Thanks for dropping by Safe Investing South Africa. I am on a journey to build wealth my way. For any questions or comments, feel free to contact me.

24 Aug 2013


I just asked a group of women on facebook about their side hustles. I was so inspired by all these hard working women. Some are in direct marketing building their sales businesses, some are rocking a second job/ future business, one is selling chicken and eggs and one is completing her self catering apartment/ studio. This all inspired the rest of us. Everyone is awakening to the reality that no job is secure, and that diversification of income is necessary.
Side hustles and Outsourcing
My own side hustles story goes:
For more than 4 years I lived in a foreign country, set to build on my side income to be my main income. I had no salary and my goal was to grow my side income to reach the last salary I received from my job. This would enable me to choose whether to go back to work or continue doing what I love doing. The plan was to have a location independent kind of work like freelance writing. For one year I buried myself in writing from morning to morning. I slept for 5 hours max. I got burned out and worried that I wont enjoy the new country I was in if I carried on with the hard work and no leisure. I decided to outsource some of my work (I am a lazy person in general). A company in another country started writing for me together with SA journalism students and a freelance editor worked on the imperfections. I pretty much freed most of my time to do missionary and charity work and talks in conferences, and coffee dates and church activities, and social networking, and leisurely writing only on what I like.

My main side income when I had a job was in real estates, followed by my writing. With me that far I had to hire a property manager to take care of the real estate part of my busy life. I now had outsourced almost all my life. I didn’t even take my son to school, because I felt I needed time to think about ways to grow my side income. Everyday I woke up to think, think and think some more... My thoughts got clearer and clearer every single day. I decided to go back to school for 2 years, which I did on block weeks to do Masters in Real Estate. Though unnecessary but also tying in with the goal of growing my side income.

I renovated my rental properties to increase the rental worked. My writing side hustles started working for me and I re-invested the income where it can work and earn me monthly income... it worked. Four years went by and my extra income reached my final take home salary of 4 years prior. I had to choose whether I go back to the workplace or I continue chilling with my daughter at home. My friends were scared for me, my family was scared for me, I was scared for myself, my husband was a very proud man and pretty much told me to “do whatever you want to do”. I went back to work just to see how I feel about it. I was now more confident to shove in my terms into my new job like reducing the travel. And I realised that I still like the kind of work that I have been doing in the past, quite a bit. I will be honest, the main reason I went back to work is to grow my side income further through investments in order to reach double my current salary. I thought and still think I won't last very long at work but I decided to at least try it. If I enjoy it, I will stick around for another two years.

This is no magic, anyone can do what I am doing. I am humbled by the love and support and the inspiring women who are working hard all around me. I am writing this to inspire the women who are starting on their side hustles to keep on working hard. It's one of the few ways to fast track one's financial independence. All my side income is re-invested to build more income. Most importantly, when I invest money, I never feel deprived of anything because God has already provided me with everything I need. The rest is just unnecessary frills that are great to have. And my lifestyle has enabled me to give to the less fortunate more each year. I am really grateful. I may not be rich but I am very content.

How about you my friend? What side hustles are you busy with?

21 Aug 2013


A few weeks ago I wrote an update on my deceased estate transaction. I had basically thrown a towel as this transaction is approaching a full year in existence. I actually sent a "thanks but no thanks" type of email to the lawyers when they sent me this:
Dear Mrs... Thank you for your email of the 20th of July. You are quite correct to say that this has been a tough transaction but we have reached the stage where the transfer documents have now been forwarded to Cape Town for registration in the Deeds Office. We anticipate registration to occur towards the end of August. 
Yours faithfully
Ok, it seems that we are finally putting this matter to rest. We are to pay the remainder of the money beginning of September. What I found interesting though is the email from the lawyer that reads:
Dear Mrs...
As we are expecting registration early September 2013 please let us have the purchase price iro the above-mentioned transaction.
Please note that there has been a delay caused by FNB losing the original Title Deed and Bond which has to be simultaneously cancelled with registration of transfer.
Awaiting to hearing from you shortly.
Then the bank delays this process further. But really, it doesn't matter much. I still think the transaction was worth the wait. I managed to lock the price for the whole year. I only paid the lawyers fees in the year and kept my money in the money market account for the year.

What is exciting me the most is the fact that I will do a small development in this property. I may add a few two bedroom units in the land. Lets hope the municipality wont give me problems. if they do, I may have to re-sell the property. It would hurt to do that because even my parents went to see it. They really loved it.

