YOUR MONEY | Which money personality are you?

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Did you know your childhood, your environment, career and lifelong expo­sure to financial matters have all contributed to shaping your money persona­lity?

Each person’s money personality has an influence on how they feel about money and how they interact with their partner, family or even colleagues when it comes to finances.

Your Money spoke to Riana Prins, FNB’s Business Risk Advisory channel head, about five basic personalities, their positive and negative traits and how you can optimise your type.


You like to make a statement with your purchases. Appearance, the quality of your possessions and staying on trend are hugely important to you. You’re also not afraid of incurring debt to portray a desired image.

Positive You have an appetite for risk and could be willing to invest more aggressively in, for example, share portfolios that might give a good return on an investment.  

Negative If you’re not careful, you tend to overspend and fall into the debt trap. You can also be reckless with investments, which might lead to big losses.

Make it work for you- Ensure that purchases are worthwhile in the long run. Before buying, think about what the item will mean to you in a year.For example, if you have a job interview, it’s worthwhile spen­d­­ing money on an outfit that creates a good impression.

But if you’re buying a kettle, go for the practical, cost-effective model and not one based on looks alone that costs five times more – unless you’ve saved up for it.

- Before you spend any money, set aside enough to cover your day-to-day living and necessary expenses.

- Beware of get-rich-quick schemes and get expert advice from a financial adviser.

- Don’t incur debt just to keep up appearances. Buy a little less and save a little more.


You like your money to work for you. Whenever you spend money, it should have an end goal.

As a result, every cent you spend must give you a return on investment, eventually building towards a passive income.  For example, you buy a holiday home but you’d rather rent it out than enjoy it.

Positive You plan ahead and are always in complete control of your finances.

Negative You never really enjoy anything you spend as you always want to link it to a return on investment. Make it work for you

- Realise that some returns can’t always be measured in monetary terms. Think of, for example, a once-in-a-lifetime holiday with your family.

- If you live with another money personality type, allow that person the opportunity to do things with you that you both enjoy but that’s also important to them.


You don’t spend money to impress others, but you’re not living within your means either. You’re not really interested in finances and don’t monitor your spending.

Positive You’re not materialistic and enjoy the things you spend money on.

Negative You could rack up unnecessary debt and your lack of financial planning will catch up with you.

Make it work for you

- You need to pay attention to your finances so you don’t overspend. There are tools to help you with this, such as spending apps and banking apps that have a budget function.

- Get a financial adviser to help you stay accountable and help with your budget and financial planning.


You save every cent and live extremely frugally – you might not even buy your child slippers if your home has wall-to-wall carpeting. You’re uncomfortable with spending money, even when it’s necessary.

Positive You always have money tucked away and you’re good at bargaining.

Negative You’re so careful with money that you might be saving yourself poor.

For example, you’ll keep your money in a long-term savings account with low interest for fear of losing it, instead of investing in a unit trust with some share exposure.

As a result, your savings aren’t keeping up with inflation and as your living expenses increase, the buying power of your savings diminishes.

Make it work for you

- Get a professional to help you with your investment decisions. You can still have a safety net but to get your savings to grow well, an expert can help you make good, unemotional decisions.


If you’re feeling a little down, a little retail therapy quickly perks you up.

Positive You understand the value of money and you’re a bargain hunter of note.

Negative You buy with your emotions and can easily overspend and abuse a credit card.

Make it work for you

- If you know emotional stress makes you shop, you need to have an alternative plan of action in place.

- Consider setting up debit orders for necessary expenses such as savings.

- Talk to a financial adviser who’ll help you invest your savings in a way you can’t easily access – this will help you avoid unnecessary spending.  

Each money personality has positive and negative traits, and no one is perfect. See how you and your spouse or business partner can get your personalities to complement each other so you make sound financial decisions together.


- For a list of accredited financial planners, go to and

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