Jesinta Franklin: ‘I owned a home at 21’
MODEL Jesinta Franklin is just 26 years old but she's already made a career out of lucrative endorsement deals.
The former Miss Universe Australia is an ambassador for Christian Dior, Coach, Tiffany & Co, Olay skincare, Moet & Chandon and spent a year as the face of David Jones.
Franklin can earn hundreds of thousands of dollars for a short period of work. She was reportedly paid $250,000 by Cadbury last year as part of a 12-week contract, launching their Dark Milk range.
So while skyrocketing property prices mean home ownership is out of reach for many young people, Franklin has been quietly pocketing her large pay cheques and investing in property.
"I bought my first home when I was 21," Franklin told news.com.au this week.
"It was a goal of mine when I was 15 so I ensured everything I did was towards that," she said.
"If you don't own a home there's nothing wrong with that, but that was my goal and what I worked towards and I made sure I educated myself about what costs would be involved. By the time I'm 40, I'm going to be having some pretty darn good holidays and have some good properties under my belt," she said.
The professional clothes horse and her AFL star husband, Lance "Buddy" Franklin, 31, currently own a $2.3 million four-bedroom house in Sydney's Rose Bay.
Franklin is passionate about women gaining financial independence and staying out of debt. She says she's tried to maintain discipline with her spending habits and avoid blowing her cash on clothes and accessories.
"I see a lot of my girlfriends with really high credit card debts from buying the latest handbag or a nice dress. It's really tempting because there's a lot of pressure on women to look a certain way, but for me I would much prefer to spend a couple of grand doing up my house or my mortgage than a new handbag," she said.
"I actually have a very minimal wardrobe because I'm passionate about owning all my homes in the next five years and being debt-free and not having to worry about mortgages and all of that. I always have this conversation with my girlfriends … it's so important. I actually think [what it takes to buy a home] should be taught more in schools. So I always say 'try to invest in homes, not handbags'."
Much of her financial success has come down to standing up for herself when negotiating endorsement deals and making sure she is not short changed.
"Back in the day, my goodness, there were definitely things I was signing that I probably should not have agreed to," she said.
"Sometimes as a woman, I think you naturally talk yourself down or you value yourself lower than what you are. So that's why I have a great team around me who build me up and say 'No, you're worth so much more than that in time and in money so this is what we're going to go in at'," she said.
That talent for hard bargaining came in handy last year when she was renegotiating her contract with David Jones.
The department store insisted she sign an exclusive deal, meaning she wouldn't be allowed to represent other brands. Franklin refused.
"Look, there was a long period of negotiations and I asked for what I wanted," Franklin said.
"Unfortunately we couldn't agree to terms and it was such a great learning lesson for me. Nothing against them as a company, I had such an incredible year with them and I cherish every moment. It's definitely not a soured relationship, but I asked for what I wanted," she said.
"There's nothing more empowering than walking away from something that doesn't serve you or isn't right for you. I hope that other people can get inspiration from that."
Now, Franklin only agrees to commitments that she is really excited by. This week she's on duty for Moet & Chandon - every girl's dream gig.
"It came up through my wedding," said Franklin, who married her husband in a secret Blue Mountains ceremony in 2016.
"When we were secretly planning our wedding, I really wanted the Moet goblets at the ceremony and my friend who knows the PR for Moet got in touch with them," she said.
"The photos that went viral were the ones of Bud and I holding the Moet goblets and it was like 'Hang on, she must really like the brand' and that's how relationship came about.
"It's a really fun partnership and obviously I love the product."