Work is not a job, and the web of life

Over at Retirement Investing Today there’s an intriguing differentiation between work and jobs. I confess that I never thought about either until mid-teens, and conflated the two. Let’s hear it from RIT

Soon after joining it became very obvious that while there were some pieces of meaningful work (where I define work as something you do for purpose) the vast majority of what I was going to be doing was just a job (which I define as something you do because you need the money) and right now I don’t need a job.

You know how listening to someone speak, somewhere in the back of your mind there is a guy with a tape recorder taping the incoming soundstream1. Every so often you have a hey I didn’t quite get moment and yell down to the guy in the depths of your brain “Hey, roll tape and gimme that again”

Well, there must be a similar process in reading, I had gotten past that section on to

Living it again enabled me to see that the role, my industry and my own needs had changed beyond recognition and at some point, much like the boiled frog, my meaningful work / career had actually predominantly become just a job with me just not noticing.

before it occurred to me that this was a way of looking at work that was seriously new to me and something I had missed through a lifetime of work 😉

RIT approach to work and investing is in some ways the yin to my yang, or perhaps the other way round. Anyway, he is a steady and rational investor of the passive kind. He had sufficient overview of his industry to lay out the distant early warning system that picked up the sound of incoming thunder early enough for him to plan an exit strategy

I originally pursued FIRE as back in 2007 I saw some changes starting to occur that made me think my job at the time would eventually be outsourced to a low cost country.

Whereas I discovered I was in trouble after The Firm took a stake in an outsource and my work turned into a job (in RIT’s parlance) and then started to become seriously shit.

When a Job is not Work

I confess I never sought meaning from work, this is still something I don’t get. What I wanted was for it to be interesting and above all to be enough to live on. I saw leisure time as the time to chase meaning. It has not escaped me that this seems to be an atypical approach to work nowadays. Perhaps it comes from a working-class background, people don’t carry bricks or fix cars as a source of meaning in their lives. These were jobs, though people still think of it in terms of going to work.

So I am intrigued by RIT’s taxonomy, and perhaps what I called a requirement for work to be ‘interesting’ was what many people call ‘meaning’.

Certainly as time went by micromanagement became more and more a feature of the workplace although I rose a few levels up the greasy pole. When I started at The Firm I could sign off up to £500 of spend, when I left two decades later and some layers up the tree I had to get return train tickets authorised in advance to London (where the project was). There was much more job in my work.

A company doing white-collar work used to be a group of people working together to a common goal, there was more leeway and co-operation. Nowadays it’s a bunch of work units performance managed to an inch of their lives, measured individually against following processes. No surprise that there’s less esprit de corps then 😉

RIT’s experience and description of retiring and returning to work and then leaving it again confirms my prejudice that once you walk away  from a professional job you become pretty much unemployable in that sort of thing.

The work is all right, it is the job part that sucks. Filling in timesheets, getting authorisation for spend, all hands events where lying bastards lie blatantly to you and it’s not the done thing to call them out on it or ask “why is this going to work this time when it failed the last three times it was tried here?”

Those locked into the hamster wheel make the best of a bad thing I guess and say they get meaning from this and good luck to them. An Ermine in The Firm would be a very dangerous thing indeed, because a company runs on a shared belief system that does not necessarily correspond with reality, and it doesn’t need troublemakers highlighting the dissonances.

There seems to be an increasing trend to corporate belief in the principles of Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret2 – the current UK government seems to also be a fan of the modus operandi of wishing for what you want really really hard and it will happen. Perhaps there is truth in “Whom the gods would destroy they first make mad“.

Companies avoid dissent in the ranks against the obvious stupidity of the latest management fad with the simple threat of economic sanction – do it our way and don’t rock the boat else you’ll lose you job. The financially independent think to themselves ‘so what’ and also ask themselves how they could better use their time.

Others say contracting is the way and many people make a success of that. You don’t have to buy into the corporate ethos. I could never see that as a reliable source of income of the sort I’d have the balls to raise a mortgage against. I wasn’t even aware of it as a possibility for the first decade or so of my working life, BPO wasn’t a big part of the companies I worked for at the time. Mrs Ermine, who comes from a different background, has no trouble with the notion. It ain’t me.

