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
    • worriedDan
    • By worriedDan 25th Feb 17, 7:12 AM
    • 186Posts
    • 548Thanks
    worriedDan
    Dan's desperate dash towards solvency
    • #1
    • 25th Feb 17, 7:12 AM
    Dan's desperate dash towards solvency 25th Feb 17 at 7:12 AM
    Hi everyone,

    After posting on the DFW board, I have decided to start a diary. My earlier posts can be found here - http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5601202

    In a nutshell, we 55K in debt with not much to show for it. I have reached a point where something HAS to be done to sort out this awful mess. I do all of our finances and whilst my wife always knew that were in lots of debt, it has only been over the last couple of weeks that I have really started to discuss it with her.

    I put together a budget that would realistically allow us to clear the debt in about 3 years. I sat down with m wife and shared it with her. She was fully on board and agrees that we need to clear the debt before we turn 40 ( 3 & 4 years away for us)

    I still haven't said "we owe 55K" but I have shared with her the rough payments that we will make and the timescale. All of the statements are also there for her perusal and I offered to make her a list of what we owed - she declined. This was the worst part for me and I feel so much better having opened up our communication. My plan from this point onwards is to keep a check that we are both following our budget. I am also going to sit down with my wife every few months and do an update on how we are doing. I don't want to keep talking about the total balance though. It makes me feel physically unwell. Noone else knows about our debt and our friends and family probably think that we are doing well!

    The good news....

    We are able to throw about £1750 at our debts each months. Most are 0% so the majority of this comes off the balance. We take home just under 4.5K between us.

    We have 13K saved. This is saved with my wife's family ( complicated situation that I won't go into on here) . In theory I suppose that this makes our 55K debt 43K. We are not going to use the money to pay debts, not right now anyway, however the psychology of knowing that the money is there is a real help to me.

    I have set our budget so that after all bills and debt payments, we have 200 for food, money to cover diesel, kids clubs, emergency savings and £300 for 'fun' I think that this is realistic and doable. I cannot see a reason why this should fail. This new budget starts from next payday - early next week.

    I still can't believe that we owe such a large amount of money. I struggle with the total figure and am desperate for it to go down!!!!
Page 9
    • worriedDan
    • By worriedDan 17th May 17, 7:56 AM
    • 186 Posts
    • 548 Thanks
    worriedDan
    Morning everyone,

    Things are moving along quite nicely. It's now been more than 3 months since this journey started for me. I have calmed down since the early days when I was stressing our 24/7 and making myself ill. I am still totally determined and sticking to the plan, but it doesn't drag me down in the way that it did.

    We have made such major changes to our spending habits. I shudder when I think of our old spending habits. For the first time we are actually planning ahead, for example, we really want some new garden furniture- nothing fancy or expensive. Normally I would have just ordered it from a catalogue or put it on our credit cards. Instead we have been discussing it for weeks and mulling over the cheapest option! We still haven't bought any!

    This month we will pay off £1800 as opposed to the 2K target. This is due to having to pay a speeding fine and also an issue with my phone bill where 2 months were taken from my bank! We are ok with this though and we accept that there will be months where we might not quite make the 2K. There should also be other months where we can pay slightly more than 2K so it should all balance out.

    I hope that everyone is doing ok. I am going to make more of an effort to update my diary more regularly.
    • triple choc chip
    • By triple choc chip 17th May 17, 6:17 PM
    • 815 Posts
    • 2,881 Thanks
    triple choc chip
    Fab progress, you seem relaxed and in control. Well done!
    Life's greatest satisfactions: Getting the last laugh, having the last word and paying the last instalment.
    Debt Free since 6.8.13
    Saving for Xmas 2017 #3: £590/£650 90.76%
    Emergency fund £1k
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 17th May 17, 7:46 PM
    • 1,561 Posts
    • 17,931 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    Well done Dan. Your most recent post makes really good reading and your in-control manner is such a contrast. I'm in that really flat period of the month where there's just one payment left from each account and it feels as though it isn't worth posting. Keep going, your progress is awesome.

