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Cut your debt and save more with these tips from SA’s stockpiling guru

Cut your debt and save more with these tips from SA’s stockpiling guru

Ncumisa Ndelu, Mzansi's money-savvy “stockpiling queen”, started her Facebook group '1 Family 1 Stockpile' in 2016 to empower women by giving them the information they need to make educated financial decisions.

The group now has nearly 500 000 members.

The online community is teeming with cost-cutting tips, debt advice, budgeting advice, and general financial advice for a healthier relationship with money.

“In the beginning, it was just to share tips on how to shop in a cost-effective manner, but it has since evolved to include other aspects based on the needs of members,” said Ndelu.

Ndelu is a journalist and frugal living expert from uMlazi, Durban. She described her upbringing as colourful and joyful, and as an only child, her close relationship with her late mother prepared her to be a feminist activist.

She reaches out to people and speaks to them in a language they understand, sharing knowledge and suggestions on how to make their lives more comfortable with the little they have.

One of the primary financial challenges the country was dealing with was debt, said Ndelu. She cautioned people to keep in mind that borrowing money was a short-term solution that could lead to other bigger and more complicated long-term problems.

She said people should arm themselves with information before making any financial decision. “The information is available on all kinds of platforms. You don’t even need to leave your home to access it!”

Her shares her expertise with a range of people, from those who have just started earning, to seniors. She said those who received their first salary should not buy into the hype of shopping till they drop.

When it comes to saving money on groceries, she said you must not go shopping for an item when it is already finished because you have no time to shop around for the best price.

Buy more when the price is low, and stockpile items with a long shelf life to gradually reduce your monthly grocery bill.

“The only person you need to keep up with is yourself. Secondly, your money does not fight when it’s sitting in your account. Finally, social media can be a monster, or it can be a tool. It all depends on you,” she said.

Ndelu also recounted how a group member's daughter completed her Master’s degree using the information and tips from the group.

Recently, the group has spread to neighbouring countries such as Lesotho, Namibia, Botswana, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe and even went international, to New Zealand.

“In the last year or so, we have seen a significant growth in the number of young women in institutions of higher learning, and this excites me to no end because they are learning from our mistakes, and they’re not likely to repeat them,” she said.

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