Renee and Jamie Reshape Their Relationship With Money Using PocketSmith

We asked some of our wonderful users to share how they use PocketSmith to be productive with their money and plan for the future. Their stories are filled with ideas, suggestions and inspiration on how you can start crafting a meaningful relationship with your finances.

Read how Wellingtonian couple Renee and Jamie use PocketSmith to track their finances and identify their money leakages!

Tell us a little about yourselves?

We’re Renee and Jamie. We’ve been together seven years now, and recently got engaged. We live in Wellington, New Zealand with our two beloved pugs, Cooper and Luna. 

How would you describe your roles in your household?

Teamwork makes the dream work in our house. We have very different jobs and schedules as Jamie runs a pub and Renee has a couple of different day jobs but works from home. This means we don’t follow a traditional schedule or a 9-to-5 lifestyle. We support each other to get it all done.

What drew you to PocketSmith?

We’d been doing a budget off Excel and it was (and continues to be) fine, but we wanted to know more — specifically where our money leakage was. You’d start the week with a certain amount of money in your account, reach the end of the week and it was gone but you’d just have no idea where it went. We had a theory that if we could see where we were leaking, we could stop the leaks and maybe top up a savings account. Jamie is from the UK and we were hoping to go back and see family more (pre-Covid).

How long have you been with us?

At least three years now. We signed up for three months thinking we’d get that data and be done with PocketSmith but the more we learned, the more value we saw in staying with PocketSmith. Our subscription cost has more than paid off in changed spending!

How has PocketSmith changed the way you do money?

Renee here. For me, I’ve completely reshaped my relationship with money because of PocketSmith. I had a financially nightmarish 20s for a wide variety of reasons (mental health, a couple of bad relationships, just generally being shit with money), so I came into my 30s feeling beaten down by money after being in survival mode for so long. I spent what I had and was technically fine but had no savings, no buffer. I used to feel embarrassed by this but the more openly I’ve talked about money, the more I’ve found out just how many people are struggling. 

With PocketSmith, I decided to track every single cent I spent and what I learned was I was paying a high price for convenience. I was also paying quite a heavy tax for lying to myself.

Prior to PocketSmith I would set my budget, decide what was sensible and then blow it straight up every week. Now that I had the tracking and I could see where and when I actually spent money, and what I spent it on, I could start to build realistic budgets and stick to them. It also got me assessing what I considered essential and what I considered a treat. Those things are different for everyone and they change over time. It also helped me decide what was worth the convenience tax and what wasn’t.  

What are your favorite features?

Renee again. I just love coding the expenses! Sitting there actually going through how and when you spend money makes you accountable a second time. It’s easy enough to put something on your card and not think about it, but when you then have to sit there and decide where and how to code an expense, you quickly start to realize that just maybe you’ve been spending some of your money on things you didn’t actually value.

Got any tips?

Stop measuring yourself against other people’s lives and spending. At the end of the day, you’re accountable only to yourself. 

What’s the best money decision you made in the past 12 months?

Jamie would make a joke about putting it all on black. Renee’s best money decision in the past 12 months was actually learning to save for things before buying them.

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