    Really good news that you did get the CC balance transfer limit increased BTW - it costs nothing to ask and it can save you money!
    MFiT T4 #2 update 42.67% after Q7 £5,465 behind where I should be
    Save £12k in 2017 #64 - £9,260.94 saved (84.19%) after October - my annual target is £11,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2017 budget of £3,600 £3000 (reduced from Apr) - 78.56% including stores after October
    My DFD is http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5593594
    • ada-or-ardor
    • By ada-or-ardor 17th May 17, 7:54 PM
    • 125 Posts
    • 528 Thanks
    ada-or-ardor
    Yeah it's so great to hear how much more positive you're feeling :-) well done!!

    Ada
    • Verbatim
    • By Verbatim 18th May 17, 3:24 PM
    • 4,514 Posts
    • 13,221 Thanks
    Verbatim
    I agree;a wonderful positive turnaround. I'm so glad you're not making yourself ill with worry anymore.
    CCs @0% £24k Dec 05 £19,621.41 Au £13400 S 12600 Oct £11,981 £9481 £7500 Nov £7250 D £7100 Jan 6950 F £5800 Mar£5400 May £4830 June £4660 July £4460 Aug £3200, S £900, £0 18/9/07 DFW Nerd 042
    • worriedDan
    • By worriedDan 16th Jun 17, 3:27 PM
    • 186 Posts
    • 548 Thanks
    worriedDan
    Thought it was time for a much needed update!

    It's been about 4 months now since the start of my journey. We are going really well. We have managed to stick fairly closely to our 'pay off 2K a month' target. This month we will be a bit short the target due ( will pay £1700) but for the first time in years we are not using credit and out balances are going down at a decent rate!

    Some of you will remember that I made myself ill with worry at the start of my journey. I took advice, went to my GP, took the anti depressants and have recently been referred for congitive behaviour therapy. This is the best thing I have ever done. I feel stronger in myself and my mental health has improved 10 fold. I no longer worry about the debt in the way that I used to. When I read back my earlier posts it feels like I am reading someone else's story.

    We are still in lots of debt as we are only in the early stages of our journey BUT we are making progress. We are on track to hit our end of Year target BUT it's fine, even if we are just shy of it.

    I am thinking of ending this diary and starting a new, more positive one! I don't the 'desperate' part of the title!!
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 16th Jun 17, 5:46 PM
    • 1,561 Posts
    • 17,931 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    Hi Dan,
    That is a really positive update and makes for excellent reading. Please can I urge you not to change your name or diary - it will sit as an example for others who may be feeling as desperate as you were when you started. Don't feel ashamed of the things that you wrote. They are part of showing where you started and to use a much over-used phrase, they really are part of your journey. You should be really proud. Anyway, if you change your name, I might have to change mine! I am hardly a lass in the sense of a young lady (probably never was tbh) - as a young woman I was no lady (!) and now any lady-like characteristics are no longer associated with youth...

    Anyway, it's good to see you posting and I hope you will do a bit of a status update to show your progress at some point.

    Well done!
    MFiT T4 #2 update 42.67% after Q7 £5,465 behind where I should be
    Save £12k in 2017 #64 - £9,260.94 saved (84.19%) after October - my annual target is £11,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2017 budget of £3,600 £3000 (reduced from Apr) - 78.56% including stores after October
    My DFD is http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5593594
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 19th Jun 17, 12:17 PM
    • 8,149 Posts
    • 43,019 Thanks
    EssexHebridean
    Oh Dan that's just brilliant to read - well done you! Understand where you're coming from on the thread title but definitely be proud of all you've done to turn your situation round.
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£632.77 (20/11/17)
    SOA Calculator for DFW newbies: Stoozing.com SOA Calculator
    • worriedDan
    • By worriedDan 17th Jul 17, 10:27 PM
    • 186 Posts
    • 548 Thanks
    worriedDan
    Hi Everyone,

    Not posted for a while. It's been about 4 months now since the start of our journey so still fairly early days I guess. this month has been our trickiest yet with loads of things to pay out. This is the first month since we started this that I have felt a little uneasy about money. Not sure if this is the fact that our budget has been strained, or the effect of medication wearing off since I came off my antidepressants. I think that its perhaps due to the fact that we are about to break up for the 6 weeks summer hols and I know that this will be a real test for us.

    We haven't managed to £2000 debt repayment this month as we have had to pay out SO much stuff that was unexpected. I am ok with this as we knew that there would always be times when we had to be flexible, but I am just so determined to never go back to where we were.

