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  • FIRST POST
    • fourthtimelucky
    • By fourthtimelucky 24th Aug 16, 3:40 PM
    • 62Posts
    • 123Thanks
    fourthtimelucky
    FourthTimeLucky's 4th attempt to become debt free
    • #1
    • 24th Aug 16, 3:40 PM
    FourthTimeLucky's 4th attempt to become debt free 24th Aug 16 at 3:40 PM
    Hi all, thanks for taking the time to stop by and have a nosy at my diary.

    This is my third or fourth attempt at clearing a nagging debt that has accrued steadily with very little to show for it. Before I explain where it came from I will put the figures out there so it is out of the way.

    Unsecured loan - £10,760.80 (40 payments remain – last one December 2019)
    Barclaycard - £1,102.65
    MBNA Credit Card - £1,989.93

    The unsecured loan is with my bank and was to consolidate previous debts on a lower interest rate. I stupidly didn’t include the two credit cards that were 0% so rather than having one payment I have three outstanding debts. Barclaycard remains at 0% and I have a standing order of £100.00 in place which means it will be cleared July 2017 as it stands. The MBNA is at a standard rate and I have recently been clocking up extra spends on which I need to put a stop to. I have just this second cut the card up and popped it in to five different secure waste sacks in my office!

    I plan to leave the loan to its own devices for now as the payment comes out of my account on payday. I also plan to leave the Barclaycard at £100.00 per month as it remains interest free for the life of the balance.

    My first decision is whether to transfer the MBNA balance to the Barclaycard where I have a 0% offer for fifteen months with a 2.9% fee (which would equate to £57.70). I am currently making minimum payments of around £40.00 and the interest is around the £25.00 mark each month so I am leaning toward making the transfer and closing the account down. In the past I have been guilty of keeping the card and account ‘for emergencies’ which obviously leads down the wrong path.

    Having reread when I’ve typed so far I am pretty sure that transferring to 0% is the way forward as the balance transfer fee is just over two months’ worth of interest alone.

    My circumstances have changed somewhat in the last three months. I now live back with my parents which whilst not being ideal in my mid-thirties does allow me to attack these debts with my outgoings somewhat reduced.

    I will be attacking them a little less full on that some of the people here on the boards. I have had a pretty grim few months and have decided to allow myself to enjoy myself a little whilst addressing the outstanding balances. That said, I am not going to book for a month in the Bahamas; just allow myself some of the things I already have in place such as a tennis club membership, a football season ticket and some pre-planned trips away (within the UK).

    I plan to adopt the MSE mantras and reign in my often unnecessary spending. I have an addiction to eating out, whether it be restaurants or lunches at work. I totalled up a weekly spend last week and it came to over £70 with two meals out and four out of five lunches at work. Whilst every week is different, it is sobering to know that at that rate I would be spending £3,640.00 a year.

    I will update as often as I can and also want to get involved in and around the boards again. I used to be quite active on a previous username so will do what I can to contribute. Thanks again for reading.
Page 4
    • fourthtimelucky
    • By fourthtimelucky 6th Oct 17, 3:38 PM
    • 62 Posts
    • 123 Thanks
    fourthtimelucky
    Another month and another milestone. Fourteen months after starting this journey I can now say I don't have any credit card debt. When I started, £3,086.58 of my total debt was split over two credit cards. With a balance transfer fee and some unavoidable spending this climbed to £3,352.62.

    I am pleased to say this figure is now £0.00 thanks to some good budgeting, a small windfall and some very tough decisions to miss out on things I would have previously done without question. This is the first time in 19 years that I do not owe money to a credit card company; exactly half my life!

    This leaves me with £6,994.52 owing on my unsecured bank loan. The last payment is scheduled in December 2019 but I am aiming to get it finished much quicker. I am not trying to figure out whether I am best placed making overpayments direct from the loan balance or saving the money on the side until I have enough saved to pay it off outright (any thoughts welcome).

    Roll on a well deserved (and budgeted for) beer tonight!!
    Starting point Aug 2016 - £13,853.38
    Current total October 2017 - £6,725.50 - 51.00% paid off
    Debt free date (worst case) - December 2019
    • Hiddenidenity
    • By Hiddenidenity 6th Oct 17, 5:09 PM
    • 4,230 Posts
    • 26,461 Thanks
    Hiddenidenity
    Amazing progress! Well done on being credit card free, make sure you cut it up now and enjoy doing it x
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 7th Oct 17, 7:52 AM
    • 223 Posts
    • 518 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    That's a great achievement! Regarding the loan, I would vote for paying it off, as long as you have an emergency fund. If you save the money on the side you might be tempted to spend it.
    Total unsecured debt - £4,367 (November 2017) - Debt free Target 27th February 2018
    • fourthtimelucky
    • By fourthtimelucky 9th Oct 17, 8:58 AM
    • 62 Posts
    • 123 Thanks
    fourthtimelucky
    Thanks for the well wishes. Much as I doubted it at first, it becomes quite addictive paying these debts down.
    Starting point Aug 2016 - £13,853.38
    Current total October 2017 - £6,725.50 - 51.00% paid off
    Debt free date (worst case) - December 2019
    • fourthtimelucky
    • By fourthtimelucky 23rd Oct 17, 11:33 AM
    • 62 Posts
    • 123 Thanks
    fourthtimelucky
    So with the credit card debt cleared I find myself weighing up taking on some new debt in the form of a mortgage!

    I have been living with parents for two years now which has been key in helping me pay down debt quicker than might have otherwise been the case.

    I have seen a flat for sale and it has been twice reduced since I first viewed it. I am really in two minds about it. I like the property and the location is ideal for what I need. My credit is decent and I have an agreement in principle for a mortgage on the property.

    My issue is whether to go and get myself more debt whilst I have the loan remaining or to stay where I am and try and blitz it as quick as possible. One consideration is the likely rise in interest rates in the coming months.

    I am still in two minds and realise I am now waffling. I just wanted to get some words down to explain quandary.
    Starting point Aug 2016 - £13,853.38
    Current total October 2017 - £6,725.50 - 51.00% paid off
    Debt free date (worst case) - December 2019
    • fourthtimelucky
    • By fourthtimelucky 24th Oct 17, 12:56 PM
    • 62 Posts
    • 123 Thanks
    fourthtimelucky
    I have just taken the brave step of closing my credit card account despite the best intentions of the Customer Retention Department. At least three times in the past I have reduced my credit card balance to nothing only to keep the cards and use them again.

    Instead of this safety net I will now look to build a small emergency fund whilst attacking my remaining loan balance.

    It feels good to have no credit card debt and no credit card to accrue any more!
    Starting point Aug 2016 - £13,853.38
    Current total October 2017 - £6,725.50 - 51.00% paid off
    Debt free date (worst case) - December 2019
    • fourthtimelucky
    • By fourthtimelucky 1st Nov 17, 3:24 PM
    • 62 Posts
    • 123 Thanks
    fourthtimelucky
    Well today was the first 1st of the month that didn't feature a credit card payment since god knows when. It is a nice feeling to say that.

    My contractual loan payment has been paid and brings the amount remaining to £6,725.50. The good news is that this takes the amount paid to 51.00% of the starting balance. To paraphrase Bon Jovi, I am (more than) half way there...

    I am now waiting to hear back from the bank about how overpayments on the loan would work in relaton to interest calculations. That will determine whether I make a monthly overpayment or set the money aside until I have enough to meet a settlement figure.

    Progress feels good!
    Starting point Aug 2016 - £13,853.38
    Current total October 2017 - £6,725.50 - 51.00% paid off
    Debt free date (worst case) - December 2019
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