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  • FIRST POST
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 12th Feb 17, 9:56 AM
    • 1,151Posts
    • 11,220Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed....
    • #1
    • 12th Feb 17, 9:56 AM
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed.... 12th Feb 17 at 9:56 AM
    £67,031.92. Seriously. £67,031.92. That is a SCARY number. I can't believe our debt has peaked (and it is the peak, I am determined) at this level.

    Our light bulb moment actually happened a few months back, but it's taken since then of wrangling utilities and carefully watching out income/outgoings (using You Need a Budget) to really figure out where we were overspending and how the monthly shortfall of anything from £200-£1,000+ was happening.

    We have literally nothing to show for this debt, it's just crept up over the past 8 years or so, and has always been at manageable levels, but back in October we realised we were spending more on credit cards each month than we were paying off.

    We committed that cardinal sin of taking out a consolidation loan, but alongside it we looked really carefully at our spending over the next couple of months, budgeted realistically for what we spend and have (I think) picked off all the easy 'low hanging fruit' of budget cuts and really identified why we were overspending.

    The main reason for the debt is, erm, me. Not that I'm the biggest spender (neither of us are amazing), but because I am self employed with a hugely variable income and basically worked out our budgets on the basis I would always earn my 'best' month's income. Which was, with hindsight, maybe a TINY bit deluded.

    The aim of this diary is to keep us on track with actually reducing our debt every single month, not doing it in a three steps forward, two (or four) steps back sort of way. Having sat down and put our numbers into the whatsthecost site, it appears that we are looking at 7 years and 1 month of repayments to clear the debt (and that's assuming we can get rid of the shortfall showing below). I REALLY want to reduce this term as that just seems bonkers.

    SOA below, with a couple of explanatory notes.

    Statement of Affairs and Personal Balance Sheet

    Household Information

    Number of adults in household........... 2
    Number of children in household......... 3
    Number of cars owned.................... 1

    Monthly Income Details

    Monthly income after tax................ 250 (variable, but this is the minimum I have earned in any month in the last 5 years)
    Partners monthly income after tax....... 2711.86
    Benefits................................ 192
    Other income............................ 0
    Total monthly income.................... 3153.86


    Monthly Expense Details

    Mortgage................................ 698
    Secured/HP loan repayments.............. 0
    Rent.................................... 0
    Management charge (leasehold property).. 0
    Council tax............................. 174 (including overpayment for a period when we messed up during a house move 18 months ago and didn't restart the direct debit for the new property. Will drop by a little under £50 after either March or April, can't remember which)
    Electricity............................. 52 (gas and electricity are one combined DD, I haven't checked the exact split but the total is £104)
    Gas..................................... 52
    Oil..................................... 0
    Water rates............................. 104 (also including a debt from previous property, but I think this will be included for another 6 months or so. I'm not sure what our actual usage is)
    Telephone (land line)................... 18.5 (includes internet)
    Mobile phone............................ 85 (£45 for my contract, which I use for work as well, £40 for DH)
    TV Licence.............................. 12.12
    Satellite/Cable TV...................... 0
    Internet Services....................... 0 (included in landline cost)
    Groceries etc. ......................... 520 (Includes £40 for one lot of school lunches. I am REALLY struggling to reduce this, but feel I could and should be able to!)
    Clothing................................ 100 (growing children, plus see notes below re clothes)
    Petrol/diesel........................... 225 (90% DH commuting costs)
    Road tax................................ 16.27
    Car Insurance........................... 25.22
    Car maintenance (including MOT)......... 30
    Car parking............................. 0
    Other travel............................ 50
    Childcare/nursery....................... 70 (this will disappear in April as child 3 gets free 15 hours)
    Other child related expenses............ 81.85 (music/swimming lessons x2, cubs and beavers, National Trust membership as they love visiting them)
    Medical (prescriptions, dentist etc).... 5
    Pet insurance/vet bills................. 0
    Buildings insurance..................... 27.07
    Contents insurance...................... 0
    Life assurance ......................... 16.26
    Other insurance......................... 0
    Presents (birthday, christmas etc)...... 90
    Haircuts................................ 20
    Entertainment........................... 135
    Holiday................................. 75
    Emergency fund.......................... 25
    Total monthly expenses.................. 2707.29



