Girl Interrupted

Friday, September 02, 2005

[+/-] I have a credit card and I'm not afraid to use it!

In case you didn't know, my latest "hobby" has been personal finance.

For years, I have thought that I was lousy at saving money, that I spend money like water, etc etc. Well, the other day, it occurred to me that I am getting old now, and it really is not a good thing that I have no savings, no investments, no retirement plans, no financial plan, nothing...

Equally, while I love the fact that my mom works at the bank and can manage my accounts for me, I'm really not learning any personal finance skills by having her do this for me. Similarly, giving her my scholarship lump sums and saying "Here mom, keep my grubby little paws away from all this lovely money, and give it to me in small amounts every month instead" doesn't ultimately help me either. Finally, I have a secondary card on her credit card account, which is great, but its her account, her money, her credit history, not mine being built.

So, I decided it was time to cut the apron strings and become Financially Independent. I opened a cheque account at First National Bank (gasp! shock! horror! How can you betray the bank you've been with since you were 7 years old!)

Why did I choose FNB? Two reasons and two reasons only:
1) Its the only bank that offers FREE internet banking.
2) Its the only bank that offers FREE sms notification of my accounts (really important at the moment, since I never know when the NBN is going to pay me my salary, and doing a balance check every day at the ATM is not only inconvenient, but ultimately quite costly - at least, it was at Std Bank [is free at FNB])

So far, they have been really really good to me - I am very impressed with the level of service. I have a SILVER cheque account and a SILVER credit card. The CC was a little harder to get, since I haven't been paid regularly by the NBN (ie, 3 months history is worthless) and since my salary cheques are marked Bursary and not Salary, and also (I suspect) since I haven't really been very good about paying my Woolworths accounts timeously.

However, I got it, with a ridiculously high limit for a first timer (higher even than James, who has been working for how long?), so I am very happy.

Even better, I have a financial plan now (albeit a vague one), and now that I actually have goals, I'm finding its actually really easy to save money. I think the only reason I was spending it all so often was that I had nothing better to do with it...

And still better: I have an appointment with a Financial Advisor on Monday. I feel very grown up, very mature, very confident in my future financial success. Unit trusts, here we come...
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  • At Fri Sep 02, 01:05:00 pm GMT+2, Anonymous Anonymous said…

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  • At Sun Sep 04, 12:54:00 pm GMT+2, Anonymous Jude said…

    Yay! Go empower yourself girl!! Investments are lots of fun but really sad to see all the money going out of your account every month!


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