The Legacy of Young Money
Young Money Blog started as a basic WordPress account in the front room of my parents’ house in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crash. I had no job, little money and hardly any financial knowledge. But one thing I did possess was a determination to improve my relationship with money – and help other young people along the way.
At that time, there was hardly any sympathetic financial coverage aimed at young people in the UK. The financial media either ignored our financial issues or conducted the conversation with parents and grandparents – entirely above our heads.
At the same time, personal finance blogs were in their infancy and seen by the financial sector as amateurish ventures not worthy of being taken seriously. I decided all this needed to change. Young people desperately needed analysis, information, and solidarity when it came to their finances, written from that all-important young perspective. And if that couldn’t be found in the mainstream, we needed get active online. I approached my blog with rigour, good humour, and a ‘can-do’ attitude always reflected in its motto: don’t get mad, get informed.
Since that fateful day in 2011, Young Money Blog gradually became one of the UK’s most influential and well-regarded blogs. It attracted hundreds of thousands of eyeballs, won awards, spawned books, and led to me becoming a regular presence on TV and radio. Most importantly, it put young people’s financial issues firmly on the map, forcing decision-makers in politics, finance, and journalism to pay attention to what we were going through.
For 10 years, I worked hard to keep the blog as independent, trustworthy, and authentic as possible. Its content was overwhelmingly editorial, with no paid advertising. It won plaudits for its down-to-earth, irreverent, and thought-provoking style, and was packed with practical information that could be used by young people to improve their financial position and feel more hopeful about the future.
But as we pass the ten-year anniversary of the blog in 2021, I feel now is a good time to gently retire Young Money as an active concern and concentrate on other projects. As much as I’ve loved being a Young Money champion for the past decade, it’s important to evolve and seek out new challenges as I enter a new chapter in my life – let’s face it, nobody will want to hear me still banging on about young people’s financial rights when I’m using a zimmer frame! And I feel very confident that unlike ten years ago, there are now plenty of younger financial champions out there who can continue the work I started.
I’m also fortunate enough to have built up a demanding but fulfilling career in which I can write, speak, and broadcast about financial issues across a diverse range of platforms. From my weekly column in the i to my TV appearances, I get the chance to communicate important messages to bigger audiences than ever before. I want to look ahead to those exciting opportunities, rather than look back into the past, and push forward interesting, grown-up conversations about money (and other subjects) that reflect the volatile, confusing times we live in.
I have built up a wealth of knowledge about how young people think, feel, and behave around money over the past ten years, which I’ll continue to offer in various forums. Now that I’m a bit older and wiser, I’ve got more to say than ever before! And who knows, I may even still blog from time-to-time, so keep a lookout! It may just be a bit more of a blog discussing what I’ve been up to and what issues I’ve been thinking about lately, as opposed to being purely concerned with young money. I also want to examine new, interesting, salient subjects that aren’t always easily or neatly defined as ‘young money’.
I’m incredibly proud of what the blog has achieved, and it’s been a privilege to grow up with my audience and learn so much about the complex, sometimes infuriating but always fascinating world of money. I will always be on young people’s side and believe with all my heart that with the right information, attitude, and approach, they can pull through whatever crisis they may face, however hopeless it may seem.
In other words, the Young Money mission will never die. Thank you all for your support, feedback, and solidarity over the past 10 years. And always remember, don’t get mad – get informed!