Money Diary: Saving To Buy A House In Yorkshire

Welcome to Money Diaries, where we're tackling what might be the last taboo facing modern working women: money. We're asking a cross-section of women how they spend their hard-earned money during a seven-day period — and we're tracking every last penny. This week, a 29-year-old woman from Yorkshire who is saving to buy a house with her boyfriend. "I've been saving about £400 a month towards the house but it has varied month to month as some months I earn more. So far, we've saved about £6000 between us. I have £70,000 from selling my last house, which was in Leeds, meaning we haven't had to use a Help To Buy scheme or anything like that. We will use the 70k as a deposit and for renovation, and then our mortgage is about 95% – based on my boyfriend's earnings, as his salary is much better than mine and I'm not in full time employment."
Industry: Pilates Teacher
Age: 29
Location: Yorkshire
Salary: £20,000 - £22,000 before tax – varies
Paycheck Amount: £1562 last month
No. of roommates: 2 – I sold my house in June and so my boyfriend and I are currently staying at my mum’s house while we save some money to buy somewhere together. Monthly Expenses: Housing Costs (rent, or other?): No rent, but the deal is that I pay for the food shopping.
Council Tax: My share is £30
Loan Payments: 0
Utilities: Lucky enough with my current living arrangement that I do not to have to pay any of these!
Transportation: Fuel costs, usually around £60 a month on average
Phone Bill: £25
Around £400 per month Total: £515

Day One

8.00 - Breakfast at home (two boiled eggs and a Berroca) before driving to teach my first class of the day. 11.30 - Pop into Sainsburys before going to meet my friend and her one-month-old baby boy. Said I’d provide lunch but not a clue what to bring. Ended up buying: - A pack of sweet potatoes: £1.25 - Cherry tomatoes: £0.90 - Ham: £3.50 - Chicken: £2.50 - Avocado: £1 - Olives: £2.30 - Houmous: £1.55 - Feta: £1.35 - Strawberries: £1.75 - A storage file folder: £5 - Baby clothes for the new arrival – you can’t turn up empty handed! £8 3.30 - Arrive home to do some admin before teaching in the evening. Have a peppermint tea while placing a final order with Naked Wines before closing my account. Wine order cost just £11.93 due to my account already having credit. Wine arrives tomorrow – whoop! 8.30 - Sit down to eat after teaching an evening class. It's my mum’s turn to cook and she makes salmon and vegetables. Daily Total: 41.03

Day Two

8.00 - Breakfast at home: a banana before driving to the studio. 1.00 - Lunch break: popped to the café downstairs and treated myself to a goats' cheese salad and a sparkling water. £5 4.30 - I'm working from home in afternoon/evening so enjoy a glass of wine from yesterday’s order and roast vegetables with feta for tea (that's from yesterday’s food shop). £0 Daily Total: £5

Day Three

9.45 - Quiet working day so going to see another friend and their new arrival! Another boy! I said I’d make lunch so I quickly nip into Tesco on my way over to pick up some extra bits (carrot sticks, cakes, bread, rocket, butter, chicken, cheese: £15.29). Couldn’t resist buying a gift for the baby so ended up getting him a hoody and a T-shirt. £7.50 12.30 - Lunch with my friend and her lovely little bundle of smiles. We had sweet potato discs (brought from home) and chicken, cucumber and lettuce sandwiches and cakes for pudding! After eating I clear away and then drive back home to do some admin before an evening of teaching. 8.30 - Evening meal of sausage and mash. Potatoes were already in the cupboard and defrosted some sausages the night before. Nice easy meal.

Daily Total:

Day Four

7.30 - Arrive at the studio, go to the café and buy a sparkling water. £1 12.00 - Pop to the café for lunch before heading out to next class. Grab a salad to take out. £4 1.30 - Arrive early for my class but need to get fuel so fill up a tank. £58.46 Daily Total: £63.46

Day Five

7.00 - Leave the house with a banana to eat on the drive to work. Back to back classes between 8 and 1. 1.30 - Slightly tired but ready for the weekend so feeling positive! 1.30 - Quickly eat a ham salad sandwich I made the night before (out of a mix of shopping stuff from Monday and Wednesday) before next client arrives. 3.30 - Finished work for the day! Pack up and clear up the studio, change and then get in the car to drive to the Trafford Centre to see some friends for dinner. 5.45 - Ridiculous traffic takes me over two hours to get to the Trafford Centre. Once there I treat myself to a bottle of sparkling water (£0.99) and then buy a book (£16.99) not sure if I can justify keeping it for myself so may have to give it to a relative for a present and then hope they lend it to me afterwards. 6.30 - Meet friends and go for dinner at Wagamama. I have a main meal and the free green tea. My meal costs £11 in total (with tip!) 7.30 - Go for a hot drink to carry on catching up. I get a lemon and ginger tea. £1.95 8.30 - Call it an evening and drive home to see my nieces before they go on holiday. Daily Total: £30.93

Day Six

10.30 - Meet with a friend for a catch up. I go for the hot chocolate with cream and marshmallows. Her husband meets us, has breakfast and then pays for our drinks – no spend from me! 1.30 - Head home to pack up an overnight bag to stay at my friend’s house in Nottingham. 2.30 - Leave my house, get 20 minutes down the road and realise I have no PJs for the night. Decide it’s time to invest in some new ones so pop to the supermarket. £12 5.00 - Arrive at my friend’s house catch up over a couple of brews and time flies. 7.30 - Head out to meet a friend for dinner. We get loads of different things we can share, plus a bottle of wine. We split the bill at the end – it's £20 each. Daily Total: £32

Day Seven

10.30 - After a home-cooked breakfast I get back on the road back to my house. My mum is on holiday and my boyfriend is working away so no rush to get home but also looking forward to having the house to myself. 2.00 - Cook myself some pasta and make a tomato sauce using ingredients from the cupboard. 8.00 - Settle down to watch a movie. Realise it’s the first day all week that I’ve managed not to spend any money!! Whoop! Go me! Daily Total: £0

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