Ever wonder what someone else was thinking? We’re giving you the chance to find out. This month, it’s the financial advisor.

A typical student will spend their weekends working in a café back home, or perhaps traipsing in at all hours after some bar work. Working as an assistant for an independent financial advisor seems to break this mould somewhat.

An independent financial advisor is a position I’d describe as anything from an actual advisor to a psychologist, and even as a shoulder-to-cry-on type of vocation. Visiting the houses of the financially confused can involve anything from a cup of badly made tea to some very clingy children. Being able to witness these various situations as a student certainly places my approaches to life, and people, in perspective. The fact that I have to walk past Costa Coffee every morning, knowing that I cannot justify the sweet taste of a big fat cappuccino, seems just a tadpole compared to a normal couple’s realisation that the three takeaways they order a week DOES  have an impact on their outgoings.

My favourite clients are those who can’t possibly afford the home insurances to ensure their faux polar bear rug and fancy elephant doorstop are protected, but come running straight back to us the moment their bathroom spontaneously floods the house.  Visiting the houses of these families seems a world away from my single bedroom sporting a desk, wardrobe, and communal kitchen shared with six other students.

It is the clients themselves that provide the most entertainment; the drinking of some rather expensive-looking wine as soon as the clock chimes past six o clock, or the wiser client imparting a Welsh language lesson onto the disorientated looking student. I feel that the variety of people I have had the opportunity to meet and observe, both personally and financially, alters all stereotypical perceptions I had previously applied in everyday life. Every wife has the potential to max out £34,000 on secret credit cards whilst every house looks inadequate to most couples without an extension for that extra bedroom they don’t need. Similarly, every student has the potential to max out their student overdrafts and still not have purchased any course books for the academic year.

Running into my thousands of pounds of debt as my degree ploughs on seems ironic as I read through the application for one gentleman wishing to borrow enough to transform his two bedroom bungalow into a four bedroom house. I can’t complain, it’s never a boring day in the office. The ever mounting compliance always comes to bite you on the bum but that doesn’t dampen the excitement of stamping the post with the “received” date stamp every day.

The existing problems with negative equity and down-valuing by various grumpy valuers doesn’t seem to discourage our first time buyers, as they strive on with their overtime and cashing in on parents to build that fancy custom mahogany kitchen with an absolutely essential limestone floor. This kind of ambition and resilience is highly similar to that of the generations of undergraduate students facing the overwhelming increase in fees to better themselves with an education. The recent demonstration in London amplifies this type of determination to strive on despite the various obstacles facing society. Yes, I recognise that students have to have a much lower threshold in terms of living standards; supermarket branded tins and watered down alcohol; but then average members of society are faced with issues which in relation, demand the same type of fight.

It seems that each client is simply looking for an all-encompassing friend in a financial advisor.; someone who can solve their marriage issues, their bad cooking and their financial concerns. In truth, I think this is something students and pretty much all normal human beings look for, a friend who can place a nice bubble around you and your home, and blow your problems away.

Want to let us know what you’re thinking? Posts are completely anonymous, so get in touch by emailing thesirenswansea@hotmail.co.uk

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