Am I the only one who often wonders where the heck some people get all their money from?

(53 Posts)
Nonalphamum Mon 02-Sep-13 10:39:30

I probably am very nosey, but I know a few people that have a seemingly average/low income but seem to spend spend spend all the time and I guess I just wonder how they do it.

DD's friend's mum is a single mum with 2 children, she works part time, yet seems to have endless cash for holidays, clothes, haircuts, nights out etc. She and her kids have had 2 foreign holidays during these summer holidays alone.

Another woman I know has 5 children, her husband works in the catering industry so not on a good wage, and again they seem to just spend all the time; clothes, holidays, things for their house. And she has said that they spend £200 most weeks on food shopping.

It just baffles me where people get their money from.

I have what is classed as a low income, yet I do always seem to have shopping bags at work. I generally only buy a good bargain, I don't spend a lot on food (so many people turn their noses up at whoopsied meat, etc, but I generally buy it at at least a 50% reduction, it saves me a fortune!). I also have a nosy at HUKD, MSE etc, at least a couple of times a day, while on my lunchbreak at work, and I'm more than happy to buy Christmas/ birthday presents months early if it's going to save me a decent amount.

The people who always complain to me that they have £50 left the week after payday to last them the rest of the month, or that they have dipped into their savings again, are generally the ones who are snobby about labels, or rummaging for a good bargain, or not having yellow labels on their food. They'd run a mile if they saw my freezer!

Freemilk Mon 23-Sep-13 15:23:21

Just coming back to this......
for some dare I say it they have well paying jobs (I gather not infrequently public sector) and work in a cheap part of the country.
TBF as someone said upthread how much you pay for housing makes a huge difference, whether that is through having no mortgage or living somewhere where houses are very cheap.

I also think the kind of differences I am talking about are not accounted for by taking the bus instead of walking or buying cushions from matalan when everyone thinks they are Next. I am talking about school fees for multiple children from the age of 3, buying houses for well over a million, having 4 or 5 overseas holidays a year, for the whole family, flying business class (or better) however many clubcard vouchers I save or clothes I sell on ebay or buses I don't catch it is never going to pay for all that.

Worth remembering that savings and housing equity are not taken into account by tax credits a useful way of adding several 10s of K to your wealth when you might not 'need it' not sure what the situation is re maintenance but even then as I said that is only going to cover 1 set of school fees not all the other stuff.

Along the same lines those who receive lots of parental help where are the retired getting it all from?!!! I'm surprised they don't feel the need to save for their care homes!!

Actually sorry I have just realised that I have changed the question it was about how people on a low income have loads/look rich etc, not about how totally loaded some people seem to be!! I will add this anyway it is interesting to think about.

cozietoesie Sat 21-Sep-13 19:08:49

I vaguely remember a famous court case about 30 years ago where the man put a huge amount of money in a woman's name for tax avoidance reasons (I think they were husband and wife so it must have been a divorce hearing) - and she promptly decamped.

The (very senior) judge took great delight in intoning lugubriously 'He who plays with fire.......'

78bunion Wed 11-Sep-13 10:01:00

I went to the hairdressers yesterday for the first time in about 5 years (it's very expensive) and I usually just buy the £6 dye and cut it myself. Yet there seem to be loads of people out there who often go to get their hair done, who eat out and all kinds of things we never do. I think it is just that some spend money they don't have or else they illegally evade tax or have money from parents.

HMRC look at all this on their inspections - is the lifestyle of the person higher than their declared income, do they have expensive cars, boats, private school places, clothes, jewellery beyond their means etc.

Some women get stuff from men. I was talking to a man this week who had bought a £1m house in the name of his lover! Now wants it back but of course if it were a gift that's rather hard.. .more fool him.

addictedtofarmville Wed 11-Sep-13 09:19:24

I think too that some people are just excellent at living a champagne lifestyle on a lemonade budget. Some people are really good at looking for bargains, or at putting outfits together, or at decorating their homes on a shoestring.

Another friend of mine is a single mum on benefits and is extremely skint, yet her house is like a showhome as she just has a great flair for decorating and interior design.

FourGates Tue 10-Sep-13 22:12:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ememem84 Tue 10-Sep-13 21:48:33

Could be any number of reasons. Debt. Or family money. Or just saved hard. We're being a bit extravagant this year on face of it- new kitchen, new bathroom, trip to NYC in jan, just got back from a week in turkey, skiing in feb 14 and nz dec 14. However. Nz trip was a wedding gift. Skiing coincides with friends wedding. We're trying to sell flat to buy house upgrades are necessary to get better price. We budgeted and saved hard.

miffybun73 Tue 10-Sep-13 21:22:35

They're probably massively in debt.

Ilovefluffysheep Tue 10-Sep-13 21:20:04

You could me talking about me! Single mum to 2, work part time, foreign holiday every year, overpay my mortgage.

I don't do debt (other than mortgage). I'm good at budgeting, use coupons to the max, and exploit the tesco club card scheme as much as possible (2 Florida holidays, Lapland, half a car, all paid for in the past by club card).

I guess I'm lucky as my first house bought in 1996 tripled in value, so even though when I moved in 2007 and my mortgage almost quadrupled, I still had plenty of equity in my property.

