Why is it so hard to buy magazines about money and finance? Have I been brainwashed all my life into reading titles such as Crap Celeb Magazine and Flowery Chintz Monthly? Why is it more important for me to know about celebrity, fashion and handicrafts than about my own cash? Why is it easier to find magazines about ‘Women’s Interest’, Guitars, Films, (also women’s interest, I would argue, but WH Smith disagrees) or researching a family tree? Wouldn’t it be a healthier habit to be well informed about finances?
In 2016 I set myself a new hobby. No more crocheting dishcloths. No more upcycling my clothes (note: never dye your own shoes). I am saving hard, and I’m saving well – I still have fun finding ways to save a few pennies. It’s time to know WHAT TO DO with the money when you’ve got it. I’m 33 years old now, it’s 2017, and I still have lots of interest in this new hobby. I’ve battled through my twenties and I’ve come out the other side (finally) with an actual real paying job. I don’t have any debt other than my student debt. What the hell happens next?
I realised I needed to understand what to do with my savings. What happens when you apply for a mortgage. What are the steps of buying a house? What’s the best interest rate you can have? What the hell is up with pensions? WHAT EVEN IS INVESTING? Why did I spend time in school learning about GCSE stuff and A Level subjects, whilst working both in the local Co-Op and as a Dinner Lady (“Lunchtime Supervisor”) and STILL leave without a shred of real financial acumen*?
If you’re any age, and you don’t know what some of these things are, I guarantee you you’ll be able to pick it up a lot quicker than you think. My WORST subject at school was mathematics, but I promise you, if you know the difference between 1 and 2 and you can see that 0.75 percent interest is not as good as 0.95 percent interest, basically if you can count at all, I think you’ll be alright. I am. And we can pretty much all count. HINT: There are no non-calculator questions in real life.
I recommend reading Money Week if you can bloody well find it in the shops, I’ve learned a lot from it and it’s cheaper and less weighty than the FT. (This isn’t a sponsored post, I’m not even a subscriber right now). I also suggest checking some of these out, alongside the stalwart propping up my browser history, Money Saving Expert.
*albeit even with two Bachelor’s degrees I am VERY proud of my GCSE in Textiles.