When Work is not a Job

… it’s called volunteering. Presumably nobody volunteers for things they think are without worth, and the great advantage volunteers have over employees is they can walk off the job at any time with no downside. As an aside, that can make managing volunteers really tough. When the task in hand is obvious – like clear this brushwood, then one volunteer is better than ten pressed men. And employees are pressed – they show up because they need the money 😉

But when the job is obscure, or controversial, like shooting deer3 in woodland, or will have a result in the long run, or just lacks feelgood factor, well, give me paid staff any time.

There’s a feelgood story about these deer in Captain’s Wood, but I have been sworn to secrecy about deer in other wildlife places… If it’s a dirty job, then use staff, not volunteers.

By RIT’s definition, though not by mine4, a while ago an Ermine did about a week of work. I can’t say the process agrees with me, getting up regularly for a particular time malarkey isn’t to my taste these days. It was a long video job shooting unpredictable stuff under awkward light. You have to make a lot of decisions quickly as an event starts5, because professionals can get away with zooming the camera in vision but I am not talented enough to do that, though I can track action serviceably enough with a sort of fluid head.

Much has improved in this biz since I worked as a studio engineer at TV Centre in the 1980s, the cameras are sharper, better, smaller, lighter. The combination of optical stabilisation and software post-stabilisation makes handholding without a Steadicam feasible6, indeed I was amazed I could raise the camera on a monopod four feet above my head and still get a usable result. So I learned a combination of practical stuff and people stuff, and hopefully the result will make people happy.

The web of life

I am far too conservative to make RIT’s sort of move. The place you worked is not necessarily a good place to retire – London is the classic case in point. It’s easy to feel poor there as the joint fills up with the super-rich. Simple economics also points that way – people congregate where there is a higher density of well-paid work. This tends to push the price of accommodation and some services up. We had someone from New York stay with us and they were amazed at the low cost of wine. Even American wine, which is illogical, it’s come a long way and we have significant alcohol taxes.  Her perception was that the discount was a lot more than the 20% due to the fall in the pound. Presumably stores in NYC can charge higher prices because the market will bear them.

I stayed where I had worked for several years before moving westwards. Although the move was logical for someone interested in ancient stones and occasional hillwalking, we had commitments and a retiree should take a lot of time to ponder their web of life before moving. Before we moved we had made contacts in this area and taken on some common projects, expanding who we know. I personally think with contacts that matter you need to have physical connections with – see them, walk with them, do things together, eat and drink together, celebrate significant events. In the flesh.

During your working life these connections are easier to make7. You usually are in the same place as the people you work with, and share breaks with them. People who have young children also connect with other people with similar age children, and coincidentally this tends to be in your working life due to the vagaries of human biology. As an (early) retiree you are probably past those opportunities, so you need to take a lot more care about moving. The aspect of who is as important as where.

The ‘nearer to the grandchildren’ trap

Beware one trap regarding the who and where, though it seems to be particularly for those around 60. The first time I saw this I though that was just tough luck, but I’ve seen it several times now. Some people move away from an existing web of friends and acquaintances and somewhere they know to be closer to their children and new grandchildren. It all sounds idyllic, and they can help greatly with childcare in those pre-school years etc. But while those ties are strong, it seems to start unravelling roughly when the grandchildren start going to secondary school and being more independent.

You don’t want to be stuck in a place where you have no other friends and are too far away to see your previous friends who have drifted away as you start entering the hazard of having lower mobility or not being able to drive, that seems a very lonely row to hoe. Particularly if you are unlucky enough for your children to have to move for work, as can happen. So if you are going to do that, make non-family connections in the area a priority too. Do things with other people, seek shared interests.

Non-family connections matter too

Modern work is inimical to non-family connections in many ways. For starters, you move away from your home town, often for university, very likely for work. So far so good, as you are still in the early phases of life where making connections is easier. You may make connections through work or children, but compared to previous generations jobs are less stable, and people move for work more often. Childcare seems to take up more energy that it used to do. Work oozes past the 9 to 5, seeping through smartphones and computers into a low-level background load.

This is a hit for very early retirees, because their peer group is largely still at work. I don’t know what the answer is. Moving to an area where there is less employment because it’s cheaper may not be wise, because this tends to skew the age distribution too. Philip Greenspun tackles this in where to live for early retirees.

You can, of course, take the digital nomad route – you can reduce your costs and see a lot of the world that way. Great if it is for you. I did a reasonable amount of travelling for work for a few years. About once a month was great. I was single, and could extend the journeys with some extra vacation allowance and have many fond memories.

