Today I’m sharing the fifth installment of my bi-weekly series, ‘Savings Stories,’ where I speak to millennial Londoners about their personal finances. Our personal finances are often kept under wraps, with conversations about money usually kept to a minimum- making it hard to know whether anyone else is going through the same things as you. ‘Savings Stories’ aims to start a conversation about our finances, and lift the lid on millennial spending and saving- is the reason we can’t afford property in London really about overspending on avocados and lattes? I think not.
Millennials have a bad rep when it comes to money management, often accused of being too quick to splurge on the latest food, drink and clothing trends compared to the previous generation- with conclusions being drawn that this is the reason that we find it impossible to save for a mortgage deposit. I personally disagree with this, there is of course a culture built around instant gratification and new media which was not around 20 years ago- which does encourage additional spending- but there are definitely many millennials out there who are making small steps to build a savings account and live a thriftier lifestyle.
This feature will give you a sneak peek into other people’s income, rental, and savings totals- helping you decide if you could make the leap and ask for that pay rise, find a new flat within your price range, or give you that push to start a savings account. It will share the realities of debt, hopefully showing that, if you are in debt yourself, you are not alone.
This week we speak with Ellie, who writes the wonderful blog Ellie’s London. Ellie is a 24 year old from West London- she is a Journalism graduate and was working in property until 12 weeks ago.
Salary range: Until 12 weeks ago it was between £20-£25k
What is your monthly rent? £595 per month including bills
What is your living situation? I share a two bed flat with one other girl. We have our own studio rooms and share a kitchen and bathroom.
Total savings: Around £2,000. It was more until I lost my job a few months ago!
What are your savings goals? Whatever work/job I do my goal is always to travel. Any spare cash I get goes into a ‘travel fund’, but since losing my job, just staying afloat can be a daily struggle! Paying bills with my holiday fund is not what I planned to do 🙁
Do you set a weekly budget? I do. When I have a steady income coming in I budget for the week after taking away my rent and living costs etc. Sometimes, when things are really tight I will do a daily budget and make sure I stick to it. This way I can save on a weekly basis even when cash flow is small.
Debt total (not including student loan): None – and I’m really proud of that! (Even though my student debt is over £50K!)
How often do you worry about money? When I’m working, I trust myself to budget so I don’t worry about it much. When I’m not working or when the money coming in is reduced, I think about it daily. It can really bother you if you over think things because you have to consider how much things will be before basically even breathing in London!
If you are worried about debt, you can find assistance at Citizens Advice and stepchange, two charities who offer free advice and solutions to help you get out of debt.
If you’re a millennial Londoner and would like to anonymously share your personal finance story, please get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.