This is the first installment of Mamamia’s Money Diaries, where we investigate what millennial women are spending their hard-earned cash on. Nothing is too outrageous or too sacred. We start this series with the most expensive city in Australia: Sydney. (Thanks to Refinery29 for the inspiration.)
Salary: $60,000 ($50,000 in full-time employment + $10,000 freelance).
Housing: Living at home with grandparents and sister. I don’t contribute to household expenses.
- Gym payment: $45/week
- Phone bill: $120/month
- Petrol: $70/week
- Groceries approx. $50/week
- Health supplements approx. $110/month
Savings: I save 50% of my income, but sometimes there are unexpected expenses that mean I occasionally dig into savings.
Debt: HECS debt approx. $50,000.
Assets: None, just savings.
4.30am - I wake up and go to the gym. Every Monday my $45 weekly fee is deducted from my account. It might be excessive, but $45 works for me and I go to at least six sessions a week, so it comes out to about $8/class.
6.15am - I come home and make a protein shake. My sister and I split a huge canister that costs about $150 but lasts us a few months. Breakfast is a poached egg with avocado on toast. We live with our grandparents who provide basic groceries, but my sister and I split the costs of any extras that we buy; yoghurt, meat and fish, seeds and grains as well as particular vegetables come out of our pocket.
7.30am - after showering and getting ready for work, I'm in my car on the way to the train station. I live in South West Sydney where public transport is poor, so it takes me about 40 mins to drive to the station and park my car, then another 40 mins or so on the train to Central and a 10 min walk to the office. My return train journey costs me about $10/day, and as my '98 Mitusbushi Magna is a fuel guzzler, I spend approx. $70/week on petrol.
9am-6pm - I pack my food for the entire day and take it to work with me. I had a protein ball that I make at home every weekend with some green tea (which is free at work) for morning tea, a schnitzel sandwich made with leftovers from yesterday's family lunch (made and paid for by my mum) that I threw some lettuce onto, yoghurt with chia seeds in the afternoon and leftover minestrone soup (also scavenged from family lunch) for dinner. I managed not to spend a cent at work today.
Daily spend: $55 (not including petrol or meals prepared with groceries I'd purchased on the weekend).
4.30am - Started the day with my usual routine of going to the gym and coming home to a protein shake. My sister had to head to uni early today so I didn't have time to make breakfast at home.
8am - Park my car at the station and jump on the train. $5.
9am - Drop my thing off at the office and head downstairs to a cafe to grab a slice of avocado toast with a poached egg. $5.50.