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Money Diary: A Charity Grants Manager On £35,000

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.
Content Warning: This diary contains a reference to the death of a family member.
This week: “I’m a 31-year-old grants manager currently working at a women’s charity. I have recently started a feminist consultancy business with a friend, but it is in its very early stages. I do like my job, but also just in general would prefer not to be working at all! I prioritise spending my money on holidays and fun things but I am trying to get a little bit better with money — getting some savings together would be very lovely. I started a budgeting Excel doc just over a year ago to try to get rid of my debt accrued while doing my master’s degree, which I have just managed to pay off! Now I will hopefully be able to save some money while still doing fun things. I don’t really spend lots of money on stuff but I love plants and I love cooking so sometimes I splash out on kitchen bits/tasty food.”
Occupation: Grants manager
Industry: Women’s rights charities
Age: 31
Location: Bristol
Salary: £35,000, plus approximately £5,000 per year from a newly started side business.
Paycheque Amount: £2,032.43, plus about £220 a month from side business (still an estimate as I am yet to do a self-assessment tax return).
Number of housemates: One — my partner S.
Pronouns: She/her
Monthly Expenses
Housing costs: £0. We own our flat without a mortgage due to us both receiving large inheritances. All our bills are split evenly and cost about £250 each per month.
Loan payments: £156 for my undergrad and master’s repayments (this repayment doesn’t cover the interest). 
Savings?: My partner and I have nearly £4,000 in savings which we’ve been saving over the past few years since buying our flat. 
Utilities: £127 for gas and electric; £37.50 for water; £130 for council tax (all split equally). 
All other monthly payments: £22 for home insurance; £43 for car insurance; £43 monthly payment to the freeholder of our flat; £28 car tax; £2.60 boiler insurance; £38 TV licence; £29 for internet (all split equally). Personally, I also pay for my £10 phone contract, £16 phone purchase repayments and £8.66 dental plan.
Subscriptions: £50 gym
Pension? I have one which I pay £91 into each month. I’m actually unsure how much my employer contributes. 
Did you participate in any form of higher education? If yes, how did you pay for it? During my undergraduate degree I got the maximum loans which covered my rent. I also worked and got a bit of help from my parents for my spending money. When I did my master’s, in the first year you could get a government grant, so I got the full loan which covered my tuition fees and left me with £2,000 to live on for the remainder of the year. During this time, I supplemented this money by working in a pub and with a little debt.
Growing up, what kind of conversations did you have about money?
I don’t remember having many conversations about money when I was growing up. We never had lots of money but we were definitely comfortable. I have learnt since being older that when I was young my parents were really struggling for money but were lucky to have some support from my mum’s parents. But as I got older and my mum was able to go back to work (I am the youngest of four children) I think things got easier financially for them.
If you have, when did you move out of your parents’/guardians’ house? I moved out to go to university at 18. I moved into my dad’s flat after university when I was 21 for six months to save to go travelling (I was lucky he didn’t charge me rent for those months). I haven’t lived with either of them since then.
At what age did you become financially responsible for yourself? Does anyone else cover any aspects of your financial life? I would say I became financially responsible for myself after I moved out my dad’s house when I was 21. 
What was your first job and why did you get it? I had a paper round when I was 13. I think I got it because my parents told me to! I also got a job in a shop when I was 15 where I worked four hours a week and I think I got paid £18 a week which I used to go out with my pals.
Do you worry about money now? I do worry. I don’t have a particularly grown-up relationship with money. I'm definitely more of a spender and have only recently got myself out of debt which had been accruing since my master’s days. Although we are in a lucky financial situation with the house, my partner has recently changed careers and taken a large pay cut. 
Do you or have you ever received passive or inherited income?
Yes, I received a large inheritance when my sister passed away. She didn’t have any money to leave but she had a death-in-service benefit at her work which she had left to me, my parents and my other siblings. I put this towards the house. My partner’s inheritance came from one of his parents who passed away when he was little.