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  • FIRST POST
    • DD265
    • By DD265 31st Aug 16, 3:37 PM
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    DD265
    Ready to be debt free
    • #1
    • 31st Aug 16, 3:37 PM
    Ready to be debt free 31st Aug 16 at 3:37 PM
    I've been here before and then lost focus.

    I currently owe £6187.53 on two credit cards, all interest free at present. Last year I was raking it in on the bonus scheme at work and would pay off over £1000 a month across several debts. This year my targets are not achievable and although I had a pay rise I'm still bringing home less and therefore I don't feel like I'm making any significant progress.

    Now for my confession: £3800 of that has been spent this year. That's a real eye opener - and I do have a list of exactly what it was spent on too. If I hadn't done that, I'd be well on my way to clearing the other card within months.

    I have YNAB and can see two key areas to cut back, one easier than the other.

    1) unnecessary supermarket/snack spending. You know the £5 here, £3 there that all adds up, despite the fact that you did a meal plan and a weekly shop.

    2) this is tough; I have a horse who's recently retired. At £600 a month he costs the same as what I contribute to our home/bills. He hasn't been 100% for years but he's healthy and happy enough to be a pet so I'm in the see-how-it-goes camp at the moment. A large part of the £3800 was a throw-everything-at-it last attempt to get him being ridden happily, and we did have a really good couple of months so whilst I do regret some of the spending, I really appreciate those memories too.

    My plan is to find/make the funds to start making over payments on the card with the largest balance. I do reasonably well selling on eBay and I've a mountain of things still to put on as well as some currently active listings. I hate having to wait days/weeks between making extra payments so I'm hoping the eBaying will still let me feel like I'm doing something useful.

    Wish me willpower
Page 4
    • DD265
    • By DD265 17th Oct 16, 10:26 PM
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    • 2,672 Thanks
    DD265
    I've managed to strain the same wrist twice in one evening, lifting a box which was perfect combination of size/weight to twang my wrist (twice). I'll have the chiro look at it on Thursday; hopefully before it develops into full blown tendonitis. I can still drive and type, just can't lift anything with any weight to it or use a strong grip with that hand. Oops.

    Through a scheme at work I can reclaim the cost of my chiro visits (up to a fixed amount per plan year) and this will be the first month where it applies. I go at least monthly as it stands (more often if I feel like I need to) so the cost of visits will exceed the annual limit. I'm considering whether it would benefit me to increase the limit, which would mean making a monthly payment of my own in addition to what work pay for. Need to do the maths.

    OH has suggested a DIY cat tree. The ones I'm looking at range from £40-110ish depending on size (I've not looked at the £200+ ones!) but we have a couple of local second hand furniture places so I'll check there first and have re-subscribed to Freecycle on the off chance. I'm definitely of the opinion that the more moggy has to do, the less likely we are to encounter issues. Of course should we ultimately rehome a more sedentary cat, we'll probably want different things for it. I'm not 100% convinced about making one; we'd probably need to buy some tools for a start and I suspect we'd spend more in the long run! Although it would mean we could build whatever we wanted...
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • DD265
    • By DD265 18th Oct 16, 10:51 PM
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    DD265
    Today's MSE news: 3x items sold on eBay.

    In other news, I think the courier firms are uniting to do me in. It's a nightmare, honestly and we're now on a very tight deadline and it's stressing me out. I did go over the edge momentarily, when I saw that OH had merely put the wet clothes on the clothes horse; no attempt to smooth them out so they don't crease. One of my t-shirts was actually half inside out. I haven't said anything (yet, but I need to because I'd honestly rather he didn't touch my clothes if they aren't going to come out of it wearable!) but I confess that the clothes were duly slammed on the floor in frustration. Take that, clothes.

    They're now hung up neatly, and I'm hoping that they are still damp enough for the creases to drop out.

    Somebody save me.
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • DD265
    • By DD265 19th Oct 16, 9:25 PM
    • 1,115 Posts
    • 2,672 Thanks
    DD265
    It's a bit frustrating having money in the bank (or PayPal, as it happens) and not making any additional payments off the credit cards.

