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  • FIRST POST
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 19th Jan 17, 2:37 PM
    • 254Posts
    • 1,064Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    Dreaming of financial freedom!
    • #1
    • 19th Jan 17, 2:37 PM
    Dreaming of financial freedom! 19th Jan 17 at 2:37 PM
    Hi everyone reading this!

    I hadn't thought about writing my own MFW diary until another user suggested it, so I have no idea if anyone will be interested in what I have to say, but I'll just post it and you can ignore if it's rubbish So here's my story...

    I turn 30 next month and I would like to be mortgage free as soon as possible. My husband and I work in IT and, at least in my company, it seems to be that most jobs are being moved abroad. My dad also worked in IT was made redundant at 53 before my parents had finished their mortgage so I think that is why I am so anxious about having mortgage debt and would like to pay it off ASAP.

    We bought our first house in 2006 and sold it three years later in the middle of the recession for a loss of £6k, which wasn't ideal but it allowed us to purchase a house we couldn't have otherwise afforded as the vendors needed a quick sale so were prepared to drop their price. We moved in to the new house at the back end of 2009 and didn't need to do anything to it, which is a good job as we didn't have any spare money at the time! After a few years I got a job that paid well and we started overpaying on the mortgage, which we decided to do rather than save up as we would get a nice lump sum if we were made redundant. I loved seeing the mortgage go down!

    In 2011 my dad was diagnosed with a progressive neurodegenerative illness, which means his brain is slowly dying and was given a life expectancy of approximately 7 years, although it differs for everyone. My parents decided to make the most of their time together and bought a static caravan by a lake, which they lived in happily for a couple of years before my dad started having too many falls to continue living there and they moved into an independent living unit near Holmfirth, which isn't too far from where my in-laws live so it made visiting them all on our weekends up from Nottingham so much easier! By 2014 my dad had deteriorated quite a bit and my husband and I discussed leaving Nottingham so we could live closer to our parents in Yorkshire. At this point, the house was valued at £170,000 and the mortgage was at £108,000. Had we stayed and continued paying the same amount each month we would be mortgage free by 2021 but if we moved we would either have to rent (which we both saw as dead money) or buy another place that would be more expensive for a comparable house so it was a difficult decision. Around the same time my father-in-law got cancer, so we decided that moving up would be the best option. The only problem was that my dad was deteriorating rapidly and it takes ages for houses in our area to sell so we'd miss the last bit of time with my dad in a reasonable condition and could miss being there for the in-laws when they needed us through the cancer treatment process. At this point, I suggested we rent out our house and buy another house closer to our parents. I first spoke to my mortgage provider and asked if there was a way to release equity from our house and move it onto a buy-to-let mortgage then purchase another property. Unfortunately they wouldn't allow us to do this, but luckily MSE sings the praises of London and Country mortgage brokers and as they don't charge a fee I thought it would be worth giving them a call. I am so glad I did! My advisor Adam found me a new residential mortgage and let-to-buy mortgage (which is apparently very similar to a buy-to-let mortgage but it is when you already owned the property when you decided to rent it out) so we could use equity from our house. A couple of months later we moved into our new house and our old house was rented out shortly after.

    After 2 years, our fixed deals have just come to an end and this is where we now stand...

    Residential mortgage:
    Started at £216,000 on 3.29% with no OPs allowed.
    From January 4th, the property has 80% LTV and is on 1.99% for 3 years with 10% OP allowed. Started at £204,000 but as I had to guess what amount I would need when I first applied 3 months ago, we were refunded £1,404 so the mortgage now stands at £202,596. The standard mortgage payment £916 but I set the DD up at £1,100 as that's what we paid before so there is an overpayment there without any hardship. I can't wait to see this go under £200k, and then I will set £10k goals.

    Buy-to-Let mortgage:
    Started at £136,000 on 4.79%, and we started making overpayments of £250pm.
    From February the property will have a 73% LTV and will be on 2.64% for 2 years. Again, we applied for this mortgage 3 months ago and I guessed £129,000 but when I checked yesterday it stood at £127,895 so we will be due some money back and will pay that off the mortgage straight away.The standard DD is £638 but I am considering whether to leave the payments at £1,000 as they previously were.

