No announcement yet.

Choosing between time or money

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Choosing between time or money

    OK, I'm asking this here because I know there are a lot of people at different places in their lives with similar attitudes towards savings & finance to mine - so I'm interested in hearing a bit about what you think.

    Here is my situation - I'm not living in the US and while we would like to live there sometime in the future, we are making this decision based on our current situation in Europe.

    Option 1 - stay the course - I run my own business and make a pretty decent income. The bulk of my work is 10 months a year, and I work on average about 30 hours per week during my busy season. This gives me a pretty decent (by local standards) income.

    Right now I am on maternity leave for most of the week and work part time two days a week. (By maternity leave I mean I am collecting a percentage of my salary - DH is home while I work. (this will continue until LO starts daycare (in 6 months)

    This job affords me a lot of time - even while working - to spend with my family. I set my own schedule, go on vacation when I want, and I genuinely enjoy the job.

    The negatives: There is no guarantee of work or hours - I am dependent on my clients. There is no where to go in the job, I am the boss - This is the job. It will not change (I get bored easily). I cannot feisibly increase the number of hours I work, to increase my income.

    Option 2: I was offered a job by a large company in town. They pay well and have a good reputation. The job is not something I am super interested in, but it is a way in to this good company. After 6 months probation, it will be a very secure job (legal thing here - perm. positions are well protected with killer severance packages). It will be a 9-5 job for at least the first 6 months (then I can legally sink it down to 30 hours p/w as per the family laws here) I will probably make, for the 30 hours a week, a little more than I make now.

    I will not be able to choose when I go on vacation - tho I will get 5 weeks vacation.

    If I decide to go up to 40 hours a week, I will make a good 1000$ more a month. I will get a better pension plan.

    So I am stuck - what do do? Since I'm in Europe health care and day care don't figure into this - I pay the same thing for day care irregardless of how much LO attends. (150 dollars/month).

    We have more than enough money to cover our bills, currently we save about 1000$ a month and we are in the black (only debt we carry is student debt).

    DH's contract runs out next year, and that means he will be looking for work. (He has good UE insurance, and a lot of paternity leave left - so he will have a good chunk of his income for over a year coming in) If I get a permanent contract it means we can qualify for a mortgage and eventually buy a house.

    I'm kind of stuck.....

    Paternity leave, killer severance packages, 5 WEEKS vacation, working 30-40hr weeks......Europeans have it made! Most Americans would love to have even one of the above.

    I would take the permanent position if you see the possibility of moving up in the company. The way you talk about your current job there is no growth.


      I personally have chosen time over money in my life. If I were you, I'd keep the job. Particularly because you have a young child. In no children, then I'd probably take the new job.

      There will be other job opportunities down the road, is my feeling. When the kids age and you want to focus more time on work. OR if you get bored and want to change things up.

      Before kids, I'd usually choose money, but since having kids, choosing time over money has been the best decision we have made for ourselves. Just where I am coming from.


        This is about much more than time vs. money. You are choosing between self-employment and working for others, between being your own boss and becoming an employee, between making your own schedule and having it dictated for you.

        I'm curious about this comment:
        If I get a permanent contract it means we can qualify for a mortgage and eventually buy a house.
        Can you not get a mortgage if you remain self-employed?

        So it comes down to where your priorities lie and how much of an entrepreneur you are. Personally, I prefer to be an employee and let others handle all of the administrative nonsense, but others love doing that and being in charge.

        * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
        * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
        * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.


          Thank for the responses -

          Redraidar: that moving up thing is the main reason I am considering this job opportunity - I like a challenge.

          Monkeymama: Thanks for that, I think I often get stuck in the 'now or never' mentality, thanks for reminding me that there will be other options in the future.

          DS - I think you hit the nail on the head. This is really why I ended up asking about time vs money. Because when I worked for a big company I kind of saw it as me 'selling' my time to them. And the thing I hated most about that job was the downtime - although I do realize I have a lot to learn from others, I have a hard time stopping productivity to go and do things I feel are rather silly. When I am my own boss my down time is my time - if I have a meeting cancelled I can go out for a run instead, and then come back to work.

          You all gave me much to think about .... I do enjoy being an entrepreneur - and I come from a family of relatively successful ones but sometimes I feel like I'm not being 'serious' enough especially now that I am a parent. A lot of my friends at this time have successful careers and are moving on up, and I guess I just feel a little like 'well where am I going to go'

          Oh and the mortgage thing - that's a thing about the region we live in - because the permanent job contracts are pretty solid with killer severance - the bank likes at least one member of the household has one when giving a mortgage, and neither my husband nor I do. I am a sole-proprietor which means it takes a lot more work for me to prove to them that I qualify for a loan. Or I need to change the structure of my company, which takes a substantial investment on my part.


            There are 2 types of people in the world: Employees and Employers. There are pros and cons to both, but I would choose the pros of "Employer" any day.
            Rock climber, ultrarunner, and credit expert at


              I would jump at the chance and atleast try out the job. From what you say I assume if the permanent job does not work out you can return to what you are doing at the moment? Either ways I would love to take the risk.


                As a mom - it would be really hard for me to give up the flexibility of having my own business. It really sounds ideal. BUT if you are really unhappy and it's important to you to be able to "move up" then give it a try. Just make sure your intentions are really to do what's best for you and your family and not just to keep up with your perception of how your friends are doing. Good luck to you whatever you decide!


                  one thing to add to the subject line...time is money. once time is wasted you can never ever get that back. if you lose or waste money you can always get that back.


                    I have chosen time over money. As long as I have enough to pay my bills and some extra, that is fine with me. I don't have any desire to accumulate more and more and more. I just want to enjoy my life, work and family and have a balance about it. Some people are "high energy" and can "do it all". I simply cannot. I accept that and have accepted a modified lifestyle as well. Money comes and goes. Time just goes.


                      same here, I go for time rather than money. You can earn money in many various ways, you don't have to caged yourself in an industry which cannot give you any benefits.


                        Thanks for the words of wisdom - I have decided to decline the job - and continue on my own path. I am going to continue, instead, to look for new ways to grow my business. I'm also going to take advantage of the free University classes and try to beef up my competence in some other related business areas.

                        I will continue to hold out my hand to different industries, and if the right job pops up, I might take it. But I'm not quite willing yet to accept a job that I am not all that interested in. And thankfully, your words here have helped me to see that is not an irresponsible decision.


                          Wow... you're lucky to have it all in Europe. 5 weeks vacation, legal family law, etc. I would leave my current job and work there!


                            I do wish we had it here like in Europe. I have been to Europe, and the benefits to working there are far superior to anything in the U.S. They also have a much better social welfare net, and better health care overall, at least where I was in Western Europe.

                            I personally value time over money, because we can't extend a certain amount of time we get in life to do things.

                            It is always difficult for women to choose between staying home and working, in situations like the original poster's.


                              It really depends on what you value. I live a downsized lifestyle. I don't want a McMansion or a big huge house and huge yard. I have a nice family home with a decent lot. I don't really like to travel that much as I tend to get carsick, etc so i am pretty much a homebody. And, i have simple pleasures like walking the dog, playing basketball with my kids, cooking, etc. I don't need a lot of fancy anything.