Monday, 11 July 2011

A tale of two families

There is an interesting article in today's Daily Mail which I read this morning  ( free, online ! ) which tells the story of two families both earning the same income but one family is in the North and the other family is in the South. The income in question is a household income of £50,000 per year. The story makes an interesting read. The family in the South  live in a £600k detached house, they have two cars and Mom tells how she has dropped the Tesco shopping from £250 to £150 ( you assume this is per week as it's not confirmed). The article goes on to state that they have virtually nothing for life's luxuries. They have stopped having their three holidays each year, given up their £75 monthly gym membership, can't get the children their favourite brand of clothing and recently their horse died, which they are not going to replace. From the photographs they look well clothed and have a beautiful home, the car on the driveway looks decent too.
   The family from the North have a lower value home , due to regional price differences but the article describes them as having an affluent lifestyle. They belong to the sailing club, a private health club, having annual holidays; fortnight's skiing and also a fortnight's summer holiday abroad,regular meals and activities out and the article says they don't have to worry about bills or shopping.
     Our family income is a little over half of theirs and please don't think that I am jealous. I find it interesting how people live, I suppose you could say I am nosey! But there are people countrywide who are struggling financially who aren't able to relinquish the horse, the gym and the holidays , as these people have never been in a position to have these things in the first place. When I read the blogs, I see people making serious adjustments to survive. The article does offer an insight into how other people live but I don't honestly feel any sympathy for these people. Perhaps they should do an article on how families are struggling living on £20k per annum ? What do you think?


  1. I am constantly amazed by how much other people have coming in- and going out. The [free] pensions advisor who came to see us last week said "Is that ALL you have coming in?" and "You manage to do ALL THAT on that little income?" He was utterly gobsmacked. Then he said "You two don't aspire to great riches, do you?" [er, no - you won't find many clergymen who do go into the job for monetary gain]
    I am concerned that so many articles focus on these 'poor' people deprived of horse and ski-trip holidays - and don't give PROPER help to families learning to manage a budget of much less.
    blessings xx

  2. Hi Angela, I agree entirely with your comment. How rude of that person saying you don't aspire to great riches ! Not everyone is money mad. We personally know people who have lots of cash,investments and a big house but have no wife/family etc and the material things are nice but they crave what we have, which is each other !!

  3. Hi yes I read that article this morning too. It has something like over 300 comments now. I like going back and reading the comments too!. I am like yourself we possibly on a combined income live on approx £21,500.00 per annum.
    When I read articles like that its like a world away as we would never earn that amount. I would be living a luxury lifestyle on that( well not luxury but I could make me money go further!
    The poor little dear not having 3 foreign holidays! I went abroad some 16 years ago!I am not complaining. Its funny reading articles like that . I think they should use an average family on twenty grand too

  4. That's whats great about blog land. We can read about each other and how we spend and live. We're all a bunch of snoops :-) and it's super interesting.

  5. I don't need to go to the gym. I scrub the floor, do the housework, weed the garden, sweep the path, walk to the shop and dance in the back room.
    Love from Mum

  6. I am always amazed too by how much other people have coming in and going out! Ha I have only ever lived on half of that income and less now. I think in some places in the north you can have a better standard of living due to house prices but thats it really - utilities and food prices are not much cheaper. I never had a horse to give up either. Wow how do pay for a 600k house, nice car etc etc from 50k a year anyway.

    I get miffed when I am told 'that I will just have to cut back' lol - what more am I supposed to cut???

    Yes that pension person was very cheeky. Aspire to much!!!! So as if riches and material things are the only things worth aspiring to?

  7. Your post was so interesting that I looked up the original article and read it....along with most of the accompanying comments. Wow! Those two families sure did generate a lot of opinionated emotions!

    I'm kind of at a loss for what to say, other than the one family (I kept getting their last names confused) is mortgage-poor for sure! Not sure how or why they spend that much on a house payment. And surely the woman didn't mean she spent 250 a *week* on groceries, maybe she meant a month.

    If the Daily Mail was doing a series of articles on people from ALL different income ranges, this article would make a lot more sense. As it is, it just seems divisive and meant to stir the pot.

  8. Hi Everyone, Thanks for all your comments. I guess we are all thinking along the same lines. Interesting there is another article about a lady on benefits with 14 children, perhaps they put that in to balance things out.