    However, I have more than enough "cash" for my half of the venue deposit which is good, and then enough on top for the adoption fee for Madame Mog (that name may stick). Sold two more items on eBay today although I still need to post one, as I didn't have it with me. Will do that tomorrow.

    What it means is that my expenses and salary inc bonus are fair game, once the bills are paid, although I will need some cat-stuff. Unsure whether to make cat tree but hoping to find one second hand in mean time. I'm thinking:

    Food
    Insurance
    Cat carrier
    Food bowls
    Water bowls
    Litter trays & scoops
    Litter
    Cat beds - probably worth a go although there are plenty of alternatives in here!
    Scratching posts (in addition to humongous cat tree)
    Toys (must confess already got a couple)

    Will definitely be getting moglet microchipped if that isn't done by the rescue. Am not certain on collars though - one to research.
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • DD265
    • By DD265 24th Oct 16, 3:54 PM
    • 1,115 Posts
    • 2,672 Thanks
    DD265
    Ahem so. I feel a little like I'm emptying my accounts right now...

    The venue haven't yet sent the contract/asked for their deposit - s'fine.

    I've just paid the adoption fee for two kittens (not the originally intended one, we're rehoming two brothers instead) to pick them up at the weekend = a bit of a dash on the other stuff.

    I've also just requested £108 worth of photo book/print from the photoshoot at the start of the month. There were a couple of prints and a handful of social media copies included, but the range of emotion/vibe in the shoot is so broad that I had to have more, and the photobook gives me a copy of every edited photo. I ranged from bawling to laughing out loud as we were going through the photos, and chose the prints based on the strongest emotions.

    So between all of that, I've written IOUs to my emergency fund and PayPal accounts. Expenses come in this week, salary next week. I'm sure I'll regret the spending at some point but hey ho.
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • DD265
    • By DD265 27th Oct 16, 5:45 PM
    • 1,115 Posts
    • 2,672 Thanks
    DD265
    Just realised I got caught up in a cycle of spending again. Last weekend with the event I wasn't keeping track of food spends and frequent trips to the shop on the corner added up. Wish I'd thought of taking packed lunches!

    I got my expenses in this week but I owe my emergency fund £250. I'm leaning towards not repaying my PayPal account (I owe it just under £150), but we'll see how my budget looks; ultimately the money will be used regardless so it maybe doesn't make that much difference. OH gave me some of the cash he owed at the weekend, but that was used on the weekend as well.

    I'm not moving any more money around until I've been paid on Monday, then I can see what's what. As well as two bonuses at work (monthly and quarterly - assuming targets are met) I'm getting cash back from two of the healthcare schemes. One of them is £32 for a chiro appointment, the other is £30 for being a non-smoker. Not to be sniffed at! Have also submitted my final expenses claim.

    We pick the kittens up on Saturday morning and will be more or less housebound for the rest of the weekend. We have a movie to watch (Warcraft; it's been here for a few weeks!) but I need to sort my car insurance out. Also got a couple of committee things to wrap up. I have a lot more things to list on eBay too. I'm not coming to the end of listing (there's a big pile for that!), but finding things to list is slowing down, if that makes sense.
    Last edited by DD265; 27-10-2016 at 5:51 PM.
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • DD265
    • By DD265 29th Oct 16, 8:32 PM
    • 1,115 Posts
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    DD265
    I so hate shopping for insurance.

    That said, I've been able to cut a couple of hundred off my current renewal (same company, via Moneysupermarket.com) so I'll need to sort that out tomorrow. To make such a big saving I will need to put it on a 0% credit card though and whilst I know it'd save me interest, the thought stings. If I do it, I must make sure that I put some money aside for my next renewal.

