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  • FIRST POST
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 19th Feb 17, 5:55 PM
    • 4,011Posts
    • 18,472Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    Confessions of a house hoarder
    • #1
    • 19th Feb 17, 5:55 PM
    Confessions of a house hoarder 19th Feb 17 at 5:55 PM
    Hello MFW board

    It's about five years since I last posted here, but I'm back from the DFW board and ready to start tackling the mortgage.

    Er, or not. We accidentally bought another house. We didn't mean to, we only wanted to buy a 6-acre field next-door-but-one to our house, but it was an executor sale and even though the field we were after was a separate croft in title to the lady's other croft at the opposite end of the village, her family wanted them sold as one.

    Now, I have always, always wanted have a job that involved bringing derelict and abandoned houses back into use. The problem was that croft tenancies are not mortgageable and we didn't happen to have a spare six-figure sum lying about the place. What I did have was an absolutely wonderful family who went, 'Ooh, that looks like a great opportunity. Look into it.' We drew up a fairly detailed set of costings and a timeline, presented it to them, and the Dragons decided they were in!

    So instead of one 6-acre field we ended up buying five fields, totalling just over 12 acres, and a rather dilapidated three-bedroom croft house. Originally the plan was to do up the house and then sell that croft again, leaving us owning the field we'd originally wanted free and clear, but the more we've worked on it, the more we've realised that it would make an amazing holiday let, and three of its four fields are fabulous hay fields.

    Mr Minx, who has always been very handy about the house, has now got the renovating bug big-style as well, and is already asking me what we're going to buy next. The ultimate plan is to have two holiday lets and at least three buy-to-lets mortgage-free, picking houses that need a lot of work to make habitable, and specialising in providing homes for tenants with animals, whether that's dogs, cats, chickens, sheep or horses

    If anyone's interested in the renovation works, I do have a blog, but this diary is going to be more about the financial side and my efforts to earn a living self-employed in one of the most remote parts of the UK.
    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £114,428.66 Offset: £51,337.84 Amount paid off: £30,716.34 (21.2%) Paying interest on: £63,090.82
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £48,270.00) Currently: £169,836.86 Amount paid off: £7,580.00 (4.22%)
    Sugar days 2017: 17/26 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
Page 7
    • lionheartedgirl
    • By lionheartedgirl 6th Jun 17, 3:22 PM
    • 907 Posts
    • 3,197 Thanks
    lionheartedgirl
    Found you! hurrah! I had been wondering where a few long lost faces were, and a few of them are here! how lovely!

    I'm so excited to read of all your new ventures and wish you all the very best :-)

    *subscribes*
    Never sit in the comfy chair - Jake Humphrey
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 15th Jun 17, 8:15 AM
    • 4,011 Posts
    • 18,472 Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    Good news and bad news. The good news is that we've been told we've got both the residential and commercial mortgages. The bad news is that the lender's underwriters want both to complete on the same day so the credit cards are paid off immediately (as having the cards and only the residential mortgage puts us on the wrong side of their affordability line) - and of course, until the other house is decrofted, it's not mortgageble.

    Fortunately the surveyor is coming a week on Monday to do the drawings, but even if the solicitors play nicely with each other it's still going to take a minimum of three months to get it all tied up. The seller is a bit twitchy about this (her decrofting took 14 months to go through a few years back) so I had a look at bridging loans yesterday, but no lenders would even consider a house this far north. So unless anyone has any bright ideas for paying off just under £50,000 of cards in very short order, we're now stuck until the decrofting goes through, and I need to work like a demon to get a kitchen and bathroom in.

    Work-wise things are going well. I got the market research job done thanks to some help from NEL, who was having a quiet week and lent me two of her other typists for a couple of days. Still going through the PhD stuff, which is really interesting, and this morning I've got a 45-minute celeb interview to do for newest journalist Call me shallow, but I do love doing them

