‘Quality is generally at the top of my shopping list’
Me & My Money: Richard Fitzmaurice, chief executive and co-owner of The View
Richard Fitzmaurice, chief executive of office space company The View: “In business I have gambled as I have taken risks that I felt had to be taken.”
Are you a saver or a spender?
I am a balanced mix of both. Over the years, I have become more cautious on spending. Now that my wife and I have two young kids we tend to spend more towards things that benefit our family life rather than ourselves. On the savings side, reinvesting is always a goal for me whether that is in business or at home. If I am saving, I am spending to benefit long term.
Do you shop around for better value?
I expect value for money and a fair price but quality is generally at the top of my shopping list. If I work with a supplier and their goods or services are worth the extra spend, then I will choose the long-term value over the short-term saving.
What has been your most extravagant purchase and how much did it cost?
When I was in my mid-20s I had a rush of blood to my head and bought a two-seater sports car for IR£25,000. At the time I felt I was working hard and deserved it. I sold it 12 months later for less than half of what it cost and, although it hurt at the time, I learned a valuable lesson on buying and selling.
What purchase have you made that you consider the best value for money?
I purchased my first home when I was 23. I worked three jobs for two years to save and in the long run it was the best thing I have ever done – every hour I worked was worth it.
How do you prefer to shop during the Covid-19 restrictions – online or local?
I prefer to shop local as I like to support local businesspeople, many of whom I know personally, and who are doing everything they can to keep going.
Do you haggle over prices?
In business if I feel I am being overcharged I will say so and make a counter-offer. If you do not ask you do not get.
How has the Covid-19 crisis changed your spending habits?
I have reeled in my spending a lot in both business and my personal life. I feel I need to be overcautious and protect cashflow now more than ever.
Do you invest in shares?
It isn’t really my thing but I am interested to a certain degree as my wife works for a US tech company so gets shares as part of her salary. She has also bought shares to support some Irish start-ups she believes in.
Cash or card?
Generally card but I always like to have some cash in my pocket just in case.
What was the last thing you bought and was it good value for money?
We recently bought a hybrid car and it has been great value for money, so far. We are travelling less so spending less and the charge we get with it usually gets us from A to B at little or no cost.
Have you ever successfully saved up for a relatively big purchase?
Yes, my wife’s engagement ring set me back a small fortune. It turned out to be a lot more expensive than I had initially planned on spending but it was worth it and will always be value for money in more ways than one.
Have you ever lost money?
I bought an apartment as an investment in my mid-20s and my plan is to sell it in the next year. I will never get anywhere near what I paid for it, however. This was another impulse buy I made in my 20s that I’ll learn a hard lesson from.
Are you a gambler and, if so, have you ever had a big win?
Not all at – the poker table and betting in general has never appealed to me. I will go to the races to support friends but if I spend it will be for fun and nothing more. In business I have gambled as I have taken risks that I felt had to be taken. More times than not they have worked out.
Is money important to you?
It is to a certain degree as I want my family to live the life I want for them. Money motivates me to succeed in business as my biggest fear is failure.
How much money do you have on you now?
In conversation with Tony Clayton-Lea