Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 28th Jan 17, 12:18 PM
    • 1,743Posts
    • 19,264Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    Get a grip woman!
    • #1
    • 28th Jan 17, 12:18 PM
    Get a grip woman! 28th Jan 17 at 12:18 PM
    Having been reading a number of people's debt-free wannabe diaries for some time now, I have finally decided I will start my own.

    We are less than three years from wanting to stop work, and less than ten years from state retirement age. I manage our household finances and DH lets me get on with it. His attitude is more "live for today" so we are a good balance, I think. We have two holidays each year and sometimes more - and he has some boys toys - 2 Harley Davidson motorcycles in the garage, that seem to always need money spending on them. That said, there is more to be said in favour of a happy and contented DH than against them so I don't resent them in any way.

    So to debts - It seems a good time because I have recently finished the finance on my car, and as of yesterday, paid off the finance for DS's car (I borrowed from him 18 months ago and paid back by buying his car on finance and paying his insurance). I was paying 4.7% on that debt so it was my highest priority. I paid it off 10 months early using most of my HSBC Regular Saver that matured this week.

    The debts I have currently are:

    110,621 - Mortgage - interest rate of 0.74% (0.5 above the BoEBR)
    3,476 - DH's car - 0% credit card until Sept 17 - a 4000 cash advance with a 76 fee
    8,755.54 - Barclays Finance for double glazing 0% over 2 years 2/24 paid

    Total 122,852.54

    It isn't that I can't afford to keep up payments, it is more that I want us to start our non-work phase without them hanging over us, if you know what I mean.

    I think that will do for a scene setter.

    SL
    MFiT T4 #2 update 51.75% after Q8 5,203 behind where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after Jan 634.93/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 238.47/3,500 including stores so far
    My DFD is here
Page 14
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 22nd Jan 18, 7:54 PM
    • 1,743 Posts
    • 19,264 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    Thanks both, yes we are OK - totally shattered last weekend and so very silent and a bit uncommunicative but OK after three long sleeps.

    Re our electricity - it is a little high but we do run an electric 4-oven aga so it is v high for a small house and you may recall we had no central heating until literally a week before my Mum arrived for Christmas. Now the CH is working there is not a need for electric radiators - 2 oil filled and one convector - that were on a lot up until Christmas. So even if our bill is a bit high I would rather have it a bit in credit.

    We are with Flow and they ask for a reading, about a week before the statement date, then they estimate the gap at 4 times your pattern of usage (sometimes half the bill is in that week between me reading and them statementing). It is that basis they use for estimating, and they cannot get their heads around high usage from October to April and extremely low usage the rest of the time. That said, DH often forgets to turn off the heating in his man-cave, and almost never turns off all the lights
    MFiT T4 #2 update 51.75% after Q8 5,203 behind where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after Jan 634.93/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 238.47/3,500 including stores so far
    My DFD is here
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 22nd Jan 18, 10:00 PM
    • 28,526 Posts
    • 160,775 Thanks
    Karmacat
    The central heating was off! Of course
    Retired August 2016
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 22nd Jan 18, 10:30 PM
    • 1,743 Posts
    • 19,264 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    DH has approached his DC Pension provider and we are going to draw-down 25% tax free lump sum now so we can lop a lump off the mortgage. About 17k or so. It will help and it will reduce that interest per month figure
    MFiT T4 #2 update 51.75% after Q8 5,203 behind where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after Jan 634.93/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 238.47/3,500 including stores so far
    My DFD is here
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 26th Jan 18, 7:13 AM
    • 1,743 Posts
    • 19,264 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    Thank goodness DH has been paid today. That was the longest January ever! We are due a power cut later this morning (from 0830 for a few hours) while they prune trees away from overhead power lines (the joys of living in a rural Village), so here I am, reading and posting from 05.00