    The only fly in the ointment now is that our jobs aren't as secure as they used to be, and there are rumours of redundancy packages being dropped to statutory rates, which I understand isn't very much. This has made me think that we ought to have some savings in case one or both of us gets made redundant. We have £1500 in premium bonds saved up for house repairs but that wasn't much of a safety net. Luckily, we have just received a cheque for £4,900 from my husband's stock that he just sold so for the first time ever we finally have some security. We would have previously put it straight on the mortgage but with the current uncertainty around jobs it is nice to have a bit of a safety net. The timing couldn't be better!

    I'll be honest. I'm rubbish with budgets. I don't know how much we spend and I know I could be a lot more careful with my spending. We do have takeaways and eat out quite a bit, mainly because we both work long hours and very tired on an evening and don't want to then spend a big chunk of our evenings cooking. If I'm even more honest, part of it is laziness However, I want to change that as I'm sure we could save some real money and be healthier if we cook more so I'm thinking maybe meal plans, online shopping so I don't get tempted by add on products and don't have to give up a load of time to go to the supermarket, and maybe the odd ready meal in place of a takeaway when we're feeling tired / lazy. I am also going to have a look into slow cooker recipes that I could put on in a morning so it's ready for us as soon as we finish working.

    My goal is to start logging what we spend and make a proper budget!

    Some (limited) financial info:
    Husband earns around £3,000 net each month.
    I earn around £1,700 net each month.
    Rental income, after expenses, is £678 per month.

    Mortgage 1 £1,100
    Mortgage 2 £322 (£1,000 payment minus £678 rent, assuming we keep the payment the same)
    Car loan £500 (ends in October 2017)
    Loan to In-Laws £250 (not accruing any interest)
    Water bill £26
    Council Tax £128
    Gas & Electric £94.14
    BG Home Care £29.50
    Mobile 1 £13
    Mobile 2 £20
    Sky TV, internet and phone £70.93 (up for renewal tomorrow so will haggle or switch to Virgin)
    Car insurance £632 in 2016 (paid in a lump sum in April)
    Home insurance £491 in 2016 (paid in a lump sum in December)
    Pet insurance £69.61 in 2016 (paid in a lump sum in November)
    Landlord insurance £219.21 in 2017 (paid in a lump sum in January)
    Rent Guarantee and Legal insurance £125 in 2017 (paid in a lump sum in January)
    Gas Safety Certificate £60 (annual, paid in February)

    Unsure on food and entertainment costs (really need to get a grip on this) but after paying our credit cards we end up with between £500 and £1500 left at the end of the month, which we have recently been spending on home improvements, insurance, Christmas etc. so we haven't saved much of this. We are also thinking about joining a gym so that might also be another expense in future. If I think of any other expenses I will add them but I think that's pretty much it for now.

    I will try and update this as and when I get more information or manage to make savings / OPs. Thanks for reading!
    Last edited by ch4rly2002; 20-01-2017 at 10:44 AM. Reason: Forgot to include the current mortgage values.
Page 14
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 17th Nov 17, 4:07 PM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    Things seems to be going well on the eBay front, but I've found I'm starting to lose motivation for listing items. I must keep thinking of the benefit of taking time to list and sell items.

    OnePoll is slowly creeping up and is at £25.60, which is still a long way off pay out, but I'm spurred on that I'm over half way there now. I haven't had much through on Prolific recently, so the balance is stuck at £6.03, but I'm confident that more will start to come through next year. To be honest, with all the time we've spent on getting the house ready for sale and visiting family / friends, I haven't had much time to do surveys recently.

    I'm trying to be a bit more frugal with my spending. I found that we'd started eating out a bit more again, so I've bought a delivery pass for online grocery shopping. I'm trying to stick to online grocery shopping to stop me from picking up necessary items in the supermarket, or getting takeaway because we haven't got anything in. So far it's working, although there is minimum £40 spend to get the free delivery, even with the pass so I am buying more in bulk. Our porch is currently full of pop, but as it's fairly expensive at the rate we go through it, it is worth sacrificing some space until I can find a better place to store it!

