The Fat Wallet Show with Kristia van Heerden

Podcast: Saving for your kids is not enough

In Latest, The Fat Wallet by Kristia van Heerden

So many Fat Wallet listeners are diligently setting money aside for their kids. We often field questions about investments and suitable investment vehicles for children. Being able to send your child into adult life with enough money is a noble aspiration.

We don’t often encounter people who benefited from this type of financial leg-up, making it difficult to guess at the impact it has. This week, listener Pieter let us in on his experience as the beneficiary of this sort of parenting. He also tells us why he doesn’t think it helped as much as it could have.

He writes:

The biggest financial issue for my dad has always been paying off their house. He used to say that he would have done much more with us as younger kids if he didn’t have that debt. He took it upon himself to make sure my sister and myself get a good, debt-free start to adult life. We are very fortunate that he helped us buy our first house cash, and had some money left to invest. For this I am truly grateful.


My financial education was as follows:

At age 10 my dad gave me a little book and a pen and told me I need to write down my allowance and spending. It took all of 20 seconds and I think I wrote one line in that book. I never saw him do it and he never asked me about it again.

More than decade was wasted simply because I was not financially literate. Worst of all, it lead to the mismanagement of the assets with which we were entrusted. If I knew at 18 what I knew at 33, I would have been much closer to retirement.

To save oodles of money for your kids is a nice gesture, but teaching them about that money makes the biggest impact.

Both my kids have TFSA ETF accounts at Absa and that is all fine and well. But I am making an effort even at their young age to educate them about money. Once they’re older they will be included in budget talks and planning, know about salaries and about their investments. I want them to work with money and make mistakes while I am still there to catch them.

You also mentioned in the podcast that talking to your kids about finance means you should fix yours. I also feel that you should include them in your failures. Learning comes from failure so go at it 😀

We live on a farm and pay the kids allowance for chores using poker chips. It’s a mission to have a bunch of 1 rands everywhere.

We soon realized that we we’re running out of poker chips and had to make a plan.

I built a small “bank” for them where they can deposit their poker chips. I added some budget functionality and my plan is to add some interest dynamics when they are older. I put it online for some friends to use and figured you can point other parents to if you want. (I gain nothing from people using it. I just like to share). 

Moola Bank

Shane wins second prize, for putting his money where fees aren’t.

Thanks for the great on TFSA Transfers!

I’ve decided to be a guinea pig, and initiate my transfer out of those super high fee people (Old Mutual), and into the safety of my EasyEquities account.

It’s been fairly painless so far, all I did was call each provider, told them what I want to do, and they mailed through the forms.

Now the 10 day waiting game begins.


Richard Watson reckons the time for silver investing has come and gone.

The listener who wanted to put all his cash into silver might want to move half into vanilla!

Dirk is looking for a place to invest for his little girls.

Seems as if Sygnia has quite a reputable TFSA with lowest costs I have seen in the market thus far.

I am thinking about opening a TFSA for each of my little girls in the near future.

We’d like to commiserate with our friend Petrus for paying a rental management firm 10% commission every month for no good reason.

Been paying these fuckers 10% commission for more than a year for nothing!! Anyway, just another point for NEVER buying!! I have a good tenant (well, I hope as I’m sitting in Germany), so I will be dealing directly with him until I get to sell the piece of shit property.

He also has an excellent point regarding emergency funds.

Just a quick sanity check. Why should I not use my credit card as an emergency fund? It seems wasteful to have say three months worth of living expenses sitting in cash not earning anything. Surely with the 58 days (I think) interest free you get with your credit card this gives you enough time to draw money from your investment (of course not your TFSA) before you have to pay interest.

I guess there is a good reason you keep this in cash, but I am not sure what this is.


  • Fees
  • If you use your credit card because you lost your job, how will you pay it back?


Perwez wants to help his wife find an index-tracking RA

My wife recently resigned from her job and now has her retirement funds available to invest.

I’ve told her the best option would be to open an RA with what she has rather than converting it to a provident or preservation fund.

I’m a firm believer in passive funds and I have been doing some research in what is available within RA wrappers. Other than the usual suspects (below), do you know of any other passive RA products/wrappers?

Thus far, Im leaning towards a 50/40 split between the Prescient balanced fund and the Nedgroup Core Accelerated funds, both of which are available on Momentum Wealth’s RA LISP (the only platform I know of that has both funds available) and adding the remaining 10% to an index tracker focusing on property.

  • Prescient balanced fund
  • Nedgroup Core funds
  • Satrix balanced fund
  • Sygnia Skeleton funds
  • 10X
  • Easy Equities RA funds
  • ETFSA funds
  • ABSA core RA passive fund (although latest factsheet is from Sep 2016)

Hannes has literally sold the farm – or part of it, at least.

I‘ve sold part of the farm and must now invest the money wisely.

Everybody tells you to see a certified financial adviser – I am still to meet such a creature.

The inputs I have had creates more confusion than clarity and I get the distinct feeling that a corporate overseer is involved and that fees are not realistic.

Can you give me some pointers?   

Is there anybody that is knowledgeable about trusts since the property is in a trust?

In the podcast we recommend that Hannes get in touch with Craig Gradidge. You can contact him here

Miles compared a bunch of balanced funds and found that the NewFunds MAPPS Growth ETF outperformed the others by a huge amount.

Although it’s overweight Naspers, at a TER of 0.20% – great.

Even a medium risk TFSA blend would probably battle to beat this growth!

I seriously think, for a TFSA portfolio of ETFs, MAPPS could have  about 20% allocation.

To remind you, this ETF has:

Cash (4.56%)

Equity (75.65%)

Inflation-Linked Government Bonds (9.11%)

Nominal Government Bonds (10.68%)

Marlene has a financial responsibility vs lifestyle balance issue.

I am saving a lot for retirement and not so much for the things I want to do, which is travel. I feel like my brain is in save mode.

All of a sudden I am anxious to save for everything. From a deposit for my next car, to a deposit  for country house (when I retire) or nice-to-have item.

How can I balance the two as I grow older, seeing as I am 31? I want to retire comfortably but also travel. I feel like I cannot just focus solely on my retirement portfolio and medical expenses, but want to travel and enjoy life whilst in my 30s. I opened the ETF accounts to utilize when I retire. Hopefully they will grow as I reinvest dividends, and the market doesn’t collapse like 2008.

Should I resume my investment strategy as is, or should I look at other ways of growing my portfolio? Please also advise if I am saving too much for retirement/ future medical expenses as opposed to doing things I want (travel).

The Fat Wallet Show with Kristia van HeerdenThe Fat Wallet Show is a no-nonsense personal finance and investment podcast hosted by Kristia van Heerden and Simon Brown. Every week we answer questions by a growing audience of finance enthusiasts. Submit your pressing money and investment questions to

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