THIS National Savings Month, Sanlam has challenged Mzansi to live a more frugal life. This is more than just cutting out going to see films – it’s about changing your behaviour to create good habits that empower you to foster financial well being.

Andre Wentzel, solutions manager at Sanlam, said they have compiled a 31-day frugal challenge to inspire Mzansi to get serious about saving.

“The idea is to complete a series of small, daily savings goals that together help entrench good financial habits and a more frugal mindset,” he said.

He said while times are tough, it’s never too late to save.

“If you’re feeling overwhelmed by money matters, this challenge is a fun way to get back on track. Additionally, I always suggest speaking to a financial adviser as the best starting point when finances start becoming stressful.”

Wentzel says these are some of the top challenges you can anticipate.

1 Carpool - It’s been said time and again, but few of us have actually got around to consistently carpooling with colleagues. Now’s a great time to gather a carpool crew and share the costs of fuel.

2 Say goodbye to expensive bank charge. Check what you’re paying in monthly bank fees and investigate whether you are on the right account option.

3 Get smart with your geyser: Geysers use an astonishing amount of electricity each month. So lower the thermostat on your geyser to cut down on costs (*no lower than 60 degrees for health reasons).

4 Have a “clothes swapping” party: gather together friends or colleagues and arrange to have a clothes swap. The rule is you can only take someone else’s clothes if you contribute two or three of your own good quality items.

5 Stage a garage sale: Watch a Feng Shui video on de-cluttering on YouTube and have a mini garage sale.

6 Negotiate cash discounts: never be afraid to negotiate.

7 Eat in: have “One Favourite Dish” potluck meals with loved ones.

8 Join a loyalty programme: loyalty programmes can sometimes save you considerable sums.

9 If it’s broken, fix it. We often just throw things out when they break, because of the effort and time involved in fixing them. Next time try to fix something.