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  • FIRST POST
    • Busy Mee1
    • By Busy Mee1 1st Apr 16, 10:34 AM
    • 300Posts
    • 974Thanks
    Busy Mee1
    Getting a Grip and Saving towards the mortgage
    • #1
    • 1st Apr 16, 10:34 AM
    Getting a Grip and Saving towards the mortgage 1st Apr 16 at 10:34 AM
    It is nearly a year since I last posted - due to a combination of work and losing my log in details However I am back with my sleeves rolled up bcause the new Personal Savings Allowance means I can start getting my hands on some of the lovely bank accounts that are now on offer without having to pay the taxman.
    So a potted history of me and mine - we are me, OH, DS (25) and DD (23) who since I last wrote has moved in with her boyfriend but I am still financially supporting as she is in her last year at university. Son is financially independent, still living at home but looking to buy his own place shortly.
    We have a large mortgage because we built out own house 7 years ago. We do however have a great mortgage deal - a lifetime tracker of 0.69% so instead of overpaying the mortgage I put any spare cash into higher paying ISAs and have until now been looking longingly at some of the higher rate current accounts - we are both higher rate tax payers so have been pointless using anything but ISAs until now.
    The numbers:
    Mortgage debt: Jan 15 288778.23. March15 286,217.61. Jan 16 277958.44
    March 16 275,920.98

    Savings: Jan 15 22080.81 March 15 25,790.53 Jan 16 34,361.10 March 16 36966.91

    So as you can see although I haven't been posting I have kept up the saving, averaging 1000 per month.
    I also set myself a goal of losing a stone and I have lost a stone and a half
    I think setting goals in writing on here really worked for me and so I am back
    Last edited by Busy Mee1; 01-04-2016 at 11:31 AM.
Page 11
    • LadyGnome
    • By LadyGnome 22nd Feb 17, 10:04 AM
    • 410 Posts
    • 1,509 Thanks
    LadyGnome
    Hi Busy I think your username is well deserved at the moment. Will you be able to claim the additional money you should have been paid?
    Fantastic work on the food shopping and cooking. Every day brings you a step closer to your goals.
    Mortgage
    Start Nov 2012 310,000
    April 2017 251,443.64 Reduction 58,556.36
    MFW 2017 #42 2054.30/3100
    End Oct Sept 2034 but I have a cunning plan...
    • Busy Mee1
    • By Busy Mee1 22nd Feb 17, 5:19 PM
    • 300 Posts
    • 974 Thanks
    Busy Mee1
    Hi LadyGnome
    Yes I will and I realised this stopped at the beginning of January and I didn't notice, so I will have a couple of months arrears to come
    I am feeling in a much better frame of mind after my negative rant this morning. The boiler is fixed - H@meserve arrived within 2 hours of me ringing, which is excellent service and we have central heating again.
    Also very proud of DD - whilst she was out for a lunch with her friend, a man collapsed and started to fit. While everyone else was running around like a headless chicken not knowing what to do, she administered first aid until the ambulance arrived and the ambulance crew commented on her quick action. It just shows the value of first aid training, I do think everyone should be trained in basic first aid.
    Last day of work tomorrow and then I have four blissful days off - I can't wait
    • themadvix
    • By themadvix 22nd Feb 17, 5:38 PM
    • 758 Posts
    • 3,067 Thanks
    themadvix
    Well done to your DD!