    I have my Christmas Fair stall on Sunday so I've started getting my items ready for that. I hope I sell a lot of items, if only to free up some space and not have to lug it to Nottingham with me!
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 20th Nov 17, 9:35 AM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    Well, the Christmas fair was disappointing. It was a lot quieter than anybody expected, and for some reason they played Christmas songs while we were setting up but they stopped before visitors arrived?! Managed to sell quite a bit considering how quiet it was, but nothing that would make a huge difference to what we'll have to take with us to the next house. My mum has suggested we do a stall at her place when they have the pantomime as it's something the other residents would probably enjoy. She'll be selling mince pies and coffee to raise funds for my brother's sponsored run (he's doing an ultra marathon for Dad's charity, which is something like 2.5 times the length of a normal marathon...he's nuts!) and if I sell anything I'll donate to the cause as well. Anyway, going back to the Christmas fair, at least this time we remembered to take some cans of pop with us, and they provided a free bun for us so we didn't have to buy refreshments.

    I've relisted some items on fleabay and I need a boost in motivation to list some new items. We have the BIL coming round tonight for the usual Monday TV session (The Walking Dead at the moment) and tea, so I won't get chance to list anything tonight, but I'm going to make a real effort tomorrow.

    I've started picking up a few Christmas gifts while they're on offer. Is it bad that I'm really pleased the in-laws are in America so we can get their presents in the boxing day sales? I'm not buying any edible gifts though as I learned from Halloween that although they may be on offer before the event, they won't make it to the event!

    I want to try and eat our way through the tin cupboard and freezer before we move house, so in the spirit of being organised and not wasting money eating out, DH and I have agreed to do a stock take together, think of some meals using up what we have and then plan the shopping around it. That should tie in nicely with the online shopping delivery pass. I also got a £10 voucher because the milk in our last order had been squashed under something and had leaked all over the bag they were in, the other shopping bags, and my new entrance carpet Luckily I cleaned it up as soon as I saw it so it hasn't left a mark or a smell, but they still gave me £10 for the inconvenience, which I thought was really nice actually.

    We received the solicitor's pack from the purchase of the new house, so everything seems to be real now We haven't heard anything on the sale front since we returned our documents and took ID into the solicitor's office, so I guess that's just progressing in the background.
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 22nd Nov 17, 10:47 AM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    DH is working away this week, which means I get to eat beans on toast. I love beans on toast, it's real comfort food to me, it's quick and easy to make, and it's nice and cheap. I don't normally get to eat it because DH is allergic to beans and the sight / smell of beans makes him feel ill. I will be taking full advantage of him being away to empty the tin cupboard of the remaining tins of beans

    I still can't believe we're actually buying 'the dream house'. We've had her solicitor details, and we have forms from our solicitor so things will start progressing on that front. Still not had any update from our solicitor on the progress of our sale. They have an online website that shows the progress and it hasn't even updated with the ID checks yet, so I suspect this may be slow going. Oh well, at least we shouldn't have to worry about trying to move over the Christmas period When I get the dates I'll have to price up some removal services and decide what we're going to do.

    DH and I are going to the Good Food show this year. Our friends go every year and say it's amazing so we're finally making it happen this year. We got 25% off using the code NEC25 so if anyone else is thinking of going you can make use of the code. Apparently there are lots of tasters and freebies so we shouldn't need to buy lunch while we're down there.

    I have my tax return to do for the rental house, which isn't a massive job, but I somehow can't find the motivation to get it done. DH really wants to sell the rental house, and I must admit, I'd prefer to have the money as an emergency fund and not to have to do these tax returns, and we never actually intended to become landlords, it was just the only way we could get the deposit to move up here so quickly. The tenants said they were interested, but only if they can get it for a very low price. The lettings / estate agent doesn't think they're serious though as they haven't spoken to the mortgage advisor they recommended (he is a landlord with them but has helped tenants to buy their properties and doesn't charge anything for his advice or take a commission but he's really good at getting mortgages through), so we may end up putting the house on the open market. It would be a shame as they've made it their home so we'd rather it went to them, but we want to find a price somewhere in between that works for everyone. We'll wait until after Christmas before we either ask again if they're interested or serve them their notice as we don't want it hanging over them over Christmas.
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 24th Nov 17, 11:29 AM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    DH's working away has helped the 'Fridge, freezer and cupboard use-up' mission immensely. I've been able to get through a lot of items he doesn't like. My mum is also preparing for the New Year's family visit from my brothers and has asked me to make sure there will be plenty of room in the freezer, so that's another incentive to work my way through it.

