Amy’s Story

Amy's Story

Getting my finances in order was somewhat of a coincidence, looking back it feels like all the stars aligned at just the right time. In truth though, it was probably something that had been playing on my mind for a while. I had no savings, a bit of credit card debt and felt a little financially out of control. One weekend I visited a friend of mine who had bought a little apartment all by herself, she’d done an amazing job renovating it and making it her own. A few weeks later I visited my bank to do a mundane task, while I was there the bank teller that served me asked if I was saving for anything. I explained that I had a bit of credit card debt but would like to eventually save for my own place. He took the initiative to set up a balance transfer credit card that I would have to pay off within 6 months, the final payment being June 2nd – I’ve never forgotten the date.

It was the first time I set a goal and stuck to it, and vowed never to have ongoing credit card debt again. Once it was paid off, I saved a set amount each payday and built up a good pot of savings. A while later I was given the opportunity to take redundancy, I was looking for a change but at the time it was a bit of a scary decision. I ended up talking it, started a great new job and added my redundancy money to my savings. For the first time ever I was earning interest from the bank rather than paying them interest! Less than a year later I bought my very own apartment. I’m now renting it out and letting someone else pay off my mortgage until I am ready to move into it. I’m back on the saving bandwagon, to build up more money to invest in something else.

My biggest lessons are:

  • Try to work out a way that you can earn more, either by working towards a promotion at work, a second job, commissions and bonus’ etc.
  • Try to live within your means; paying of credit card debt for things you bought ages ago is no fun.
  • Being organised is such an important part of being financially fit, I do my tax return on time, keep my receipts in order, do my healthcare claims and work expenses as I go along, so that it doesn’t all pile up and become a bigger job than I can, or want(!) to handle.
  • Surround yourself with smart, likeminded people that inspire you and can also lend a helping hand as you venture into new financial projects.

Over the next 5 years, I am aiming to grow my earnings, have a diverse range of investments and live a life where I am not financially restricted, meaning I can do the things I want to do when I want to them.

Amy attended a 10thousandgirl workshop in Sydney in 2014.

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Microfinance is the provision of financial services such as loans, savings, insurance and training to people living in poverty. It is one of the great success stories in the developing world in the last 30 years and is widely recognised as a just and sustainable solution in alleviating global poverty.

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