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  • FIRST POST
    • mouche
    • By mouche 20th Sep 11, 2:08 PM
    • 844Posts
    • 4,138Thanks
    mouche
    Moucheís adventures with her first mortgage (while coping with her first baby)
    • #1
    • 20th Sep 11, 2:08 PM
    Moucheís adventures with her first mortgage (while coping with her first baby) 20th Sep 11 at 2:08 PM
    Hello everyone. I expect I am jumping the gun a bit by starting my diary already but I have been aching to join the MFWs for ages! Iím more of a lurker than a commenter but your diaries have inspired me over the years and I hope that in time I might be able to help someone myself. At any rate, Iím joining in and I hope someone reads my diary other than me J

    Right, a bit of background. My husband and I moved to the UK from India after we got married about 5 years ago (actually he moved a year before me so heís been here 6 years now). Iím 32 now and he will be 37 next month, so weíre not as young as many of the FTBs on here but we started from scratch after we got married and weíve been saving hard for a deposit on a house ever since. Finally achieved our target sum earlier this year. Then started the attempt to find a house we both liked, which had a decent survey and whose owners were ready to sell to us. We were nearly there in April and then the sellers of our almost-dream house pulled out because their buyers had pulled out. We started again, offered on 2 properties, were scared off by their survey reports, and have finally ended up, as of yesterday, exchanging contracts on the almost-dream house! We had rung the owners on the off chance and found that they were looking for a buyer and things just fell into place. We are completing on Friday and moving on Saturday. Weíll miss our rented house Ė we were there for 3.5 years but looking forward to being in our own home.

    Our mortgage is with HSBC and we are on the Lifetime Tracker which will run at 2.49% above base rate for 25 years. It allows unlimited overpayments and fee-free switching at any time. When we decided on the mortgage, we had planned to overpay like mad so that when the base rate started to rise, we could switch to a fixed rate on a lower LTV. A combination of the delayed purchase and me getting pregnant has meant that this is no longer going to be very achievable but weíre keeping our fingers crossed that the base rate doesnít rise too soon or too fast so that we can still OP a fair amount before needing to fix.

    We had a just over 20% deposit so the actual mortgage capital amount to repay is Ė brace yourselves - £193,000. This is for a 4 bedroom house with garage in London Zone 6 so we think we got it for a good price Ė but of course, itís an absolutely enormous number and I know I will be on this board for the long haul. A tentative goal is to pay it off by my 50th birthday, so in just under 18 years, but that is a finger in the air goal with nothing to back it up. After we move in and I reassess our financial situation, I may be in a position to set more concrete goals.

    As mentioned, we have our first baby on the way (and to be honest probably our only baby Ė Iím not too keen on more than one though I have been told once baby is born, I may change my mind). Baby is due in early Feb but because I am going back to India to deliver (long story), I will be starting maternity leave on 7th November. Well not maternity leave technically as I have 20 days of holiday to use up first, but in my mind itís maternity leave as that is when our maternity budget will start. Iím an Excel fiend and love calculating budgets and tracking every stray penny. So Iíve set up a maternity budget which will take into account our reduced income for the year that I will be off. I am a higher earner than OH so the loss of my salary will make quite a dent. However, Iíve calculated that I can pay myself a Ďsalaryí of £1000 a month from my maternity pay (6 weeks), SMP (33 weeks), child benefit (6 months as I canít claim when Iím not in the country), and the money I have put aside for maternity leave. This will help a lot as with quite a bit of belt tightening (no holidays for a start!), our joint income ought to just about cover our expenses while I am on mat. leave. I still have to find £300 to pay OHs salary when he is on paternity but I think that can be managed. I still have a little bit left from the Ďhouse fundí which will hopefully cover moving costs and the bits and bobs of furniture we will need in the new house. My plan is to try and save from the reduced budget Ė even if it a few pounds Ė and also try to earn a little extra doing surveys and the like. We will have to see how that goes but I am determine to OP *something* every month, even if it is 2p!