Well, that's my deceased estate transaction update. Will I ever buy from a deceased estate again? I don't know. I actually doubt it. Would you consider buying from a deceased estate?


The right way to go about reaching financial independence for me was only through understanding my “WHY”. For me, it is to be able to take control of my life. I don’t want to stay in the job that I don’t want because I have to. That's why we chose to owe no one anything but love, and it works wonders for us. We worked hard and sacrificed fancy material stuff earlier on to leave an inheritance for our children and started building our own tools to give to the poor. I have a small scholarship to give other people's kids a solid high quality education. This is all based on the wisdom found in the Proverbs.
Reaching Financial Independence - image
Establish your own WHY and shape your life to respond to it.

What is Financial Independence?
“Financial independence is a term generally used to describe the state of having sufficient personal wealth to live, without having to work actively for basic necessities. For financially independent people, their assets generate income that is greater than their expenses.” Wikipaedia

A high salary doesn't count, unless it is used to acquire assets that make more money. It is all about asset ownership. Assets are what enable us to create jobs, reach out to the poor, and have control over our time. A job is not a permanent solution to one's financial woes. You may lose your job in an instant. It is much wiser to get R500,000 per year from an asset than R1Million from a job because your asset is likely to be with you and your children and if well taken care of, with your children's grandchildren.

Measuring your Way to Reaching Financial Independence

Financial independence is about the ability to live comfortably without needing a job. To measure your wealth, think about the number of years you can manage without your next salary. If you are able to cover all your expenses without a monthly salary, congratulations, you have arrived. There are two ways of doing this

You either boost your income or lower your monthly expenses. The easiest is lowering expenses. This is not easy, but it is very possible. In just over 10 years of us working towards this with only our salaries, we reached the point where we can do without our jobs in an unfortunate event of us losing them. We managed to collect assets that earn us a stable income that covers more than just our basic expenses. This is how we did that:

Real Estate
Most of our monthly income is from our rental properties. These alone can cover our current basic needs. It is definitely not easy collecting assets like property in South Africa. Don't be intimidated, however. Push harder, save like crazy, and start your own wealth building journey. We also paid up all our properties by investing the rental income back into the mortgages/ homeloans. It was worth it. Without a homeloan currently, that means lower monthly expenses.

Living Below your Means
It's a no brainer, earning R20,000 and having your living expenses at R20,000 is doing your retirement plan disservice. Most of us spend more than we earn. In some instances, a beggar in the street with R500 net worth is doing far better. Living on 50% of your income is a general rule of thumb. I know couples that live on one salary. Earlier on, we invested about half of our income in real estate and lived on the other 50%. That was not very easy but with time it was automatic. Even the 50% was a lot. I suspect that we will do even better than this. I think living on 40% in our current financial state is attainable.

Paying yourself First
It has been mentioned over and over again but the concept of paying yourself first will never get out of fashion. I am guilty of loving nice clothes, shoes and bags. Most people don't know how badly I love nice stuff including nice cars. I go to an extent of reading car magazines. I love cars. But I obviously can't own everything I love now, can I? The fact that I know I can afford them and will eventually own the one I really love is enough to keep me going. I just think a car installment would pain me at the moment. I doubt if I will ever be OK with it. So I try to hold my horses and keep pushing my old car. In the meantime, I'll keep investing in my car fund until its overgrown.

I've been trying to quicken our way to reaching financial independence through this method for a while now. What works for me is transferring the money immediately it reaches my account into my investment accounts. Part goes to stocks, part to property when I have a mortgage, part to my money market account, etc. Its only after this that I start spending the remainder. After spending on all the basics, I make it a point I get my monthly facial and massage. Even with spending 50% and below, I manage to sneak in my beauty spa visit. It is very important for my sanity.

Interest, Stocks and Dividends
Our emergency fund obviously gets some interest of just below 5% in the current low interest rates. The stocks we have earn us some growth and dividends. These are very small amounts but every little bit counts. I must add that with diversifying in mind, all our rental income goes to stocks now.

Side Income
I have a small income from my online writings. This alone can pay for my son's school. I am grateful for this very small amount of money. Especially because I love writing and I only do it about once a week currently. I am too busy with a lot of stuff in my life at the moment. I would prefer more writing.

I also want to sell stuff online at a comfortable pace. I will stock things I love to collect and re-sell them. That includes antiques and art.

How about you? Is there any thing you are currently doing to fast track reaching financial independence?