    With the last of the international friendlies over, I'm also going quiet on the matched betting front for the summer. I've withdrawn my bank from two bookies, but have £1,000 stuck in another two, because my card expired in February and I haven't made a deposit on the new one. Since the chip on the new one stopped working yesterday, the bank's sending me a replacement and I'll wait for that to arrive before calling the customer service teams to get my withdrawal method changed - I can't do it myself unless my balance is £0 and I can't withdraw because the card's expired! The money can sit in Ratesetter over the summer (although quite a large chunk is paying for Mr Minx's birthday weekend away) and then go back to work in August when the football season starts again.
    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £114,428.66 Offset: £51,337.84 Amount paid off: £30,716.34 (21.2%) Paying interest on: £63,090.82
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £48,270.00) Currently: £169,836.86 Amount paid off: £7,580.00 (4.22%)
    Sugar days 2017: 17/26 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 15th Jun 17, 8:22 AM
    • 4,011 Posts
    • 18,472 Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    Oh, forgot to add - we had the shearer over last night, so I have 13 happy naked sheep running around and 1 unhappy naked sheep. Poor Bella, the oldie at 13, wriggled at exactly the wrong moment and got the front edge of her left ear caught in the clippers She came out absolutely covered in blood, looking like something out of a sheep horror film, and with blood still dripping from her ear, but it congealed fairly fast and within 20 minutes she was back to grazing. It's had a good blast of antibiotic spray and I'll keep a close eye on her - if it goes yucky, I may need to go into the vet's and get an injection for her. This year, because I have more than three sheep, I've had to register with the British Wool Marketing Board, so they've sent me a huge sack (called a sheet) and all the fleeces are rolled up and put in it. I then take it to their depot when I'm next going south where it's graded for quality. I get a very small payment straight away and then next year, once all the fleece across the UK has been sold, I'll get a balancing payment so the total I receive is the average price per kg for wool of my type and grade sold across the country. It won't be a lot - I think the average price for my breed of sheep is about £1.42 a kg - but it will cover the cost of shearing them with a little left over.

    We've also had our peats cut, which I haven't had the bill for yet, but I think it's about £1.76 a metre. Mr Minx and I went up to the hill the other weekend and laid them all out to dry, and once we've had two or three weeks of wind and sun, we can go back up and herringbone them to dry the other side for the rest of the summer, before bringing them down in the autumn and stacking them for our winter fuel.
    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £114,428.66 Offset: £51,337.84 Amount paid off: £30,716.34 (21.2%) Paying interest on: £63,090.82
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £48,270.00) Currently: £169,836.86 Amount paid off: £7,580.00 (4.22%)
    Sugar days 2017: 17/26 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
    • Jessy103
    • By Jessy103 16th Jun 17, 10:02 AM
    • 437 Posts
    • 1,857 Thanks
    Jessy103
    Great news about the mortgages but shame about the cards! I don't know much about it but could Crowdfunding be an option?
    Original Mortgage Amount 2007 - £87,310.50
    Mortgage Amount July 2017 - £62,900.00
    Overpayment Target for 2017 - £5,000 /£3,679.09
    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
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 18th Jun 17, 9:33 PM
    • 4,011 Posts
    • 18,472 Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    Great news about the mortgages but shame about the cards! I don't know much about it but could Crowdfunding be an option?
    Originally posted by Jessy103
    It's a great idea, but I don't think I'd be able to raise enough - I'd have to pre-sell weeks in the holiday lets and that's over a year's-worth of weeks in all three. I've been looking at peer-to-peer property lending today as well, after listening to a podcast about it, to buy the house faster, but that doesn't seem to be an option either. I shall just have to work a major charm offensive on all the solicitors

    It's been a quiet day, but an interesting one. I've had a one-to-one lesson in trading football on Betfair, making 50p in the process, and after a conversation with a friend who is setting up a stud and is therefore looking to loan out some of her other horses, have a miniature Shetland pony arriving on Wednesday - both my horses know him, as he used to live next door, and having him around will mean that I can take each out on his own for some exercise without the other one charging up and down screaming because they've been left behind.

    My new card arrived on Saturday, the balance from one bookmaker is on its way back to my bank account and the other will get sorted tomorrow after my free bet on the US Open settles one way or the other (looking like it will go into the exchange right now, which is no bad thing!) I've already got £500 from my matched betting in Ratesetter at 2.7%, so there'll be another £1,000 going in next week to sit there until the football season starts again.

    Next week's jobs - 10 minutes of a file left for Journalist #3, who needs it back by the end of tomorrow, about 90 minutes in from NEL and hopefully will charge through the remainder of my friend's PhD interviews, as Mr Minx is away Tuesday to Thursday nights, so I can work late.
    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £114,428.66 Offset: £51,337.84 Amount paid off: £30,716.34 (21.2%) Paying interest on: £63,090.82
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £48,270.00) Currently: £169,836.86 Amount paid off: £7,580.00 (4.22%)
    Sugar days 2017: 17/26 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 27th Jun 17, 9:18 PM
    • 4,011 Posts
    • 18,472 Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    There is light at the end of the transcription tunnel! I'm so busy at the moment that I've had to turn down two jobs this week - one has said that it's not urgent and I can do it next week, which is great, but the other was six hours of focus groups, which would have been a nice chunk. Shame.

    The surveyor came yesterday to measure up the land the house and garden down the road sits on, and has said he'll have the drawings to the government department arranging the sale in 2-3 weeks (he's out surveying up here all this week), so we're a step closer to getting our mortgages.

    Exciting news this morning in that I have finally been notified of my 2016 farm payment (3 days before the deadline for the Scottish government making the 2017 one, which I suspect they're going to miss!) - a grand total of £408, which is about as much as it cost me to get help with the application. Still, money in the bank is money in the bank (or will be, when they pay it) and I can use it to buy some more lambs.

