Friday

A Post About Money




Reading a post on Caz' blog about money kind of got me thinking about my finances. I realized that I have a pretty good grip on it. Sure, I live paycheque to paycheque; I spend inordinate amounts of money on clothes and shoes (especially shoes), I party at least once every weekend, go to dinner at least three times a week and buy my lunches almost every day.

I splurge on Starbucks every once in a while, I take cabs a couple times a week - usually only late at night or on the weekends, I buy makeup and hair products at an alarming rate, I even go to the hair salon just to get my hair washed and blow-dried every couple of weeks.

On the other hand, I have almost no credit card debt (I'm down to $600), no student loans to pay off, and no car payments. I have a savings account with my rainy day fund and an RRSP with enough for a very small down payment on a house.

Therefore I think I'm in an okay position to talk finance.

Don't get me wrong, life isn't all peachy keen. I don't wander around throwing money to the wind while singing a little ditty about my Monolos or diamond-encrusted Diva Vodka (neither of which I have ever owned) .

I've been so poor that I grocery shopped on my Bay (department store) credit card, the only card of 4 that wasn't maxed out. My phone has been disconnected and I went without cable for a long time (partial laziness, partial brokeness, partial not caring enough to watch TV).

I had moved out of Douche-ex' place where I paid $250 a month for rent and into my own apartment where I paid $900 a month plus all my own groceries, nights out and entertainment. That's what I call a huge adjustment. I slept on a semi-futon chair for a month before I got a bed and ate more then any sane persons share of macaroni and ramen noodles.

Eventually I got adjusted, luckily I knew that rent came first and was never late with any payments, I started paying down my credit cards after cutting three of them up and acquired furniture - slowly.

I got my new job a year and a half ago. Better pay, normal hours, nicer people. I also moved to a different apartment (because my rent went up to $2100 a month - damn you "no rent control"! Obviously I moved before that rent came into effect) last year that is cheaper but still spacious.

Luckily my dad made me start an RRSP when I was 19. My work takes ten percent of my paycheque, matches it and puts it in my RRSP as well so I'm doing well on that front. It's strange getting a letter every four months about the amount in there when I don't even notice it missing from my cheque because I've never had it in the first place. It's the best way to save.

I opened an ING account a year ago. I put ten percent of my income automatically into it off each cheque for my rainy day fund. With that money I've gone to Cuba and PEI, I've gotten many a pair of shoes, I've bought Christmas and birthday presents, I'm planning on flying to Victoria for Thanksgiving and possibly Hawaii in the spring.

If I didn't automatically save money I would have spent that all on food, booze, and gawd knows what else. Instead I get to enjoy it. My dad wishes I would save it all and use it for something bigger (like buying my house) but you only live this life once and I'm going to enjoy the freedom I have to travel and have fun while I'm still young and single enough to enjoy it.

16 comments:

The Alleged Ringleader said...

GOOD FOR YOU! My finances are a mess! I can't pry myself away from spending more than I make!

rs27 said...

Oh your crazy Canadians and your spelling of check.

Ben said...

Your rent is double my mortgage payment. That is not okay.

brookem said...

im totally with you on the last paragraph. i say as long as i save a bit (ive been meaning to open an ING for forever now), then i can splurge a bit (on things like martinis, shoes, vacays, etc.). why not right? you only live once!

So@24 said...

It's fucking rough being an adult.

So@24 said...

I've had a plan in the works for awhile to take a long nap until time travel has been invented.

Want to join me? Take my hand to the promised land.

Grant Miller said...

If you have no debt you're doing very well especially if, as I'm kinda guessing, you're youngish and not looking to retire in the immediate future.

Enjoy life since you can.

Paula said...

I have a fairly good grip on my money too and found myself nodding along with the first part of my post, til i got to the savings part. I have about fifty pounds of savings. I think I'll maybe take a leaf out of your book and start saving ten percent of my pay every month.

Dr Zibbs said...

I bet you're not doing THAT bad. I mean, look at the fancy way you spell paycheck. Only rich people do that. Also, to make it look like you have more shoes, consider mix and matching them, wearing them on the opposite feet, and decorarting them with sticky decals. Good luck.

AttachedMama said...

She doesn't need to make it look like she has more shoes. I saw a picture of her next to her shoe rack once and thought she was in a shoe store, and that was only a small sampling... Anyway, paying yourself first is definitely the way to do it!

Kez said...

Wow, you go girl! And enjoy your youth :)
I did the house buying thing with teh hubby when we got married and have been yearning for the dosh to travel ever since our honeymoon!

angel said...

we all can't have daddy matching our investments.

just kidding I'm not bitter or anything.

But the whole eating ridiculous amounts of mac n cheese and raeman reminds me of stuffwhitepeoplelike.com

goingon27.wordpress.com

Essentially Me said...

Smartest thing you can do as an adult is have a savings account. I know people who get married and then live with their parents because they can't afford to buy a house or condo. Kind of sad really.

ÄsK AliCë said...

Ringleader - It's SO hard not to!!

rs27 - You love it, don't lie

Ben - Definitely not ok...a move may be in order ;>

brookem - Exactly!! Splurge while you are young and have minimal expenses!

So@24 - I would so join you for a nap, I love napping!

Grant Miller - I wish I could retire in the immediate future but it's not looking promising

Paula - You don't even really notice it gone. Start with 5% then up it once you're used to that.

Dr. Zeeee - I love the mixing and matching idea...

Attachedmama - I may have a shoe problem.

Kez - At least you have the house though! I'm trying to balance which is more important right now in my life

Angel - No, no; "Daddy" doesn't match my investments - my WORK does, it's an incentive program they have.

EssentiallyMe - Yup, I know people like that too. I'd rather get myself set up now.

well-intentioned heartbreaker said...

haha, first i love this post and the fact that you are smart financially. i would never date someone who wasn't.
uhm. not that i'm trying to date you.
that came out wrong.

MOVING ON.

i'm sitting here reading this as i eat NOODLE TIME here at work for the first time in.. ever. i've never been in debt, have lived on my own since i was 17 and have always paid every bill on time. like you, i go out frequently, and spend too much money on booze and shopping. but with going back to school fulltime next year and trying to have the cash to PAY for that and be able to afford a roof over my head? i've actually started budgeting (i started 2 days ago. i shouldn't be patting myself on the back yet). i saw a pair of killer boots at the mall this weekend and instead of paying the $150 for them, i told myself i'd "save" for them. my heart broke. i have a feeling not being broke and saving money is going to be hella harder than being broke. it's hard not to spend when i know that money is just sitting there. i must remind myself to THINK SCHOOL. THINK FUTURE.

(Un)popular said...

Good job girl! I'm impressed!