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Money Diary: A Financial Consulting Apprentice On £23,000

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 20-year-old finance degree apprentice living in Newcastle. I went straight into the corporate world from school because I bought into the corporate girlie lifestyle and lucrative future prospects. I’m lucky that my company sponsors my degree while also paying me a wage — although it does mean I have a very different life to many of my friends at uni. At the moment I very much focus on a ‘memories over money’ approach by prioritising brunches, holidays and silly treats. As my friends back home say, I am very much in my “city girl era” after growing up in the countryside my whole life. I honestly love it. I’m living up to the stereotype.”
Occupation: Finance (consulting degree apprentice)
Age: 20
Location: Newcastle upon Tyne 
Salary: £23,000
Paycheque Amount: £1,570
Number of housemates: Three housemates (S, D and C)
Pronouns: She/her
Monthly Expenses
Housing costs: £540 rent (includes wifi)
Loan payments: N/A
Savings: I have £2,500 in various pots and accounts. I wouldn’t say I consciously save at the moment.
Pension: I currently pay 5% into my pension and my employee matches this.
Utilities: Bills package for water and electricity comes to £100 (although this is very convenient and easy it is definitely overpriced); £50 council tax.
All other monthly payments: £3 Apple storage; £5 Monzo Plus; £20 gym membership. Subscriptions: £25 Skin+Me
Did you participate in any form of higher education? If yes, how did you pay for it?
I’m currently undergoing a BA (Hons) degree as part of my apprenticeship. This is paid for by my company and follows the same three-year process as if I were to go to university. Additionally, I get a professional qualification in chartered management as part of the degree.
Growing up, what kind of conversations did you have about money?
Money was never a large topic in my household. My parents didn’t encourage materialism but instead allowed us to have every experience we wanted: taking us on holidays abroad, prioritising hobbies and education. They then separated when I was 11 and both adopted very different attitudes to spending. My mother came from a well-off background and brought us up with a good lifestyle, meaning she can often be impulsive with spending when trying to replicate this. My dad on the other hand is more cautious with money. Although I’m very aware he is very generous with money when it comes to his children, so I know he’ll always help me out.
If you have, when did you move out of your parents’/guardians’ house?
I moved for this job opportunity when I was 18 — almost straight after finishing sixth form — and I rarely go back due to working full time.
At what age did you become financially responsible for yourself? Does anyone else cover any aspects of your financial life?
Although I earn a wage my parents still help me out. My dad sends me £200 at the start of every month and frequently helps out with other costs throughout the month, if he approves. Additionally, I participate in athletics and have done so for years. My dad heavily supports this hobby and therefore pays nearly all expenses associated. My mother also pays for my phone bill. 
What was your first job and why did you get it?
I worked for less than a month at a restaurant at 17, baking for them and waitressing the occasional bottomless brunch. Sadly, it had very questionable owners and my parents encouraged me to quit by giving me an allowance instead. Eventually it got investigated by HMRC and shut down for illegal trading.
Do you worry about money now?
Being in a finance-heavy world, I have become very aware of the cost of life and do worry about how my future looks in the current climate. Although I earn well for my age, my spending habits are very excessive and I have very high expectations for my future, with currently no money to support this. Additionally, I realise my parents won’t help me out forever.
Do you or have you ever received passive or inherited income?
I was given £2,500 for my 18th birthday. I think I spent the majority of this on post A-levels holidays (I went away five times that summer) and moving to Newcastle.