More than that and it became wearing. Being ill on the road is particularly tough – and this was only things like the flu and gutrot.

I can’t imagine a more alienating and lonely experience than travelling all the time, but it seems to have a great following, particularly with Millennials. A chacun son goût…  I would suggest at least say try it for six months before building it into your future permanently. It seems to work for some.

All this is tougher to get right for the very early retiree. You have to live with the results for longer, you are making some connections many people make in the workplace, and you are an atypical retiree. That is not a reason not to do it, but it’s a task that needs more getting right that simply for an early retiree. People look at me as an early retiree and assume I was lucky. Whereas if I were 40 they would file me under the category ‘alien being’.

Even as an introvert with less need for human connection than average, this much I know. Early retirement is not all about the money. Humans are social creatures. Make connections, and do things with your fellow people. Having more time to do that is one of the gifts of not working.

  1. apparently this tape recorder guy in the depths of your head is a real thing, a bit like the job VT did for TV studios when I worked there – they were banished to the basement of TV Centre. So says the Guardian:  “Audiobooks, by contrast, exploit our “echoic memory”, which is the process by which sound information is stored for up to four seconds while we wait for the next sounds to make sense of the whole.” 
  2. I have never read The Secret but it seems a take on the earlier fad of  cosmic ordering. Humans are storytellers and to some extent you do make your own world, but there are limitations to how far that will take you. If you want to step beyond those limitations then you probably have to dedicate time and effort to improving your art of changing consciousness through acts of will. Even with that there are going to be hard limits somewhere ;) 
  3. I have never seen Bambi and don’t see anything wrong with shooting deer, but it’s a real tough one for conservation organisations who really don’t want the public to know they shoot deer to stop them browsing new growth and generally buggering up forest management. 
  4. I wasn’t paid, so it’s not work in my book. But it was interesting, so it sort of falls under RIT’s definition. Certainly wasn’t a job… 
  5. Too many people tried this previously on automatic settings, which looks ghastly in tough light. But on manual, you get to rack levels yourself, in real time. In my TV days there was someone solely dedicated to racking and colour balance 
  6. There are now gizmos you can buy that use motors and gimbals to do the chicken-head thing and I may get me one of these. Paradoxically I had an easier time holding the monopod at the bottom with the camera raised over my head than with the damn thing on the ground and holding the head. Either I improved my art over time or there is something weird going on. Bird necks are amazing, I once videoed a hunting kestrel through a telescope, and the bird’s eyes were held steady it seemed the rest of the bird body moved around in the wind. 
  7. This article posits a counterfactual for millenials, I don’t know if this is a peculiar pathology of London where most journalists seem to be, because the millenials I see don’t seem to suffer such a shocking dearth of friends. I do agree that when your cohort start having children is a massive nuke for school/college friends if you are child-free. You do start seeing some of these again in their  mid-fifties for some of the reasons this article takes the piss out of Fern Britton

26 thoughts on “Work is not a job, and the web of life”

  1. Very wise post. Life is about social connection. I finished my career job a few months ago now, and one of the things that clinched the decision for me was realising that I was no longer having much social connection through work – people so busy that even a catch up with a colleague over lunch would take months to organise. I can honestly say I haven’t missed it at all.
    I am also mystified by the idea of moving abroad or travelling as an early retirement way of being. Unless you are very good at integrating with new social groups it’s going to be a hard slog to start feeling ‘at home’.
    Right, off to catch up with the RIT story now!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Interesting and enjoyable post Ermine. I agree with a lot of it, but I have to say I disagree on two bits (so please don’t take these as criticisms!):

    1. Meaning from work: I think you make the argument the other way round(!) on meaning between white-collar jobs and manual jobs. Thinking about some of my family, my grandfather was a builder, he was still building into his 70s – only falling through a garage roof stopped him. One of my uncles is a mechanic, he’s ‘retired’ but spends all day tinkering with cars. Another is a driver, until he got ill he would spend his days driving his cars, motorbikes or whatever he could get his hands on. My grandparents were caterers, they ran restaurants until they couldn’t. Then they would spend most of their days in the kitchen cooking. These are ‘jobs’ that can derive a purpose than an admin clerk or office manager (or [insert other corporate jobs]) will never have. Granted, there are some manual jobs (think retail assistant…) where this applies. So perhaps it comes down to professions vs non-professions?

