MMFBT 027 – The Undeserved Stigma of Being “Cheap” w/ Rob Nettleton

Today’s guest came to my attention when I was reading the Globe and Mail one morning.  Suffice to say, when you read a headline such as, “He’s 26 with $32,000 in savings. Here’s how he did it,” you think to yourself that there might be something worth exploring there.

It turns out that Rob Nettleton is pretty much just a really cool “everyman” – expect for the fact he managed to save a ton of money while doing stuff like being a student union president and travelling to Norway amongst other things.

Rob lives in Ottawa and attended school at both Algonquin College and Carlton University.  While he graduated with $18,000 in student debt after several years of post-secondary study, in a few short years he’s managed to establish some solid savings habits and not only dig himself completely out of debt – but to begin growing a nice little nest egg as well.  It should be noted that while many people don’t see coming out of school with $18K debt a major win, if you are forced to leave a rural area in order to live away from home and attend post-secondary studies like Rob and I, then this number is fairly modest.

The following quote from the article caught my attention:


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“Some people say I’m older than my age when it comes to saving,” Mr. Nettleton, a writer at a communications firm, said in an interview. “It’s always been something that has been very important to me because I come from a lower-income family. I watched my parents struggle with debt and I told myself it was something I would never allow myself to do.”

Interestingly enough when I contacted Rob about doing a podcast we couldn’t decide on what specifically we wanted to focus on.  I liked the fact that he had a unique educational background going to two different types of post-secondary institutions and that he had some experience with student debt, as well as tried-and-true savings techniques.  However, after reading some of the comment feedback to his story in the G & M, Rob said he wanted to talk about this backlash to the idea that someone could enjoy life and yet still manage to save money at the same time.  Of course any time you actually read internet comments only bad things can happen, but we tackle the issue anyway.

Tune in next week to listen to Rob’s insights about small-school vs big-school and how Canada’s various different post-secondary institutions stack up.

Tune in now to hear us chat about:

  • Why the ridiculous stigma around being money-conscious should be abolished.
  • Some quick and easy tips to save you money this school year – from a guy who was just in school – not some staff writer who got their degree in 1973.
  • What a student line of credit looks like – even if you don’t have a co-signer.
  • How to not let ignorant folks get to you.

As always, any feedback you’d like to provide via our comments section or in the form of iTunes ratings is much appreciated.  If you’d like to come on the podcast don’t hesitate to contact us and we’ll get a session set up.

More Beers, More Cheers, That’s It That’s All!

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