    Once weíve moved and settled in a bit, I will post our SOA for your scrutiny and suggestions. Just wanted to share my excitement with you Ėthough Iím ashamed to admit Iím probably more excited about starting my MFW journey than buying our first house! Still, I think you will understand.
Page 18
    • tootallulah
    • By tootallulah 26th Jul 14, 7:38 AM
    • 1,997 Posts
    • 6,896 Thanks
    tootallulah
    Hiya Mouche busy as ever I see. I think that your boss leting you work from home whilst in India is great it sets a very good precedent if you can make it work, and will give your Mum plenty of spoiling time with your LO! When your family are far away it does make visits expensive but it is so important to go and make sure your LO knows his extended family. Also things like lovely days out together are one of the way you create your own family memories never money wasted on that. Brilliant news on the tax rebate - well done you.
    Mortgage House £173,000 July17th 2016.
    • Goldiegirl
    • By Goldiegirl 26th Jul 14, 4:29 PM
    • 8,337 Posts
    • 47,611 Thanks
    Goldiegirl
    Hello Mouche, just been reading your updates.


    It'll be great to spend 6 weeks in India, and for LO to meet the family over there.


    I would just like to say.... a curry picnic sounds fantastic !
    Early retired - 18th December 2014
    If your dreams don't scare you, they're not big enough
    • poorbutrich
    • By poorbutrich 1st Aug 14, 4:18 PM
    • 1,482 Posts
    • 5,530 Thanks
    poorbutrich
    Have a brilliant time in India Mouche! Very jealous!
    Overpay!
    • mouche
    • By mouche 2nd Aug 14, 11:53 PM
    • 844 Posts
    • 4,138 Thanks
    mouche
    Hi everyone...I'm not actually in India yet and won't be till next year but thanks for all the good wishes. I could certainly use some good vibes as 4.5 months after our house fire, we were burgled last week.

    Fortunately, no one was home and so no one was hurt. Unfortunately, they took quite a lot of cash and all my jewelry. The cash was left over from our holidays and hadn't yet been banked - we don't normally keep cash in the house. The jewelry was only a small part of what I own (the rest is in a safety deposit box back in India) but it comprised some pieces that have a lot of sentimental value and I have been very upset about their loss.

    More than what we lost, it's been the feeling of our home being invaded and a stranger going through our things. I'm not a fainting type of person but in the middle of the phone call to the police I started shaking so badly OH had to take over. And I've been afraid to come home on my own with LO since it happened.

    We are having a monitored burglar alarm fitted asap - a whole lot of expense but at least for a while, I won't feel safe without something like that.

    Anyway, I don't want to think about it anymore. Payday shuffle has been done and we overspent quite a lot last month. The overspend has negated the £144 I will save this month by not paying council tax (overpaid enough to skip a month) and the £110 I have had refunded for a membership we don't use.

    I have saved £14 using OHs company discounts though and I also found more in the Nationwide account than I expected. So I have been able to put aside £100 in the private school fund and another £80 towards a mortgage OP.

    My laptop battery is about to die so I will have to finish this update later.
    Mortgage (original/ current):193,000 (23/09/11)/ £144,515.84 (16/06/2017).
    MFW target for 2017: £2355.48/ £5,000
    2017 Challenges
    Grocery Challenge: £173.17/ £200 (June)
    Make £300 a month: £236.08/ £300 (June)
    • poorbutrich
    • By poorbutrich 4th Aug 14, 3:13 PM
    • 1,482 Posts
    • 5,530 Thanks
    poorbutrich

    Fortunately, no one was home and so no one was hurt. Unfortunately, they took quite a lot of cash and all my jewelry. The cash was left over from our holidays and hadn't yet been banked - we don't normally keep cash in the house. The jewelry was only a small part of what I own (the rest is in a safety deposit box back in India) but it comprised some pieces that have a lot of sentimental value and I have been very upset about their loss.