    I had an unexpected MSE win yesterday as well. When I bought the new vac, Dyson told me that if I saw it cheaper within 10 days I could ring them and they would refund the difference. Yesterday was day 10 and I just happened to spot an advert for the exact same vac at Curry's for £30 less than we paid. I rang Dyson and sure enough they're honouring it and refunding the £30 difference.

    I also had a MSE win yesterday. DH has been twitting on about replacing his iPhone 6s as his contract has finished but he is still paying the same amount and feels he should have a new phone if he's paying that much, I argued that the phone is only 2 years old and cost £800 at the time (I bought mine the same day, but I bought mine outright and got a cheap pay monthly sim), and I don't think it's sensible to be talking about paying £1000 for another phone so soon. I pointed out that we made our iPads last 5 years and we use those a lot more than the phones, plus I pointed out that if he waits until next November he can either get the latest release, or this current release cheaper. He agreed with me and is going to cancel his contract and get a pay monthly sim to last him until next year. For someone who loves his tech like my husband, and is always playing 'keeping up with the Jones's' with his brother, I feel like this is a major win!

    I had some sad news the other day as well. The Manager (a trained nurse) at Dad's nursing home took mum into her office and said that Dad has now officially entered the end of life stage. He has stopped eating almost everything (he occasionally manages to have something to eat, but it is the exception rather than the norm) and is sleeping a lot. Sometimes he is in such a deep sleep that the carers struggle to wake him and run down to the Manager's office fearing that he has passed away. She estimated that he has a maximum of 12 weeks left, but in reality thinks it will be less. He is still drinking his smoothies so he is still getting some nutrients. He has stopped begging to go home and doesn't talk much now. It is so sad to see this wonderful, clever and kind man deteriorate so much. Although we have had a few years to get used to the idea of him dying, and have already done a lot of the grieving for Dad already, this really brought it home to us as the reality now that we don't have that much time left with him. As sad as it is, the nurse said he has no quality of life now, which is completely true. He hasn't been able to drink alcohol for a very long time and has been on a soft diet for a little while now too. He used to love the occasional small glass of whiskey and chocolate gingers. He can't see much of anything now and spends all day either in bed or strapped into his chair. Even now he thinks he can stand up and walk, and a recent fall meant we had to get him a lap strap, which he doesn't like wearing but when we explain it's to stop him falling he is relatively OK with it. I wish he'd gone sooner before deteriorating so much, he is a proud man and hasn't liked relying on everyone to do everything for him, let alone the embarrassment of the carers having to help with his hygiene aspect. I just hope now that the end isn't too painful or uncomfortable and that he slips away peacefully.

    I really feel for my mum, but I am clinging onto the thought that when we move into the new house she will move in with us and not be alone. She's going to try it and see how it goes. She said she can always get a flat of her own if it doesn't work, but she's pretty low key and will have her own space so I'm hoping all goes OK. I'm really grateful to DH for being happy to have mum with us, and she's offered to pay board, which will go towards helping with the mortgage. She's also said she'll help with the cooking if we each pay 1/3 of the shopping bill and we do the washing up after she's cooked, which I am more than happy with. We'll also do some cooking to give her a break from it, but it so nice that she's offering to help so we don't have to come back from work and have to start cooking. I hope that she gets to spend more time visiting her grandchildren at that point as she's missed so much of them growing up. I can see future birthday and Christmas presents being train tickets to Norfolk and Northampton

    Work is pants at the moment, but it is paying the bills so I'm getting on with it as best I can, and I look forward to going back into the office when we move into Nottingham.

    OnePoll is now at £28.60, so close to next milestone of 3/4 at £30. It's nice to think that next time I'll only have to get to £25.

    I'm resisting the urge to check out the Black Friday deals. I can't think of anything we really need so we'd just be spending money for the sake of it. Like Martin says, it's not really a saving if it's something you don't need. It's a shame we're not in the new house though as we'd have a better idea of what we need and might be able to make some genuine savings.

