10 Financial Concerns Many South Africans Face

During the two months of July and August 2018 I presented 21 financial talks, reaching about 1,500 people. Some of these talks were as a result of my Mandela Day project and others due to women’s month events. The groups varied between small groups of about 8 people to a big group of 600 women at a conference on women’s day. The majority of the audiences were women because of the women’s month events although some groups were predominantly men. Big retail groups, coffee shops, corporate companies, professional firms, real estate agents, colleges, networking groups, government organisations, business owners and women groups were part of the mix. The age groups varied from students in their final year of studies to retiree groups age 55 and above attending.

The general perception is that a financial talk will be boring, but I found the minute I start talking I grab the audience’s attention and I keep their attention throughout the presentation. Why? Not because I am a brilliant and entertaining speaker, but because finances is universal; it affects all of us in some way or another. Finances is also a very sensitive topic. People will rather talk openly about how much weight they need to loose than admitting they are struggling financially. However when showing the statistics and people are starting to open-up about their financial concerns; everybody seems to relax and starting to share their experiences. Why? People realize that their problems are not unique to them; many people face financial concerns and those concerns seem to be similar for many people.

Talking to all these people and listening to their stories and questions, I realized there is a golden thread spreading across all these groups – many South Africans face similar financial concerns irrespective of age, gender, race, social status or occupation. These are 10 financial concerns many South Africans are facing:

  • Debt and often over-indebtedness still seem to be the biggest concern for many South Africans.
  • Living from pay cheque to pay cheque with no money left to save is a reality.
  • Insufficient retirement savings scare most people.
  • Lack of financial knowledge about financial markets, products and terminology restrict people to a large extent making informed financial decisions.
  • Would like to save but don’t know what are the best saving and investment options available.
  • Having no defined financial goals and no plan to get there.
  • Do not provide for unforeseen circumstances happening and with retrenchments on the rise it becomes an even bigger concern.
  • The gap between income and expenses is continuing to decrease due to the increase in living costs.
  • The struggling economy, increase in divorce rates, high crime statistics and rise in critical illnesses have a significant impact on people who are dependent on an employer, husband / wife, partner or parent for an income.
  • People often admit that they face financial problems and wish to become financially stable but don’t know where to turn to for help.

During the next 10 weeks I will be discussing these 10 financial concerns in more detail – subscribe to my YouTube channel to follow all the discussions – YouTube 

Written by Ronel Jooste

CA(SA), Financial Consultant and Coach, Blogger and Speaker

Contact Ronel: ronel@financiallyfitlife.co.za

For more information about my financial wellness programmes visit the website