    I have just done some number crunching ( I haven't done that for months!!) and I can see that we have made good progress since April. We just need to keep it together over the summer!
    • Verbatim
    • By Verbatim 17th Jul 17, 10:57 PM
    • 4,514 Posts
    • 13,221 Thanks
    Verbatim
    Sounds like you have it all under control. Well done Dan.
    CCs @0% £24k Dec 05 £19,621.41 Au £13400 S 12600 Oct £11,981 £9481 £7500 Nov £7250 D £7100 Jan 6950 F £5800 Mar£5400 May £4830 June £4660 July £4460 Aug £3200, S £900, £0 18/9/07 DFW Nerd 042
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 18th Jul 17, 4:12 PM
    • 8,149 Posts
    • 43,019 Thanks
    EssexHebridean
    I'm guessing that even if you just "tread water" - make the payments you have to make - but don't throw anything extra at the debt busting, you'll still be a lot better off than you would have been in a "pre LBM" summer holidays?

    Sometimes the stuff of memories is the most important - they'll never be those ages again, and so long as you budget still works and you're going forwards not backwards, you might just want to go with the flow for a few weeks.
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£632.77 (20/11/17)
    SOA Calculator for DFW newbies: Stoozing.com SOA Calculator
    • worriedDan
    • By worriedDan 11th Sep 17, 9:52 AM
    • 186 Posts
    • 548 Thanks
    worriedDan
    So it's now been 6 pay days since the start of this journey and we have cleared around 10K of our initial debt. This is about 2k less that we had planned but then we always knew that we would have to tweak it, here and there. We initially planned to pay £2000 per month but have 'only' managed 1700 or 1800 on some months. I am not beating myself up over this as even if we 'only' paid £1700 per month, our debt free date would increase by 5 months, so not the end of the world.

    I am going to re do out SOA over the next few days so will post this at some point soon.

    hope everyone else if doing ok.
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 11th Sep 17, 12:20 PM
    • 8,149 Posts
    • 43,019 Thanks
    EssexHebridean
    As long as it didn't start out at 2k a month and then steadily decline month on month, then all good. And even if it did, identify that slide now and work out why it's happening and you'd still be able to stop it. You're learning so much along the way - budgeting, saying yes to some things and no to others - and all that is the stuff that you take forwards and live the rest of your life by - that's the best thing about it, the way it sets you up for the future.

    10k cleared in 6 months is incredible anyway - well done!
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£632.77 (20/11/17)
    SOA Calculator for DFW newbies: Stoozing.com SOA Calculator
    • triple choc chip
    • By triple choc chip 11th Sep 17, 2:57 PM
    • 815 Posts
    • 2,881 Thanks
    triple choc chip
    That's amazing Dan, what a turnaround.
    Thanks for remembering to return and update! Onwards and upwards...
    Life's greatest satisfactions: Getting the last laugh, having the last word and paying the last instalment.
    Debt Free since 6.8.13
    Saving for Xmas 2017 #3: £590/£650 90.76%
    Emergency fund £1k
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 11th Sep 17, 10:15 PM
    • 485 Posts
    • 1,773 Thanks
    Honeysucklelou2
    Fantastic progress, well done!
    paydbx #90 £475/£10,000.
    Loan £17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans £3342 March 2017. £3206 in Oct 17
    • worriedDan
    • By worriedDan 14th Sep 17, 2:55 PM
    • 186 Posts
    • 548 Thanks
    worriedDan
    updated SOA - comments please!!!
    So we have had a proper look at how far we have come since the dark days of March. I have updated the SOA to show where we are now. I have divided the debts into 0% and non-0%. Our starting debt was closer to 60K than the 55K that I originally though. We have actually paid off £9119 since we started in April which is good, but a bit less than the 10K that I thought. My wife is delighted with our progress. I am happy but want to do better!
    The thing that I most pleased about is how we have changed our behaviour. Our debts have been increasing for years. We would pay off 1K and spend another 2!!! For the first time we have actually reduced the debt by a decent amount in a short time. There have been ups and downs along the way and I do feel as though it has taken us 6 months to get into the swing of things. I have also really tackled my mental health and feel far more equipped to deal with it all.

    In terms of the SOA, My pay has increased a bit,plus £130 a month from my dad that he owes me for money that I lent him 8 years ago! I have only included the minimum payments so that you can see the potential amount that we have to throw at debts, on top of the minimums.

