Saturday 20 October 2018

'My worst job was weeding a 20-acre field of beet, by hand'

This dairy farmer's son says you never have as much money as you think you do

Mike Ross
Mike Ross

Independent.ie Business

Mike Ross is a former Ireland and Leinster rugby player who is now commercial director with the technology company, Wizuda. He lives in Churchtown, Dublin, with his family. He and his wife have two children: a seven-year-old son and a three-year-old daughter.

Ross joined Wizuda after retiring from professional rugby last year. Wizuda provides software solutions which allow companies to manage data transfer in compliance with data protection rules. Visit wizuda.com for details.

What's the most important lesson about money your career in sports or technology has taught you?

That you never have as much money as you think you have. Something always tends to come up - the kids might need new football boots and so on. I've learned that it's very important to have an emergency fund.

What's the most expensive thing about being a parent?

Keeping them in clothes and food. As time goes on, school fees will be expensive.

What's the most expensive country you ever visited?

Bermuda - I was there in November 2017. Everything is very expensive in Bermuda as it has no income tax, so it makes up for it in other ways. A bottle of beer cost $12.

What's your favourite Irish coin?

I was always fond of the Irish punt coin with the stag on it. Once you had a few of them in your pocket, you were doing well!

Apart from property, what's the most expensive thing you have ever bought?

My car - which is a BMW 5 Series. For 10 years, I got away without owning a car so when I had to go back and buy one, it was a shock.

What was your worst job?

One year when I was 16 or 17, I was working in a farm relief job. I was stuck in a 20-acre beet field and had to weed it by hand.

What was your biggest financial mistake?

I invested in a company in 2011 - the investment was a good idea but badly executed.

What was your best financial killing?

Buying my home in 2013, as I bought during the recession. It's gone up in value since.

Are you better off than your parents?

My parents are farmers so I'm not better off than them from an asset point of view - but from a regular income point of view, I would be better off. The income earned in dairy farming can be quite erratic.

If you won the Euromillions, what would you do with the money?

I'd clear the mortgage, go on the holiday to end all holidays, and look after a few people who are close to me. I'd be very quiet about winning it - I wouldn't tell anyone. I only play the Lotto a bit as I'm aware of the odds.

Your favourite song or tune about money?

Money for Nothing by Dire Straits.

Have you ever made an insurance claim?

Yes - after I was rear-ended by another car.

iTunes or Spotify?

Spotify.

What was the last thing you bought online?

A computer monitor.

Would you buy property now?

I probably would - but I wouldn't put everything into it. If I won the Lotto, I would.

What's the best advice you ever got about money?

Pay as much of your mortgage off as you can. I got this advice from my parents.

What three things would you not be able to do without if you were tightening your belt?

My internet subscription. My Android phone - as you need your phone to be connected to the world. My home.

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