    2. Becoming unemployable – I was ‘out of work’ for a lot longer than RIT and had no trouble getting a job. I appreciate that there are some technical jobs where the rate of change is very high. But you’ll be hard-pressed to find jobs more technical than a forensic accountant! However, if you have a passion for your job, it’ll never leave you. Even in my near three years ‘off’ I was still reading, following developments. So whilst I’ve been a bit rusty, getting back into the swing has been relatively painless. Maybe you are right, I don’t know. Perhaps if you are older, or there’s more management/bureaucracy involved in the job, or the industry is being overhauled, it’s harder. But I wouldn’t want to put people off of it as an option – if it’s available.

    However, I am 100% on the travelling thing, I do not, and will never get it.

    p.s. congrats Red Kite!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think the issue we ‘old codgers’ have is that once past a certain stage in many careers, you don’t get to do the interesting technical stuff you trained for and enjoyed. It’s all supervising other people doing the interesting technical stuff, juggling too many projects to be properly involved, and ending up with only a superficial birds eye view of them, and (in my case) trying to bring in work (which was never my skill set). So the work becomes management and not technical, and much more political.
      But it’s great you still have valuable skills and can sell them on your own terms. I always assumed you’d be doing more work of some sort at some point!
      (I’m still working btw, in a role which is fun and stress free and pays peanuts 😉 For some reason I find a continuing pay cheque comforting).

      Liked by 3 people

      1. > once past a certain stage in many careers

        ^this 😉 Before anybody comes back with the contracting response, if there was one thing I hated more than the non-engineering part of work, it was hustling and chasing jobs. The Ermine. Does. Not. Hustle. Not on the side, not in front, not any way. Side hustle begone. Part time begone. All or nowt for me.

        Liked by 4 people

    2. > meaning between white-collar jobs and manual jobs

      Matthew Crawford made that argument years ago with Why Office Work is Bad For You, though the obvious riposte is being paid shit is bad for you too. White collar was okay when most of my days were in the lab, but there again I was a young pup and learning all the time. As you integrate knowledge the rate of learning slows, and you have to drift up the tree if you want to earn more. Which comes with different problems.

      > there’s more management/bureaucracy involved in the job

      It comes to us all, if we want to earn more…

      > Becoming unemployable

      I’m not unemployable because I know shit about electronics, indeed the contract job I did last year had a higher hourly rate than at the high water mark of my career. I’m unemployable because not getting paid wouldn’t be enough to shut me up, that’s the point about FI, as the old A Man With Savings ad shows.


      1. I think I misunderstood what you meant by unemployable in your post. It’s not that getting a job isn’t possible, but perhaps a job that works? (bear in mind, I’ve had a lot of people warn me I’d never be able to get a job again if I took time out, so that was the angle I was seeing it from).


      2. > I’ve had a lot of people warn me I’d never be able to get a job again if I took time out

        Although in some areas I am falling behind, with a decent enough dose of curiosity and the help of Google I am probably okay technically.

        I’d say ageism is probably more of an issue for people once they reach 45. Perhaps that loss of pliability and openness/gullibility to the newest stupid management fad is the problem 😉 I wouldn’t be able to go into a role with a similar salary as my previous one because of domain knowledge and connections, as well as the temptation to beat it when faced with modern management toss. The wikipedia BPO reference indicated a lot of industrial R&D has been outsourced anyway, perhaps the wheel has come full circle and all the jobs I have done don’t exist any more other than the bench tech job I did for a year at the start of my career.

        So that effect probably does hold in the second half of careers like mine, when the position is not just about technical prowess. I certainly made that ‘you’ll never work again’ assumption – no part-time, no downshifting to stacking Tesco shelves, prisoners would not be taken in the search for freedom. It was success in breaking free or dishonour for me.


    3. Ok, I’ll take on the travelling angle. I’ve bean lean FI’d for 4 years now, and have opted to spend my (well, our, incl. tolerant wife) time travelling the world. No backpack, no hostels. Nice apartments for a month at a time.

      Why? Perhaps it’s just as I was shifted around a bit as an RAF child. My wife being from outside the UK also naturally makes us more rootless perhaps. Obviously I wasn’t thinking about this as my reasons for starting though – I primarily just wanted to go to hot beachside places, living in Tropical paradises and eating great food. Which we have done, extensively.

      On reflection, in a way the travel and organising of travel has also been my replacement for my work. I enjoy finding the best places to go and the best way to get there, and it can take quite a lot of time to sort out.

