Money Diary: A 27 Year Old IT Consultant In Wokingham On 65k

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 a 28-year-old living on my own in Wokingham in a two-bed terraced house. I could probably save on rent by moving to a smaller one bed flat, but I chose to spend a bit more so that I can still host my family and friends to stay over. I'm also saving up to buy my own place which is hopefully possible in the next 12 to 18 months. Like many, during lockdown, my work became fully remote and I now have the option to work from home full time. This has ended up being negative for me as I have lost income due to travel and food expenses which used to supplement my monthly salary packet (around £200 a month, removing the cost of petrol and wear and tear for travelling so much). As well as that, going into the office out of choice (which I do once or twice a week) cannot be expensed and can cost me £12 each time to drive and park. I'm currently single and on a dating app meeting up with matches. These can often be a huge drain on my finances and sometimes feels so wasteful when the date turns out to be awful (which is often the case)!
Occupation: IT Consultant
Industry: IT
Age: 28
Location: Wokingham
Salary: £58,000
Paycheque Amount: £2,700 after pension contribution, taxes and student loan. Through overtime and some additional bonus payouts on referrals, I supplement my annual salary with an extra £7,000.
Number of housemates:
Monthly Expenses
Housing costs: £1,200 in rent.
Loan payments: £150 a month for my car, and £246 on my student loan.
Savings?: £25,000
Pension?: 10%, which works out to roughly £600 a month.
Utilities: £55 for gas and electric, £100 for council tax, £31 for broadband and £15 for water.
All other monthly expenses: £8 for my phone contract. Subscriptions: £7.99 for Netflix, £9.99 for Readly, £9.99 for Simply Cook and £20 on Pret Coffee subscription.
Did you participate in any form of higher education? If yes, how did you pay for it?
From my parents there was no question of ‘if i would go to university’ just when, where and doing what. I had some sort of job from the age of 13, so combining my savings with the student loan and summer jobs, I had enough for my four-year course.
Growing up, what kind of conversations did you have about money?
I very much knew the value of money from a young age. My parents had to work long, hard hours and having watched them work hard for every penny, I was never frivolous with my spending or asking for the latest things. If I wanted something, my parents would always tell me it would take them X hours to work so that I knew the value of money.
If you have, when did you move out of your parents/guardians house?
I moved out of my parents house in 2018, after graduating from my grad job. My parents never made me pay rent but I would do a grocery shop or pay for a takeaway to contribute in some way. They wanted me to save while I was working and living at home so that I could build a nice nest egg to be able to get a place of my own one day. The savings from those days form the majority of my savings today so I'm really thankful for those years.
At what age did you become financially responsible for yourself? Does anyone else cover any aspects of your financial life?
I’d say I truly became financially responsible for myself when I left university in 2016. Up until then, I had always been in education supplementing my income with part-time work. However, in my final year of university I had already secured a full time graduate job and have been working full time ever since.
What was your first job and why did you get it?
My very first job was as a maths tutor when I was 13, teaching maths to children in Year 1 and 2. As early as I can remember I had always wanted to help my parents and earn ‘my own money’ so I didn't have to ask them to pay for stuff. I had always been good at maths and science and when a tutoring centre opened up down the road from me I applied to be a tutor and got the job.
Do you worry about money now?
I used to worry a lot about money and saving, however, building a rainy day fund has made me relax a bit more. The last 18 months has put things into perspective, so I don't like to turn down holidays or socials with friends anymore. I still do save a fair bit each month however, after turning 27 I decided I was going to make sure I enjoyed this year and did the things I want to.
Do you or have you ever received passive or inherited income?

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