    Heard from the buyers of our house and their solicitor told them they think we should be aiming for end of January. On one hand I am very happy that I won't have to be packing up and trying to find removal men over Christmas, but on the other hand it does seem a long wait and I am impatient at least we can start doing some packing when we have time off for Christmas but without the stress of a looming deadline!
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
    • themadvix
    • By themadvix 26th Nov 17, 11:39 AM
    • 1,149 Posts
    • 6,693 Thanks
    themadvix
    So sorry to hear the update about your Dad Charly x
    OPs 2017 = £2603/£10000
    S&S ISA = £300/£600
    OPs made 2016 = £6142.12
    Starting balance 2012: £132000; balance June 2017: £99,974
    MFW2017 no. 38
    • try harder
    • By try harder 26th Nov 17, 1:26 PM
    • 523 Posts
    • 1,669 Thanks
    try harder
    Seconding what themadvix said ,i have felt so sad since reading your post yesterday and been thinking about you ,sending you lots of hugs.
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 27th Nov 17, 12:33 PM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    Thank you for the kind words guys, it is a comfort. I got Mum a keepsake Christmas card from Clinton's which has an art deco design (her favourite) and it has a ribbon on so you can hang it from your tree or use as a decoration. I took it to Dad's place on Saturday with some ink and a pen, and we helped dad to put a thumb print in it and write "S x" (with some help), which is how he used to sign cards. It's something mum can either get out every year or can keep in her memory box. Either way, I wanted to do something while we have the chance.

    I went to visit my Grandma last night and took her a bunch of flowers and a plastic jug from Ikea! not a very exciting gift but she'd wanted a plastic jug as her glass milk bottles were getting slippery with condensation but she couldn't find one when I took her shopping. The local mobility shop wanted a fortune for one and £5 postage as they don't keep them in stock, but Ikea sells one for £1.75 so she was happy at getting what she needed and I was happy at getting a bargain! I also found her kitchen scales for her so she doesn't have to buy a replacement set. I suspect she'll be busy baking today
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
    • Kittenkirst
    • By Kittenkirst 27th Nov 17, 1:41 PM
    • 1,638 Posts
    • 8,551 Thanks
    Kittenkirst
    Oh charley, I’m sorry to hear about your dads bews, it sounds like the card you have had him sign is something you’re mum can cherish- very thoughtful of you!

    Hope the Work front is going okay, definitely feeling your pain there x

    Great work on the vacuum refund too!
    2017 MFW #20 - OP £2348.20/ £2150 106%. New target £2500 93.9%
    Last 3 months- Oct: £179.60 Nov: £160.33 Dec: £52.33

    Emergency fund £4K/ £6k
    Mortgage Oct '16 £170.995 LTV 90% end: Nov 2041
    2016 OPs £255.50/£150
    • Jessy103
    • By Jessy103 28th Nov 17, 10:25 AM
    • 468 Posts
    • 1,981 Thanks
    Jessy103
    Hi Charly, just catching up on your diary and I'm so sorry to hear about your dad. Such a lovely idea with the card and I'm sure your mum with love and cherish it.

    Good luck with the house sale and dream house purchase,I hope it all runs smoothly for you and you get to move in before the end of January! Take care x
    Original Mortgage Amount 2007 - £87,310.50
    Mortgage Amount Oct 2017 - £61,990.00
    Overpayment Target for 2017 - £5,000 /£4,060.70
    Jan - £873.26 Feb - £185.38 March - £269.07 April - £193.66 May - £467.64 June - £407.79 July - £849.96 August - £255.11 September - £177.22 October - £381.61
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 28th Nov 17, 5:10 PM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    just lost a long post
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 28th Nov 17, 5:20 PM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    Thanks KK and Jessy, appreciate it.