      After 4 years, I’m probably now at a crossroads. I’ve probably ‘done’ most of the destinations I’m interested in, so we’re now shuffling around more for the climate and also to see family really.

      I think more than whether/where we settle down, it’s really a question of me finding a little bit more to do with my time, which puts me right back in the same boat as the rest of us – too emancipated for a job, too curious a mind to do nothing. First world problems, eh?

      Liked by 1 person

    4. I think you’re in a very fortunate position to be able to both be able to get well paid work that is also part-time. My partner and I have found that combination totally impossible.

      My partner is a lawyer with over 20 years experience in both private practice and working for a major tech company. She gave up full-time work around ten years ago. The sort of tech companies she was working for would happily emply at double the compensation level she left at. They absolutely refuse, however to even consider a part-time role or working form home. It has to be five days a week, in their London office, with availability at the weekends. Totally impossible with two children, unless we hire an au pair. The alternative has been part-time consultancy stuff for small tech and financial services firms. It’s terribly paid, however. He most recent job was at just £40/hour, a fraction of her rate for a full-time role. It’s also awkward. A few hours here and a few hours there. Probably no more than 5 hours per week but at random times. Overall, it’s just pointless.

      I’m even worse. I’m so specialized. That is both why I get paid so much but also why I’m totally unemployable outside a narrow area of finance. I would argue there are a few lower paid roles I could easily do, but nobody wants to take a risk on a 45 year old. I’m also getting too old. A 30-year old with 5 years experience doesn’t want to hire a 45 year old with 20 years of experience. Especially one whose historical compensation levels might have been 10x+ theirs. There is never any possibiltiy for part-time work or even a three months on/ three months off type role.


  3. I am grateful that I spent the early years of my career working on real food technology – not the overhyped, nutritionist-dominated pseudoscience it’s become. These vegan burgers are a good example. I helped identify the right phytoproteins for these plant-based “miracle products” FORTY-FIVE YEARS ago. It took the marketing wizards that long to figure out how to sell them.
    We were lucky in that our move to be closer to family and grandkids took us to a great small town far from the madding crowd.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. > our move to be closer to family and grandkids took us to a great small town far from the madding crowd.

      I do wonder if the issue is peculiarly an overcentralised UK sort of thing. Perhaps elsewhere countries manage to spread jobs more widely across the country. Where I am now I am at least an hour from significant cities and large employers. Paradoxically there seems a lot of electronics and aerospace firms in the area, I could probably find a bench tech job closer.

      But young folk looking for professional careers with prospects and resilience against redundancy need to gravitate towards the cities, which is non-ideal for their children’s grandparents. Looks like CA has got this more right!


      1. Well a lot of our professional jobs are centered on the Greater Toronto area (spent a fair bit of my life there.) My daughter and SIL have made their careers in Ottawa so we were lucky to be able to settle in the exurbs of that city.
        That said there’s a fair bit of high tech in Ottawa as well.


  4. I now realise that the jobs I did met social and team-working needs that nothing I have tried in retirement has equalled-yet! You’re right about the social and friendship aspects of retiring – and thanks for the thought processes re moving closer to kids! I can see it all happening.
    I thought retirement would be the easy part after dealing with the psychopathic management style of my last job – people would actually disappear off the face of the earth – I really do hope it was just gagging orders after disputes.

    But retirement involves, well, trying things out to see if they fit, or you like them. And competent, able people don’t like making mistakes or being “bad” at stuff – that’s for the young! (hint, it’s how you learn!)
    So I really like these post retirement blogs, showing real life feelings and events. We are all finding our way.


  5. Whom the gods would destroy they first subject to 6 monthly performance reviews and SMART objectives.

    Also you forgot passion. Apparently you can’t get a job these days without passion. It all sounds a bit unsavoury to me but there you go.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. OMG don’t. Quarterly performance reviews if you please, and SMART objectives. Successfactors, the pusillanimous punks, the death of your company cannot come soon enough. I will travel to jump up and down on its grave. Likewise the corrupt SOBs at The Firm that bought shares in the offshore outsourcing joint and….outsourced stuff to them with no competitive tender.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Love this posting, and so many wise responses to it as well.

    The social connection element is very important. As a home worker (mostly) rather than a home jobber (a sadly slowly increasing element), I deliberately sought out activities which would bring me into contact with others, and build a deeper bond over time. Tempting though it can be as an introvert, try not to rely on your significant other for this.

