Sunday, 19 June 2011

Jane Austen Quote of the Week 155

Still related to Father's Day, although not in the best of light compared to Rachel's thoughtful Tom Lefroy quote last week, I took a quote from a not-so-successful father figure in the Austen universe. From the first paragraph of Pride & Prejudice Vol III Chapter 8 (Chapter 30):

Mr. Bennet had very often wished, before this period of his life, that, instead of spending his whole income, he had laid by an annual sum, for the better provision of his children, and of his wife, if she survived him. He now wished it more than ever. Had he done his duty in that respect, Lydia need not have been indebted to her uncle, for whatever of honour or credit could now be purchased for her. The satisfaction of prevailing on one of the most worthless young men in Great Britain to be her husband, might then have rested in its proper place.

The bolded sentences are the focus here, while the rest of the paragraph are putting them in context. The main issue is Mr. Bennet's unpreparedness for secured funds, and that is I think something I need to work on now. I mean, I'm going to be 40 in three years, and I think it's time for me to lay an annual sum of money for - at least - my retirement fund, in addition to resume saving for my dream house that I've done so far. I have no child (yet), so I think at least I have to cover myself pretty well in the future. Perhaps some people see it silly that I start to think of retirement fund when I'm not even 40 yet, but my economist partner disagree. Retirement fund (we call it 'super-annuation' here in Australia) is very important and one must start as early as possible.

I will get a new job this July after (hopefully) submitting my PhD. As I get my first salary, I hope that I'm wise enough to save the greater proportion of it, instead of spending it for 'pretty but definitely can wait' items like (cough) dresses and shoes...

What about you Ladies and Gents? Any tips for retirement fund savings?

Pic: Benjamin Whitrow as Mr Bennet in the 1995 Pride & Prejudice


bilbo said...

Hi, Icha
It's been a long while since I've said anything, but I've been here looking the whole time. I didn't feel I could contribute anything useful on most of the recent rather female-oriented posts, but I'll stick my 2 cents in on this one, for what they're worth.
You should absolutely be growing your retirement fund by now; you will need all the working time you have left to build up a decent nest egg. I didn't start really saving for retirement until I was past 40 (then had to take a loan out of my savings while getting divorced, and later lost money during the recession), so my retirement savings total would be severely inadequate to live on. What has saved me is the respectable pension I am getting from my former employer after 27 years service, as well as a modest sum from Social Security (US government program under constant Republican attack). Such pensions are disappearing now in the US, however (as at my former employer); is this the case in Oz? There should be 'retirement calculators' on-line that you can use for estimation, although in my experience they tend to go overboard a bit on how much retirement income one needs (unless, perhaps you want to travel the world during retirement).
You might buy a house (dream or othewrwise) as part of a retirement investment, but you should take care. You have to be able to afford the payments if taking out a mortgage, and property values have to be predicted to rise appreciably for a long time; hopefully the real estate market in Oz is in better shape than it is in the US.
Let me close by expressing my appreciation for the continual work you and the others have put into keeping the BJ fansite going. I particularly liked the picture of Anne Hathaway as JA last month and the reminder of the wonderful movie that brought us all together.

Nicole MacDonald said...

eeeee saving is somewhat elusive to me ;p but I'm working on it!! Let me know if you get any grand schemes *grin*

Maria aka jakeline said...

I'm only soon 31, but have been putting a small (really too small but still) sum away to my retirement fund everymonth since I was 19 or so. Hopefully I'll be able to make it larger after my maternityleave. And to save for the kids too. We've been trying to put money away for ages, but there's always some way to spend them...

hugs and kisses from Maria in sweden

Icha said...

Oh my God, Maria, since NINETEEN years old??? OMG, you're SO wise! I'm so sorry that I haven't been wiser...

But now I have, I shall do as what Bilbo has advised me to. Starting from next month, as I receive my first salary (I'm still a student until the end of the month), I shall allocate a sum of money for a pensioner fund in Indonesia (I'm returning to ID on Monday, and cannot go back to AU until 2013, except with tourist visa).

Bilbo, thank you so much for the advices on retirement fund. Those are very useful. And thank you for the kind words re: BJF. I'm so sorry that we unconsciously have been driving away gentle male readers like yours with our quotes and discussions. I assure you, they were not intentional.

You are correct, Bilbo; this is not a ladies-only club. It's for all men and women who loves Jane and Tom and Becoming Jane.

I think our inclusion of Tom Lefroy quotes are very useful to include gentle male readers like you into the discussion. But do tell us what other topics you'd like to share with us, or you have a particular Tom/Jane quote in mind for a weekend.

Thanks so much, everyone!

Linda Fern said...

Oh my goodness! Here I am at 70 years old and just realizing the importance of saving for retirement. The subject just never came up. There were always too many 'other' things around to worry about. Now I tell everyone to plan, plan, plan ahead. So, Bilbo is entirely correct. Thanks.

Yrs aff'ly,
Linda the Librarian

Icha said...

Thanks a lot Linda. I talked abt the retirement fund again with my partner (who is an economist, btw). He cannot stress enough the importance of saving for retirement, so I guess the point is, it's never too late to start, and start as soon as you can. Start even with a small amount of money, as long as you do that regularly, that would be a good start.

Rather scary topic, isn't it, retirement fund? But we don't want to end like Mr Bennet. Not everyone can find her Mr Darcy or his Emma Woodhouse these days, not that we marry for money either!

jakeline said...

*lol* You know what... I think I got this deal from my bank "if you start saving you get a magazine subscription for free" or something like that... Sounded good at the time, and I was dating this banker to be so he encouraged me to start saving. Good advice, though. :P

XOXO/ Maria

Icha said...

Really??? That's a cool way to lure youngsters to start saving. I wish I have had that long ago, but never mind. Once we realise what we should do(have done), we can rectify the problem... hopefully.

Linda's quote for this week shall be posted in a few hours. I'm a bit tied up with returning home thing, my apologies.