    We had more bad news today. The doctor visited Dad and she said she believes he only has another 2-3 weeks. She has arranged another appointment to see Dad in 2 weeks time as if you pass away within 2 weeks of seeing a doctor you don't have to have a postmortem so they are trying to save Mum from that. Mum will be ringing my brothers to let them know, but I can hear how sad she sounds. I wish I could just scoop her up and take this pain from her. I will be away with DH in Norfolk for the next couple of days (mum is kindly house/cat sitting) and then we have the Good Food Show on Friday, then after that I will visit Dad as often as I can. I'm glad we'll be spending Christmas with Mum so she won't be alone, and if Dad is around still we will go and visit him too. I really for my Mum and Dad at the moment - such a sad time for them.

    Not much news to report on the money saving side but there is a bit of house news. We had a second mortgage appointment yesterday as the mortgage advisor made a mess of the first one and it has been sat at 'Awaiting advice' for over a week. This second mortgage advisor was a lot better and we went through the application again and his recommendation, and the mortgage is now set being reviewed by the underwriters. I texted the seller to let her know that she will be having a call from the surveyor in the next day or so and she was pleased, so all moving along smoothly. It will however be an expensive month. £300 for the survey and £350 to the solicitor for the searches... ouch!

    We had hoped to sell the BTL house to the tenants but it sounds like that won't happen. They spent £10k of savings on a UK visa and haven't given any indication of whether they have enough for the deposit or how long it would take to save up for it. The letting agent thinks they're trying to draw it out to stay in the house as long as possible. We're not going to give them their notice before Christmas as we don't want that hanging over them so we've said that if they are genuine about wanting to buy the house they should speak to a financial advisor (there's one who rents houses through the letting agent and is a bit of a miracle worker at helping tenants secure mortgages) and get an idea of if it is possible and in what timescale. If it's feasible we will come up with a plan to make sure they can buy the house, but if not it looks like we'll be serving them their 2 month notice around February time then sprucing up the house for sale. It's a shame if they don't end up buying it, I know how much they like the house and they have made it their home now. Hopefully they will at least speak to the mortgage advisor and see if they can make it happen or not. We've definitely been helped by the scrapping of stamp duty for first time buyers from April
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
    • kirtsypoos
    • By kirtsypoos 29th Nov 17, 1:04 PM
    • 3,088 Posts
    • 13,766 Thanks
    kirtsypoos
    I know there are no words Ch4rly but I'm so sorry to hear about your Dads decline. The Doctor seems to be trying to make things as easy as possible which I'm sure is a help but it's a horrible situation for you and for your parents.

    Chin up, will be thinking of you over the next few weeks xx
    £175/3000 OH BC(94.16% PAID)
    PAID VERY, Barclaycard x2, Vanquis, Natwest, O/D, Tesco & MBNA x2 PAID LBM 24/07/15 - Debt: £175/31010.23 (99.43% paid)
    Mortgage - £161,000.00 (2017 O/P £3191.73) PAYDBX 17 #006 - £17,910.81/14,539.71
    • themadvix
    • By themadvix 29th Nov 17, 1:21 PM
    • 1,149 Posts
    • 6,693 Thanks
    themadvix
    Thinking of you Charly - it sounds like a really awful situation, especially at this time of year.

    I think you're being very kind and patient with your tenants - I hope they don't muck you around though. Glad things are moving with your purchase.
    OPs 2017 = £2603/£10000
    S&S ISA = £300/£600
    OPs made 2016 = £6142.12
    Starting balance 2012: £132000; balance June 2017: £99,974
    MFW2017 no. 38
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 4th Dec 17, 3:21 PM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    Thank you all for your kind words.

    My brother came up to visit this weekend. It was lovely to see him and he went to see my Dad too. I think it spurs Dad on when Mum tells him that my brother(s) will be visiting and he seems to perk up a little bit. He seemed quite alert when Alan visited him on Saturday. Unfortunately yesterday he was extremely tired and was pretty much asleep the whole time we were there. He didn't eat much of his lunch (maybe a quarter) and half a yoghurt. The nurse told us that his blood sugar was 2.4 (I think there is a risk of diabetic coma at 2, so we were very worried) and it's because he's not eating enough. She gave him some glucose and that probably made him more tired than he otherwise would have been. I went back in the evening with some pured stew that mum had made for him, but he said he didn't want it despite only eating a yoghurt for his evening meal. I'll ring my mum later and find out how he has been today. I'll be popping in to see him tomorrow lunchtime.