    I have read a few diaries this morning and is it just me? Are there lots of people in Ostrich mode at the moment? Debt Free is supposed to be about paying off our debts isn't it? Not just reducing our outgoings to the point where they are no longer exceeding our income?
    MFiT T4 #2 update 51.75% after Q8 5,203 behind where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after Jan 634.93/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 238.47/3,500 including stores so far
    My DFD is here
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 26th Jan 18, 7:38 AM
    • 1,281 Posts
    • 12,534 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    I have read a few diaries this morning and is it just me? Are there lots of people in Ostrich mode at the moment? Debt Free is supposed to be about paying off our debts isn't it? Not just reducing our outgoings to the point where they are no longer exceeding our income?
    Originally posted by Suffolk lass
    I think there can be varying degrees of this. For us we needed to reduce our outgoings to make life manageable. We know our debt will go down this year, then we will reborrow more next year for an extension, then it will go down for several more years until we are debt free. Restructuring for us has meant being able to continue paying down debt so we don't end up on a DMP or similar and unable to borrow to make our house work for our family. BUT I think there are plenty who (exactly as we used to) look at restructuring/lengthening debt terms as a way to access more spending, rather than to reduce debt, if that makes sense. So it's definitely a spectrum, and I don't think we fall at the 'perfect' end of it by any means (we just aren't that frugal, we know the debt will increase when we extend etc etc).
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: 58,608.13/1st Dec 2026
    debt on 4th Jan 2018: 35,536.09/July 2026

    Mortgage = 193,995
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 26th Jan 18, 9:54 AM
    • 28,526 Posts
    • 160,775 Thanks
    Karmacat
    I think there's a lot of strings to the bow, SL, and reducing outgoings is certainly one of them - isn't it the first one that Martin recommends? It's a circular process, I think - halfway through the journey, it can be time for a deep re-assessment of what's going on.

    Loving the *reason* for your power cut and I hope you had nice warm socks on!
    Retired August 2016
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 26th Jan 18, 6:11 PM
    • 1,743 Posts
    • 19,264 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    I think there can be varying degrees of this. For us we needed to reduce our outgoings to make life manageable. We know our debt will go down this year, then we will reborrow more next year for an extension, then it will go down for several more years until we are debt free. Restructuring for us has meant being able to continue paying down debt so we don't end up on a DMP or similar and unable to borrow to make our house work for our family. BUT I think there are plenty who (exactly as we used to) look at restructuring/lengthening debt terms as a way to access more spending, rather than to reduce debt, if that makes sense. So it's definitely a spectrum, and I don't think we fall at the 'perfect' end of it by any means (we just aren't that frugal, we know the debt will increase when we extend etc etc).
    Originally posted by Treadingonplaymobil
    You are right TOPM, and as you know I regularly read and contribute on your diary - you have moved dramatically over the last year and I was not implying you when I posted. I think you may have begun at that point but your journey is so different to where you started (as is ours). I do hope you don't think I was sniping at you - I was not. Washing up bowls summed it up for me - you were determined to stretch to something beautiful and expensive at the start and moved your ground to compromise significantly.

    Like you, we have also consolidated unsecured debt once, when DH lost his contract and all work was absent and dried up for several months. We also moved to an interest-only mortgage when he was unemployed for over a year, just after we borrowed an additional 90k for our extension and house remodelling, which left us in significant debt and just about able to squeak by until we moved house. I think that is why we still have our mortgage, and will do, after I finish work - not a position I recommend
    MFiT T4 #2 update 51.75% after Q8 5,203 behind where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after Jan 634.93/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 238.47/3,500 including stores so far
    My DFD is here
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 26th Jan 18, 6:16 PM
    • 1,743 Posts
    • 19,264 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    I think there's a lot of strings to the bow, SL, and reducing outgoings is certainly one of them - isn't it the first one that Martin recommends? It's a circular process, I think - halfway through the journey, it can be time for a deep re-assessment of what's going on.

    Loving the *reason* for your power cut and I hope you had nice warm socks on!
    Originally posted by Karmacat
    Yes, you are right. It is frustrating to see the same spending traps snagging their prey at this time of year - a bit like people falling off the diet wagon I suppose.