    Assets

    Cash.................................... 0
    House value (Gross)..................... 210000
    Shares and bonds........................ 0
    Car(s).................................. 800
    Other assets............................ 0
    Total Assets............................ 210800



    Secured & HP Debts

    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Mortgage...................... 173733...(698)......3.14
    Total secured & HP debts...... 173733....-.........-


    Unsecured Debts
    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Barclaycard....................6880.21...156...... .0
    MBNA...........................9614.71...98....... .0
    Parental loan..................20000.....0.........0 (see notes below)
    Tesco loan.....................21000.....377.......10
    Total unsecured debts..........57494.92..631.......-



    Monthly Budget Summary

    Total monthly income.................... 3,153.86
    Expenses (including HP & secured debts). 2,707.29
    Available for debt repayments........... 446.57
    Monthly UNsecured debt repayments....... 631
    Amount short for making debt repayments. -184.43


    Personal Balance Sheet Summary
    Total assets (things you own)........... 210,800
    Total HP & Secured debt................. -173,733
    Total Unsecured debt.................... -57,494.92
    Net Assets.............................. -20,427.92


    Created using the SOA calculator at stoozing.
    Reproduced on Moneysavingexpert with permission, using other browser.


    Regarding the (relatively) high clothes expense, it is a combination of 3 growing children (8, 6 and 3), plus the fact that my job is in the fashion industry, and as a self employed person I need to have the right sort of 'look' in order to get work (think along the lines of a self employed personal shopper - people need to see you looking good in order to book with you).

    The parental loan was for a house deposit. The parent in question has no idea about our debts. She is not desperate for the money back and isn't charging us interest, but has asked us to save £150-200 every month into a savings account and then once we've saved a decent sum to either repay them or 'reborrow' it for work on the house (basically they want us to be able to make repayments if they suddenly need the extra income, but meanwhile are happy for us to benefit from it. I am not saving the money while our debt payments are so high - we are hoping to have paid enough off that if the parent ever needs it that we can reborrow it and pay them back). This isn't great, but realistically I think the best solutions is to treat it as the lowest priority for snowballing - once we have paid back the other debts we will throw the entire £630+ at this debt.

    So, there is a freaking enormous shortfall every month, which is somewhat depressing. Most months it is covered by the fact that I earn more than my 'bare minimum', but it is those months where it isn't covered that the debt creeps up again, and I am a total disaster for going 'oh well, we've spent on the credit card, we might as well keep going' and buying more clothes or something for the house - this is probably a significant proportion of our debt problem.

    We have managed to get rid of the balance on the one credit card we were spending on, so the remaining ones are both on 0% deals (although one expires in September). I have not cut up the remaining credit card, because we don't have an emergency fund in case of eg boiler repairs, but it has not been used for all of a month, and I hope to keep it that way.

    A DMP or similar isn't really on my horizon right now - I feel like we should be able to make the cuts to make our budgets balance, and I am optimistic that as my income goes up (when I can work more as child 3 starts school) that we will be able to make overpayments.

    My plan for now is:
    1) Try to wiggle those budget numbers around enough that we don't have a shortfall any more.
    2) Make a plan for any months where I make extra - do I use it for an emergency fund, as a fund to cover future months' shortfalls, to throw money at the debt to try to reduce minimum payments in case of future 'shortfall' months?
    3) Try to make more money. Not quite sure how this will work as I am largely limited to working around DH's working hours (I work evenings and weekends and the 5hrs childcare per week we are paying for for child 3).

    Now that's all down in black and white I am feeling a combination of relieved (to be clear on the numbers) and immensely stressed (by the semi-regular £180+ shortfall).