    Some good news, our mortgage application for the new house has been approved! We've started planning for the new place and we bought an Amazon Echo plus in the black Friday sale. We want to have a smart home in the new house so we will have the lighting, heating etc. controlled by the Amazon Echo. It was reduced from £139.99 to £109.99 with a free smart light bulb. The best part is that I got it free using Nectar points. Mum has also bought a Tassimo drinks maker for her bedroom so she can make a drink if she wakes up in the night... £55 down to £34, with £20 of Tassimo pod vouchers inside

    I have also just redeemed £6 from Pinecone and I am very close to £30 on OnePoll. Hopefully I'll start to see some more questionnaires coming out soon. We also had an unexpected win as well... today I received a letter from HSBC apologising for making errors on our mortgage application and wrongly advising what stage we were at in the process. They have credited £100 into our joint account as an apology without me even making a complaint or anything. I am very surprised and pleased with that
    Last edited by ch4rly2002; 04-12-2017 at 3:24 PM.
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
    • SWSEGirl
    • By SWSEGirl 4th Dec 17, 5:18 PM
    • 48 Posts
    • 88 Thanks
    SWSEGirl
    HI Charly,

    So sorry to read about your Dad - my dad died when I was 16 and reading your posts brings it all back - their decline is horrendous to watch - when you witness their fear and distress, it is unbearable and I really feel for you, it is the worst of times.

    I really admire that you are able to hold the rest of your life together so well - when I am faced with difficulty and grief I have a tendency to think 'what's the point?' - but you have such positivity, it's incredible.

    xx
    Original Mortgage as of September 2016 = £322,999 Paid off by 2051
    Current Mortgage Balance as of September 2017 = £316,649
    Emergency Savings = £9,661 £10,000 £10,500 £11,200
    Mortgage OP's Total = £1500 £2200 £2900
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 4th Dec 17, 5:25 PM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    Hi SWSEGirl. Thank you for your lovely message. I'm really sorry to hear about your Dad, and how young you were. That truly is awful. Yes I agree, it is horrendous to watch their decline and the fear and stress it brings. I'm sorry that reading this brought it all back to you. I hope you find comfort that he is at peace - that keeps me going now that dad is so near to the end. As sad as the news is, I am hopeful that he will soon be able to rest in peace and not have to suffer any more.
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 5th Dec 17, 9:49 AM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    Phew, OnePoll has finally ticked over £30 so I am in the last quarter. It's been quite a slog but I'm hoping the last bit goes faster. At least next time I'll only have to get to £25!

    I've been doing the TopCashBack X-Mas Treats competition too (luckily mum noticed it had started and told me). I'm not very lucky with the TopCashBack competition, but I usually win 10p or 20p. After catching up on the first few days that I missed, I now have 3 out of 4 candy canes required for £20. With 20 days left there is a chance I may actually win a decent amount this time... however I'm not that lucky so I won't hold my breath!

    I bought Grandma a really good quality ironing board for Christmas as her cover came off and the replacement doesn't fit so I thought I could just get her a nice new one, but she said she only irons her summer trousers now so she doesn't really need a new ironing board. I took it back to Argos and not only did they refund the £38 I paid in cash, they also gave me a £5 for the discount offer they had on when I bought it (if you spent over £40 they gave you a £5 discount). So, I still have to think of another gift to buy her for Christmas but I'm £5 up for the next item I buy from Argos I'll be taking her shopping tonight so I will try and get an idea of what she would like for Christmas when we have our cup of tea and catch up.
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 8th Dec 17, 11:56 AM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    Well, we weren't expecting much of a turnout at Mum's place, but it was busier than expected. The panto was great (Jack and the Beanstalk) and was performed by the Northeast Producers, which is an amazing company that lets you book a performance to come out to the community for a small fee (I think it was £150, but very worth it). Mum booked them to do the panto at the independent living place where she lives so the residents could all come into the lounge and watch the performance - She's done it the last few years and it's been popular. Mum sold tea/coffee/juice and a pie (lots of difference flavours for those who don't like mince pies!) and raised £91.20 for my brother's fundraising which will go to the PSP association. I had a stall and managed to sell quite a few items that hadn't appealed to some of the younger customers I've had, so I was pleased to shift some stock. I made just over £43 (I forgot to write some of the items down as the sales came in busy spurts and I didn't have chance to stop and write it down but I don't think I missed too many). I was pricing everything very cheaply as I know the residents down have too much money and there were kids there who would be using pocket money so I marketed the stall as stocking fillers, everything under £5 and most things were priced around £1 with some pricier items on multi-buy offers, like scarves £2.50 each or 2 for £4. Considering I wasn't really expecting to sell anything much, I was really pleased with the result, and I enjoyed the panto too!