    I think this time of year is quite hard going generally, aside from your extreme busyness at work, BusyMee. I know DH and I feel like we're on a treadmill at the moment. Easter still seems a long way off, so hopefully your long weekend will be just what you need to recharge and relax.
    OPs 2017 = 2603/10000
    S&S ISA = 200/600
    OPs made 2016 = 6142.12
    Starting balance 2012: 132000; balance June 2017: 99,974
    MFW2017 no. 38
    • try harder
    • By try harder 23rd Feb 17, 6:52 AM
    • 401 Posts
    • 1,231 Thanks
    try harder
    Im so pleased to see you are feeling much cheerier again ,i wrote a long reply yesterday but my internet went down and i lost it ali but i was thinking of you .I am not surprised that you feel slightly down occasionally you do such a brilliant job looking after your family and home ,finances and a very full on full time job ,i know that i definitely could not do it and you always give one hundred percent to what ever you are doing too so its no wonder you sometimes feel a bit fed up with things the good thing is that it didnt last long ,just look at your things to be grateful for they are just wonderful they are the same things that i am grateful for too minus the great job im still working on that one
    • Busy Mee1
    • By Busy Mee1 23rd Feb 17, 7:57 AM
    • 300 Posts
    • 974 Thanks
    Busy Mee1
    Aww thank you LG, Madvix and Try Harder - I am always amazed by how lovely and supportive people are on here. It is so nice to be able share with like minded people, because folk out in the real world don't "get" our MF ambitions. I think the people at work would be quite shocked at some of the things I do in a bid to save money, and I am in turn quite shocked by some of things they do that just waste money. Still it would do for us all to be alike ( as my Mother would have said !) . A good example of this was I happened to mention to someone that we were having beans on toast for tea ( we probably do this once a week if we are late in from work and it is just me and Mr Mee). The shocked response (she said her husband wouldnt put up with not having a "proper meal ") made me feel that we are a bit out of kilter with the rest of the world. I darent tell her I also cut his hair to save 10 on going to the barbers So it is definitely good to be amongst like minded people.
    It is a bit wild outside - storm Doris has arrived here. I am hoping to get out for a walk at lunchtime. I decided yesterday I need to try and get out more in the fresh air and daylight to try and help manage my mood. I hope I don't get blown away
    Last edited by Busy Mee1; 23-02-2017 at 11:42 AM.
    • try harder
    • By try harder 23rd Feb 17, 8:32 AM
    • 401 Posts
    • 1,231 Thanks
    try harder
    We do exactly the same thing Busy Mee1 ,if we have no children or grandchildren here we have beans on toast ,we actually really enjoy it almost like a naughty treat and my best friend always says exactly the same thing ,that her husband would not put up with that ,it makes me realise too what a wonderful husband i have so more things to be grateful for
    • Busy Mee1
    • By Busy Mee1 24th Feb 17, 10:17 AM
    • 300 Posts
    • 974 Thanks
    Busy Mee1
    A Day Off
    It is only 10 am but I am already really enjoying my day off.
    I had a little bit of work to finish so I got up early with Mr Mee and got that done and then I went back to bed with a cup of tea The sun was streaming in through windows and it was bliss !

    I have then drum roll ..........been out for a run....the first of the year. I actually really enjoyed it, the weather is beautiful this morning, bright sunshine although quite cold. It has really helped to lift my mood. I have decided today that I am only going to do things that make me feel good.
    So I have my music on and will do some tidying this morning and then I am meeting DD for lunch. I might bake this afternoon as I have some bananas that are overripe, so I think I will make a banana cake.

