Budgeting was easier when we were paid weekly
Weekly pay is not that common any more, but budgeting seemed to be easier when it was the norm.
I can remember a time when nearly everyone was paid weekly. Sure, this was probably before the time of internet banking and payday loans, but was it easier to budget this way? After all, there can’t have been much need for a seven-day, high-interest loan if your next wage was only a few days away.
Around 15 years ago I remember working in a job in which I got paid weekly by banking transfer into my account every Friday. Looking back now I think it was great.
I had direct debits to pay, which I carefully worked out each month. I knew almost to the penny how much of my weekly pay packet was mine to keep, save and spend and how much I had to leave in the account each week to cover my essential direct debit costs.
To be fair I was a lot younger in those days and my commitments weren’t as high as they are now, but I look back fondly on the period as budgeting on a weekly wage seemed very simple. Maybe I’m looking back with rose tinted financial glasses.
I worked with people who were older and had higher commitments, but they too seemed to manage well. I also remember that making small regular savings didn’t seem too much of a sacrifice at this time.
The best advice I had about being paid every Friday came from one colleague who always told me "as long as you’ve got a fiver in your bank on a Thursday night you’ve got no worries".
Around the time that I was leaving this job to move onto pastures new, the staff were told that the wages department were making the transition from weekly to monthly pay.
There was outcry, as the transition itself would be difficult for those without savings to cope with - essentially the staff would go instantly from a weekly wage to four to five weeks without pay.
Once that tough transition was made, many expected they would be okay.
I kept in touch with friends from my old workplace and over the coming years they began to look back on the weekly pay packet fondly. They too found it harder to budget on a monthly wage.
As a debt counsellor we come across people who have difficulty budgeting for all kinds of reasons. A big gripe we hear is that the client is paid four weekly. They don’t seem to grasp the concept that they actually receive 13 payments a year. Four weekly pay can really throw some people out of whack.
lovemoney.com has some great tools to help you budget but what do you do if you find that your budget doesn’t add up?
If debt is a problem we’ve got an online tool that can help with debt management and advice. Our Debt Remedy tool didn’t exist back when being paid weekly was the norm, but it’s designed to help people in all kinds of tough situations regards their finances and it doesn’t matter if you’re paid weekly, fortnightly, four weekly or monthly, it can help in all circumstances.
Did you ever get paid weekly? Did you find it easier to budget? We’d love to hear your thoughts.
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