Holidays are important to us, so saving for those is a priority. I never buy anything full price, and my work colleagues call me bargain queen. It can be done, but you have to be pretty dedicated.

addictedtofarmville Tue 10-Sep-13 09:25:42

I know someone who is a bit like this and I often wonder how she does it. She's a friend of mine and is a single mum to one child, and often moans about how hard life is financially for her, yet she is always buying clothes in shops like Topshop and River Island, so not particularly cheap clothes. She also goes to a top hairdressers and has a cut and blow dry for £80 every 6 weeks. She doesn't really have holidays, but does have lots of nights out, spa days, all those kinds of things. Also her daughter always has loads of nice, expensive clothes.

I've come to the conclusion that her parents help her out financially. I don't think she could sustain that lifestyle herself doing the job that she does and with the income she claims to have.

Either that or she's doing phone sex chat line work on the side!

PeachesForMe Sun 08-Sep-13 09:20:10

Family members - I know my baby-boomer parents feel they have way more money than they are entitled to. They just did what they should do, saved up, bought pensions etc, and now they're getting the benefit. OTOH they've seen me go further than they did: good education, couldn't buy a house for ages though, no spare money for investments...They have given me gifts of money because they can.

Also, the more you have, the more that comes to you. It's quite a sad fact. You get better deals on practically everything, once you've got a bit to "invest". Free flights, cheap hotels for credit card points. Savings when you bulk buy. Cheaper bills because you're well insulated and have a good boiler. It all adds up.

And as you get older, people die and leave you money. sad

I think thinking about it too much can eat you up inside! We have good salaries but could only afford a camping holiday this year as we're in the red following maternity leave and a load of things going wrong at home which needed fixing (eg serious things like electricity supply, toilet not working, boiler issues...).

juneau Sun 08-Sep-13 08:59:56

I sometimes wonder this too, but you never know someone else's situation. For instance, my sister only earns about £20k, yet she owns her own house, has a car, goes on at least two foreign holidays a year, and it's all because our parents help her out a huge amount. They let her have an advance on her inheritance to buy her house, she's borrowed money from them to replace her car, she goes on holiday with them at least once a year, which they never ask her to contribute towards, our dad gives us all some money each year in order to avoid inheritance tax, etc. It all adds up and means she has a much better lifestyle than she could dream of having on her salary alone.

And, of course, as others have said, there are many, many people out there who live on credit, who lease their cars, make minimum payments on mortgages, etc, and are therefore able to give the impression of being much more well-off than they really are.

Chubfuddler Sun 08-Sep-13 08:58:34

People think I spend a fortune on clothes as I have bought a lot of new stuff recently (massive weight loss so I had to).

80% are from charity shops.

FamiliesShareGerms Sun 08-Sep-13 08:54:59

Badlad - good point! Children do cost money!!

GinOnTwoWheels Sun 08-Sep-13 08:45:42

OP, the family with 5 DCs will be getting a LOT of tax credits and child benefit, £20k+ PA, plus HB on top if they rent.

AdoraBell Chile Sun 08-Sep-13 05:41:29

Not the only one at all OP, my OH goes on, and on, about how do all these people on X salary afford these houses and those cars. Drives me potty, I couldn't give a monkeys how they afford it or what salary they are on even though I know most of it is either on credit or inheritance here.

CyrilSneers Sun 08-Sep-13 05:39:04

I swear I've read this exact thread before hmm

Morgause Sun 08-Sep-13 05:35:45

We are both semi-retired now and have a lot of days out exploring the countryside. We see some wonderful houses as we drive around and constantly wonder what the residents do for a living. They can't all be footballers or company directors can they?

BadLad Sun 08-Sep-13 04:24:10

I can never understand how people have large savings such that they can pay for an extension in cash or not worry about working for a year, for example.

I presume family help / inheritance, probably including ensuring no student debt and help towards a decent deposit to make the mortgage smaller.

Add not having kids to that list. It makes a big difference to the amount of disposable income. Or so my friends with children tell me.

gintastic Sat 07-Sep-13 23:24:08

We paid cash for our extension, but I'd rather still have my uncle, thanks very much.

Oblomov Sat 07-Sep-13 23:22:13

2 of our friends have both bought new cars, outright for cash. They both have expensive holidays. Dh and are baffled. We can only assume they are given alot by their parents.

WeAllHaveWings Sat 07-Sep-13 22:49:50

Dh's friend is on a low income, but has a lot of material things and he and his family go on the type of holidays we can't afford.

We have a mortgage and equity, where they pay a smaller council rent.
We pay for insurance for mortgage protection, building & contents, pet insurance, life insurance etc where they take the risk and have none.
We have a saving plan for ds where the have none.
A lot of their gadgets fell off the back of lorries, I pay for my gadgets.
They owe money to family and friends, I have no debt and have never borrowed significant money since I left home.

I am very risk adverse and would worry about debt, no insurance, owing money where they are very relaxed. What I spend on insurances, savings and legit purchases would probably pay for a nice holiday each year!

FamiliesShareGerms Sat 07-Sep-13 22:42:24

I can never understand how people have large savings such that they can pay for an extension in cash or not worry about working for a year, for example.

I presume family help / inheritance, probably including ensuring no student debt and help towards a decent deposit to make the mortgage smaller.

applepudding Sat 07-Sep-13 22:37:45

Sometimes people can appear to be spending a lot on certain things because they economise in other areas.

For example, we go on holiday quite frequently (normal one foreign holiday and a few UK short breaks) and eat out at least once a week but we have a very small mortgage, our cars are both over 10 years old, I generally shop at Aldi, meal plan and check voucher codes/comparison sites before making purchases.

DH and myself are both on average/low wages but DS says his friends are always saying we must be rich because we go away/out a lot.

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