    There will definitely be no work done today
    • Busy Mee1
    • By Busy Mee1 27th Feb 17, 8:49 AM
    • 300 Posts
    • 974 Thanks
    Busy Mee1
    Monday
    It is Monday and I am still off work
    It has been a hectic weekend with visits to the gym on Saturday morning and the in- laws on Saturday afternoon. Yesterday was the usual shopping and cooking day, although I also managed a couple of hours at the local shopping centre with DD. It was quite fortunate that we noticed just before we left that her new boots that she bought on her London trip less than a month ago had split and we were able to return them and get a full refund. It was a NSD for me, if fact DD gave me 30 that she owed me so I ended the trip with more money than I started
    The grocery shop was done for 57.75 bringing the total for the month to 243.45 and an average weekly spend of 60.86. I am really pleased with this, the cupboards and freezer are still full and we have been eating really well. The challenge has really made us think about what we buy and broken some of the shopping habits of buying the same things every week just because we do.
    Next month I am going to set the budget at 250 for the month and see if we can maintain the new regime I am going to go to our local butcher and buy meat for the month in bulk and see if this helps ( our local butcher is great and I would rather support him by shopping there rather than at the supermarket ) I have also stopped buying sweet treats at the supermarket and have been baking. This weekend I made a chocolate and banana cake to use up some overripe bananas and made homemade hobnobs again as these were very popular last week. I was thinking about buying staples in bulk, but I am not actually sure it would save that much money and you do then up having a lot of money tied up in stores. I was looking at pasta to see if by buying larger quantities you could save money but tbh I haven't been able to find it cheaper than Ald! in the regular size bags. I picked up a couple of tins of tomatoes in Home B@argins to try at 25p a tin, and if these are OK I may stock up.
    In other cooking news I made a roast dinner yesterday as everyone was at home and the leftovers have made another meal for DS at work tonight and used up the Christmas pudding left from Christmas. I also made up a large batch of pasta for lunches - this is costing less than 3 for a batch and is making enough for 7 lunches = 42p per lunch.
    I having been thinking about whether we need to be more radical in our approach to saving for our mortgage. We have cut back on our spending quite considerably over the last couple of years, so that all our non discretionary bills are as cheap as they can be and we have cut out things that we don't miss (daily newspaper, bought lunches etc). The only other place we can now cut spending are on the things we would really miss - holidays, the second car, and Sky. I feel quite ashamed writing this, and how fortunate are we to be in this position to have the choice to make. The trouble is I feel we are in a bit of a vicious circle with the holidays and car- I have a busy high pressured job and so I desperately look forward to our holidays and I need the car for work. The holidays are the obvious place to cut back, and we have done so a bit this year - with a couple of breaks in the UK and bargain flights to the US. The trouble is we do love to travel ( we missed out when we were younger) and I don't want to leave it too late as all of our parents suffered significant health crises in their late 50/60s and then couldn't travel long haul. I keep pondering all of this and coming back to the need for balance and as long as I keep our spending down as much as I can in the areas we don't care about then I guess it allows us to continue to do the things that do matter to us. It is all about having choice I think and we are fortunate enough to have the choice.
    Sorry this turned into a bit of a ramble...have a good week everyone.
    • try harder
    • By try harder 27th Feb 17, 1:39 PM
    • 401 Posts
    • 1,231 Thanks
    try harder
    Well done on the shopping you are doing so well and then to find time to do so much cooking too is amazing ,you are so organised.I am now going to try buying meat in bulk ,i have a money off coupon for Waitrosx this week and noticed that the duchy mince and burgers are all on a great offer at 2 for 5 ,i am going to buy several and then bulk buy beef and lamb from an online butcher at a great discount of around 200 and should last us around 9 months and cost about 6 a week ,we can then eat meat in meals a couple of times a week and slice whats left for sandwiches to save buying ham and chicken .
    In regards to finding more money to overpay the mortgage i feel that the money i spend on our second car enables me to go nice places every day that i wouldnt otherwise be able to get to ,it also helps me to find bargains and keep the food budget down ,it gives me enjoyment and although we could save by me having no car i would not be getting the immense pleasure it gives me daily ,its the same with holidays and the huge amount of money i spend on birthdays and christmas for all the children and grandchildren ,i could save all this money but i get such a lot of pleasure and happiness from it .I think at the end of the day it does boil down to balance and which things give you the most pleasure and as you say we are so lucky to have the choice
    • themadvix
    • By themadvix 1st Mar 17, 8:47 AM
    • 758 Posts
    • 3,067 Thanks
    themadvix
    Hi BM, don't beat yourself up about the holidays and car. Life is about balance and it's important that you don't look back with regrets. If holidays are important to you, then go on them. If it's possible, as you say, to cut back without reducing your enjoyment of them, then that's fine, but you work hard and obviously need the break - both as a time to decompress and as something to look forward to. We are the same (albeit on a smaller scale, simply because I suspect we don't earn as much, being at a different point in our careers).

    Likewise, if you didn't have the car, you wouldn't be able to work or do all the other things which contribute to OP the mortgage. If you think two is bad, we have three! We all have things we won't compromise on and if we're not in 'bad' debt (i.e. loans etc.) and are living within our means then choosing to OP is just that - a choice, like the many others that are available to us. We choose to OP, but, like you, also to have nice holidays, and we make the cut backs in other areas. After all, life is for living too! (Sorry, reading this back it comes across as very serious, but I don't mean to be a bully!)

    It sounds like you're doing really well with the food budget and shopping in Ald!.
    OPs 2017 = 2603/10000
    S&S ISA = 200/600
    OPs made 2016 = 6142.12
    Starting balance 2012: 132000; balance June 2017: 99,974
    MFW2017 no. 38
    • Busy Mee1
    • By Busy Mee1 1st Mar 17, 6:00 PM
    • 300 Posts
    • 974 Thanks
    Busy Mee1
    February Update
    Hooray it is March and only 30 days until the clocks change and we get the lighter evenings back.

    Thanks TH and MadVix for listening to my musings and pondering - I seem to be doing a lot of self reflection at the moment. I think because work is getting to me and I think I need to make some sort of change. I am just not sure what yet.