    Anyway on to the important bit. The kittens are here and we're in love. On that note I'm off to spend more time with them; they haven't got the run of the place yet.
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • DD265
    • By DD265 3rd Nov 16, 7:18 PM
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    • 2,672 Thanks
    DD265
    Well I couldn't bring myself to put the car insurance on the credit card. I know that means I'll be paying interest but the thought of slapping another £500+ onto the card was just too much.

    The next insurance I need to look at is pet insurance. I'm in two minds so going to get a price and go from there. My horse has always been insured and we have claimed on three separate occasions totaling several thousand so it was worth it in his case.

    I would've liked to have made higher debt repayments this month than I will be doing but the initial setup costs for the kittens haven't been cheap. I now need to get bigger litter trays (in hindsight we should've skipped the kitten ones) and bulk buy food/litter. It should settle down then as we have everything else barring larger food bowls which they don't need just yet.

    I still have the money set aside for the wedding venue deposit, I keep having to remind myself that it's not "free". It will get paid off the credit card but not until the deposit has been paid on said card.

    Also my savings have just exceeded £300 so I'm really pleased with that. As well as the Lloyds Save the Change thing, I've got a standing order for £50 a month going in. As my debt is interest free I'm happy to be building up some savings alongside.
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • DD265
    • By DD265 7th Nov 16, 11:41 AM
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    • 2,672 Thanks
    DD265
    I don't know if I mentioned before (too lazy to go back through and check) but we got a discount at IKEA through my work scheme, and basically got to buy gift vouchers at 5% off. We bought £300 worth of vouchers (£100 increments unfortunately) and paid £285. They were intended for a bed which would cost £340 in total (excluding our discount) - plus delivery if it wouldn't fit in my car.

    Well, I went over a week ago and one part of the bed (the central support, generic across several beds) was out of stock so they wouldn't sell me any of it. The second time I checked stock before setting off and after an agonising 30+ minute wait for it to be picked from the warehouse - will it fit? what if it doesn't fit? will I have to do the walk of shame back in to arrange delivery in front of all these people? - the bed was in the car. It's still in it's boxes on the bedroom floor to be assembled as we don't have the mattress yet but I think we'll do it tonight and put the existing mattress on for the time being. Mostly I'm just pleased to avoid the walk of shame and the delivery charge.

    I drive a Nissan Note so not huge but I'm constantly impressed by how much I can fit inside it. The next challenge for my car will be fitting a king size mattress in.
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • DD265
    • By DD265 11th Nov 16, 11:51 PM
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    • 2,672 Thanks
    DD265
    I may or may not need new tyre(s) this weekend. If I spot a stone wedged in the tread I always fish it out, but this time I noticed a split in the tyre. I assume the stone had something to do with it. I am a bit annoyed because I've never had it happen before (that I know of anyway) and I didn't exactly scrimp on these tyres plus they're only a year old. Taking the car in tomorrow to get the tyres assessed. If there's any doubt about the integrity then it'll be a new one as I won't take that kind of risk with a motorway commute. Fingers crossed it's just cosmetic.

    I had £200 set aside to pay off the MBNA card but I'm hanging on to it until I know what the score is. I need to pay off almost £800 to meet my target of getting my debt down to £4000 by Christmas and it's going to be tough but it is achievable, whether I have to pay for new tyres or not. Need to keep focused.

    Getting an unexpected work bonus at the end of the month plus a fairly high expenses claim so those will both help. I do feel a bit like I squandered the large bonus from October - and I did really on the kittens - but they're so worth it.
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • Huskyrunner
    • By Huskyrunner 12th Nov 16, 11:51 AM
    • 525 Posts
    • 859 Thanks
    Huskyrunner
    haha you will have too see if you can put up pics of the kittens :-)
    debts 16550
    Mortgage 69500
    • DD265
    • By DD265 20th Nov 16, 10:42 PM
    • 1,115 Posts
    • 2,672 Thanks
    DD265


    They are cute. I can't believe it's only been three weeks.

    I had £200 set aside for the MBNA payment. I don't any more. I have been a bad DD265. I pretty much spent it on jumpers; it's cold.

