• The R word

    Yay, recession.

    It bugs me that over the last few months as interest rates soared, the rates on loans soared in kind. Yet now they’re starting to fall, I’m not seeing a corresponding drop. Surely it has to come sometime. And yet the rate on my Fastsaver plunged, literally a day or two after the OCR cut announcement.

    Things are going bad at the boy’s company. He’s getting sent home every week because there’s no work for them. Which is all fun and games since he gets heaps of downtime to mess around in, until the week after when his pay packet’s a helluva lot thinner. especially considering that he’s paying down debt at the moment, every dollar counts. we really need his full pay, more preferably. everything extra helps. and with the car needing a warrant this week, god knows how much repairs are going to cost. bloody money suckers. I know how it bores him to stay at work cleaning and doing crap stuff, but as long as he can stand it, as long as he can wring something out of it, it’s gotta be done. But when he’s got to stand around waiting for a “possible” job to crop up, all the while unpaid (they have to allocate their timesheets by jobs so the company can bill their clients) he may as well go home and chill out, hang out with people, clean and do chores (ha, yeah right).

    We had the joy of having a meeting today about “cutbacks” (first time I’ve ever seen the editor in persn). I now know how many staff we have too, and it’s fewer than we think. Soon to be a few less, with a handful of redundancies on the cards (not in our department fortunately). I guess getting laid off happens to a lot of people, but it’s never really hit close to home before.

    Guess it’s not the best time to ask for a raise…

  • Money makes the world go round

    SO they’ve been talking about introducing a universal student allowance, but considering the amount it would cost it’s never been implemented. But of course it’s going to be an ugly election, so I shouldn’t really be too surprised that Labour’s decided to run with it. And I’m not too impressed. Not just because of the sheer amount it would cost but because of how inherently unfair it would be. I acknowledge the current system is deeply flawed, but I don’t think a universal allowance is the answer.

    Off the top of my head, I can’t think of anyone I know who desperately needs and deserves the allowance but isn’t getting it. On the other hand, i can think of a few who, through clever accounting, get almost the full amount, plus fees paid and pocket money from parents, and others who, although not that extreme, do get a fair amount while living at home and often being subsidised for it. Parental testing is there for a reason, although it’s nowhere near perfect, and the limits are WAY TOO LOW.I don’t see a reason not to just dramatically increase the parental income limits to be more realistic instead.

    I’d rather see way more emphasis put towards the actual AMOUNT we students get – and how much we can earn. There should be no cap. 190 before tax is insane. Why would you penalise someone for working hard just so they can buy food, bus pass, save a little and buy the occasional drink?

    Also, accommodation supplement needs to go up. Those who live away from home need more than 40 a week in the hand. Admittedly it’s forty bucks free, but compared to the actual cost of living and Auckland rents it’s a bit like a slap in the face.

    Im glad to think i’m graduating in a year. i would hate to be at uni struggling on an allowance knowing every single other person living at home, not paying rent, bills or food are getting exactly the same amount as me.

    Maybe I’m a little jaded… I work hard and I’ve had so many odd jobs, working 2,3 or 4 at a time, and you can bet I don’t do it for fun. I have to work fulltime all summer long and can’t just take time off for road trips or holidays.  Which I don’t mind at all, it’s my lot in life, but man I’m glad I’ll be long out of uni when the universal allowance is in.

    I quite like Peter Dunne’s way of thinking. Actually, the more I hear about him the more impressed I am, oddly enough. Apparently the allowance scheme is roughly equal to the total cost of university fees, so he’d rather just make tertiary education completely free.

    Revolutionary.

  • The importance of money

    I wonder sometimes how much easier it would be if I only had my own finances to manage. I’d halve the number of bills and payments I deal with and possibly have more money to boot. But I’ve finally really got my act together and got into personal finance, I have a cool budgeting program with coloured charts and graphs and worked out that the best way to work a changing income is to adjust it every week (duh! How many months did that one take????)

    Sometimes I really just can’t wait to graduate and start my real life. I’m a little tired of living from week to week; realistically we’re not struggling, we eat well and pay all our bills on time and have the odd night out, but anything like clothes or weekends away or car repairs have to be so carefully planned. It’s been a very very long time since me and Trent bought each other birthday/anniversary/Christmas presents. There’s always something – and it’s usually car related…

    How do you get someone interested in money??

    I think it’s possibly the most important skill to have. Like it or not life today revolves around money – you just can’t get by without it so you need to know how to manage it. Messing up your credit means you can’t borrow (well, except from dodgy, 35% type places like Moneyshop), can’t find a place to rent, possibly can’t get a job. I can totally understand being scared of seeing where your money really goes, but to not have any interest or care?

  • The pursuit of money

    I was sitting in front of a Fijian and a Samoan guy on the bus the other day. They were talking about how great it was going back to visit because life over there is so different; it’s more laidback, there’s a sense of community, money is not as important and you don’t NEED it to get by as you do here.

    It sounds idyllic. But you know what, I don’t think I’d last long there. City life is stressful, and expensive, and sometimes it’s harsh and dangerous and downright disheartening, but I wouldn’t trade it in. The Pacific is top of my holiday list but it’s not really a lifestyle option.

    I think I value ambition and money and the buzz of the city (not that I’d want to live in the midst of it) and the insane variety of foods we now have here (y’all know how much I love to eat). I want to work hard and travel and obtain the trappings of middle class life eventually.

    Or have I just been brainwashed by the capitalist economy?