Me and My Money: Sarah Wood

Sarah Wood CEO of
'It's easy for money to slip through your fingers': Real estate CEO Sarah Wood says it's important to ask yourself if you need to spend. Photo credit: Supplied.

"It's easy for money to slip through your fingers.

Ask yourself whether you really need to spend it." That's the advice from CEO Sarah Wood. 

Money. It's the driving factor behind many life choices, but is it the be-all and end-all?

'Me and My Money' is a regular feature that investigates Kiwi attitudes towards money and what drives the choices they make. We also explore if COVID-19 has changed peoples' money habits and how.   

Newshub spoke to Sarah Wood, CEO at property website about how much property asking prices have increased over the last 10 years, stopping before spending and buying smarter rather than stockpiling.

1. Are you a saver or a spender?

I love to spend but I’m measured about what I spend on and try to focus on quality.

My father always says, 'It's easy for money to slip through your fingers and you need to focus on asking yourself whether you really need to spend it or not'.

2. Has COVID-19 influenced your attitude towards money?

It's increased my focus on having a detailed plan, the right investments and using money wisely.

3. Post lockdown, have your spending habits changed and if so, how?

Yes, a focus on buying less. We just don’t need more stuff. We need to buy smarter and focus on quality. It’s something that I’m actively teaching our children.

4. Your mobile phone dies: what do you think is a reasonable amount to spend on a new one? 

 $1400 because it’s an everyday tool that I use to run my life.

5. Give an example of a recent purchase that you consider great value for money

A kitchen benchtop made of stone. It will last a very long time, but I also know it will bring me joy because it’s beautiful.

6.  What was your last impulse or 'fritter' purchase and how did you feel about it afterwards?

A new suit by New Zealand designer Wynn Hamlyn. I feel good about it because it's made from gorgeous wool fabric with hand-stitched detailing which I know will last a long time.

I appreciate things that have been crafted with care and want to support New Zealand businesses at this time.

7. If you have spare cash to invest, what's your preferred form of investment and why? 

Property because it is such a solid investment: stats show that the national average asking price in New Zealand increased by over 50 percent the last decade. 

I love that property offers so many opportunities to improve and add value to your investment.

8. Do you use a credit card and if so, do you pay off the entire balance by the due date?

Yes, for convenience and it gets paid every month. I’m with Kiwibank for the airpoints.  

9. Does having more money increase happiness?

Money can make things easier but doesn't fundamentally change happiness. One of the happiest points in my life was one when I had very little money.

10. The best money advice someone's ever given you?

Have a plan for your money and look at options to diversify your investments to balance risk and growth.