    Onwards and downwards (for the debt, not me)!

    edited to add: the original £67,031.92 figure was based on the total figure for the Tesco loan, which included all interest payable over the entire term of the loan. I have updated the debt figure in my signature and in all posts going forward as at 4th June 2017 to reflect that actual current debt balance rather than the balance plus interest over the lifetime of the loan. This has knocked £7,911.62 off the debt figure, but means that each monthly payment will have the interest for that month deducted from it, so it won't affect the DFD if I don't make overpayments.
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 04-06-2017 at 2:58 PM.
Page 112
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 4th Jan 18, 6:41 AM
    • 1,151 Posts
    • 11,220 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Rounding up yesterday's lists before today's start...

    to do today (yesterday)
    1. Update debt total in signature. Not done!
    2. Make a start on tidying the house. A bit done.
    3. Post presents for the relatives we unexpectedly didn't see. Done.
    4. Menu plan and shopping list - hoping this can stay nice and cheap for Jan, as we still have some leftovers. Done, and DH went shopping.
    5. Pay for DC music lessons. Done.
    6. Pay HMRC NI bill (boo). Done.
    7. Pop into town to pick up thank you cards so the DC can do theirs, and a birthday card for DH. Not done.
    8. Invoice for December contract work (yay!). Done, and paid.

    To do this week
    1. Get the house into order.
    2. Do some batch cooking.
    3. Wrap DH's birthday presents.

    To do in January
    1. Review 2017 spending and try to improve 2018 plans by being more prepared - plan big spends like holidays and Christmas now and be realistic about the cost.
    2. Redo SOA once the remortgage is through.
    3. Make a 2018 business plan that is less frenetic than originally (I think I had too high expectations of myself, leading to much stress in Nov/Dec).
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 04-01-2018 at 6:47 AM.
    £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
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 4th Jan 18, 6:47 AM
    • 1,151 Posts
    • 11,220 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 47: Day 5

    Wow, almost at the end of Week 47. Only four and a bit weeks to go until I've been at this MSE lark for an entire year! In some ways it's flown, in others it's crawled.

    I was so wiped out yesterday, I think all the Christmas prep, travelling, eating and drinking finally caught up with me. I achieved practically nothing. Went to bed at 8pm (and was disturbed 900 times or so by various of my DC, but glossing over that) and am feeling far more human today, although I did snooze my alarm for AN HOUR this morning . Need to crack on and get some work and cooking done today.

    The mortgage broker chased the mortgage and apparently we can expect to hear in the next day or two when completion might be - fingers crossed it's soon! Can't believe how ridiculously long this has dragged on for.

    Right, off to get started on my day. Feeling much more energetic!

    to do today
    1. Update debt total in signature
    2. Do some more house tidying.
    3. Make flapjacks for DC snacks.
    4. Pop into town to pick up thank you cards so the DC can do theirs, and a birthday card for DH, and an extra little present for him from my mum.
    5. Pack orders for smaller business.
    6. Raise prices for smaller business - my supplier has put up their prices, and my profit was fairly pathetic even before that! Time to bite the bullet.

    To do this week
    1. Get the house into order.
    2. Do some batch cooking.
    3. Wrap DH's birthday presents.

    To do in January
    1. Review 2017 spending and try to improve 2018 plans by being more prepared - plan big spends like holidays and Christmas now and be realistic about the cost.
    2. Redo SOA once the remortgage is through.
    3. Make a 2018 business plan that is less frenetic than originally (I think I had too high expectations of myself, leading to much stress in Nov/Dec).
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 05-01-2018 at 5:35 AM.
    £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
    • warby68
    • By warby68 4th Jan 18, 7:08 AM
    • 893 Posts
    • 9,082 Thanks
    warby68
    Just a thought, do you need purchased thank you cards?

    Your children are crafty - can't they do their own from existing supplies?

    I know its a lifestyle preference thing but an easy small saving is possible too.

    Also will you need stamps? I'm all in favour of old-fashioned thank yous through the post but stamps are costly so I'd flex for personal email or other electronic messages on cost grounds these days if things are tight or even a personal phone call. When mine were younger people were absolutely delighted with a child on the phone and the chance to have a little chat with a loved one.
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 4th Jan 18, 3:37 PM
    • 1,151 Posts
    • 11,220 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Handmade thank you cards is a fab idea, but not for this year - one to add to the planning list for next year! Time has completely got away from us, and they'll never get sent if I wait for us to have time to make them.

