Money Diary: A Social Media Manager In London On 29k

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 was living in Melbourne from February to May after travelling southeast Asia until lockdown restrictions in Australia meant that I lost my job and my savings dried up. My boyfriend and I tried to stay there as long as we could while the pandemic was at its worst in the UK but finally had to return at the start of May.
Within a few weeks of being home I got a new job, which I was so very happy about as it was a big step up and I thought it would be impossible to get a job when so many places had started furloughing people. I started there by working from (my parents') home until moving back to London at the end of June. I’m now just enjoying working in this new job, living with my boyfriend (finally after six years) and seeing my friends again after being on the other side of the world for six months.
My job involves a lot of being proactive and independent working as it’s a pretty small retail company and only me doing social media. Day to day I reach out to influencers, create content, run paid ads and look for new and exciting things to do to reach our audience on social. I love the new responsibility but sometimes it would be nice to have another person to bounce ideas off and just chat to about social media updates.
My approach to money is weekly budgeting and only buying clothes you love like they’re your firstborn child. I try to budget weekly with £40-50 in my personal and £50 in the joint Monzo for food/drinks out etc. This has been working well so far. I do sometimes have to top up the weekly budget or just buy things on my regular bank card to pretend it didn’t happen, like birthday presents or new skincare products. I try to spend as little as possible on things like groceries, transport and buying lunch out so that I can then spend it on dinner with friends, quality clothes and visiting non-London friends. I also sell a few bits on Depop and I use the money from that for little treats. I know I should think about saving for a house deposit but that seems pretty impossible with rent prices in London. It’s also tricky to know exactly how much I’ll save or spend with a new job coming out of lockdown. So far I’ve put whatever was left at the end of my first paid month into savings which are not to be touched."
Occupation: Social media manager
Industry: Online retail
Age: 25
Location: London
Salary: £29,000
Paycheque amount: £1,928
Net worth: Travelling took a big hit to my savings, as did the deposit for the flat. I have £5,700 left which I need to move into my ISA, which has £3k in it from some family inheritance. I'm hoping to put whatever I'm left with at the end of the month back into that to try and build it up to £10k again. My boyfriend earns about the same as me once you take off the tax for his company car. We have a joint account for rent, bills and what's left over can be holiday money. We also have a joint Monzo which we add £50 weekly to for food shopping, eating out and odd things for the flat.
Monthly Expenses
Housing costs: £725 for my half. Before I left London to go travelling I lived with some friends of friends who turned out to be GREAT friends.
Loan payments: £18 student loan.
Other expenses: £5 Spotify Premium (my half), £0.79 Apple storage, £15 phone bill, £0 Netflix (family account), £0 Amazon Prime (included in my phone contract). Travel varies from £20-30 a month depending on what I do at the weekends. I don't pay for any gym membership right now but I am hoping to join a yoga/Pilates studio once one is back open.

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