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Money Diary: An Account Manager In Glasgow On £39,000

Welcome to Money Diaries where we are tackling the ever-present taboo that is money. We’re asking real people how they spend their hard-earned money during a seven-day period — and we’re tracking every last penny.
This week: “I’m a 26-year-old account manager currently living in Glasgow, but I’m originally from the Highlands. I started working in sales after I left uni four or five years ago, but I have only recently ended up in a role in an industry I love, and at a company that is able to support my training and aid in progressing my career. I’ve jumped from earning £24,000 to £39,000 in the last year and I have been working hard to pay off my overdraft and credit card debt… But I’ve still been managing to enjoy life and I enjoy being on a higher salary! I am in a very fortunate position — especially for the age I am — and I’m constantly needing to know what the next steps are in my career. Honestly, I’m just really enjoying life right now, although I will always be stressed about money. I so, so, so appreciate being able to have extra money every month, so that money isn’t an all-consuming stress. I haven’t grown out of the ‘going out and get steaming with your pals’ phase yet, but I’ve calmed down from how hard I used to party. Life is about balance, in my opinion.”
Occupation: Account manager
Industry: Hospitality
Age: 26
Location Glasgow
Salary £39,000 (inclusive of salary and car benefits)
Paycheque Amount: £2,400
Number of housemates:
Pronouns: She/her
Monthly Expenses
Housing costs: £378 mortgage. This is a 40-year mortgage that I stupidly didn’t lock in for five years at 2.9%, so I need to remortgage in May. 
Loan payments: I’m paying back my student loan about £80 per month. I’m also currently putting anywhere between £150 and £350 towards my credit card payments to clear the debt. I have about £1,000 left so I will clear this before the summer, then build up the savings even more.
Savings?: Currently about £4,150 in a savings account and £60 in a holiday pot to save for a huge trip me and my best pal are planning for our 30th birthdays. I realise this is in three and a half years’ time but I’m a planner and I want to do a blowout holiday. If we don’t end up going on the holiday for whatever reason I’ll use it to buy myself something good, maybe new boobs. A reduction has been calling my name. 
Utilities: £40 gas; £40 electricity; £115 council tax; £105 factor fee. 
Pension? Currently paying about £116. I have no idea how much I have in pension; I’ve moved jobs four or five times since I left uni so that will be a fun surprise to research one day. 
All other monthly payments: £50 phone; £40 gym; £65 online personal training; £16.99 Cineworld; £65 car insurance; £40 life insurance; £30 contents insurance; £30 to aforementioned holiday fund. 
Subscriptions: £9.99 Disney+; £4 Spotify family plan; £25 various charity subscriptions. 
Did you participate in any form of higher education? If yes, how did you pay for it? I went to university, but I live in Scotland so it’s free, wehey. I probably wouldn’t have gone if I had to take out a huge loan.
Growing up, what kind of conversations did you have about money?
There wasn’t loads of money growing up. My parents always kind of hid the stress from us but chatting to my mum recently, I know it was tight. She was telling me that she felt so bad for saying no to buying us things and honestly, we stopped asking for things because we knew it wouldn’t happen. They were always savers and they took us on holiday, so it never seemed bad to us. We were deffo better off than a lot of people and we’ve always known and appreciated that. They’re doing really well for themselves now and it’s really difficult to accept money from them but they are the most generous people in the world and refuse to accept anything from us. My dad will not even let me pay for a dinner out, although I half pretend to offer. 
If you have, when did you move out of your parents’/guardians’ house? I moved out at 18 to go to uni but hated it and wanted to move back every day. 
At what age did you become financially responsible for yourself? Does anyone else cover any aspects of your financial life?
I became properly financially responsible for myself when I was 18 moving out for uni but then again when I finished. I didn’t have the safety net of moving back to my parents’ in the summer to work.
What was your first job and why did you get it? I worked in a leisure centre on Saturdays for £4.15 an hour.
Do you worry about money now?
Yeah, I really do. I only got this high-paying job recently and it’s a mega, mega jump from what I was on. I racked up about £5,000 on credit cards and my overdraft from just living costs and also moving in 2022. This is almost paid back and, my God, it’s so nice to actually have money, but that stress never leaves you. 
Do you or have you ever received passive or inherited income?
Yes, my grandparents were recently left a huge estate by a very distant relative. My gran is the most incredible person ever and gave each of her grandkids £20,000 to go towards a property and donated the rest. I tried to convince her to buy a Lamborghini but she thought it would look out of place on her street of council houses — also, she is in her late 80s. I bought my flat almost two years ago and it’s small but it is perfect and I am very upfront with how I bought it because if I hadn’t gotten money from her, I would still be renting and be absolutely fucked paying crazy rent every month.