Please note that this article is from a previous issue of the magazine – some information may have changed since the publication date. Virgin Money cannot be held responsible for the accuracy of this content.

Letters – July

The writer of this month’s star letter received £100!

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I have just finished reading your article ‘How to cut the cost of having a baby’ and it has been a real help. My partner and I are due to have a baby very soon and I have had sleepless nights worrying about if we will be able to make ends meet!

Times were already hard with rising bills and stagnating pay and raising a child is a big undertaking, financially as well as emotionally. The advice in your article will go a long way in ensuring we can meet all of our obligations and give our child the best start in life. In hard times it can be the littlest things that make the biggest difference.

Rob Buxton

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Star letter wins £100
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In response to your article ‘How childhood shapes our attitudes to money’, as a child, I would get my pocket money and even at an early age, would balance out what I had with what I wanted to buy. And I would save. I loved doing maths so bought an exercise book to practice my tables on, a quarter of sweets to last me the week, and saved the rest for Christmas and birthdays.

You never lose the experience of budgeting your cash flow, even when you are older. I think it was training from my mother I picked up, which has helped me in life.

Janet Brown

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In response to your article ‘How childhood shapes our attitudes to money’, the one thing that stays with me from my childhood was my dad’s rule on savings. His theory was that savings should be split into three: short, medium and long-term.

Every month, he’d suggest I put away money for annual purchases like car insurance, so I’d never end up with predictable but forgotten large purchases through the year. Medium-term savings would be for a new computer or home furniture and long-term would be for the future.

The actual amount didn’t matter as much as the principle of continual saving. As a self employed musician, it has helped me avoid money problems in the ups and downs of my work.

Rachael Coulson

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Sadly, I lost my dad when I was seven years old. I was the youngest of six, my eldest sister being 16 years older than me, so she was one of the breadwinners in our house back in 1972.

I just remember us as a family not having much, but we survived. However, something my dad insisted on was that we all had bank accounts opened at the first opportunity – it was pretty much just pennies that were paid in.

I got my first motorbike at 16 years old from the money in that account, and that motorbike got me my first apprenticeship because I was the only one that could get to the premises. It was on a new industrial estate on the edge of town that the buses didn’t then serve.

I am trying to pass on his ideals to my kids, and it’s not easy when all their mates seem to get what they want almost immediately, usually due to the ease of credit advances etc. I might not have got to know him very well, but my siblings and I were taught some important stuff early on.

You just don’t see it at the time but the old sayings seem to prove themselves – them pennies can make pounds (or in my case, a Honda 50 and a job!).

David Morley

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As a child I was given weekly pocket money but had to do house chores in return, such as going to the shop for some coal to put on the fire. If I wanted anything else I was told to get it myself, so I got a paper round and learned to save my money for the things I wanted.

My parents’ attitude was, ‘if you want it then work for it!’. It sounds harsh compared to today’s world 40 years on, but I knew no different. I gave my children pocket money, but did not make them do any chores – big mistake! I gave them everything that my parents denied me - mistake number two!

My children are now grown up in their 20s and they do find ‘going without’ very difficult. I refuse to financially support them anymore as they are now grown up but their expectations are that I should! 40 years on, they know no different!

Andrew Wilson

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Do you agree with these readers? Is there a money-related subject you’d like to see us tackle, or have you your own tips to share? Whatever you’d like to say, we’d like to hear your thoughts on Virgin Money and the My Virgin Money magazine.

Write to us at and we’ll publish the best letters we receive in a future issue of the magazine. And don’t forget, we’ll pay £100 for our star letter! We look forward to hearing from you.

My Virgin Money magazine reserves the right to edit contributor’s letters for, and as a condition of, publication. Links to external websites are for information only. Virgin Money receives no income from them and accepts no responsibility for the website content. The information in this article is correct as at 24 July 2012.

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