Money expert defends the spending habits of woman, 30, who struggles on £40k salary

Jacob Jarvis
The 30-year-old said she has to borrow money every month from her mum and dad: PA
The 30-year-old said she has to borrow money every month from her mum and dad: PA

A money expert has defended a woman who claims she still has to rely on handouts from her parents despite taking home roughly £40k each year and living with them.

Sian Teasdale, 30, wrote in Grazia that she asks for £100 to £500 from her mother and father each month to get by at the end of the month.

However, she insisted this is not due to being “frivolous” but because she does not believe her salary is enough to “cover even the basics”.

This prompted a backlash online, with people seemingly confused by how she cannot manage with her income.

However Ioana Bain, the author of budgeting book Spare Change, said that Ms Teasdale should not be judged negatively for her situation.

Sian Teasdale said she has to ask her parents for between £100 and £500 on average each month (PA Wire/PA Images)
Sian Teasdale said she has to ask her parents for between £100 and £500 on average each month (PA Wire/PA Images)

“The bottom line is that Sian shouldn't feel ashamed or inadequate for drawing on her parents' help.

“It's far better that Sian minimises her reliance on expensive credit if she has parents who are obviously comfortable and happy to support the daughter they love.

"I'm glad to hear she doesn't want to use a credit card, though any money that could be put towards paying off her overdraft would be well-directed,” Ms Bain, who is also the founder of the Young Money blog, told the Standard.

She explained how Ms Teasdale’s parents' generation tends to recognise the struggle of those who fall into the “millennials” bracket, who are “fighting financial fires all the time”.

Ms Bain, 30, referred to high rent costs, expensive housing deposits and slow wage growth as issues.

She said the fact Ms Teasdale’s salary varies, her wage as an account director for a marketing agency is between £30k and £40k depending on commission, might also affect her.

“It is not for me or anyone else to judge whether Sian can live on the amount she earns. I strongly believe that if Sian could live purely on the amount she earns, she would do.

“The vast majority of young people, extreme cases aside, would far prefer to be financially independent than draw on their parents,” Ms Bain said.

“My generation largely missed out on formal financial education. We don't have a consumer economy that gives young people a fighting chance of managing whatever little they've got.

“Against this backdrop, I think Sian is very brave to come forward and open up about her struggles.”

In contrast another money expert, Pete Matthew the author of the Meaningful Money Handbook, said that the salary Ms Teasdale discussed should be enough for one person.

However, he said the lack of detail on her spending made it hard to judge.

He said: “Budgeting is so individual. She needs to look closely at all her costs. Is there anything she could cut out? Assuming she's paying some board to her parents, but not full market rent, I reckon there must be some fat she can trim from her budget.

“£40k is a serious income, and without housing costs, I would have thought that she could save several hundreds per month if not four figures. But I have no idea about travel costs to work, things like that.

“I'd like to know what she is struggling with. Without a breakdown of her spending it's hard to be sympathetic!”

Ms Teasdale, who lives in Bournemouth, said she borrows money to cover expenses from bills to buying lunches.

She said: “The reality is that even earning that much, it can be hard nowadays to lead a normal, and in no way extravagant, 30-something lifestyle. It’s embarrassing, but not unusual."