    I think the problem comes when I don't update my budget frequently (ideally as I go along, but at least daily). The new plan is simply to manage for the rest of the month on my existing budget and to do that I'll have to make sure I keep it up to date so I know where I stand.

    What usually happens is I get my expenses payment in before my salary and end up using that, then my salary when that turns up. This month I plan to pay the expenses payment straight off the MBNA card, which will take it nicely under the £2500 mark I wanted. I then need to try and get the Barclaycard under £1500 using my salary and any proceeds from sales. Ooh just remembered OH owes me some money too. If I can do that, that's my 2016 target achieved.

    In theory I can do it, if I keep myself in check
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • DD265
    • By DD265 1st Dec 16, 1:27 PM
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    • 2,672 Thanks
    DD265
    Naturally I didn't keep myself in check. However December is a new month and the perfect opportunity for a reboot.

    I got my expenses on Tuesday and salary yesterday so before checking my bank account (having let YNAB slip again) I've made the £441 payment to the MBNA card without giving myself the opportunity/a reason to change my mind. Unfortunately this does not take the balance below £2500 like it was going to because...

    I bought my wedding dress. I know we haven't even paid the deposit for the venue yet and here I am buying for mememe. Basically I chanced across an advert for a black weekend sale, we rocked up and found "the one" for - with 75% off the original price - the princely sum of £199. It's everything I wanted, yes it'll need a few alterations but Mom will do those.

    So once I've caught up and done my December budget, I'll look at what I can do with the MBNA card and the Barclaycard.
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • Bobarella
    • By Bobarella 1st Dec 16, 8:42 PM
    • 8,044 Posts
    • 51,514 Thanks
    Bobarella
    Congrats on finding your wedding dress
    £790 to pay =70% repaid
    RR 2016 #2 December £2.32 2016-£55.16 2015- £84.20)
    Wombling Free 2016#5 £2,237.25 2015 £1027.20
    NST December
    PAYDBX #7 £1910.53/£2,700 (70%)
    • DD265
    • By DD265 4th Dec 16, 12:22 PM
    • 1,115 Posts
    • 2,672 Thanks
    DD265
    Thanks Bob, I think that's one purchase I'll never regret putting on the credit card

    The good news is after looking at my budget I can still make my targtes before Christmas; our December expenses payment is split in two so some gets paid early and OH owes me a bit of money too.

    We decided we'd get another cat tree for the boys for Christmas as we're getting a bit fed up of carrying one up/down the stairs (especially as one of them likes to "ride" it, and attack your hands as you're carrying it; they're starting to get heavy!) but also to get a bigger one.

    I bought one used from eBay and we just picked it up. It's no bigger than the existing one but it was dirt cheap and they're very happy with it. I plan to keep an eye out for another one on the cheap and eventually cannibalise them for parts and make a super cat forest.
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
    • DD265
    • By DD265 6th Dec 16, 1:10 PM
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    DD265
    So I've just been updating my budget and realised that I've not been setting aside X a month for anything in particular really. A bit in the joint account perhaps but not specifically by design.

    That will be my "thing" for 2017; I think it's the next step in really getting the most out of YNAB. The way I see it there are probably three types of category in my budget:

    1) balance to zero then top up each month - e.g. my "spending money" which is basically a free for all. If I had a buffer in there I'd just blow it. Not many of these (maybe even just that one) to be fair.

    2) put X aside every month to be able to pay in full at the next renewal - e.g. car insurance

    3) get a month ahead - e.g. car repayments

    At least it would be nice to have a month's budget in the bank (if I did it on the balance to zero categories I'd just blow it), then I can build up to two months etc. I want this in addition to my emergency fund/savings. I'm not expecting to nail it straight away due to paying off my credit cards.

    Alongside this will be saving up for the wedding; I need to work out how to budget this. I'm tempted to create a totally separate budget, keeping a single "wedding" category in my current budget but swapping over to the other one as things change.
    Barclaycard: £1795.61/£2907.26 - 38% paid
    MBNA: £2,613.57/£3866.92 - 32% paid
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