‘If I could leave rugby with a house fully paid off, I would be very happy’

Me & My Money: James Lowe, professional rugby player

‘I used to be an impulse buyer but since I have recognised this, I can now stop myself,’ says James Lowe

‘I used to be an impulse buyer but since I have recognised this, I can now stop myself,’ says James Lowe

 

James Lowe is a professional rugby player for Leinster and Ireland, and the new brand ambassador for Gourmet Burger Kitchen, “home to Leinster’s best burgers”.

Are you a saver or a spender?

I would say I am both. I am currently front-loading my mortgage. As a rugby player, I understand that my window for earnings is limited so, instead of having all the flashy things, I would rather pay off my mortgage. If I could leave rugby with a house fully paid off, I would be very, very happy.

Do you shop around for better value?

I would, but I also value convenience. That said, I would rather pay more for a better quality product than have to come back and buy the same thing two or three times.

What has been your most extravagant purchase and how much did it cost?

Probably my mountain bike, which cost me €7,500. At the start of lockdown, I purchased a Specialised Levo SL. It is an assisted mountain bike and an amazing piece of equipment that brings me a lot of joy. The worst thing about mountain biking is going up hills, but this bike has a small motor that takes out most of the hard work.

What purchase have you made that you consider the best value for money?

My bed. As a professional athlete, sleep is one of the key ingredients to performance. I am more than happy to pay extra for a good quality bed. Robbie Henshaw got me in touch with the Sleep Shop in Athlone. My sleep has been amazing ever since!

How do you prefer to shop during the Covid-19 restrictions – online or local?

Definitely local. I enjoy walking my dog, Norman, down to my local coffee shop in Stillorgan. Down the road, we also have a grocer that is great to pick up a few bits for dinner. I have limited my spending on material items during Covid-19, for sure. There has been no real need for new clothes, shoes, and so on.

Do you haggle over prices?

No. If I think something isn’t worth the price then I simply will not purchase it. I used to be an impulse buyer but since I have recognised this, I can now stop myself. If I am still thinking about buying something after two or three days, then I will go and get it.

How has the Covid-19 crisis changed your spending habits?

I hadn’t purchased many clothes or shoes during the pandemic as we couldn’t really go anywhere to wear them. We also saved a lot of money on petrol – my girlfriend works from home full time, and I now cycle to work more often.

Do you invest in shares?

Very rarely. I haven’t done enough research, which means I don’t fully understand it. So it scares me.

Cash or card?

Definitely card. Although we used to use cash for everything.

What was the last thing you bought and was it good value for money?

My Kamado Joe Classic. It is basically a big clay oven. When the weather is right and we’re dining at home, I will use it to cook dinners. I wouldn’t say I’m a master yet, but that’s the goal.

Have you ever successfully saved up for a relatively big purchase?

Yes, a new house. We are currently in the middle of a move. It’s very stressful, and I feel like the process should be a lot easier than what it has been. It will be worth it, though.

Have you ever lost money?

Thankfully not. My investment portfolio isn’t that extravagant so the risk of losing money isn’t very high.

Are you a gambler and, if so, have you ever had a big win?

No, I’m not. I would say I am reasonably conservative when it comes to money, although I did pull Tiger in the 2019 Masters Sweep Stakes in Leinster. I wasn’t a fan favourite, unfortunately.

Is money important to you?

Yes, money is important. It is important to me to be able to give back to the people who have helped me to get to where I am. To be able to help my parents, siblings, and to set myself and my future family up for life after rugby. It isn’t the be all and end all, but if I can retire from rugby, have a house paid off, financial stability, and be able to play golf twice a week I would be very happy.

How much money do you have on you now?

I just put one of Joe Tomane’s old golf jackets on. It had €20 in the pocket. Thanks, Joe!

In conversation with Tony Clayton-Lea

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.