    Two bits of good news today - the first is that our remortgage is set to complete on the 8th, so hopefully will be in place and we'll be able to pay off the Tesco loan before next month's direct debits go through.

    Second is that DH and I have redone our SOA to reflect our new costs - I'll post it shortly - and although the saving for the extension is going to be scarcely enough and we might have to postpone until next summer rather than starting in January, I've been able to reduce my earning aims for 2018, which has allowed me to reduce my planned working hours too, so the year is looking a lot less frenetic. I have managed to reduce my evenings working to a maximum of one per week (and none in some weeks) and weekend working to exactly half of the weekends this year, which is a reduction on last year, although still more than ideal. This has improved my mindset immeasurably, as I was looking at the year with a bit of a sense of dread!
    £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
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 4th Jan 18, 4:16 PM
    • 1,151 Posts
    • 11,220 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    It's SOA time!

    DH and I sat down together and put together a new SOA. It places a lower earning pressure on me, which will make life massively less stressful this year.

    Statement of Affairs and Personal Balance Sheet

    Household Information

    Number of adults in household........... 2
    Number of children in household......... 3
    Number of cars owned.................... 1

    Monthly Income Details

    Monthly income after tax................ 3062.27 This is DH, obviously.
    Partners monthly income after tax....... 200 And this is me.
    Benefits................................ 192.4
    Other income............................ 0
    Total monthly income.................... 3454.67


    Monthly Expense Details

    Mortgage................................ 702
    Secured/HP loan repayments.............. 0
    Rent.................................... 0
    Management charge (leasehold property).. 0
    Council tax............................. 141 No doubt this will go up in April.
    Electricity............................. 49.84 Vastly reduced for coming 12 months thanks to enormous credit.
    Gas..................................... 0 Included above.
    Oil..................................... 0
    Water rates............................. 95 Metered.
    Telephone (land line)................... 18.99 Includes internet.
    Mobile phones............................ 102 Two contracts. One largely offset as a work cost.
    TV Licence.............................. 12.12
    Satellite/Cable TV...................... 0
    Internet Services....................... 0
    Groceries etc. ......................... 400
    Clothing................................ 0 Children's clothing in a separate category below, DH's included in his kitty, mine budgeted as a work expense before my salary is paid.
    Petrol/diesel........................... 225
    Road tax................................ 16.62
    Car Insurance........................... 32.74
    Car maintenance (including MOT)......... 42
    Car parking............................. 0
    Other travel............................ 50 DH catches the train once a week.
    Childcare/nursery....................... 20 This will stop in July.
    Other child related expenses............ 0
    Medical (prescriptions, dentist etc).... 5
    Pet insurance/vet bills................. 0
    Buildings insurance..................... 31.84
    Contents insurance...................... 0
    Life assurance ......................... 16.26
    Other insurance......................... 0
    Presents (birthday, christmas etc)...... 0 Separate categories below.
    Haircuts................................ 20
    Entertainment........................... 150
    Holiday................................. 100
    Emergency fund.......................... 50
    netflix................................. 5.99
    icloud.................................. 6.99
    DH kitty................................ 40 Includes his clothing.
    My kitty................................ 25
    Children's clothes...................... 60
    House bits.............................. 15 Random stuff like tins of paint, light pulls, shower curtains. There's always something.
    Pocket money............................ 5
    Cubs & Beavers.......................... 30
    Piano lessons........................... 35
    Swimming lessons........................ 48 This will be slightly less as one DC is doing a cheaper club rather than intensive lessons now, but not sure on price.
    Christmas............................... 100
    Birthdays............................... 60
    National Trust.......................... 9.6
    YNAB.................................... 3
    Extension fund.......................... 300
    Pipsticks............................... 15 This is a sticker subscription that we got the DC as a gift, will go on for six months.
    Total monthly expenses.................. 3038.99



    Assets

    Cash.................................... 0
    House value (Gross)..................... 225000
    Shares and bonds........................ 0
    Car(s).................................. 500
    Other assets............................ 0
    Total Assets............................ 225500