    In the meantime I am very focused on saving towards the mortgage and operation 50k. The figures for February are follows:

    Saved in Feb 1,243.95
    Total Savings 44,359.39
    Mortgage. 250,353.77
    Savings:Mortgage 17.71 %

    I am pleased with this especially as my salary was underpaid and I have got some arrears to come back at the end of March. The mortgage figure is reducing and will be in the 240s next month and by my calculations my savings will offset the mortgage to under 200k in May. Everything is on target to have 50k in savings in June

    Our monthly savers all mature in March and we should receive 386.93 in interest from these and the annual interest from our fixed rate ISA will be paid at the end of April and should pay 441.00.
    • themadvix
    • By themadvix 2nd Mar 17, 11:30 AM
    • 758 Posts
    • 3,067 Thanks
    themadvix
    Sounds good Busy! How have you worked out the interest due on your regular savers? Is there a calculator online?
    OPs 2017 = 2603/10000
    S&S ISA = 200/600
    OPs made 2016 = 6142.12
    Starting balance 2012: 132000; balance June 2017: 99,974
    MFW2017 no. 38
    • Busy Mee1
    • By Busy Mee1 4th Mar 17, 7:42 AM
    • 300 Posts
    • 974 Thanks
    Busy Mee1
    Hi Madvix- I just googled a compound interest calculator for monthly savings. I found one at savings calculator.com ( sorry not sure how to inset a link on my iPad).

    It is a very grey morning here with rain forcast here, I am hoping for a slightly better day tomorrow as we plan a trip to the seaside. I fancy some fresh air and fish and chips.

    I am off to the gym in a while and will call at the butchers to bulk buy meat for the month and then I will go grocery shopping this afternoon.

    There are a few money shuffles to do, but they are all a bit sad now 3 interest from the TSB accounts and 3 from the Halifax rewards. Still I suppose every little helps.
    • try harder
    • By try harder 4th Mar 17, 10:26 AM
    • 401 Posts
    • 1,231 Thanks
    try harder
    Wow look at those savings ,i look forward to your posts as i feel inspired when i see your numbers go up every month and your mortgage come down ,i definitely feel mortgage neutral is the way for me to go i feel much more secure knowing i have some savings to fall back on if needed but also love the security of knowing i have money saved for the first time in my life its a great feeling ,what a great feeling it will be for you to go into the 190s ,just amazing keep at it and roll on May and June you will have to do something nice to celebrate .
    • Busy Mee1
    • By Busy Mee1 5th Mar 17, 7:41 AM
    • 300 Posts
    • 974 Thanks
    Busy Mee1
    Seaside Sunday
    Hi Try Harder - I definitely agree that I feel much more secure now we have savings and also because I know we can live on a much smaller income. In fact Mr Mee and I had a long conversation about early retirement yesterday, he only has 2 and a half years left until his retirement anyway unless an opportunity comes up for voluntary redundancy ( we think it might ). However we also agreed that if the opportunity for me to take early retirement came up then I could take it too ( this would be quite early retirement as I have another 8 years to work). This feels huge and I never thought that this would either be possible or that I would want to, however it feels great to have that choice. There are a lot of ifs and buts here but it has now focused both of our minds on saving as much as we can in the meantime.
    I went to the butchers yesterday and bought enough meat for the month - this cost me 26. We then had a bit of a departure and went to L!dl for our shopping this week ( they had olive oil on offer - so 3 bottles bought). I spent 39.86 and so the total spend so far this month is 65.86/250.
    I had my usual weekend cookathon, and made a big pan of veg chilli and rice for lunches and portioned it up into recycled plastic takeaway containers. I reckon this cost under 3.00 to make and made 6 portions for lunches next week, so under 50p a portion. Taking lunch to work saves around 4.00 a day and there are 4 of us, so effectively saving 16.00 a day and 80 a week I am happy the "kids" are learning this lesson and it is saving them money too. I also made my famous Saturday night curry ( effectively uses up any veg lurking in the fridge) and another batch of hobnobs.
    We are going to the seaside today and I am just keeping my fingers crossed that the weather stays dry ( it is actually a lovely morning this morning) however rain is forcast for this afternoon. We will just dress for all weathers and enjoy - I am looking forward to fish and chips. You can't beat fish and chips at the seaside
    • EatingTheElephant
    • By EatingTheElephant 5th Mar 17, 8:18 AM
    • 899 Posts
    • 4,546 Thanks
    EatingTheElephant
    The cookathon sounds very productive - if I have to spend time in the kitchen I prefer to do multiple meals at once (or at least prep some so they can just be bunged in the oven).

