South Africa’s new budget: Five facts and how they affect you

South Africa’s new budget speech was described as a “tough but hopeful” one and will look to further stabilise our country and its finances.

But, what does this mean for us and our spending at home?

Here at GetBucks, the easiest way to get credit online, we’re all about simplicity. So, here to help you break down some of the key points in the budget are five budget facts worth knowing, and how they may affect you.

If anything, they should inform your own budget at home to keep your spending in order.

1. VAT increases to 15%

For the first time in 23 years, VAT has jumped a percentage point. But, this change will not affect many of the essential foods and items that we already love and buy, including brown breads, eggs, rice, vegetables and fruits, and of course a good old South African maize meal.

Look out for zero-rated VAT products to save some money and benefit. Remember, every bit counts!

2. Smokers and drinkers can expect to pay more

Yes, sin taxes have gone up at what that means is simple: Expect to pay 15c more for a can of beer, 23c more for a litre of wine and as much as R4.80 more for a bottle of spirits. Smokers can expect to pay R1.20 more for a box of 20 cigarettes.

If you’re a smoker or a drinker then, now might be a good time to cut down or quit.

3. Free education will help thousands of students this year

Government has laid out a three year plan to make higher education free. This includes helping many students yearly until this is a reality. This year, thousands of poor students will benefit from a R12.4-billion helping hand, which will go a long way easing many of their budgets at home.

Are you in the position to benefit from free education? Keep a keen eye on the news and contact your local tertiary institution for details that could direct you.

4. Expect to pay more to get around

As of 4 April 2018, the petrol price will go up by 52 cents per litre. That means that your trip to work will be more expensive. So, brace yourself: Expect slight increases from taxis and uber-like companies as we all prepare to pay more at the pumps.

Consider this: Is it cheaper to use public transport than a private car if the option is available to you?

5. Drought-stricken areas to get some relief

Much of South Africa is a very dry country and government has acknowledged that our drought-stricken regions need extensive care. As such, they have put aside R6-billion this year to fight things like drought-relief and to build infrastructure to avoid future problems. If you’re suffering under the drought, this should arrive as very good news.

So, with the budget come and gone and the facts laid out, what will you do to adjust your budget at home? Whatever it is you decide to cut down on, our advice is to keep on saving as much possible to prepare for a rainy day.

Importantly though, be honest with yourself and calculate how this budget might affect your actual spending from day to day. Then, react and adjust to keep your budget hopeful too!

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