    Secured & HP Debts

    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Mortgage...................... 193000...(702)......2.19 This is higher as the Tesco loan is paid off.
    Total secured & HP debts...... 193000....-.........-


    Unsecured Debts
    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Partnership card...............2837.81...72........18
    Barclaycard....................12572.4...295...... .0
    Parental loan..................20000.....0.........0
    Total unsecured debts..........35410.21..367.......-



    Monthly Budget Summary

    Total monthly income.................... 3,454.67
    Expenses (including HP & secured debts). 3,038.99
    Available for debt repayments........... 415.68
    Monthly UNsecured debt repayments....... 367
    Amount left after debt repayments....... 48.68


    Personal Balance Sheet Summary
    Total assets (things you own)........... 225,500
    Total HP & Secured debt................. -193,000
    Total Unsecured debt.................... -35,410.21
    Net Assets.............................. -2,910.21


    Created using the SOA calculator at www.stoozing.com.
    Reproduced on Moneysavingexpert with permission, using other browser.


    My earning aim at the end of 2018 was £350 per month, and I initially had it set to £400 per month for this year, but this new SOA has enabled me to reduce it dramatically without compromising too much, apart from saving less for the extension than initially hoped. If I earn extra (which I hope I will, but am not pressuring myself at all), I will initially save for future months, then any extra will be split between debt overpayment and extensions savings.

    The expectation is that we will have around £1,800 extra cash when we get the remortgage money through to pay off the Tesco loan, because of the extra payments that have been made on the loan and mortgage since the initial application was made. This will be split between paying a chunk off the Partnership (high interest rate!) and giving all the monthly savings pots an initial boost to avoid the robbing Peter to pay Paul situation (they are all empty after paying for Christmas, as the Christmas savings pot didn't have enough in it).
    £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
    • joeyjimbles
    • By joeyjimbles 4th Jan 18, 4:22 PM
    • 1,468 Posts
    • 7,933 Thanks
    joeyjimbles
    Oh well done on all that organisation, including paying your NI bill which is a reminder to me to go and do mine in a minute - must first find password which is in the folder that is in the box that was taken out of the moved filing cabinet which is still not back in the office...you get the picture.

    Another note on vouchers - Morrisons currently do 25 M&M points per £ spent on a voucher so a £20 voucher would give you 500 points = £1. Not a lot but something.

    And if you do the odd survey, Qmee etc and get paid in Amazon vouchers you can just print them out and put them in a card. There's always something to buy on Amazon - and these days they have really good deals on make-up, perfume and even clothing.

    Anyway, Happy New Year.
    • Chrystal
    • By Chrystal 4th Jan 18, 4:22 PM
    • 161 Posts
    • 1,183 Thanks
    Chrystal
    Handmade thank you cards is a fab idea, but not for this year - one to add to the planning list for next year! Time has completely got away from us, and they'll never get sent if I wait for us to have time to make them.

    Two bits of good news today - the first is that our remortgage is set to complete on the 8th, so hopefully will be in place and we'll be able to pay off the Tesco loan before next month's direct debits go through.

    Second is that DH and I have redone our SOA to reflect our new costs - I'll post it shortly - and although the saving for the extension is going to be scarcely enough and we might have to postpone until next summer rather than starting in January, I've been able to reduce my earning aims for 2018, which has allowed me to reduce my planned working hours too, so the year is looking a lot less frenetic. I have managed to reduce my evenings working to a maximum of one per week (and none in some weeks) and weekend working to exactly half of the weekends this year, which is a reduction on last year, although still more than ideal. This has improved my mindset immeasurably, as I was looking at the year with a bit of a sense of dread!
    Originally posted by Treadingonplaymobil
    Hurrah for the good news! So very pleased for you.

    Knowing that you can cut down your working time will make a huge difference to your mindset and hopefully let you enjoy being innovative with debt busting while still enjoying life.

    I think when you look back on the year you'll realise what a long way you've actually come, not just with paying the debt down, but also coming to terms with the fact that you can't be Superwoman ALL the time and that you deserve some time for yourself.

