MONEY: Energy savings are crucial this Winter

Namibia in power crunch

Electricity charges are expected to rise and South African home owners have to find ways to cut down energy costs, says Tony Clarke, Managing Director of the Rawson Property Group.

PROPERTY: You can put a price on security

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Security still remains one of the main factors influencing home buying decisions. There is a significant difference in prices between access-controlled areas and neighbouring areas without such controls.

PROPERTY: The importance of your credit record

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Your credit record is important when buying a home. Proving that you can manage your debt obligations responsibly is vital, says Albertus van Staden of FNB Housing Finance.

LIFE: Busking for social change

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American-born social entrepreneur, Jason Woolf returned to his parent’s home country South Africa to use music in the tourism industry for youth development. Woolf has incorporated his education at the NYU Gallatin School of Individualised study to create social change.

PROPERTY: What to do with your home when you relocate

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If you have to suddenly relocate, selling your property may not be the best decision, and if you rent it out you need to make sure you have a reputable managing agent to take care, advises Richard Gray of Harcourts Real Estate.

MONEY: Banks approve bonds to better-prepared borrowers

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About 29% of home loan applications are declined outright by lenders. This low figure indicates an improved financial position of South African households. Banks are still strict with their credit qualification criteria when approving bonds.

PROPERTY: Bargain hunters seldom successful

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Property bargain hunters are having trouble lately as good estate agents begin to ostracize them. There is a negative perception that they are greedy and likely to turn down a fair market price.

MONEY: The Importance of Dread Disease Cover

Medical cost

Dread disease cover assists you in covering the financial costs associated with a serious illness. Most life assurers in South Africa have comprehensive dread disease cover which will pay out tax-free (as the contributions are paid with after-tax money), explains Bruce Fleming of CFP.

Property: A savings vehicle for your child’s education

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Your property investment could go towards saving for your child’s education as opposed to a traditional savings plan. Property is an asset that appreciates annually, beating inflation.

LIFE: E-learning at your door step

Risk management

Southern African Virtual School and Eduloan are making e-learning more accessible for personalised online learning to homes in South Africa.