    Household Information[/b]
    Number of adults in household........... 2
    Number of children in household......... 1
    Number of cars owned.................... 2

    Monthly Income Details

    Monthly income after tax................ 3555
    Partners monthly income after tax....... 1020
    Benefits................................ 82.8
    Other income............................ 130
    Total monthly income.................... 4787.8


    Monthly Expense Details

    Mortgage................................ 489
    Secured/HP loan repayments.............. 0
    Rent.................................... 0
    Management charge (leasehold property).. 0
    Council tax............................. 103
    Electricity............................. 40
    Gas..................................... 49
    Oil..................................... 0
    Water rates............................. 30
    Telephone (land line)................... 15
    Mobile phone............................ 15
    TV Licence.............................. 12
    Satellite/Cable TV...................... 0
    Internet Services....................... 17.5
    Groceries etc. ......................... 250
    Clothing................................ 30
    Petrol/diesel........................... 160
    Road tax................................ 5.2
    Car Insurance........................... 20
    Car maintenance (including MOT)......... 0
    Car parking............................. 0
    Other travel............................ 0
    Childcare/nursery....................... 0
    Other child related expenses............ 0
    Medical (prescriptions, dentist etc).... 0
    Pet insurance/vet bills................. 0
    Buildings insurance..................... 10
    Contents insurance...................... 10
    Life assurance ......................... 28
    Other insurance......................... 0
    Presents (birthday, christmas etc)...... 100
    Haircuts................................ 10
    Entertainment........................... 150
    Holiday................................. 0
    Emergency fund.......................... 100
    Total monthly expenses.................. 1643.7



    Assets

    Cash.................................... 14000
    House value (Gross)..................... 165000
    Shares and bonds........................ 0
    Car(s).................................. 8000
    Other assets............................ 0
    Total Assets............................ 187000



    Secured & HP Debts

    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Mortgage...................... 69000....(489)......1.25
    Total secured & HP debts...... 69000.....-.........-


    Unsecured Debts
    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    all debts at 0%................40881.....830.......0
    Debt not 0%....................9000......248.......6.9
    Total unsecured debts..........49881.....1078......-



    Monthly Budget Summary

    Total monthly income.................... 4,787.8
    Expenses (including HP & secured debts). 1,643.7
    Available for debt repayments........... 3,144.1
    Monthly UNsecured debt repayments....... 1,078
    Amount left after debt repayments....... 2,066.1


    Personal Balance Sheet Summary
    Total assets (things you own)........... 187,000
    Total HP & Secured debt................. -69,000
    Total Unsecured debt.................... -49,881
    Net Assets.............................. 68,119


    We need to better with the entertainment and present budget as we have pretty much fudged this. We haven't gone mad but equally we haven't controlled it in the way that we should.
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 14th Sep 17, 4:09 PM
    • 8,149 Posts
    • 43,019 Thanks
    EssexHebridean
    baby steps Dan - you're doing really well with this. Pick one of the categories to make your next focus and make sure that you diarise everything you spend so you can really get to grips with what's being spent. You do realise than in another 6 months you could have shifted everything that is not at 0%? That's amazing!
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£632.77 (20/11/17)
    SOA Calculator for DFW newbies: Stoozing.com SOA Calculator
    • worriedDan
    • By worriedDan 14th Sep 17, 9:15 PM
    • 186 Posts
    • 548 Thanks
    worriedDan
    Thanks Essex, I do love your supportive replies. You helped me a great deal in those early 'dark' days.
    • worriedDan
    • By worriedDan 14th Sep 17, 9:19 PM
    • 186 Posts
    • 548 Thanks
    worriedDan
    Just realised that I missed £122 from my expenses. This means that our total disposable income that we can use toward debts ( on top of the minimums) is £1944.

    Part off me wants to go crazy and throw every penny at the debt, whereas my wife wants to continue aiming for the 2K a month in order to make it sustainable. 2K per month would see us debt free in just over 2 years. This would be great! I want to be debt free before I turn 40 in 2021.
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 14th Sep 17, 11:10 PM
    • 4,680 Posts
    • 8,870 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    I think you are doing really well Dan but do you really not set aside anything for car maintenance?
    4 weeks to go until early retirement in December . Debt free and mortgage free.

    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

1,769Posts Today

7,432Users online

Martin's Twitter