I'm done making debt to impress others, says DJ Loyd
DJ Loyd - aka Loyiso Mdebuka - is indisputably nailing life. A man who wears multiple hats, he's a successful TV presenter, radio host, DJ, TV star and creative director at his own company Blank Kanvas .
Having grown up in Gugulethu and Khayelitsha in strained circumstances, he's fought hard to create this life. And he's learnt some big lessons along the way.
Living the "celeb" life has been tough at times. DJ Loyd says it's easy to get drawn in by the pressure to impress. He's seen a number of friends get caught out by the pitfalls of "that social media lifestyle",dropping big bucks and purchasing items outside of their means. Plus, he says he's made some miscalculated decisions himself that have turned out to be expensive learning curves.
Here, he shares some insights and drops some financial knowledge from his own experiences, in conversation with Capitec Bank.
1. Do you think that people have certain expectations of what a celebrity lifestyle entails? And do you feel pressure to live up to this?
To be honest, the term celebrity is not something I really subscribe to or see myself as, however brushing shoulders with celebrities definitely creates perceptions and pressures that one feels to live up to. I've watched a number of celebrities try to live up to the "standards" of a life of stardom. It becomes a debt trap as you try to own the latest car, designer clothing or Grade 10A weave. These things don't ho ld their value for very long and quickly you're left paying off the money you still owe.
To overcome the pressures to live up to the "life of stardom", I've adopted the mindset of seeing myself as lucky to have been given certain gifts and talents and blessed enough to see them through. So, I believe in seeing yourself as a servant to your talents and that helps me alleviate that pressures.
2. Can you share with us some of the financial "mistakes" you and perhaps some of your friends have made, especially in your early days of celebrity?
The biggest mistake I think most people in the limelight have made, especially in the beginning, links to a "need to impress". Buying unnecessary things that are not assets or failing to truly contribute towards financial and personal growth. Because in truth, you become your business and your mindset needs to shift towards growing that.
I had to dig myself out of a debt trap which was built on keeping up with appearances. This, as a result, has taught me to rethink credit. I started looking at credit and asking myself, "Am I taking out good or bad credit?" I needed to rethink credit and use it for the right reasons - as a tool to reach my dreams a nd live a better life in the long term.
3. What big purchase do you most regret making?
My toughest lesson was when I bought my second car. I was really fixed on this brand and wanted to "reward" myself for all the work I had done to get to that moment. I justified the exorbitant amount on the car's repayment by saying, "I usually spend this money on silly things so now I am going to focus and make sure I don't overspend."
I got that partially right, but I had a lot to learn about hidden costs the hard way. My insurance was high, petrol was super expensive, and I spent a lot on that, because "excited Loyd" now had to drive everywhere fast. In essence I ended up spending almost double than what I thought due to hidden costs. I really wasn't rewarding myself for all my hard work and it turned out to be a burden.
It really got bad when one night my friend borrowed my car without me knowing. When I woke up in the morning I found my car parked outside my apartment but the front was severely damaged. I had to get the car fixed quickly as it was my only transport to gigs and work. Luckily by this stage I had paid off most of my debt and could use credit for the right reasons - to fix my car. Credit was an important tool, which kept me mobile and able to earn an income. That's good credit.
Having a credit card in such instances is great for unplanned expenses or emergency situations. With Capitec , you can get a credit card limit of up to R150 000, depending on your affordability assessment as well as an interest rate from 10%.
4. What are some of the best financial lessons you've learned?
Have a plan - you need to look at money as an enabler not the goal. Once you have a plan, you can see how much your money can enable you to realise your ambitions.
I think, especially when you're starting a side hustle, a personal loan can be an empowering way to grow a dream. The reality is that when you're starting out, you generally have no clients, just a vision.
Provided you have a plan, access to a personal loan can be an incredibly important enabler. We wouldn't be where we are without cash reserves and credit. Plan well, gain a clientele, enable capacity and then start to access other kinds of funding like investment. Who knows, a savvy side hustle could one day become your primary income earner. Most of all, be responsible. Capitec offers personal loans from 12.9%, which puts it in line with secured credit, making it an affordable option when starting your side hustle . and save!
Francois Viviers, Executive of Marketing and Communications says, "DJ Loyd is an inspiring example of how to see past the temptations of flashy spending and keeping up with the Khumalos, and rather using your money, and credit, to build towards the future. He was able to grow a full-fledged company and now employs others too. Our rethink credit campaign is all about using credit for the right reasons. It's about seeing credit as an enabler to realise responsible dreams.”
* This article was published in partnership with Capitec.