goals. Budgeting (ideally on a monthly basis) makes you accountable for what you spend and how you spend it.
The truth is, money will either use you or you will know how to use it.
Here are some other basic principles worth following when it comes to managing your money:
Save first. And then spend what you haven’t saved. You are effectively paying yourself first.
Live within your means. When you begin to buy things you cannot afford, you enter into a cycle of debt and regret, putting yourself in a precarious position if unexpected expenses arise, which they do.
Debt. Don’t use debt to fund a lifestyle. Debt should not be used for consumption, only for investment (and no, those Air Jordan’s are not an investment).
Spend wisely. You are not defined by how much you have. You are defined by how you spend what you have, so spend wisely.
How you make money. Achieving success by trampling on the heads of others is not success. As the old adage goes: “It’s not how much money you make that counts, it’s how you make your money that does.”
You might be in a place where you’re about to finish varsity. Maybe you’re wondering if you’ll be able to adapt to ‘real world’ responsibilities and decisions you’ll be facing soon. This whole ‘adulting’ thing may feel a bit daunting, which is why Campus Outreach Johannesburg in partnership with Villic Wealth will be bringing you ‘Adulting 101’. It is a seminar that hopes to equip students and young adults with some of the skills needed to navigate personal finances and one’s working career.
I will be covering topics ranging from paychecks, budgets, and tax returns through to building wealth, insurance, and investment basics. We will also have the privilege of hearing from Advocate Realeboga Tshetlo and Adriaan van der Spuy as they share some pearls of wisdom about overcoming the legal and entrepreneurial challenges you may face.
Adulting 101 will be happening at Rosebank Union Church in Johannesburg on the 20th of November 2018 at 7pm. This is a free event and all are welcome, however please email Christos@campusoutreach.org so that we can get an indication of the number of attendees.
Looking forward to seeing you there!