What's your master plan?; Time is money; Quitting time (hardly!); Making do with less; A tale of two deposits

What's your master plan?; Time is money; Quitting time (hardly!); Making do with less; A tale of two deposits

By Amanda Morrall (email)

1) The perfect life

I am old enough, wise enough and realistic enough to know there is no such thing as the perfect life. Instead, I believe one should strive to live the life you love and love the life you live.  I do on most days but as I was flying around town madly yesterday trying to usher my kids off to childcare, attend to my worm-stricken puppy, arrive on time for a press conference, write up a story from it, write my column, spend time on my book writing project and somehow find a spare moment to stock the fridge as there was no food in the pantry, it dawned on me that my life is too busy.

Appreciating the fact that I can't or won't get rid on the kids, dog or quit my job, I got to thinking about how I could restructure my life to make it more balanced. I thought perhaps a house husband might solve a few issues for me. Trouble is finding a man willing and able.

Cutting back on work would seem the logical thing to do but I can't cut back on work without cutting income, which I need to survive so I've had to rule that one out too. I'm still tinkering with various possibilities but happy to entertain any suggestions...and I know you'll have some.

I took on board a few tips from marriedwithdebt.com which suggests designing the ideal lifestyle is possible through a process of continuous tweaking and most importantly working toward a masterplan.

What's your masterplan?

2) Time is money

No sooner had I written No.1 then this blog from Wellington financial advisor Liz Koh of Money Max land in my inbox. The question remains how?

Time and Money

In the harsh world of economics, the value of a person is not difficult to quantify. In simple terms, the value of a person at a given point in time is based on future earnings, which is the number of hours the person is able to work for the remainder of their life, multiplied by the hourly rate the person is capable of earning. There is a common saying; ‘time is money’ and there is no doubt the two are inextricably linked. The corollary is that the income you earn from personal effort is determined by how you manage your time as well as by how you manage the hourly rate you earn.

Without getting too complicated, let’s look at this in a bit more detail. One of the first things to be aware of is that people are more likely to waste time than money. The irony is, because time is money, wasting time is equivalent to wasting money. Unfortunately, time is limited. If your income comes only from personal effort, there is an absolute limit to what you can earn in your lifetime. Super wealthy people are those who find ways to make money without being dependent on personal effort, for example by setting up a business which makes money out of other people’s effort, borrowing to invest, or selling intellectual property.  If you earn a high hourly rate, spending your time doing things that someone else can do at a lower hourly rate is not effective use of your time and lowers your potential income. If you earn a low hourly rate, it is worth spending time to look at ways of increasing your hourly rate through study, training or finding alternative work. The ultimate winning strategy is to find ways of making income without using personal effort. 

3) Calling it quits

After reading this piece from financialsamurai.com I realised just how far I am from walking away from it all. Samurai considers the case of a high-income earning friend in his late 30's with US$1 million in the bank who promised himself he'd kiss the corporate life goodbye when his bank balance hit that enviable number.  It's a good read for a number of reasons particularly the various scenarios which are cost calculated by Mr. Samurai who comes to the conclusion that his rich mate ought to weigh his options very carefully even with all that cash in the bank.

I also had a bit of shock when I read Samurai's prescribed retirement savings recommendations. He suggests I should have $500K in my retirement fund at this stage of my life. Looks like work/life balance could be along way away yet.

4) Making do with less in 2012

I'm not a big shopper, in fact the Aussie couldn't believe it when I cruised past a gallery of shops without so much as a peak. Still, there is always room for improvement. Perhaps I should take a page out of this blogger's PF book and publicly account for all my discretionary spending. On second thought, maybe not. But I did give myself a pat on the back for buying my second only dress in two years the other day and spending only $65. And it wasn't even at Glassons! Can't go wrong with the little black dress, not at that price anyway.

5) A tale of two deposit rates

I've been tweeting some of our calculators recently and there seems to be a fair bit of interest which is great. 

For those who haven't yet discovered our deposit calculator it's a beauty. It allows you to compare the difference (after tax) between two term deposit rates at maturity. Every little basis point counts.

Have a fabulous weekend all.

To read other Take Fives by Amanda Morrall click here. You can also follow Amanda on Twitter @amandamorrall





We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

We welcome your comments below. If you are not already registered, please register to comment.

Remember we welcome robust, respectful and insightful debate. We don't welcome abusive or defamatory comments and will de-register those repeatedly making such comments. Our current comment policy is here.


I agree I look at some of the women around me and they, at 40 odd are still looking for a knight in shinning armour, over-weight, and/or mental baggage....over-rate themselves......aint going to happen........I meet some nice guys and assholes.....the assholes seem to do better with the girls....gift of the gab that doesnt deliver.....not my problem anyway......
I'd add in a good work ethic and decent/reasonable education btw......

...... I'd add to your list one item , Ivan : No one who declares that they've always voted for ( which ever party ) and always will .......
Guys & Gals with  a closed mindset are to be avoided .....

Hey Gummy Bear...Amanda showing more restraint than you I bet.....how many dresses have you bought this year?

Never more than one on any given shopping spree ....... unless they have a cute little black number ,...  those accessorise so well with my Gummy Bear bag and assorted jellified acoutrements ...
......... ah , retail , such therapy !.

"A cute little black number"..hmmmm....not very PC of you Gummy!

Ah, the luxury of anonymous drive by commenting GBH. 

Good to see you have such high standards Ivan.

I would agree Ivan but I have considerably revised my expectations from a list of 20 to about four; money isn't even on the list (provided they aren't a financial liability) nor does political persuasion although maybe I should heed gummy bear's advice.

Often it Boils down to the amount of moola the guy has. There is a formula there.... More cash = less flaws observed by the female

Not in my books.

Ah come on Amanda : Didn't you say " if you've got it , flaunt it " ...... ?
 That works equally well for rich guys , who flaunt their wealth ..... Kim Dotcom is no " oil painting " , but the chicks flock to a guy who flaunts wealth , fun times , and a derison of the authorities .......

Why are we not seeing Kiwi build used truck tire cottages?....this resource is going to waste....the slum suburbs in the undeveloped world have so much to teach Kiwi on how to make do with less...My bet is the NZ media lack the courage to get out and find the families saving heaps by living safely and comfortably in homes built with discarded stuff.
We need a return to the era of the Kiwi batch...the Crib....with the tank water and the long drop dunny....the open fire or wood burner....the bunks and sack 'curtains'....the solid wooden floors and sheet steel roof. Ok no long drop, compost instead.
I predict councils are going to face some serious conflict in the decades to come as more people go back to the future and to living in a crib.

I challenge BH to identify the three best Kiwi 'red tape buster' homes in use today...give us a cost benefit analysis...don't report the exact location though.
Enterprising construction that's safe sound and fit for a family...with home grown food too.
Come on Bernard you can do it....Amanda would love the task.

Amanda, perhaps you ask the wrong question, its not "there is no such thing as the perfect life"
  Its is there such a tHINg as a peRFEcT lie.   SPILT COFFEE ON MY KEYBOARD SO IT RAMDOMLY SHOUTS 

Grizzled old chippies reminisce of the days when the building industry issued it's own small book of standards ...... and those houses are still solid as , standing proudly today ......
..... then the gumnut & the local councils decided to muscle in on the act ...... and it's all turned to rhubarb & custard ever since .......
The customer now gets a crappier house , which costs much more than before ........ it's called " progress " !

Your access to our unique content is free - always has been. But ad revenues are diving so we need your direct support.

Become a supporter

Thanks, I'm already a supporter.