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  • FIRST POST
    • FloppyDisk
    • By FloppyDisk 21st Dec 15, 2:35 PM
    • 379Posts
    • 3,080Thanks
    FloppyDisk
    From Flat to Farmhouse
    • #1
    • 21st Dec 15, 2:35 PM
    From Flat to Farmhouse 21st Dec 15 at 2:35 PM
    Hello everyone, I am hoping some of you might recognise my name and no, my mission hasnít changed, I still have lofty ambitions of upgrading from my flat to something a little more spacious. I used to post here a year ago but letís be honest, my ex went a bit stalky so I had to take a step back and delete everything which is a bit of a shame but thatís boys for you

    So where were we? Oh yes, paying £400 a month in interest on my mortgage! I need to start 2016 with a renewed vigour towards my financial management. Whilst this wonít be wholey directed at the mortgage, I have found the community of MFWers so helpful in getting the balance right. Despite having the all-important spreadsheet, I have gotten a bit lost with my finances with the poor interest rates and having to use current accounts for savings, so I need to do a proper audit.

    As old friends will know, I have the slight disadvantage of being owned by an event horse who insists on having the best of everything. I am also severely hampered by my inability to cook and tend to fritter money away buying lunches.

    It is lovely to be back and focused on security, I have missed you all!
Page 3
    • hiddenshadow
    • By hiddenshadow 2nd Mar 17, 11:12 AM
    • 2,030 Posts
    • 9,030 Thanks
    hiddenshadow
    We've got our groceries down to £225/mo (average) for 2 of us. This includes breakfast, dinner, and lunch is invariably leftovers from dinner.

    Regarding meal planning, I took a super simple (and probably inefficient) system. We have a Trello board that lists recipes by type (pasta/soup/dessert/etc), copied from here: http://blog.trello.com/meal-planning-with-trello

    I skipped the last half of that article (dealing with the calendar) because it was too complicated. Instead I added lists that include 8 cards: 7 recipes (copied from the lists by type) and a shopping list (including everything needed for those recipes). Then at the weekend when we shop, we copy/paste that shopping list, remove anything we already have, and go. We started with 4 weeks' worth of lists, and are now up to 8 because we added extra ones as we came across recipes that sounded yummy. I think it's a good balance between work (setting up/maintaining the lists, figuring out what week we're on, etc) and variety.

    Shopping-wise I broke the weekly list into 4 sections:
    - one-off things for that week only (meat, special ingredients, etc)
    - veg (so all the produce is listed together for ease in the grocery store)
    - staples (that we should have around and shouldn't need to buy, but if we spot on sale should stock up on)
    - spices (again, shouldn't need but should buy if on sale)
    ...that makes it pretty easy to scan the kitchen for what we already have. I'd say we spend maybe 5-10 minutes each week prepping the grocery list before we run errands.

    Cost-wise, it's inefficient because I really haven't done anything regarding combining meals to take advantage of bulk buying. We know roughly what ingredients we need, though, so if we spot anything on sale that's frozen or has a good shelf life, we'll stock up on it and then not need to buy it again when that week comes around. We've probably shaved about £30-40 off our monthly grocery spend since we started meal planning, so it's not too bad. If we really focused on it I bet we could get under £200 pretty easily.

    ------

    Re: window shopping, I've made myself stop looking. Rental-wise we're not going to be moving for 3 months so it's still at least a month too early to look. Purchase-wise it's just depressing to see lots of lovely things but know we won't be buying any of them. We could, but it would be a bit foolhardy...we want to try out living in the area for at least a year or two before putting a ton of money into property. It is so fun to look, though, even when you know it's pointless...
    MFW: Dec '13 £197,100 / Dec '14 £180,691 / Dec '15 £161,669 / Dec '16 £119,669 / Mar '17 £111,283 (£6,104 offset)
    Payment 38/84 / 2017 MFW #56: £8,385/£20,000 41% / MFiT-T4 #15: £48,216/£90,000 53%
    • FloppyDisk
    • By FloppyDisk 2nd Mar 17, 3:09 PM
    • 379 Posts
    • 3,080 Thanks
    FloppyDisk
    Thank you very much shadow, that's given me food for thought.... ha! And inspiring that it can be done if we get organised. I've had a look at the Old Style board for cooking for dummies help for me too.

    Re the house - I think it could be a quick money spinner as it's 'up and coming'...
    • FloppyDisk
    • By FloppyDisk 3rd Mar 17, 10:00 AM
    • 379 Posts
    • 3,080 Thanks
    FloppyDisk
    I'm awful at this MSE lark. Had put some clutter in the hallway meaning to take it to the charity shop. After Watty's success with her china I thought I'd had better check whether anything was of any value, indeed £100 of what I had always thought was tat from a local sculptor.

