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Former Miss Northern Ireland Zoe Salmon: modelling for a few hours gave me a year’s pay as a lawyer

NI-born former Blue Peter presenter reveals her financial highs and lows


Financial decisions: Former Blue Peter presenter Zoe Salmon said she has been quite sensible with her money

Financial decisions: Former Blue Peter presenter Zoe Salmon said she has been quite sensible with her money

Financial decisions: Former Blue Peter presenter Zoe Salmon said she has been quite sensible with her money

Former Miss Northern Ireland Zoe Salmon has revealed that she earned more money during a single modelling shoot back in 2009 than she did working for an entire year in a legal profession.

The Bangor native spoke about her financial struggles during university and some of her biggest money mistakes throughout her career, including buying a Grade II-listed apartment in West London.

Zoe said that it cost her £60,000 a year in service charges, plus thousands more in expensive renovations.

However, she revealed that probably the best financial year of her life was in 2010, when she took part in the Dancing on Ice tour which she said was “actually more lucrative than the show”.

“I presented so many TV shows for different channels that, at one point in that year, I was on every major network in the UK,” she told the Mail on Sunday.

“Plus, I did a Hollywood movie with Russell Brand and had the lead role in a theatre production of Cinderella.”

The TV presenter (41) said that, shortly after first appearing on Dancing On Ice back in 2009, she did “one or two jobs within the space of a week, for which I got paid five-figure sums for a few hours of work, doing endorsements and a glamorous photo shoot”.

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She said: “That was more than my whole year’s salary as a newly qualified lawyer.

“I remember meeting my stylist, hairdresser and makeup artist and thinking I barely need to do anything but smile. It was just crazy.”

The former Blue Peter presenter said that she has been quite sensible with her money and has invested in a series of properties in Northern Ireland over the years, both in Belfast and her hometown of Bangor.

She has since sold her buy-to-let penthouse apartment in Belfast but reinvested the money in a four-bedroom house in Bangor.

Zoe also has two investment properties in her hometown, which she calls “her pension nest egg”, and is currently building her “dream home” with her husband William.

She explained that it will “have a sort of Los Angeles feel to it, with lots of glass and a lovely view of the Mourne Mountains”.

“We’re hoping to sell our current home and move in there in about a year,” she said.

The money-savvy Co Down woman also revealed that she has focused more on paying the mortgages off on her various properties instead of paying into a pension.

“I prefer bricks and mortar because it’s a physical asset that you can see,” she said.

“Maybe one day I will invest in the stock market, but until recently I’ve been more interested in becoming mortgage-free. Now I’ve achieved that, I wouldn’t rule it out.”

She added that her number one financial priority is “to always be debt-free and have savings for a rainy day”.

“That way, if I ever choose to buy myself another expensive asset — whether that’s a property or a handbag — I’ll be able to do so, knowing I worked hard for it,” she said.

She credits her parents, saying they taught her “to save wisely and to spend wisely”.

“I didn’t want for anything, but I was never handed anything on a plate,” she added.

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