    Grandma kindly gave me £40 after taking her shopping and ordering a microwave for her, which I thought was lovely of her. I told her I'd be adding it to my savings pot and she seemed really pleased with that. She's definitely an advocate of saving for a rainy day so when I told her that my savings had been started by what she'd given me, and that every time I get something from her I put it into savings, she seemed to quite pleased.

    Still keeping fingers crossed for another candy cane for the £20 prize on TopCashBack... I'm not holding my breath though!

    I'm going to see my Dad today, so I'm hoping he's having a good day. He's actually managed to eat quite a bit over the last couple of days so he must be feeling a little better in himself, which I'm pleased with. I hate the thought of him suffering The Co-op had Innocent smoothies half price the other day so I bought him a couple of bottles. They're about his only treat nowadays.

    One last thought... Yorkshire's apparently expecting snow this weekend so I might be working my way through the tin cupboard sooner than expected!
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
    • Moominmamma89
    • By Moominmamma89 8th Dec 17, 11:23 PM
    • 211 Posts
    • 360 Thanks
    Moominmamma89
    Thinking of you and your family x
    • ch4rly2002
    • By ch4rly2002 13th Dec 17, 12:15 PM
    • 254 Posts
    • 1,064 Thanks
    ch4rly2002
    Thanks Moominmamma... and funnily enough one of our nicknames for mum in Moomin

    DH is working down in Norwich this week so I get to use up some of the tin cupboard that he doesn't like, which strangely enough excites me. I also have some chicken that needs to be cooked so I will make a big batch and put some in the freezer for when he gets back.

    Home insurance is due (everything seems to be hitting us this month!) and has shot up since I got my jewellery valued. The jewellery was valued quite a bit higher than I expected and as there are a few more items over £2000 I've had to add them as named items and update the existing 3, so instead of the home insurance costing £459 (before any discounts), it now comes to £559 (with discounts). I'd rather have the protection and peace of mind that they're covered if anything happens so I'll suck it up, but it's not the best feeling to part with even more money. Luckily we have a safe as my engagement ring was valued at £10,100 and as it's valued at over £10k, if I didn't have a safe I would have to have it on me AT ALL TIMES! Pretty scary to think about having to have it on if I went swimming or to the gym.

    I have made my benefits selection at work today. It came to £357 per month, and as it comes out before tax they show a message at the end showing my salary has gone down by over £4k however, that includes my pension payment, my additional voluntary pension payment and an extra 10 days of holiday so it's not all bad

    OnePoll and Prolific are a bit slow at the moment but I'm plodding on. However, I have had a good month for Pinecone surveys, another £3 withdrawn today. I didn't realise but you can set the frequency of surveys so I changed it from once a month to unlimited. So far I've been getting one every few days now so I'm happy I spotted that. Yesterday's survey was for a product I would really like to try so I hope I get selected to try a sample or that they bring out the product!

    I've written and sent my Christmas cards too. I didn't realise how many cards I have bought (I tend to buy a pack or two after Christmas when they go in the sale) so this year I will have a strict no buying cards policy when the sales start!
    Savings: Aim £13.5k. Dec 2016 £1,700 / Dec 2017 £11,550
    Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£216,000 / Dec 2017 -£193,850
    BTL Mortgage: Dec 2014 -£136,000/ Dec 2017 -£124,100
    CC 0%: Nov 2016 -£4,500 / Dec 2017 -£3,436.66
    Loan to In-Laws: Sep 2010 -£48,185.82 / Dec 2017 -£30,815.49
    Student Loan: March 2011 -£18,275.04 / April 2017 -£14,003.85
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