    Power off promptly at 0830 and back just after ten. The aga took it in its stride and kept up to temperature. The Churchyard hedge survey left me with very cold extremities though. Definitely battling a nasty virus and feeling 99p in the pound today!
    MFiT T4 #2 update 51.75% after Q8 5,203 behind where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after Jan 634.93/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 238.47/3,500 including stores so far
    My DFD is here
    • Cumbria lass
    • By Cumbria lass 26th Jan 18, 6:26 PM
    • 1,365 Posts
    • 7,813 Thanks
    Cumbria lass
    Completely agree with the Ostrich mode, have read a couple of diaries recently and I do wonder. I have a relatively small amount of debt compared to others, however I don!!!8217;t have a massive income to some. I know that I have learnt my lesson this time , but think other people have still not had a true LBM .

    Loving your description of your power going off. I read your diary often !
    Jan 2018 CC1 3099 CC2 220

    Debt Free Nov 2019: earlier if I have my way
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 26th Jan 18, 8:43 PM
    • 1,281 Posts
    • 12,534 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    You are right TOPM, and as you know I regularly read and contribute on your diary - you have moved dramatically over the last year and I was not implying you when I posted. I think you may have begun at that point but your journey is so different to where you started (as is ours). I do hope you don't think I was sniping at you - I was not. Washing up bowls summed it up for me - you were determined to stretch to something beautiful and expensive at the start and moved your ground to compromise significantly.

    Like you, we have also consolidated unsecured debt once, when DH lost his contract and all work was absent and dried up for several months. We also moved to an interest-only mortgage when he was unemployed for over a year, just after we borrowed an additional 90k for our extension and house remodelling, which left us in significant debt and just about able to squeak by until we moved house. I think that is why we still have our mortgage, and will do, after I finish work - not a position I recommend
    Originally posted by Suffolk lass
    at the washing up bowl reference! I think that may be how I am remembered on the debt free diaries long after I am finished here.
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: 58,608.13/1st Dec 2026
    debt on 4th Jan 2018: 35,536.09/July 2026

    Mortgage = 193,995
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 26th Jan 18, 9:14 PM
    • 1,116 Posts
    • 6,794 Thanks
    redofromstart
    at the washing up bowl reference! I think that may be how I am remembered on the debt free diaries long after I am finished here.
    Originally posted by Treadingonplaymobil
    There are worse ways to be remembered

    Interests points which helped me reflect on my own behaviour. I'm trying really really hard not to get sucked into 'sales' and spending but reading my diary back I bought jumpers and boots this month that I wanted, not needed, even if I justify to myself that it was with my Christmas present money. That's money that have gone to emergency savings or the ginormous great debt that is the mortgage. It does make you think when you read back. I think if you go looking you will always find unmissable bargains and I guess the trick is not to look in the first place.
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 26th Jan 18, 10:53 PM
    • 5,683 Posts
    • 11,227 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    I have noticed a few ostriches on the diary forum too. I don!!!8217;t have any issue with people trying to manage their debt and try and live too. It is the ones with debt increasing who are still spending which are difficult and frustrating to read.

    Good idea to use the 25% TFLS to reduce the mortgage.
    Debt free and mortgage free and early retiree. Living the dream

    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Mortgages, Banking and Budgeting boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com. Pease remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 30th Jan 18, 7:53 PM
    • 1,743 Posts
    • 19,264 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    There are worse ways to be remembered

    Interests points which helped me reflect on my own behaviour. I'm trying really really hard not to get sucked into 'sales' and spending but reading my diary back I bought jumpers and boots this month that I wanted, not needed, even if I justify to myself that it was with my Christmas present money. That's money that have gone to emergency savings or the ginormous great debt that is the mortgage. It does make you think when you read back. I think if you go looking you will always find unmissable bargains and I guess the trick is not to look in the first place.
    Originally posted by redofromstart
    You are right - it is a different journey for everyone. Yours has been particularly remarkable so far. Your articulate open discussions really do inspire others to emulate you. I think it is great that you have a copy - when you have got back in the black you should read it from start to finish - as you go along, you don't realise the ground-shift that is happening
    MFiT T4 #2 update 51.75% after Q8 5,203 behind where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after Jan 634.93/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 238.47/3,500 including stores so far
    My DFD is here
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 2nd Feb 18, 4:57 PM
    • 1,743 Posts
    • 19,264 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    End of Jan 18
    Monthly update

    DEBTS

    Mortgage 110,621 93,665,54 (16,955.46 paid so far)
    Barclays 0% Finance for double glazing 8,755.54 3,581.82 (5,173.72 paid)
    DH's car - paid off on 21st Aug 17 3,476 0 (3,476 paid)

    Total 122,852.54 97,247.36 - that is 25,605.18 or 20.84% paid off so far.