    Enjoy your fish and chips at the seaside. I prefer the beach in the winter, especially if it is stormy as it is quite invigorating!
    • Kittenkirst
    • By Kittenkirst 5th Mar 17, 8:55 AM
    • 1,331 Posts
    • 6,314 Thanks
    Kittenkirst
    Enjoy the seaside today!

    You're numbers are looking just fab Busymee and good to see you are striking a balance between OP'g and enjoying your earnings too!
    Emergency savings- 2660 /4000
    Mortgage Oct '16- 170.995 LTV- 90% end date Nov 2041
    2016 OPs 255.50/150
    2017 MFW #20 - OP 1090.99/ 2150. 50%
    Jan- 68.21, Feb- 306.67, March- 272.01 April-324.05 May 120.05
    • themadvix
    • By themadvix 5th Mar 17, 10:38 AM
    • 758 Posts
    • 3,067 Thanks
    themadvix
    Thanks for the tip re compound interest calcs BM - it hadn't occurred to me that there might be such things!

    Enjoy the seaside - I'm with EtE, I love it when it's blustery and wild!
    OPs 2017 = 2603/10000
    S&S ISA = 200/600
    OPs made 2016 = 6142.12
    Starting balance 2012: 132000; balance June 2017: 99,974
    MFW2017 no. 38
    • Busy Mee1
    • By Busy Mee1 11th Mar 17, 7:33 AM
    • 300 Posts
    • 974 Thanks
    Busy Mee1
    Saturday and a long weekend ahead
    Morning all - I am up and at 'em early this morning as we are going away for a long weekend.
    This week has gone incredibly quickly. We had a fab day at the seaside last Sunday, blue skies, sunshine and flat sea- it was a beautiful day and the weather was totally unexpected. It really recharged my batteries and the fish and chips were yummy too.
    Work continues to be mad but I do feel like I have managed to repair myself and am feeling a bit more on top of it all, hopefully another long weekend away will help
    I have quite a bit of financial news to report this week (this is after all the MF thread not the how to cope with your sh!tty job thread ).
    So the 3rd and 4th T@sco accounts are now live and have been filled with 3k each. Excitingly the first interest on the 1st and 2nd accounts has arrived and is 5.59 on each account - it is ridiculous how pleased I get about these small amounts (I really do need to get out more).
    I also joined the MSE credit club to check my credit rating, I have been feeling slightly nervous that opening all these bank accounts might have a negative impact on my credit rating, but no I still have a perfect credit score. I duely celebrated by opening our 12th account with N@tionwide to get 5% on 2500 and a 5% regular saver on 500 per month. Once this is open I will recommend Mr Mee and he will switch one of our other accounts. He should get 100 and so should I . Another 200 for the pot . I just need to decide which of our other accounts to sacrifice - it will either be the TSB one or H@lifax I think.
    The big news is that I received an email from British Gas to close down our account and we are 609 in credit. I am not sure how that happened and slightly embarrassed that I took my eye off that ball, but really pleased with the unexpected windfall - just need to decide what to do with it now .
    I need to pack and get ready for our weekend away. We are going with friends but DD and NB are also going to join us tonight and tomorrow. We intend to do lots of walking and probably a lot of eating and drinking. We are taking food for substantial breakfasts, flasks and home made cakes. We should only need to eat out for our evening meals, so it will be moderately spendy.
    The food shopping has been done early and we spent 58.81. So a total of 124.05/250
    Anyway better get cracking - I am going to the gym first
    Last edited by Busy Mee1; 11-03-2017 at 7:45 AM.
    • try harder
    • By try harder 11th Mar 17, 8:15 AM
    • 401 Posts
    • 1,231 Thanks
    try harder
    Morning Busy mee1 ,you definitely live up to your namesake ,you are amazing ,i wish i had just a small amount of your energy and motivation ,please tell me your secret .I cannot imagine you as retired What will you do ?Your money shifting is admirable i dont know how you do it ,its all so time consuming .Have a great weekend sounds wonderful and dont spend too much !
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