    I really admire your determination (and stamina!) X
    GC. Oct.17 = £261.18/ £300 = + £38.82 NSDs 20/31
    GC. Sept.17 = £354.89/£300 = - £54.39

    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 4th Jan 18, 4:27 PM
    • 1,151 Posts
    • 11,220 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Hurrah for the good news! So very pleased for you.

    Knowing that you can cut down your working time will make a huge difference to your mindset and hopefully let you enjoy being innovative with debt busting while still enjoying life.

    I think when you look back on the year you'll realise what a long way you've actually come, not just with paying the debt down, but also coming to terms with the fact that you can't be Superwoman ALL the time and that you deserve some time for yourself.

    I really admire your determination (and stamina!) X
    Originally posted by Chrystal
    You're completely right - I have been in semi-denial about what I am physically able to do (in terms of working time/earning potential/continuing to handmake everything and cook from scratch daily) for years, and it's only been during this process of facing up to the reality of our finances that I've really come to terms with my limits. Facing the music on the debt front has actually forced us to confront our priorities as a couple and a family, for the better I think.
    £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
    • armchairexpert
    • By armchairexpert 5th Jan 18, 4:01 AM
    • 738 Posts
    • 4,870 Thanks
    armchairexpert
    You're singing my song, as always! I am determined to try and make this work-life balance thing work better for me, and it's just not easy at all, is it?

    Love the inter-family Secret Santa idea. My kids always buy for each of us, and this year wanted to buy for one another too, and it's sweet and I want to encourage them giving and not just receiving but it definitely adds up. And we get some v odd things: Little Girl is into ornaments and knicknacks, so we get things like ceramic parrots and garden gnomes. Maybe I'll steal this idea!
    MFW diary here. 1 Feb 2017 $229,371 - MFD Feb 2043 aiming for May 2028
    14 August 2017 - Refinanced: $220,000
    December 2017 - $214,653.00 Current MFD 31 July 2035
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 5th Jan 18, 5:35 AM
    • 1,151 Posts
    • 11,220 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Yesterday's lists, before starting today....

    to do today (yesterday)
    1. Update debt total in signature. Done.
    2. Do some more house tidying. Done.
    3. Make flapjacks for DC snacks. Done.
    4. Pop into town to pick up thank you cards so the DC can do theirs, and a birthday card for DH, and an extra little present for him from my mum. Done, although DH came too so need to go again today for his card/present from my mum.
    5. Pack orders for smaller business. Done.
    6. Raise prices for smaller business - my supplier has put up their prices, and my profit was fairly pathetic even before that! Time to bite the bullet. Not done.

    To do this week
    1. Get the house into order. DH made a really good start on this yesterday.
    2. Do some batch cooking.
    3. Wrap DH's birthday presents.

    To do in January
    1. Review 2017 spending and try to improve 2018 plans by being more prepared - plan big spends like holidays and Christmas now and be realistic about the cost. Done with DH before doing SOA.
    2. Redo SOA once the remortgage is through. Done.
    3. Make a 2018 business plan that is less frenetic than originally (I think I had too high expectations of myself, leading to much stress in Nov/Dec). Made a good start on this.
    £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
    • Eager_Elephant
    • By Eager_Elephant 5th Jan 18, 6:25 AM
    • 4,167 Posts
    • 23,499 Thanks
    Eager_Elephant
    TOPM - I notice your water bill is huge. Either you are in a high cost area like South West or you have a leak.....

    Have you checked to see if there are any tariffs suitable for you. In my area (East Anglia) our water company do a tariff for people with 3 or more children which caps their water at a set figure which is generally about half of what it would be if they were on standard tariff.
    Ninja Saving Turtle No. 24 for January
    NSD - 11/18
    (up to 17/01/18)
    My Diary is here - http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=2175629 (Eager Elephants Effective Everyday Excursion)
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 5th Jan 18, 6:31 AM
    • 1,151 Posts
    • 11,220 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    TOPM - I notice your water bill is huge. Either you are in a high cost area like South West or you have a leak.....

