Cost of Living – prices drop!

10/10: Despite the high Cost of Living, certain products and services in South Africa have actually come down in price over the past year. This, according to research done by Businesstech.co.za based on a new Statistics South Africa report.

Top of this list is telecommunications equipment which is 8.6% cheaper when compared to January 2017.This includes average price for a cellular phone, which decreased by R82 from R2,622 in January 2017 to R2,540 in August 2017. Since January 2014, overall prices for telecommunication equipment have fallen by 36%, the report said.

Other items which are now cheaper across South Africa include fruit (8.4%), furniture (4.1%) and breads and cereals (4%). Postal and telecommunication services, recreational equipment, fuel (petrol and diesel), hotels and appliances all also experienced slight price decreases.

This means that the Cost of Living has dropped in some instances – most certainly in terms of basic necessities such as buying food (fruit, bread and cereals) but also in terms of household necessities (buying furniture).

The price of living is also slightly alleviated when it comes to “luxury” items such as recreational equipment (which could range from gym clothing to sport accessories) and hotels. This means that end-of-year Christmas shopping and holiday outings could be more affordable, according to these latest estimates of price of living.

Of course, it all matches up against what salary you earn, and how much you can afford to pay. If your Cost of Living is exceeding your salary, you need to examine what expenses can go – and what has to stay. Mywage also has a comprehensive map of global Living Wages, which gives an idea of how much people earn in relation to Decent Work.

Important to remember: The lower the average income of a country, the lower the prices of necessities such as food, accommodation and electricity. But in the low-income countries, luxuries, such as new cars or imported goods, come at a very high price. Where things are definitely tough for consumers in South Africa – and getting tougher – it might make us feel better to realise that we are not the only ones in the world battling high living costs. And while our electricity costs are high, our wine and beer are cheap, as are our property prices per square metre.

And the price of some goods is actually decreasing!

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