    Like others, have done travel aplenty for work and apart from the occasional excursion I’d rather stay home when on holiday. The travel as your main source of meaning and fulfilment is such an environmentally damaging paradigm too.


  7. ‘Work is not a job’ Indeed, and when you are at large enough entities for there to be serious salaries at the top, even if charities or government, (everywhere has adopted a slavishly corporate ideology now) you can see some individuals living the dream. Paid handsomely to turn up, be grovelled to and talk all day or just potter around in the best offices like life tenured professors in their ivory towers, those are perfect jobs, but you’d be hard-pressed to find any work in them. Where work and jobs are the same thing is mostly at the bottom of the social pile, essentially day-labour and these people sleep well at night too, but only because they’re too exhausted to worry any more. (It’s the middle class that have insomnia over losing that status by falling into the poor with the slightest bad luck on the treadmill)


  8. Interesting how your post made a handbrake turn halfway through!

    The ‘digital nomad’ paradigm is mostly just kids chasing fashion and peer approval, imo, behaviour Paul Theroux very effectively skewered in one of his early travel books (writing about young travellers) as “a social order familiar to the average Masai tribesman” and to which the young are particularly susceptible. Combined with their unconscious conviction about the impossibility of getting old and the linked imaginative failure to comprehend the implications of that in terms of opportunity lost as well as gained, maybe the belief can only be cured by time and experience. Travelling can be huge fun when you’re young, but to still be embracing it as a way of life in your 50s or 60s seems mistaken and a recipe for loneliness and dislocation. Iirc you quoted Jung in an earlier post about how many people get stuck as they age in a mindset that was appropriate for an earlier stage of life. There seems to be more of this infantilism around these days, heavily promoted by the advertising agencies and parts of the media. There comes a point at which you may be happiest ‘cultivating your garden’, but first you need to accept that…


    1. > a social order..

      Paul Theroux, The Great Railway Bazaar section readable on Google books. Thank you for the reference, I won’t be able to lose that vignette on seeing yet another perfectly curated instagram page 😉 Plus I’ve learned a new word – catamite… The book looks a fun read.

      Seems a tale from a long time ago – the idea of travelling through Iran alone seems from before the time Carter dropped helicopters on Iran. Looked at the summary where it said published Sept 2011 and just plain didn’t believe it, the tales of compartments and shunting trains and splitting them reminded me of 1970s rail travel. Sure enough, turns out it was first published in 1975


      1. Maybe take a look at the Happy Isles of Oceania as well, which has the best depiction of voluntary discomfort/relative comfort theory I’ve ever read. Sleeping with a tramp on a beach one night followed by a $10,000 dollar a night hotel the next. Its really good.

        Having just survived a fortnights camping (and I mean only just after the hurricanes of last weekend) I am now delirious at the prospect of level surfaces to prepare food/drinks upon… utter luxury!


  9. Nice post. I see you mentioned contracting and that its not a stable means of income? I have been contracting for 5 years now and never been out of work for more than a month at a time. When I first started, I was earning over double my previous salary and nearer 3x take home, due to tax advantages. I saved 6 months worth and used this as my initial emergency fund. I looked at it that I had bought myself 6 months security. As well as the money, I get to choose the roles I do and can pick lower paid work if I find it more interesting. I also avoid corporate politics and back stabbing etc! The tax changes proposed for next April may shake it all up and may be returning to the workforce with my tail between my legs but for now I am making hay while the sun shines.


    1. Re contracting:

      I could never see that as a reliable source of income of the sort I’d have the balls to raise a mortgage against.

      That is a very different thing from saying it isn’t a reliable source of income. Things change over a working life – I had no role models for contracting (the sort of thing that allowed Mrs Ermine to do contracting because she grew up in a background of entrepreneurship, I didn’t) and it was less common. Now I would be able to intellectually think of it and the associated cash float as a different way. But I wouldn’t feel that way, and would never have the guts to raise a loan on that sort of income. That is my limitation, not the world’s 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My apologies. It was not meant as a dig, just a different perspective. It can be harder to get a mortgage when you have a salary of £5k a year but if you use decent brokers its fine (and I was offered far more than I would be comfortable borrowing). I had the same concerns as you initially and maybe I’ve been lucky, but it seems to have worked out OK for me. Hopefully it will still be viable post April 2020!

        Liked by 2 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: