Financial Debt

Saving Tips

SAVING TIPS are always an attention grabber because we all need to save where we can! We’ve compiled a list of money saving tips for you to use. Life has become increasingly expensive, and we’ve done some research and come up with a few ways to save a bit of cash each month.

Electricity Saving Tips:

Geyser: Geysers add up to 40 percent of the monthly electricity bill. The easiest way to keep these costs down is to switch off your geyser when you leave the house. You could also install a geyser blanket – either purchase one or make your own from ”think pink” material. It’s a good plan to isolate the first metre of your existing hot water pipe as well. By switching off your geyser you can save huge amounts of money usually spent on electricity.
Lightbulbs: Lighting comprises up to 10 percent of an electricity bill, so by switching to energy-saving light bulbs and turning off lights in unoccupied rooms.
Fans: Summer time can become extremely hot and the use of fans can become expensive. If you have security doors and burglary bars, rather open the windows and doors to get the air flowing through the room. Unplug appliances: Even when they’re turned off, appliances and electronics on standby draw electricity that can amount to between 10% and 20% of your electricity bill.
Stove: The stove is one of the heaviest users of electricity. When cooking match pots and pans to plates of equal size. A small pot on a large plate means the heat around the pot is wasted.
Kettle: Every time you boil an overfilled kettle you waste unnecessary energy. Rather boil the kettle once and keep the water hot in a flask.

Saving Tips = Planning!

Plan your meals: Work out your Menu before going shopping. Using this saving tips will help you purchase only what you need each week. You’ll also avoid grabbing a takeaway on nights when you’re unsure what to cook. And if you’re shopping for food items make a grocery list and stick to it!
Ditch the pricey brands of food: Consider buying generic items rather than branded ones. They’re probably made in the same factory, have the same ingredients, and do the same job!
Household cleaners: We need to do a Post on what to use instead of… but use old school methods like bicarbonate of soda or vinegar and lemon juice instead of buying expensive cleaners . Make your own detergent for cleaning brassware by mixing a bit of tomato sauce and vinegar. The acidity in both aid the cleaning process. Rub onto brassware with newspaper, then wash with cold water and a bit of dishwashing liquid.
Not all DIY cleaners work. As far as washing dishes goes, the cheaper makes of dishwashing liquid are not always the best, as they are not very concentrated and could cost you more every month.

Saving @ Work…

Make up your lunches at home:  If you plan your lunches, you won’t need to buy them in that expensive coffee shop at work. Try making up a big pasta and leave it in the fridge to keep you going for a few days, rather than rushing in the mornings. You could also save money by microwaving your dinner leftovers from the night before.

Carpool: Can you combine your journey with someone else’s to save on cost? Ask around or advertise on your social media site to see if there’s anyone interested in splitting the cost of travel. Remember SAFETY FIRST! Make sure you are traveling with someone you know, and this saving tip will work for both of you.

Get staple work clothing: Rather than keep spending money, take a serious look at your work wardrobe and bring out the staple pieces each day. Depending on your work environment you could ask to wear a uniform which means you don’t need to supply your own clothing each day.

Don’t feel obliged to go to work socials: If your workmates go out a lot, don’t feel you need to, too. Choose the ones you want to attend of course, but head straight home rather than going to the others.


Avoid impulsive shopping: Do you really need that extra pair of shoes, jeans or accessories? Think carefully before you make each impulsive purchase. If it helps you to avoid those situations, don’t go to shopping malls at all.

Shop at flea markets: Flea markets are great places to bargain. The person behind each little store is usually their own boss. They set the price and that means they can change it. Before negotiating you must decide on your bottom line. You need to be clear about two things. First, what you can afford and second, the going price. Shop around to find out what most people are charging for the same item.

Staying in is the new going out: Consider inviting friends over rather than meeting up in town. You’ll still have fun but you won’t all be spending so much money. If you absolutely have to go out: Visit your local museum, Botanical Garden, or join a reputable Hike or Cycling Club.


UIF BENEFITS (South Africa)

Claiming UIF can be daunting, especially if you have no idea where to start.

Have you been retrenched, contract not renewed? Many of Doctor Debt clients are put into a position where they have become unemployed or unsupported for various reasons, and not aware that they can claim. Our clients must contact us immediately and we will assist them.

Persons who are registered with the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) and who have been contributing to the Fund can claim depending on the circumstances surrounding the loss of employment.  For example, you cannot claim from the UIF fund if you have resigned from the job, only if you have been dismissed or retrenched or if the contract has expired.

Unemployment benefits: 

Ask your Employer for the UI-19 Form and UI-8 Form which must be completed by them on your behalf

Email Application:

You may email the application through and will need all the necessary documents as listed below.
The email address is

Labour Centre:

Go to your nearest Labour Centre. There you will be asked to sign the unemployment register and you will be told when you need to come back and sign the register again. The register needs to be signed every four weeks to show that you still need to claim the UIF benefits.

You must go back to the office and sign the register on the correct date. If you are ill, you must take a doctor’s certificate with you to the labour centre. You will be given a white card, which the UIF officer will sign each time you sign the register.

If everything is in order, you should start getting money from the Fund within eight weeks of registering. The money will then be paid every four weeks, until all the benefits are used up. If you don’t receive your money in eight weeks, you should phone the Labour Centre and ask them to find out why there is a delay. Remember to have your name and ID number ready. You will receive a slip every time you receive money so that you can see how much you have received and how much you can still get.