    Have you checked to see if there are any tariffs suitable for you. In my area (East Anglia) our water company do a tariff for people with 3 or more children which caps their water at a set figure which is generally about half of what it would be if they were on standard tariff.
    Originally posted by Eager_Elephant
    You're right on the first count unfortunately - we live in the South West! I believe we are in the second or third most expensive area of the country for water. Already checked for leaks.
    £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
    • walkonsand
    • By walkonsand 5th Jan 18, 7:06 AM
    • 5 Posts
    • 23 Thanks
    walkonsand
    On the high water consumption, I would guess a huge amount of that would be shower related. Have you looked at a water saving shower head. As a general rule they use half the amount of water and they do still have the same pressure as a normal shower head. That's a double win as you use less Gas to heat the water too. I got mine for about £8.
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 5th Jan 18, 9:06 AM
    • 1,151 Posts
    • 11,220 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    On the high water consumption, I would guess a huge amount of that would be shower related. Have you looked at a water saving shower head. As a general rule they use half the amount of water and they do still have the same pressure as a normal shower head. That's a double win as you use less Gas to heat the water too. I got mine for about £8.
    Originally posted by walkonsand
    We already have one . No easy savings, our consumption is below average for a family our size. Lots of shared baths, we do a fair bit of laundry (obv) but I'm not obsessive about cleanliness by any stretch of the imagination.
    £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
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 5th Jan 18, 9:13 AM
    • 5,164 Posts
    • 9,817 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    Can you go back to non metered? We are in the South west and went to metered when our daughters left home but I seem to recall we had the option to move back to non metered if it was cheaper. We pay £53 for just 2 of us so I am not surprised that yours is £95.
    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
    • try harder
    • By try harder 5th Jan 18, 10:06 AM
    • 591 Posts
    • 2,106 Thanks
    try harder
    Love reading your diary every day you have done so well and sounds like a wonderful Christmas was had by all .So pleased that you have got everything sorted now and that you feel much more positive going ahead this year .Happy New Year to you all.
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 5th Jan 18, 10:06 AM
    • 1,642 Posts
    • 18,481 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    Happy New year. I am pleased to see you planning to pay down that last 18% interest card with the extra bits from the mortgage. You would really see the benefits if you could get that balance cleared and to a position where you are only using it to accumulate the benefits and paying it off each month.
    MFiT T4 #2 update 42.67% after Q7 £5,465 behind where I should be
    Save £12k in 2018 #53 - my annual target is £10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 budget of £3,500 including stores
    My DFD is http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5593594
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 5th Jan 18, 10:25 AM
    • 1,151 Posts
    • 11,220 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Can I have a MSE halo? I have been researching the flights/car hire for relative's holiday house (we have been offered free use of the house in the summer) and just flights and car hire was going to come to around £8-900 for the five of us, so I have been the bad cop and said it isn't happening - actually DH and my mum (who would have come with us) were fine when I explained the sums. That's something like 4% of the price of the extension, never mind the impact on debt repayment if we used it for that instead. I am feeling a bit sad we're not going, but it would have meant no camping trips, weekends away or anything all year (and we all know that wouldn't happen, so it would actually have meant a massive overspend), and it's easier to say no now before anyone gets carried away with the idea.
    £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
    • Chrystal
    • By Chrystal 5th Jan 18, 12:35 PM
    • 161 Posts
    • 1,183 Thanks
    Chrystal
    Well done you!
    I'll definitely award you the MSE halo TOPM
    GC. Oct.17 = £261.18/ £300 = + £38.82 NSDs 20/31
    GC. Sept.17 = £354.89/£300 = - £54.39

    • DawnW
    • By DawnW 5th Jan 18, 2:20 PM
    • 4,744 Posts
    • 36,626 Thanks
    DawnW
    Good decision TOPM, you will have other opportunities to do things like this in the future, and as you say, it would be a bit hard on the children to have no camping trips etc this year. My children are grown up now, but still talk about the camping we did when they were young. They take their own children now
    NSDs for January 5 /18
    Decluttering 24 /31

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