Starting in the world of work and finally earning a decent income can be an exciting time in life. At the same time, learning to manage your finances, start your savings right, and make the right financial decisions can be difficult when you’re just starting out.
On top of that, many young people have a responsibility to start giving back to their parents and families who sacrificed a lot to give their children a decent education.
As Ernest Zamisa, financial advisor at Momentum explains, if this responsibility is not handled properly on the part of the young worker, he could fall into a cycle of financial responsibility that could harm his own financial well-being in the years. future.
âA study conducted by Momentum, in partnership with Unisa, showed that approximately 71% of South Africans under the age of 39 are financially vulnerable consumers. This market segment faces a number of economic challenges including high unemployment, the pressure of changes in life stages (such as student loans, marriage or childbirth) and starting their journey. savings in a good way. Adding family responsibility to this list – colloquially known as the âblack taxâ – only puts additional pressure on these people if not addressed properly. “
He adds, of course, that this is a delicate discussion tied to complicated emotions. “While many of us are grateful for the opportunities that are presented to us – and wish to repay this in one form or another – it can also come with a sense of guilt over our success.”
One of the biggest issues, according to Zamisa, is that there is a lot of anxiety that comes with the responsibility of supporting an extended family while building your career and trying to achieve your financial goals.
âOf course, you can honor this arrangement if you feel it’s your responsibility, but it can be overwhelming. Keep in mind that you shouldn’t put your current financial commitment to your parents ahead of your financial goals. rather it this way – if you prioritize building your wealth now, you will be able to contribute more to your family in the future. â
With this in mind, he lists some tips for swimming instead of drowning in the “black tax”:
1. Be realistic with your money
You can’t take control of your money if you don’t understand your financial situation – your income, your expenses, and your commitments.
2. Get help and good advice
If you are financially floating, get yourself a life jacket. If you’re lost and failing to meet your financial goals, get direction. “We don’t always know how to create and maintain financial limits with our loved ones, and that’s something a financial advisor can help you put in place.”
3. Have open conversations with your family about money
You might not need to disclose your payslip, but Zamisa says sharing your financial goals and insight into your spending will help them figure out what you can afford. âSometimes our families believe we can afford more than we can. That’s why it’s important to have open conversations with the people we trust and are financially responsible for.
4. Empower yourself and your family
Demonstrate sound financial behavior, such as budgeting and sticking to it. “Our parents did not have access to the tools and resources we have today, so helping them understand the value of good financial behavior can benefit everyone.”
5. Take advantage of your income
Finally, Zamisa says it’s important to take advantage of your income. âWe are working hard to be able to take advantage of the rewards. Balancing your financial responsibilities and working towards your own financial goals can give you peace of mind when it comes to your money.
While many young South Africans cannot avoid paying “black tax”, Zamisa points out that there is a better way to approach it. âLearn to manage your finances in a way that helps you support your family without ignoring your own financial needs and working towards your own goals,â he concludes.