    More than what we lost, it's been the feeling of our home being invaded and a stranger going through our things. I'm not a fainting type of person but in the middle of the phone call to the police I started shaking so badly OH had to take over. And I've been afraid to come home on my own with LO since it happened.

    We are having a monitored burglar alarm fitted asap - a whole lot of expense but at least for a while, I won't feel safe without something like that.

    Anyway, I don't want to think about it anymore. Payday shuffle has been done and we overspent quite a lot last month. The overspend has negated the £144 I will save this month by not paying council tax (overpaid enough to skip a month) and the £110 I have had refunded for a membership we don't use.

    I have saved £14 using OHs company discounts though and I also found more in the Nationwide account than I expected. So I have been able to put aside £100 in the private school fund and another £80 towards a mortgage OP.

    My laptop battery is about to die so I will have to finish this update later.
    Originally posted by mouche
    Oh gosh Mouche - so sorry to hear this.
    Overpay!
    • Goldiegirl
    • By Goldiegirl 4th Aug 14, 8:38 PM
    • 8,337 Posts
    • 47,611 Thanks
    Goldiegirl
    Mouche, just sending a big hug
    Early retired - 18th December 2014
    If your dreams don't scare you, they're not big enough
    • mouche
    • By mouche 8th Aug 14, 1:43 PM
    • 844 Posts
    • 4,138 Thanks
    mouche
    Thank you pbr and Goldie...I was a bit shell-shocked last week but am better this week. Yes, I lost some valuable things, but at least we are all well and at least things we lost were not things we 'need'. We will miss the money come next holiday and I will miss my jewelry when I think about it, but I wear very little jewelry on a regular basis so I suppose it could have been worse.

    Some nice things happened/ are happening as well:
    1. I had a very good appraisal at work so if there are any pay rises, bonuses at work this year, I will be eligible for them
    2. My parents are coming to visit us - they come every summer but my father is getting old now and the long flight is hard on him . He had told me last summer was the last visit. But he's changed his mind - yay!
    3. I had a night out with my friend last night - this was my first night out this year I think!

    On MSE news:
    1. Few surveys done and money retrieved
    2. Have figured out how to do OnePoll on my phone so am doing them again (work has restricted logging into any external sites, including MSE)
    3. OHs tax refund has been paid so the new car is nearly paid off.
    4. Both friend and I are on diets so night out cost just over £10 - bargain!
    5. The Spanish bank has offered me a pre-approved 0% on purchases credit card which I will be accepting for my first attempt at stoozing.

    Can't think of anything else.

    LO moment: I was trying to take his toy phone out of his bed (I thought he was asleep) and he sat up and said 'Don't touch my phone mummy, it's charging'.
    Mortgage (original/ current):193,000 (23/09/11)/ £144,515.84 (16/06/2017).
    MFW target for 2017: £2355.48/ £5,000
    2017 Challenges
    Grocery Challenge: £173.17/ £200 (June)
    Make £300 a month: £236.08/ £300 (June)
    • Goldiegirl
    • By Goldiegirl 8th Aug 14, 9:06 PM
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    • 47,611 Thanks
    Goldiegirl
    Glad you're feeling a bit better, and it's great that your parents are coming over.

    I'm doing quite well with OnePoll, but I know that any survey that starts with the status question and I answer 'married' , I know I'm going to get screened out. Do you have better luck answering 'married with children'?
    Early retired - 18th December 2014
    If your dreams don't scare you, they're not big enough
    • tootallulah
    • By tootallulah 9th Aug 14, 7:36 AM
    • 1,997 Posts
    • 6,896 Thanks
    tootallulah
    Mouche I am so sorry to hear about your burglary - and I love your attitude you are so right. Great news on your parents, it will be good for you to have some help and well done on the appraisal fingers crossed for a bonus!
    Mortgage House £173,000 July17th 2016.
    • ljaneyr
    • By ljaneyr 12th Aug 14, 11:04 AM
    • 1,132 Posts
    • 6,822 Thanks
    ljaneyr
    Hi Mouche

    I'm slowly catching up with everyone's diaries. I'm so sorry to hear about your burglary. Money is replaceable but losing jewelry is hard. At least you will now have a new security system so should start to feel safer. I must say I was nervous about our house when we returned from holiday but luckily it looks so run down from the outside I don't think anyone would bother.

