Money Diary: A 28-Year-Old Corporate Fundraiser On 32k

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: "I'm 28 years old and live in London with three housemates. I've been working from home since March 2020 and feel pretty lucky that the house where I am has space for me to work without impeding my housemates. I changed jobs during the pandemic and didn't meet any of my colleagues in real life until about three weeks ago (after working there for over 16 months). When I started the role this didn’t bother me (I was on fixed-term maternity cover) but when I got made permanent the prospect of remaining virtual became very draining. We got news recently that we will be virtual until at least the new year, apart from a four-seater satellite office, which is frustrating.
I consciously try to save money and was already able to save a fair bit before the pandemic. I met my boyfriend, J, about four months before the first lockdown. We only became 'official' a couple of weeks before everything stopped so it hasn’t been a 'normal' first couple of years. I think this made our relationship move quite fast as we got very comfortable in each other's company doing very little; visiting each other each weekend for walks or cycles, TV and takeaways was as exciting as it got. J moved closer to me later in 2020 so now we can see each other on weekday evenings, which is really nice. Although I have savings and have received inheritance, I make a conscious effort to live within my monthly salary. You could say I am slightly unnecessarily tight with money but I struggle to think what I would spend more on (except rent if I chose to live with less people). I give myself a weekly budget – £100 into a Monzo account each week – and try to stick to it but have the flexibility. Both J and I also transfer £50 into a joint Monzo account for shared purchases."
Occupation: Corporate fundraiser
Industry: Charity sector
Age: 28
Location: London
Salary: £32,000
Paycheque amount: £2,047 after pension contribution and tax
Number of housemates: Three
Pronouns: She/her

Monthly Expenses
Housing costs: £400 rent
Loan payments: £0
Savings? £700 in a Monzo pot from the cash left from my weekly budget. £43,000 in a standard savings account and £130,000 in an ISA portfolio.
Pension? I keep meaning to try and amalgamate my various (small) pension pots from different jobs but have no idea where to start. In my current role I contribute 4%, matched by my employer. I don’t know how much there is but it can’t be much. 
Utilities: Gas and electric are approximately £25, water £8.50, Wi-Fi £6, council tax £44.50.
All other monthly expenses: Phone bill £22, bike insurance £6, half of the car insurance on my parents' car £80 annually. Subscriptions: Guardian £3, Smol dishwasher tablet subscription £2, Who Gives a Crap toilet paper subscription £3, FFS razor subscription £9.95, Villages Beer subscription £26 every six weeks, Oddbox veg box £12 (I share a fortnightly box with my housemate), Amazon Prime £35 annually, Planta app £32 annually, squash club membership £240 annually.

Did you participate in any form of higher education? If yes, how did you pay for it?
Both of my parents went to university and it was a given that I would go. In retrospect, I feel that I rushed my decision about what to study but had a great time. I received a loan to cover my fees and used the maintenance loan to cover day-to-day living expenses. My parents were kind enough to cover my rent and I had a part-time job from my second year until graduation to supplement.
Growing up, what kind of conversations did you have about money?
I don't remember many conversations about money. I received pocket money from about 12 and my parents were always very clear about what should be paid for out of my pocket money. My parents placed their value on experiences so if we wanted something specific we were encouraged to either wait until birthdays or Christmas or to save up for things. I was lucky that we never had to worry about money growing up.
If you have, when did you move out of your parents'/guardians' house?
I moved out (for the last time) when I was 25 after moving home after uni. I lived at home for about a year at this point as I did not immediately get a permanent job.

At what age did you become financially responsible for yourself? Does anyone else cover any aspects of your financial life?
I became financially responsible for myself at uni and it was left to me to manage my finances and get a part-time job to fund my social life if I needed to. Frankly, though, I was definitely not entirely financially independent until I moved out when I was 25 as my parents did not ask me to pay rent while I lived with them.
What was your first job and why did you get it?
Other than babysitting, which I did a lot, my first job was actually a Saturday receptionist at a GP practice. I got this to supplement my social life and holidays with friends in the summer and it definitely gave me a perspective in time-management of my social life and the value of work and play.
Do you worry about money now?
I don't worry about money day to day but as you may be able to see from my diary, I can be a bit tight and impose some unnecessary money anxiety upon myself to secure a bargain. I do worry that the current housing market will force me to leave the area I'd like to live in if I want to buy, but I am fully aware of how lucky I am to have the option to even consider this.
Do you or have you ever received passive or inherited income?
Yes, I have received inheritance from my grandparents, some of which I used to pay off my student loan in full. This has also supplemented my savings.

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