finance

What My Salary Gets Me: A Sales Director on $120,000 a year, who refuses to cook.

Mamamia’s What My Salary Gets Me asks Australians to record a week in their financial lives. Kind of like a sex diary but with money. So not like a sex diary at all. We still find out the best kept secrets though. We discover what women are really spending their hard-earned cash on. Nothing is too outrageous or too sacred. This week, a 31-year-old working in Sales tells all. 

Age: 31

Job: Sales Director

Salary: $120,000

Housing: Renting with my partner in Sydney

Regular expenses (monthly):

Rent – $4800 (split with partner)

Gym – $160

Transport – $240 (so many Ubers)

Food – I’d guess $600+ (I eat out… a lot)

Debt:

  • HECS debt, which I don’t like to look at or think about.

Assets: Car, dog

Sunday – Day One.

Sunday means getting brunch with my partner, which comes to $35 (my shout). We go home and spend the day cleaning and organising the house, walking the dog, and getting some work done, before going to the movies in the evening. My ticket and popcorn costs $27. 

Watch: The optimal salary for happiness. Post continues after video.

We go home and I have leftover pizza for dinner, before doing some online shopping. I spend $120 on a dress I’ve been eyeing on The Iconic for weeks. It’ll arrive at my office tomorrow and I’m already excited. 

Total amount spent: $182.

Monday – Day Two.

I get an Uber to work, which costs $11. Before I walk into the office, I pick up my coffee ($4), and eat some fruit as soon as I get in. Just after midday, I go out to get my lunch. I can’t cook, and I’m disorganised, so I always buy my lunch out. I get a sandwich from a nearby cafe ($8). My dress finally arrives, and I’m obsessed. But it’s a stressful afternoon at work, and I go to the gym afterwards to try to calm myself. I order dinner with my partner when I get home, which comes to a total of $42. We split the cost between us.

Total amount spent: $44

Tuesday – Day Three.

I get an Uber (don’t judge me), and toast and coffee on my way into work. It’s not even 8am and I’ve already spent $19. Oops. I go to a client lunch so it’s paid for (YAY), but tonight is dinner with a group of friends, so it’s probably a good thing I’m saving on food. We go to quite a nice restaurant, and when we split the bill, it’s $55 each. I get an Uber home ($16). 

Total amount spent: $90

Wednesday – Day Four.

It’s another Uber to work ($10), and a coffee, but today I go for a large ($4.50). It’s a slow morning, so I do some online shopping, and find a cute pair of sneakers for $120. I get a salad for lunch ($9), as well as a juice ($5), and eat it at my desk. I have a work event at 6, so go straight there, and stay for a couple of hours. I get an Uber home ($15), and order food as soon as I get in. I get Thai, because even though there was finger food at the event, it was super unsatisfying. It costs $16. My partner is out tonight, so I watch some TV while eating dinner. 

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Total amount spent: $179.5

Listen: What women are spending crazy money on. Post continues after audio.

Thursday – Day Five.

My partner drives me to work this morning, and saves me a few dollars, which is handy. I get my coffee on the way in ($4), and it’s a frantic morning. I buy my lunch, a different salad this time ($11), with a juice ($4). I do some grocery shopping after work (we need all the boring stuff, like detergent, and toilet paper), but I get some food too, hoping I’ll be better with cooking over the weekend. The total comes to $54. 

But… then I go to Kmart. My happy place. I’m obsessed with their homewares, and get a few things for our place, which we’ve only been in for a few months. I spend $145 on a few little things, like candles, new sheets and pillow cases, and a mirror. 

Total amount spent: $218

Friday – Day Six.

It’s been a full-on week at work, and I’m so relieved it’s almost over. I get an Uber (must have got it at a bad time, because prices are surging. It costs $19), then a coffee and toast ($8). 

Lunch is a poke bowl ($12), which I know is way too expensive to justify. 

It’s a busy afternoon, but I’ve got drinks with my partner and some friends after work, so it goes quickly. I leave the office at 5.30, and meet everyone at a nearby bar. We have drinks, which turns into dinner, and before I know it, it’s 11pm and I’m exhausted. When I look at how much I spent, it’s $49, which is more than it felt like.

Total amount spent: $88

Saturday – Day Seven.

I have my cousin’s baby shower which I COMPLETELY forgot about until last night. That means I’m up early and rushing to the shops to get a present, which ends up being a bunch of onesies from Bonds, as well as some cute toys. All together, it costs $64, and I have no idea whether that’s too much or to little to spend on a baby shower gift. 

After the baby shower, my partner and I go out for a farewell for one of his friends. What we had promised each other would be a chill night turns into a big one, and I definitely end up buying drinks for other people. We get a taxi home (we couldn’t be bothered waiting for an Uber), and when I check my bank statement, it turns out I spent almost $90. HOW. 

Total amount spent: $154

How much I spent the whole week: $955.50

That’s so BAD. 

I can’t believe I spent that much, and that’s not including my gym membership, which I only used once this week, or rent. Yikes.

I think because I have a solid salary, I feel like I can use my income in a really disposable way. But looking back, I’m spending my money on stuff I really don’t need to.

Want to share a week in the life of your bank account with us (anonymously of course, no judgement here)? Send us your Money Diary to [email protected]

For more What My Salary Gets Me stories:

What My Salary Gets Me: A 24-year-old journalist who earns $55,000 a year.

What My Salary Gets Me: A 23-year-old student pharmacist who earns $51,000 a year.

What My Salary Gets Me: A 29-year-old public servant with a mortgage and a 6-figure salary.

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