    I hope you're feeling better this week,

    Janey x
    "It is often said that before you die your life passes before your eyes. It is in fact true. It's called living." Terry Pratchett

    Bought our house 2012 Married 2015 Started renovating 2015
    Renovation fund... what renovation fund? Emergency fund 40% Future fund... ongoing...
    • mouche
    • By mouche 27th Jan 15, 12:23 PM
    • 844 Posts
    • 4,138 Thanks
    mouche
    Thank you all for your support after the burglary we had last year. Life has taken over my MSE forum activities though I hope I can start catching up with everyone this year.

    Money-wise we are doing ok apart from a 5 week salary loss for OH (signed off so SSP only), which was partly compensated by the fact that we were on a holiday back to India so costs in the UK were limited. It will be a tight few months going forward though to get us back to where we were.

    OP wise, I have now increased our DD to pay the maximum OP permitted by our fixed mortgage (how I regret fixing it in April - I could have had almost a year more of a lower rate!). Our household budget doesn't allow for that much OP so I need to find £50 a month extra to cover that. So 2015 will be a year of trying to generate extra income; tightening the belts a notch and trying to enjoy life, family and friends a bit more.
    Mortgage (original/ current):193,000 (23/09/11)/ £144,515.84 (16/06/2017).
    MFW target for 2017: £2355.48/ £5,000
    2017 Challenges
    Grocery Challenge: £173.17/ £200 (June)
    Make £300 a month: £236.08/ £300 (June)
    • ljaneyr
    • By ljaneyr 28th Jan 15, 3:17 PM
    • 1,132 Posts
    • 6,822 Thanks
    ljaneyr
    Hi Mouche

    It's lovely to 'see' you again. Sick pay is such a worry but at least you were prepared and able to cope.

    I look forward to reading about your challenge!

    Janey x
    "It is often said that before you die your life passes before your eyes. It is in fact true. It's called living." Terry Pratchett

    Bought our house 2012 Married 2015 Started renovating 2015
    Renovation fund... what renovation fund? Emergency fund 40% Future fund... ongoing...
    • jodles16
    • By jodles16 28th Jan 15, 5:35 PM
    • 1,303 Posts
    • 3,898 Thanks
    jodles16
    Hi Mouche,

    Just had a marathon read through your diary, cant believe all you have been through and am super impressed how you have made it back on top no matter what is thrown at you! Amazing!

    Jodles
    MFW2017 #29 1200.24/4524
    MFiT #66
    Overall aim 10,124.20/21,743 (£156,000)
    2016- Jan-£177,472, Apr-£173,195.04, July- £171,417.47 Oct- 169,366
    2017- Jan- 167,347.80 Apr- July- Oct-

    • Goldiegirl
    • By Goldiegirl 28th Jan 15, 8:58 PM
    • 8,337 Posts
    • 47,611 Thanks
    Goldiegirl
    Hi, Mouche, good to see you posting again

    Glad things are ok with you,apart OH's sick leave.

    One of my things for the year is generating a little extra cash, mostly eBaying, vouchers, surveys and cash backs.

    It's going ok so far. Later this year I might even try Matched Betting.....if I can work out how to do it!
    Early retired - 18th December 2014
    If your dreams don't scare you, they're not big enough
    • mouche
    • By mouche 5th Feb 15, 6:23 AM
    • 844 Posts
    • 4,138 Thanks
    mouche
    Janey...thanks for dropping by. We just got OHs payslip for the period he was off and it looks like they have given him company sick pay for most of the time he was off. We may have a small amount of SSP in the next payslip but it looks like they've in effect given him paid time off to recover (which they should do frankly, considering they were the cause of his breakdown!). We weren't expecting more than SSP though so it's very welcome and perhaps belts don't need to be tightened quite as much!

