‘Instead of investing in a gimmick, I invested in myself: with a wellness coach’

Me & My Money: Lorraine Butler, CEO of CPM

Are you a saver or a spender?
I'd have to say I am a saver. I love living a good, comfortable life, but I don't need an awful lot to keep me happy, so anything I have left at the end of the month goes into savings for a rainy day.

Do you shop around for better value?
I don't like paying over the odds for something or wasting money, so I will always check the value I am getting.

What has been your most extravagant purchase and how much did it cost?
I have a weakness for nice handbags. When I was making my way up in my career, never did I think I would spend so much on a bag, so now I try to get my husband to buy them instead!

Once a year I buy a designer handbag and use them every single day, so I get good value out of them. The most expensive was a Chanel bag I bought a couple of years ago and, in case my dad reads this, I’d better not say how much for!


I am paying off a trip for my husband and I to Japan in September to see Ireland play in the Rugby World Cup

What purchase have you made that you consider the best value for money?
Last year, I bought a smartwatch to help keep track of my health and exercise levels. I find it great to keep me on track physically and mentally every day.

How do you prefer to shop – online or local?
Ideally, local where at all possible. It's so important to support local enterprises and businesses where there are real faces and families to a brand. I much prefer an in-store shopping experience with human interaction. However, given the hours I work, online can be helpful for last minute purchases where you just haven't the time or energy to face the shops.

Do you haggle over prices?
Next to never. I research to ensure I am getting good value. For large purchases, I will negotiate to make sure I get the best value, but I can't bring myself to haggle over general prices.

Has the recession changed your spending habits?
I was brought up to value money and the security money can bring you so, before the recession, I had built up decent security. I didn't over-index on spending pre-recession – such as investing in over inflated property – and bought within my means. Thankfully, the recession didn't impact me as much as it could have.

Do you invest in shares?
No, it's not something I have the interest or headspace to do. Other than how my pension is managed, I have no interest in buying or selling shares.

Cash or card?
Card. I tend to get cash out only a couple of times a month.

What was the last thing you bought and was it good value for money?
I have started working with a healthy living and wellness coach in Co Laois, and she has been instrumental in helping me create a better outlook on daily living. Instead of investing in a gimmick, I thought I'd invest in myself – the difference in my sense of wellbeing is really noticeable.

Have you ever successfully saved up for a relatively big purchase?
My husband and I bought our first house in Dublin in 2008 and saving for the deposit took everything we had. We have since built a house in Co Laois, and it is our lifelong home so I don't foresee that big an investment again. At the moment, I am paying off a trip for my husband and I to Japan in September to see Ireland play in the Rugby World Cup. Worth every euro – I hope!

Have you ever lost money?
The only time I lost money was when, very early in my career, I worked for a recruitment company, and the day before payday, it closed down. We were all made redundant.

Are you a gambler and if so have you ever had a big win?
I never gamble, and have absolutely no interest in it. I have seen families being really damaged by gambling addictions, and am very thankful not to have any interest or inclination to want to risk it to win big.

Is money important to you?
Money isn't really important to me, but security is. I want to have enough money to live a comfortable life with limited financial worries, to be able to treat my family and friends when I can, just as they do me.

How much money do you have on you now?
I have €2. I have just come back from a run and always carry €2 for water at the finish, but the shop was closed tonight!

in conversation with Tony Clayton-Lea