On Monday, my now 23 year old daughter (the animator one that secured a job with a paper mouse) put a deposit on a $345,000 unit in the Brisbane suburb of Yeronga. Quite an achievement considering her salary is not overly high. It has been her goal, since she started working part time at 16, to buy property.
I do take some credit – even though my own money skills are shite.
When I met my husband back in 1981, he thought I was rich. Little did he know, until it was too late, that I spent my pay packet from week to week. When we dated I always paid for myself. Not because I don’t like to be paid for (who doesn’t) but because I didn’t want him to get any ideas about it being long term. I wanted to make sure I liked him. As it turns out he was more than happy with this arrangement for the same reasons. Growing up, my parents taught me zilch about money. Part time jobs while still at school were not a thing. Anything required (necessities) were paid for by them. Macdonald’s and fast food outlets didn’t exist so I didn’t need money for social outings. Consequently I was pig ignorant about money and have regretted it ever since.
I was determined my two girls would not suffer the same fate. I wanted them to know they could save and have things that would make them independent in life. I firmly believe partners should have their own bank account for personal things as well as a joint one for joint things.
I have been married for 33 years and the only thing we argue about is money. My hubby is old school and sees nothing wrong with a fully shared account. The issue I have had, until fairly recently, is that every time I wanted to buy something I felt obliged to justify why. We both work from our home and I contribute to the income. I don’t see any of it though. It all goes into the house, bills and food and quite frankly, this pisses me off! I am not asking for ‘my share’, just some independent money for me to spend on me. Finally, we have now reached an agreement and I have my own (he uses it too if he wants though) savings account. Money goes in each month. We came to this because I made it quite clear that if I didn’t have my own money then I’d freely use the Visa card for whatever I wanted…. and I did and it costs a whole heap more!
Back to my daughters. The best present I believe they have received from me is a little book called ‘The richest man in Babylon’.
The Richest Man in Babylon is a book by George Samuel Clason which dispenses financial advice through a collection of parables set in ancient Babylon. Through their experiences in business and managing household finance, the characters in the parables learn simple lessons in financial wisdom. Originally a series of separate informational pamphlets distributed by banks and insurance companies, the pamphlets were bound together and published in book form in 1926.
It is timeless and easy to understand the principals exposed. The girls took to the message and have religiously followed the principals ever since. As a result they have acquired savings and set themselves up for their future. Well done Chelsea and congratulations – and aren’t you lucky to have such a wise mum!!