    Jodles...welcome to my diary - you mean you read the whole thing?! Good golly...you deserve some kind of prize for that! Thank you for your kind words - I think I have a fairly comfortable privileged life and feel like such a whiner - so it feels kind of nice to be appreciated for coping with the things that pop up from time to time.

    Goldie!! Don't tell me I missed the big moment of retirement? I did didn't I? Well a very very big congratulations and I hope you and Mr GG are having a splendiforous time! And jusding by your siggy, the extra cash making schemes seem to working very well!
    Mortgage (original/ current):193,000 (23/09/11)/ £144,515.84 (16/06/2017).
    MFW target for 2017: £2355.48/ £5,000
    2017 Challenges
    Grocery Challenge: £173.17/ £200 (June)
    Make £300 a month: £236.08/ £300 (June)
    • Pearla*Merle
    • By Pearla*Merle 19th May 15, 8:35 PM
    • 1,583 Posts
    • 9,211 Thanks
    Pearla*Merle
    Hiya Mouche, I've been AWOL for ages (alas) but finally catching up and wanted to drop by and see how you're doing. Hope all is ok in Mouche-land and that life has been a lot cheerier this year? xx
    a penny picker upper. every penny's a prisoner!
    £26.65 til OnePoll payout! Round six! | Save £7200/£15,000
    Normality is a paved road; it's comfortable to walk, but no flowers grow on it.
    Whatever you're meant to do, do it now. The conditions are always impossible.
    The only thing you absolutely have to know, is the location of the library.
    • mouche
    • By mouche 15th Mar 16, 1:09 PM
    • 844 Posts
    • 4,138 Thanks
    mouche
    It appears my diary updates have become an annual affair!


    All is well in my world on the surface though I have been struggling with some health issues that I think are down to stress. I had a physical problem that they put down to anxiety/ depression but then the counselling service they referred me to said I wasn't depressed enough and they couldn't help me! So if anyone has any tips to destress a full time working mother of a wonderful but clingy 4 year old, please send them this way!


    Work is ok but is becoming increasingly frustrating and stressful. On the other hand my flexible working request has been approved and I now work from home 2 days a week and can do 8 hours of my choosing on those days. Which means when LO starts school in September, I can pick him up twice a week which will be fantastic.


    Financially, we are doing fine. The amount of money my in laws need is going up as age and health issues mount. I have had to reduce the money I am putting aside for my son's education to increase what we send them. Which is ok at the moment but it just covers their regular expenses. What we will do if they have an emergency I do not know.


    I have been puzzling over what to do for my son's education as well. We had our heart set on private school for him as we were not impressed by the local schools when we went round last year. We can afford primary but secondary will be impossible. We are in a grammar area so we are hopeful he will get into one of those but need a contingency plan if he doesn't. One option is to send him to a local school for three years and throw all the money we have been saving plus the fees into the mortgage. Then send him private from Yr 3 and again throw the extra savings into the mortage. That way we may just be able to pay off the mortgage before he starts secondary, which means we will have the funds to pay fees then if necessary. But it seems like such a huge risk to take. What if one of us loses our job? Or mortgage rates shoot up? Is it easy to get equity out of a house once you have put it in?


    I think I might have to formulate my options in a sensible way and post on the mortgage advice board.
    Mortgage (original/ current):193,000 (23/09/11)/ £144,515.84 (16/06/2017).
    MFW target for 2017: £2355.48/ £5,000
    2017 Challenges
    Grocery Challenge: £173.17/ £200 (June)
    Make £300 a month: £236.08/ £300 (June)
    • poorbutrich
    • By poorbutrich 2nd Apr 16, 8:07 PM
    • 1,482 Posts
    • 5,530 Thanks
    poorbutrich
    It appears my diary updates have become an annual affair!