    SAVINGS
    10,868.60 Emergency pot
    12,511.62 S&S ISA with Fidelity International (original 10,000 some years ago, no further capital added)
    7,020.05 DH's S&S ISA (with Charles Stanley Direct] (increase of 2,050.35 this year
    3,164.92 2 year Bond with Skipton BS @ 4% Finished 31 Jan 2018 - This is being used to reduce the mortgage!
    11,330.58 7 year bond with Skipton BS - matures Oct 20
    38,630.43 41,595.54 Total actual cashable savings

    Shortfall -55,651.82 (all debts)

    We have just had the call with the pensions pot holder to go through the legal process of drawing down DH's 25% tax free lump sum. It should help with the mortgage payments in February. I wonder if this is why I need to go and have a little lie down and a snooze?!
    MFiT T4 #2 update 51.75% after Q8 5,203 behind where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after Jan 634.93/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 238.47/3,500 including stores so far
    My DFD is here
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 2nd Feb 18, 5:54 PM
    • 5,683 Posts
    • 11,227 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    Once the 25% TFLS has come off the mortgage it will be in the 70ks. Coming down nicely.
    Debt free and mortgage free and early retiree. Living the dream

    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Mortgages, Banking and Budgeting boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com. Pease remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 2nd Feb 18, 9:18 PM
    • 1,116 Posts
    • 6,794 Thanks
    redofromstart
    Thanks - what a lovely thing to say, made me smile. I've been lucky that I have had work since I started the diary but its going to get very tight in a few weeks.

    We will have the option to draw down a small pension of OHs in a few weeks but I need to look into the tax situation if he does. Might be best to save it for a famine year. We have both potentially lost some final salary pension as it was with Carillon and now in limbo so a bit anti pensions generally at the moment.
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 6th Feb 18, 12:31 PM
    • 1,743 Posts
    • 19,264 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    We are obviously to blame for the massive shift-downwards in stock-market values - it happened the first working day after the conversation with the pension-fund advisers that we had to have before drawing down 25% tax free lump sum. At this rate it will be a thousand or more down
    MFiT T4 #2 update 51.75% after Q8 5,203 behind where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after Jan 634.93/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 238.47/3,500 including stores so far
    My DFD is here
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 6th Feb 18, 2:12 PM
    • 5,683 Posts
    • 11,227 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    Yes, unfortunately when Wall St sneezes the whole world catches a cold as they say. We have investments too but luckily don't need access to it for the next few years. The downward shift is annoying at its least but particularly if you intended to access your DHs pension this year. Is it a DC or DB pension?

    I have not looked at ours yet but we are 40% in bonds so I don't think they are quite as volatile. It has been anticipated for the last year or so though and I am guessing if US interest rates are predicted to go up as suggested then the UK rates may well follow shortly depending on Brexit fallout.
    Debt free and mortgage free and early retiree. Living the dream

    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Mortgages, Banking and Budgeting boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com. Pease remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 8th Feb 18, 9:16 PM
    • 1,743 Posts
    • 19,264 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    It is the 25% tax free lump sum he is permitted to take from his DC Pot that we want to draw down, in order to pay down the mortgage. We will be moving the other 75% into a retirement account that is 40% equities and 60% bonds as we intend drawing down the rest within the next 5 years.
    MFiT T4 #2 update 51.75% after Q8 5,203 behind where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after Jan 634.93/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 238.47/3,500 including stores so far
    My DFD is here
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 8th Feb 18, 9:24 PM
    • 5,683 Posts
    • 11,227 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    Is the DC pot split between bonds/equities at the moment? Hopefully the market will stabilise before June.
    Debt free and mortgage free and early retiree. Living the dream

    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Mortgages, Banking and Budgeting boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com. Pease remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

1,229Posts Today

7,850Users online

Martin's Twitter