    Perhaps I need to learn how to use e of the bay.
    • FloppyDisk
    • By FloppyDisk 12th Mar 17, 10:26 AM
    • 379 Posts
    • 3,080 Thanks
    FloppyDisk
    One ridiculously spendy ski holiday later and I am back with a vengeance. Meals planned for the next week, washing on, now the pony needs a jolly good brushing to get rid of a week of feral.
    • smallholdingsister
    • By smallholdingsister 12th Mar 17, 10:47 AM
    • 2,853 Posts
    • 21,563 Thanks
    smallholdingsister
    Ah. The Baby Hippo!
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 12th Mar 17, 11:11 AM
    • 3,946 Posts
    • 17,896 Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    I was doing mine this morning. They've decided that spring is finally on its way and have started moulting, which given we've had a week of rain and they're not rugged, means they were PLASTERED!
    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £115,256.51 Offset: £32,528.05 Amount paid off: £29,888.49 (20.6%) Paying interest on: £82,728.46
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £47,830.00) Currently: £176,976.86 Amount paid off: £440.00 (0.25%)
    Sugar days 2017: 6/26 Yoga days 2017: 85/365 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
    • Kittenkirst
    • By Kittenkirst 12th Mar 17, 11:12 AM
    • 1,208 Posts
    • 5,589 Thanks
    Kittenkirst
    Welcome back, hope you had a fab skiing trip!

    Emergency savings- £905.20 /£1750
    Mortgage Oct '16- £170.995 LTV- 90% end date Nov 2041
    2016 OPs £255.50/£150
    2017 MFW #20 - OP [B][COLOR="Blue"]£644.609/2150. 29.9%
    Jan- £68.15, Feb- £306.67, March- £269.72
    • FloppyDisk
    • By FloppyDisk 12th Mar 17, 7:16 PM
    • 379 Posts
    • 3,080 Thanks
    FloppyDisk
    Hippo indeed! But Very Nice livery lady spent an hour grooming him yesterday so we had quality time over an apple instead. Thankfully his coat is growing too, I need to hide my awful job of clipping.
    Such expensive animals but worth it!
    • hiddenshadow
    • By hiddenshadow 13th Mar 17, 9:30 PM
    • 2,030 Posts
    • 9,030 Thanks
    hiddenshadow
    \Thankfully his coat is growing too, I need to hide my awful job of clipping.
    Such expensive animals but worth it!
    Originally posted by FloppyDisk
    My first horse (TB mare) spent a winter with an arrow on her side because the clippers gave out and then I couldn't be bothered to fix it (and thought it was funny). She was less amused.
    MFW: Dec '13 £197,100 / Dec '14 £180,691 / Dec '15 £161,669 / Dec '16 £119,669 / Mar '17 £111,283 (£6,104 offset)
    Payment 38/84 / 2017 MFW #56: £8,385/£20,000 41% / MFiT-T4 #15: £48,216/£90,000 53%
    • FloppyDisk
    • By FloppyDisk 15th Mar 17, 10:16 AM
    • 379 Posts
    • 3,080 Thanks
    FloppyDisk
    I have seen a few odd jobs thanks to broken clippers, unfortunately I only have myself to blame for this one! I am awful at doing the lines on the legs so tried to go to his knees and blend it in..... wrong.

    Finally narrowing down my remortgage options, whilst trying to keep the future bright. I might even be able to start overpaying properly since Hoss arrived.
    Last edited by FloppyDisk; 15-03-2017 at 10:42 AM.
    • FloppyDisk
    • By FloppyDisk 16th Mar 17, 3:52 PM
    • 379 Posts
    • 3,080 Thanks
    FloppyDisk
    On a roll today -

    Packed lunch
    £75 claimed from switching broadband, and a reduction of £12 a month
    Cancelled new house alert emails

    Equity does not a wise investment make!
    • FloppyDisk
    • By FloppyDisk 16th Mar 17, 3:58 PM
    • 379 Posts
    • 3,080 Thanks
    FloppyDisk
    Oh and £3.71 TT'd.
    • FloppyDisk
    • By FloppyDisk 16th Mar 17, 6:53 PM
    • 379 Posts
    • 3,080 Thanks
    FloppyDisk
    MSE fail, when you can't stick to your meal plan because your previous lodger stole your tin opener. DOH!
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