    All is well in my world on the surface though I have been struggling with some health issues that I think are down to stress. I had a physical problem that they put down to anxiety/ depression but then the counselling service they referred me to said I wasn't depressed enough and they couldn't help me! So if anyone has any tips to destress a full time working mother of a wonderful but clingy 4 year old, please send them this way!
    Originally posted by mouche
    Great to see an update from you but sorry to hear you've not been well. Are you taking time out from work and looking after LO to look after yourself? Can you go for a swim or have a massage once in a while? Or a walk if you don't want to do things your thrifty way?

    hope you're ok and hope it isn't a year until your next update!
    Overpay!
    • poorbutrich
    • By poorbutrich 5th May 16, 6:51 PM
    • 1,482 Posts
    • 5,530 Thanks
    poorbutrich
    Hi Mouche
    Just thought I'd knock and see how you are as I'm passing? Hope you're feeling better!
    Overpay!
    • mouche
    • By mouche 16th Jun 17, 2:43 PM
    • 844 Posts
    • 4,138 Thanks
    mouche
    It has been more than a year since my last update - thanks for popping in occasionally pbr, I will be hopping over to your diary after this update to find out what you have been upto!

    Life has changed dramatically since my last update. Late last year my role changed at work. It was something I had asked for as I was bored senseless in my old job. My boss was very nice and agreed to let me try out the new role to see if I liked it with the security of going back to my old job if I didn't. As it turned out I didn't like the new job and I didn't want my old job back either - so I quit!

    Looking back it seems like such a dramatic step to take but at the time it felt like the only thing to do. I couldn't face doing my old job for one more day and the new one was not what I expected it to be. It was my intention to take a break for a couple of months and then find another job. As it turns out jobs are thin on the ground especially as I am severely limited in the hours and location I can work due to the fact that school runs are my sole responsibility.

    So...for now I am a SAHM though I am doing some freelance editing work.

    Financially this has meant that we are much worse off. We are operating on what I call out emergency budget which means we are not saving anything (well we are but in the sense of moving money from one savings pot to another rather than adding to the total!). Some months we use some savings, some months we don't.

    The good thing is I didn't quit without thinking about this. When we got married, OH had something like £1000 in the bank so I put £1000 from my own savings into the joint account with the idea that we would start from scratch together. I left the majority of my pre-marital savings in India. When I decided to quit my job, I brought those savings over so that I was in effect paying myself enough that we didn't need to dip into joint savings to finance my career break. That savings pot is getting smaller now though so until I find a new job (which I am not hugely keen to do to be honest - I am enjoying this less stressful phase) I need to up my income from home and reduce our outgoings.

    We are still overpaying the mortgage but now it's with the idea that we will remortgage and get the money back should we need to for private school fees. And we will stop if things get really tight.

    Luckily, OHs job is paying overtime at the moment. It is not guaranteed and they could stop it any moment but for now he is getting about 30-40% more money due to overtime. This is a huge bonus because he would work those hours whether he got paid for them or not - that's the norm in his line of work. Since we earned the same before I quit, the overtime is helping a lot but is not quite enough to make up for the shortfall.

    So, here is my plan for now:
    Increase Income
    1. Keep an eye out for jobs
    2. Do as much freelance editing work as I can get - it doesn't pay loads but I think I can make £200-£300 a month from it.
    3. Ebay the houseful of tat I haven't had time to do before.

    Reduce expenses
    1. Join grocery challenge to keep control of costs
    2. Think twice before buying anything
    3. Wherever possible use vouchers, discount codes etc.

    More later!
    Mortgage (original/ current):193,000 (23/09/11)/ £144,515.84 (16/06/2017).
    MFW target for 2017: £2355.48/ £5,000
    2017 Challenges
    Grocery Challenge: £173.17/ £200 (June)
    Make £300 a month: £236.08/ £300 (June)
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