Belfast Telegraph

Why keeping track of my spending and growing my own has saved me money

Every week we ask a businessperson about their finances. Today, we talk to Claire Kelly, owner of Passion Preserved relishes and chutneys in Lisburn

Q Are you a plastic or cash person?

Plastic but trying to be more cash.

Q How much money do you usually carry around with you?

£10.

Q Do you see personal debt (ie credit card, personal loans) as inevitable or best avoided?

Best avoided. I was brought up to believe you save for what you want and the only 'okay' debt was a mortgage or car loan.

Q Apart from a house or car, what's the most expensive thing you've ever bought?

My greenhouse.

Q Are you a saver or a spender?

I like to save up - and then spend. But on a serious note I always try to have enough saved for any emergency.

Q What are your best and worst spending habits?

Best is I don't impulse buy. Worst is I love to spend on food and other people.

Q Did you get pocket money as a child? If so, what was the first sum you pocketed?

My first pocket money was 20p per week.

Q Did you have a part time job as a youngster and what was it?

I worked in a small grocer's shop from the age of about 12 - for a full Saturday I was paid £2.

Q If you had a huge fortune, would you leave it to your children?

No, I would leave enough in a trust so that they were secure but still had to work for their money. I'd leave the rest in a charitable trust.

Q Where do you do your food shopping?

My local butcher, The Meat Merchant, in Moira has most of what I buy as I like to shop local and can buy a lot of artisan produce there. I also shop in Lidl, my local Centra and the monthly Farmer's Market at Newtownbreda. I grow almost all my own vegetables so rarely buy those.

Q Are there any lessons of finances that you are bringing with you into the recovery after living through recession?

Yes, I've become a lot more conscious of my spending and when I'm in a shop I find myself mentally counting up what I have in my trolley.

Belfast Telegraph

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