To claim unemployment benefits you need to have:

  • a copy of 13-digit bar-coded identity document
  • a copy of your last six pay slips
  • information supplied by your employer (UI19)
  • a service certificate from the employer
  • proof of registration as a work seeker
  • a fully completed registration form.

If you want to receive unemployment benefits you need to be prepared to:

  • Go for training or career counselling if the UIF officer asks you to.
  • Be available for work. If you are offered work, you need to be ready to work.
  • Go to different companies to ask for work, and a form will be given to you that needs to be signed showing that you have looked for work and that there are no jobs available.

Your unemployment benefits must be collected from the Labour Centre on the date they said the money will be there. You must collect the money yourself and you must have your white card and ID book with you.

Illness benefits: (If you are off for illness for a period longer than two weeks)

To apply for illness benefits, you need to register at the Labour Centre nearest to you. If you are too ill to go to the office yourself, a friend or family member can get the form from the office and bring it to you to sign. The signed form then needs to be returned to the Labour Office.

You will need:

  • a copy of your bar-coded identity document
  • copies of your last 6 pay slips
  • information supplied by your employer (UI19)
  • a service certificate from the employer
  • proof of banking details
  • a statement of amount received from your employer during the period of the illness
  • a fully completed registration form.
  • You also need to submit a medical certificate (Form UF86) from your doctor. You need to get your doctor to complete the appropriate section of Form UF86 and then submit this to the UIF claims officer at the Labour Centre. The Department of Labour will consider the application and post Form UF87 to you to complete and your doctor needs to sign it and it should be submitted to the claims officer as well.

You will be paid benefits for the time that the doctor has booked you off work, less the first 2 weeks off work.  The amount paid out would be only for the time that you have not received normal wages from your employer.  Remember, you cannot claim illness benefits if your illness was caused by your own misconduct or if you unreasonably refuse treatment or fail to follow the doctor’s instructions. If you have lost your job as well as being too ill to work, you need to inform the claims officer of this because you might also be able to claim unemployment benefits for the period not covered by the illness benefits.

Maternity benefits:

You can take maternity leave at any time from four weeks before the expected date of birth and you may not work for a period of six weeks after the birth.

To claim maternity benefits, you need to register at the Labour Office and get a medical certificate on the correct form from your doctor.

To register you will need:

  • a 13-digit bar-coded identity document or passport.
  • copies of your last six payslips
  • Form UI-2.8 for banking details.
  • information supplied by your employer (UI19)
  • a service certificate from the employer.
  • proof of your banking details.
  • a statement of amount received from employer during maternity leave.
  • Form UI-2.7.
  • Form UI-2.3 (application form).
  • Medical certificate from a doctor or birth certificate of the baby.
  • Form UI-4 (follow-up form).
  • Fully completed registration form.

When you register, you will be given Form UF92 and this form must be filled in by your doctor, after which you submit this form to the UIF Claims Officer at the Labour Office.  To apply for benefits after the baby is born, you need to complete Form UF95 with help from the doctor who delivered the baby. If you are also unemployed, then you must notify the claims officer.

As from 01 January 2019 new Fathers can claim 10 days Paternity Leave to enable bonding to form between baby and father.  Further info on the Paternity Leave blog.

Adoption benefits:

If you legally adopt a child younger than two years old and you leave work to look after the child. Only one of the adopting parents can apply for benefits.

If you want to claim adoption benefits, you need to register with a claims officer at your nearest Labour Centre.

You will need to have:

  • a copy of your identity document
  • copies of your last 6 pay slips
  • your employer’s details on form UI19
  • a service certificate issued by your employer
  • the adoption order
  • proof of your banking details
  • a statement of amount that you have received from your employer during your adoption leave
  • a copy of your adopted child’s birth certificate.

Apply for the benefits within six months of the adoption order being issued.  A form must be filled in and sent back to the claims officer at the labour centre.

Death benefits:

The wife/ husband or minor child of someone who has died can claim death benefits if the deceased contributed to the fund.

The husband or wife of the deceased worker and any minor children of the worker can claim death benefits from the UIF. You must apply for these benefits within six months of the death of the worker.

If you were the husband or wife of the deceased worker, you need to go to the Labour Centre and fill in Form UF126. You will need to have:

  • your identity document
  • copies of the deceased’s last six pay slips
  • the employer’s details on form UI19
  • a certified copy of the death certificate
  • a certified copy of your marriage certificate
  • a service certificate from the employer
  • proof of your banking details.

If you are the child of the deceased worker, you can claim by completing Form UF127 and submitting it at the Labour Centre.

You will need:

  • a copy of your identity document
  • copies of the last six pay slips of the deceased
  • information supplied by the employer on form UI19
  • a service certificate from the employer.
  • a certificate copy of your (the child’s) birth certificate
  • proof of your banking details.
  • a certified copy of the death certificate
  • proof of guardianship
  • proof that you (the child) are a learner who was dependent on the deceased.

The Labour Office will give you Form UF128, which needs to be filled in by the deceased’s last employer and then submitted at the Labour Centre. The death benefit amount would be what the worker could have claimed if they were unemployed. This is paid out in one payment.

How much money can workers claim?

If you have been contributing to the Fund for four years or more, you can claim for up to 238 days. If you have been contributing for a shorter period, you can claim 1 day for every 6 days that you have worked while contributing to the Fund. Maternity leave allows you to claim up to 121 days. The Fund pays a percentage of the wage/salary that you earned while you were contributing to the fund. The highest amount that can be paid is 58% of what you earned per day.



Western Cape Department of Labour South Africa 

Department of Labour


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