By: Etienne Gouws, CEO of Momentum Intermediary Solutions

South Africans are indebted as they consistently depend on credit cards to pay for day-to-day expenses. This year’s State of the Nation Address (SONA) speech delivered by President Cyril Ramaphosa made mention of starting a sovereign wealth fund to “preserve and grow the national endowment of the nation”. The question most have is: How can people save while drowning in debt?

The Momentum/Unisa Household Financial Wellness Index found that a change in behaviour is still the fundamental difference between the 25% classified as financially well and the remaining 75% that are not. Even the smallest change in behaviour and regular habits can accelerate one’s journey to financial success.

Changing behaviour takes dedication and determination to empower yourself with the right knowledge and advice. From the above it is clear that sound financial advice has never been more critical. Every South African deserves to have the relevant information and advice to support them through their journey to financial success.

Momentum recently held a roadshow for independent financial advisers to discuss trends in the industry and in the country, legislation changes, life and relationship changes and how such advisers can partner with Momentum to effectively manage and enhance their clients’ financial affairs.

Etienne Gouws, CEO of Momentum Intermediary Solutions, shares a few examples of milestones in anyone’s journey to success where advice from a registered financial adviser can help ensure that they make the right choices when it comes to planning their financial affairs.

  1. Retirement planning: Less than 6% of South Africans can uphold the living standard they were used to when they retire; about 58% will still have to work after they retire to make ends meet. Only 1.3% of working South Africans are members of a retirement fund. Whether you plan to just relax on the stoep, start a brand new venture, or spend more time with your grandchildren – you need the money to finance that lifestyle. Start saving and investing early, then stay invested and live comfortably during your retirement. A registered financial adviser can assist with advice, also on options to save tax-efficiently for retirement.
  2. Life cover allows you to support your family when you are no longer around. Knowing what life insurance to get is all about understanding how much cover you need to pay off any outstanding debt, or to support your loved ones when you are no longer around or unable to provide for them. Here, too, a registered financial adviser can guide you on a solution that best suits your needs.
  3. Do you have a will? About 86% of South Africans don’t. When you are no longer around, having a will means that your wishes about what you want to leave behind have been documented and can be carried out. A will needs to comply with between 20 and 40 types of legislation, and your marriage contract also influences how you have to set up your will. The wording of a will is equally important. Get a professional to help you with drawing up a will to ensure your wishes cannot be interpreted in more than one way.
  4. Momentum Multiply rewards its members for being active, safe, and having Momentum products. Helping you to make the right choices so that you can be healthier, safer, and on top of your finances, Multiply rewards you with discounts and cashbacks for taking everyday steps towards your success. You get more money just for doing the things you already do! A registered financial adviser can guide you with advice on how to earn more points to improve your Multiply status and earn more rewards. Members saved R637 million in Momentum products, but they also gained R249 million in partner savings. Taking a closer look at the numbers, members saved R22 million on groceries, R64 million at Multiply’s online store and R36 million on local flights.
  5. Personal belongings insurance is also called all-risk insurance and protects items like your jewellery, luggage, laptops, cell phones, cameras, prescription glasses and bicycles that you often take from home. You can also insure your car against damage and accidents. A registered financial adviser can guide you with advice to ensure your personal belongings are correctly insured, and review your cover every year to make sure you are not underinsured.

Are South Africans making best use of financial advice and planning and financial advisers on their respective journeys to success? South Africans have more access to financial advisers than they think, but are not adequately making use of this service, which under current legislation is still free of charge. A registered financial adviser understands your unique financial circumstances and helps you organise your personal finances to best suit your means and needs,” concludes Etienne.

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