    The Shetland pony arrived and has fitted in pretty well - there was a little bit of handbagging the first time they all went in together and then Merlin decided to take revenge for all the times the Shetland chased him around the field with his teeth buried in Merlin's backside when they used to share a field and nipped him a few times on the back, so they had a few days where the Shetland preferred to graze alongside wherever the horse next door was grazing rather than with my two, but for the last 48 hours or so the three of them have stuck together and hopefully things will now settle down.

    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £114,428.66 Offset: £51,337.84 Amount paid off: £30,716.34 (21.2%) Paying interest on: £63,090.82
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £48,270.00) Currently: £169,836.86 Amount paid off: £7,580.00 (4.22%)
    Sugar days 2017: 17/26 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
    • TallGirl
    • By TallGirl 27th Jun 17, 9:21 PM
    • 4,139 Posts
    • 8,579 Thanks
    TallGirl
    Caz just finished reading your blog wow amazing and stunning pictures. Definitely follow you on there now. Ethel's house is looking stunning hopefully not long now. Exciting to take on a second so soon (if it works out) hope you get what you want.
    Save £12k in 17 no 93
    £7750/£12k
    Pay off wasted money £1465/£10k updated Sep 17
    • Jessy103
    • By Jessy103 28th Jun 17, 7:22 AM
    • 437 Posts
    • 1,857 Thanks
    Jessy103
    Glad things seem to be looking up! Aww look at that little face! I remember when I used to ride, the Shetlands at the stables always had an attitude and used to think they were shires! Lol!
    Original Mortgage Amount 2007 - £87,310.50
    Mortgage Amount July 2017 - £62,900.00
    Overpayment Target for 2017 - £5,000 /£3,679.09
    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
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 7th Jul 17, 4:16 PM
    • 4,011 Posts
    • 18,472 Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    We are going like the clappers with the house this week, spurred on by the fact that we have our joiner/carpenter for 3 weeks more or less uninterrupted and then we lose him to a new house build for 6-8 weeks, so we absolutely have to get the floors down and the kitchen in before he vanishes!

    Quick flyby to say that the mortgage interest was only £71.60 this month, which I think is about the lowest it's ever been.
    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £114,428.66 Offset: £51,337.84 Amount paid off: £30,716.34 (21.2%) Paying interest on: £63,090.82
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £48,270.00) Currently: £169,836.86 Amount paid off: £7,580.00 (4.22%)
    Sugar days 2017: 17/26 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 17th Jul 17, 9:21 PM
    • 4,011 Posts
    • 18,472 Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    I think I may be half-dead, but we have the kitchen floor down, the hall floor down, part of the living room floor down, paint on a few walls and the kitchen units are going in tomorrow.

    Sofas are ordered, as they're a 12-14 week lead time. I've never spent more than £450 on a sofa before (SofaSofa Madrid sofabed, now a decade old and still going strong!), so a smidge over £3,000 on two leather sofas was a bit of a shock. However, they are astonishingly comfortable and, more importantly, will fit through my front door.

    Today's card payments took me to over 1% paid off I have a slight dilemma now; my other Barclaycard finishes its interest-free period in two weeks and the first Barclaycard hasn't coughed up with a new offer. Mr Minx's empty Barclaycard has a cash transfer 0% offer which will more than cover it, but I think what I'm going to do is pay it off out of the deposit money for now and then take Mr Minx's transfer offer later when we need to pay the deposit on the new house. It'll bring our percentage of available credit used down a bit.
    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £114,428.66 Offset: £51,337.84 Amount paid off: £30,716.34 (21.2%) Paying interest on: £63,090.82
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £48,270.00) Currently: £169,836.86 Amount paid off: £7,580.00 (4.22%)
    Sugar days 2017: 17/26 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 31st Jul 17, 4:55 PM
    • 4,011 Posts
    • 18,472 Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    Barclaycard paid off, kitchen units all in (doors still need to go on and oven, hob and extractor are waiting for the electrician to come back), smallest bedroom mostly painted = knackered Minx.

