Five (5) Money-Mindful Tips for a Financially Responsible Black November

Five (5) Money-Mindful Tips for a Financially Responsible Black November

“The shopping season is in full swing with anticipated ‘discounts’ and various Black November sale frenzies going on. But if there is one thing you can do to make sure you end your 2023 year off on a high note is to reject overconsumption and, instead, practice mindful spending (IF you have a budget set out for it of course),” highlights Wikus Olivier, our managing director here at CreditSmart Financial Services.

According to the recent numbers from Eighty20/XDS’ Credit Stress Report, consumer credit defaults continue to rise. The National Credit Regulator’s Credit Bureau Monitor statistics indicate consecutive increases in the number of credit-active consumers quarter upon quarter. In June 2022, there were 26.52 million credit-active consumers, which rose to 26.90 million by December 2022 (a climb during the shopping season), and further to 27.05 million by June 2023. What’s concerning is the growth in the number of consumers with impaired credit records, which climbed from 9.88 million in June 2022 to 10.02 million within a year (June 2023). Equally alarming is the decline in the number of consumers classified as being in good standing, which dropped from 17.19 million in December 2022 to 17.03 million in June 2023. These figures highlight the importance of adopting financial mindfulness when considering extra debt, especially in the face of Black November’s enticing marketing gimmicks being portrayed as actual ‘deals’.

Here are our five (5) money-mindful recommendations on how to ensure a frugal and responsible shopping silly season:

  1. Know Your Current Money Situation: Safeguard your financial health and look at the holistic picture of your financial situation. An overall view will allow you to know if you should rather shy away from inviting ‘sales’ this month, entirely, or to what extent you can go (money-wise) to take part in the shopping phenomenon of the year.
  2. Specify Your Budget Amount: Make sure you have a separate Black November/Friday budget set up before doing any online browsing or outlet visits. Exercise self-control and stick to your allocated budget amount as shopping in the current period is more tempting than ever. Focus on essentials or ‘needs’ and not your ‘wants’.
  3. Pause Before Making a Purchase: Before committing to buying something, take a minute and ask yourself: “Is this an essential or just something I ‘want’?” and “Am I still within my budget if I buy this item?”
  4. Duck Black November Retailer Tricks: Know what items cost as this will help you to point out if a ‘sale’ is reflecting an actual discounted deal or not. Remember: Retailers tend to raise prices above the usual asking price and they market aggressively – creating a false sense of urgency, clouding your judgment to do a thoughtless ‘impulse buy’. Overpriced impulse purchases are usually followed by guilt, regret, and even uncontrolled debt.
  5. The Most Mindful Thing You Can Do is to NOT Spend Money at all: Don’t take part in the consumption chaos if you have not budgeted and don’t want to accumulate extra debt. Over-indebtedness is real and can creep in unexpectedly. If, however, you are already feeling the debt pinch, be #CreditSmart and seek the best-registered solution to help you break free from the shackles of debt.

Don’t set yourself up for an indebted 2024 by overspending and overstretching your pocket this shopping season. You can be financially mindful this #BlackNovember by avoiding impulse spending and being fully aware of your financial position – focusing your attention on your budget and ‘real needs’ instead of those unnecessary ‘wants’,” concludes Olivier.

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