Financial Literacy

The best personal finance reads from May 2018

By: Nicole Ballantyne-Choo on June 1, 2018

After what felt like a never-ending winter, the recent warm weather is getting me excited for the sunny skies of summer.

I absolutely love the summer months — any chance I get I’m outside, whether it’s brunch-ing with friends on patios, or exploring the great outdoors. While getting out of the city is a great re-set, it’s not even summer yet and I’ve already committed to cottages and events that I know will put a dent in my bank account. If I’m being honest, summer is the season where I splurge the most, so it’s a good thing that I’ve prepared myself this year by reading a lot of personal finance stories.

Luckily, May offered no shortage of good money advice. Here’s a look at my favourite posts that I’ve been reading.

The personal finance lessons of brunch via The Globe and Mail

Speaking of my love for brunch-ing on patios, Rob Carrick wrote an article about brunch and personal finance — and I was intrigued immediately. He raised a good point as to why brunch is either loved or hated, and it doesn’t have to do with the type of food served. Really, it’s about money.

He writes how, despite brunch being overpriced and people being stressed about their finances, going for brunch is an indulgence people can’t seem to part with.

This article made me rethink the money I spend on brunch (mimosas, anyone?) and about wasting spending in general. Basically, it made me realize I need to be saving more money from each pay cheque, and suggest cheaper alternatives to my friends when we’re deciding what to do until we can enjoy brunch regularly — guilt-free.

Commute costs — How to actually save via Cashflow Cookbook

As someone who has one of the more expensive commutes in the office (I live in Mississauga), I’m always looking for ways to cut costs. In the winter I’m less worried about saving money and more grateful to be underground in the TTC out of the cold, however the summer is a different story.

This article was exactly what I was looking for, and whether you have a long or short commute, it’s a helpful guide with five suggestions for anyone looking to save money on travelling to and from work.

Personally, for me to cut costs, especially on gas, I know I should leave my car at home and take a bus to the subway. Also, another option for me from here, which might be easier said than done, is to bike to the subway — it’d be far and I’d have to wake up pretty early, but it would give me the time outside I’m craving.

The other options which may work for you are working from home some days, carpooling with friends who work in the same area, or finding a cheaper parking lot that, although may be farther than your current parking lot, is still within walking distance.

PSA: Millennials Feel Like Kids Because We Can’t Afford To Be Adults via The Financial Diet

Raise your hand if you’re a millennial and don’t feel anywhere close to feeling like a functioning adult. *raises both hands*

Trust me, if this week alone you have felt behind in life, especially when it comes to financial independence and stability, this article is a must-read. Writer Meghan Koushik shares how when she was younger, she thought that 26 was the age she would finally feel like an adult — having a stable career, owning a home — which is a thought I 100% relate to. This is also a thought we both have had to part ways with.

The reality for the majority of millennials (there are exceptions) is that we can’t afford the same lifestyle our parents did in their late twenties and early thirties (whether it’s owning a house or having a wedding) and the cost of living in general is more expensive now.

The biggest takeaway from this article is not be hard on yourself for not being where you thought you would be at your age. Instead, you should be happy with your accomplishments so far and just continue to work towards whatever financial/personal goals you have, even if they take a little longer to get to.

With summer just around the corner, what are your tips for staying within your financial means? Reach out to us on Twitter or Facebook.