    Could I please have some mortgage-granting vibes? The lender for the new residential mortgage asked for a letter from my accountant confirming that my income would continue at similar levels. I didn't think she'd agree to do that (I wouldn't in her shoes - I simply send her a list of invoices and expenses each year to do my tax return from!), so I suggested that I draw up a five-year income forecast, ask her to look over it, make any changes she thought prudent and then write them a letter to say she agreed with the forecast. So we've done it this afternoon, the letter is being written as I type and once that's gone off, it's all down to the lender as to whether we now get a mortgage offer in principle or not...
    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £114,428.66 Offset: £51,337.84 Amount paid off: £30,716.34 (21.2%) Paying interest on: £63,090.82
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £48,270.00) Currently: £169,836.86 Amount paid off: £7,580.00 (4.22%)
    Sugar days 2017: 17/26 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
    • hiddenshadow
    • By hiddenshadow 31st Jul 17, 8:15 PM
    • 2,221 Posts
    • 10,040 Thanks
    hiddenshadow
    Fingers crossed for you!
    MFW: Dec '13 £197,100 / Dec '14 £180,691 / Dec '15 £161,669 / Dec '16 £119,669 / Sept '17 ££107,383
    Payment 44/84 / 2017 MFW #56: £12,285/£20,000 61% / MFiT-T4 #15: £52,116/£90,000 57%
    • Jessy103
    • By Jessy103 1st Aug 17, 10:43 AM
    • 437 Posts
    • 1,857 Thanks
    Jessy103
    Good luck!! Fingers and toes crossed for you!! x
    Original Mortgage Amount 2007 - £87,310.50
    Mortgage Amount July 2017 - £62,900.00
    Overpayment Target for 2017 - £5,000 /£3,679.09
    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
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 7th Aug 17, 4:18 PM
    • 4,011 Posts
    • 18,472 Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    Got an email on Saturday afternoon to say head office was looking at it, but confirmed that this was the last step before a mortgage offer was made subject to valuations Hopefully they'll make a decision this week.
    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £114,428.66 Offset: £51,337.84 Amount paid off: £30,716.34 (21.2%) Paying interest on: £63,090.82
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £48,270.00) Currently: £169,836.86 Amount paid off: £7,580.00 (4.22%)
    Sugar days 2017: 17/26 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 14th Aug 17, 9:51 PM
    • 4,011 Posts
    • 18,472 Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    Now they want to see my 16/17 tax return. Please excuse me while I bang my head against a brick wall for a while....

    The good news is that I went to the mart today for the annual lamb sale and didn't buy any more sheep (Had to sit on my hands a couple of times though, there was a very nice pen of 14 ewe lambs I particularly fancied!)

    Am currently pricing up the various options for going to have lunch with my brother for his birthday in November. I haven't seen him for two years so suggested to Mum that a family lunch might be a nice idea and they're both up for it. He wants us to go to her rather than all meeting up in London, but flights to Bristol are only twice a week in winter, so I'll need to go to London, meet my brother at Paddington and we'll get the train down together. So far prices for the various travel options to London range from £6 return on the Megabus (if I want to leave Inverness at 8.30am and get to London Victoria bus station at 11.30pm and roughly the same coming back!) to £90 each way for a shared occupancy room on the Caledonian Sleeper. Amazingly, the Gatwick Travelodge is only £60 for two nights (both nights, not each!), so I'll likely jump on the EasyJet as per usual.
    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £114,428.66 Offset: £51,337.84 Amount paid off: £30,716.34 (21.2%) Paying interest on: £63,090.82
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £48,270.00) Currently: £169,836.86 Amount paid off: £7,580.00 (4.22%)
    Sugar days 2017: 17/26 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
    • cazmanian_minx
    • By cazmanian_minx 24th Aug 17, 9:39 PM
    • 4,011 Posts
    • 18,472 Thanks
    cazmanian_minx
    Mortgage approved, subject to valuation I now have the most enormous to-do list you can imagine!
    Home: 06/08: £145,145.00 Currently: £114,428.66 Offset: £51,337.84 Amount paid off: £30,716.34 (21.2%) Paying interest on: £63,090.82
    Holiday let:
    02/17: £177,416.86 (Family loan: £129,146.86 + 0% cards £48,270.00) Currently: £169,836.86 Amount paid off: £7,580.00 (4.22%)
    Sugar days 2017: 17/26 Debt-free: 17/02/2017
    • Knit Witch
    • By Knit Witch 24th Aug 17, 10:15 PM
    • 3,052 Posts
    • 28,179 Thanks
    Knit Witch
    Mortgage approved, subject to valuation I now have the most enormous to-do list you can imagine!
    Originally posted by cazmanian_minx
    WOOOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOOOOO
    OS Weight Loss 1/10
    • Secret Saving Squirrel
    • By Secret Saving Squirrel 24th Aug 17, 10:19 PM
    • 3,865 Posts
    • 35,833 Thanks
    Secret Saving Squirrel
    Excellent news, well done x
    Paid off mortgage nine years early in 2013. Now picking and choosing our work to fit in with the rest of our lives!
    Still thrifty though, after all these years
    • TallGirl
    • By TallGirl 24th Aug 17, 10:28 PM
    • 4,139 Posts
    • 8,579 Thanks
    TallGirl
    Brilliant one step closer exciting.
    Save £12k in 17 no 93
    £7750/£12k
    Pay off wasted money £1465/£10k updated Sep 17
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