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    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 25th Feb 17, 8:39 AM
    • 141Posts
    • 235Thanks
    coastalchick
    2017 - moving life forwards
    • #1
    • 25th Feb 17, 8:39 AM
    2017 - moving life forwards 25th Feb 17 at 8:39 AM
    Hi

    New diary for a (hopefully!) new period in life. About me: 38, co-habiting (partner shall henceforth be referred to as "BD"), 1 cat.

    Currently living with BD in my house (or flouse as my friend calls it as it is not really a flat but not really a house!). It's under offer and we are hoping to sell this and buy our new house mid aprill. BD's flat has been on market for a while but little interest due to colossal service charges so that is rented out until Feb 2018. But our house purchase has hit a few problems, mainly due to boundary issues (which are solvable but which may be impacting on timetable!) and we are not certain it is all going to go through in time.

    Once in the new house, we are going to actively start trying for a family. If it happens before then, it happens but we are not actively trying right now due to house stress.

    Why am I here? Well, I used to have NO clue about money (I really think they should teach you what the heck an interest rate is at school and what credit cards and store cards actually mean and charge!) and was in a LOT of debt through university and my early to mid-20's. I had no clue what an interest rate was and instead just saw credit and store cards as "free" money. Often missed payments, not cos I couldn't pay (though this did become more of the case towards the end of the bad spell!) but just cos I wasn't organised and didn't realise what impact they had! Makes me sick to the stomach when I think of all the money I wasted over the years.

    I bought a maisonette in tooting in Nov 2003 (got a 100% mortgage - you could in those days!), then in April 2004, lost my job. Luckily I had income protection but of course, they don't tell you that doesn't kick in for a certain period. Also, I seem to recall that back then I also couldn't claim benefits for a period. Sadly, a few weeks before I lost my job I signed on the dotted line for a new kitchen (got royal ripped off there too) which cost me 10k (it probably should have cost 2-3 but I was so naive in those days) so had to max out the credit cards to pay for it.

    My parents offered to help but I felt I had got myself into that mess (basically it was partially my fault I got the boot as I wasn't really taking my job seriously) so declined as wanted to get self out of it. So moved, got a new job, towed the line, consolidated debt. Rented out the tooting flat and eventually bought the place I live in now. BD moved in mid June 2015 so mortgage and bills split.

    Fast forward to now and I am pretty comfortable. Luckily I had a job where I earned big bucks which enabled me to pay off all my debt, and save loads and buy the place we live in now. However, that came at a price and I was so overworked and stressed (and underpaid actually compared to others in the market and for the hours I worked) that my hair started falling out and I suffered from anxiety, panic attacks, IBS, acid reflux and regularly wanted to have a non-fatal accident so I could be admitted to hospital and not have to go to work). Eventually I couldn't take any more so quit at start of last year, and took some time off to recharge the batteries.

    Mid last year I started a new job in a much less stressful role and for only 4 days a week. Took a pay cut because of the 4 day week but worked out if I scaled the package up to 5 days, I was actually earning the same as I had been in the stressful job (which shows that decision to leave was def right!)

    Now we are about to embark (hopefully) on the next chapter in life, but feel I need to be here to try to keep myself on straight and narrow spend-wise, particularly as I now physically have less cash coming in each month and our mortgage is going to double with new house (and bills will be more too). I also need to save for maternity leave.

    I constantly worry about money (which BD doesn't understand) and the future and whether we will have enough in retirement. It's silly because on paper we are comfortable, but I think it's because I've been in serious debt before that I am constantly doing sums in my head. The tooting flat was bought for 160k (plus 48k for extension of leasehold recently) and is now worth around 450k. It has around 100k left on the mortgage and is rented out. I will own it outright by age 50, after which the rental will provide pure income. Have only just started a pension as my old job didn't have one (surprise surprise) which 630 per month goes into. BD's flat has around 75k of equity in it and he has a work pension too. We have a lot in savings at the moment but that will be left at minimal when we buy the new house as we are putting down 20% deposit plus fees, stamp duty etc. Other than our 3 mortgages on the 3 properties, we have no debt.

    So, probably most people will think I have nothing to moan about but I still worry because I know how easy it is to get into debt as I have been there previously. I also worry because children are expensive and we might have to pay for private school if the school they are allocated isn't very good. BD is a semi professional photographer and used to do weddings which he can charge up to 3k for, but he quit doing them as he found them quite stressful, but I guess could do a couple if we needed school fees (but wouldn't want him to if he found it stressful).

    So, apologies for the brain dump but I'm here to try to rein in the spending!

    Today is food shop and I have a list - we have budgeted £150 (which I know is a lot) as BD wants me to bake a cake today so quite a lot needed for that, plus this week we need coffee, loo roll, dishwasher tablets etc etc. Once we've done that, think we will have lunch at home (it's rubbish weather out there today) from what we've bought, then maybe reading this afternoon and bake the cake. BD is out at his friends tonight so I will be cooking a nice chicken dish from stores and watching a pre-recorded movie with the cat.

    Tomorrow BD will probably work in the morning, then we are at his mum's for lunch (so free lunch) and will cook a roast from the weekly shop tomorrow evening
    Last edited by coastalchick; 25-02-2017 at 9:37 AM.
Page 5
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 30th Jun 17, 1:15 PM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    to re-upholster the sofa he said around £1800! Could as well buy new for that!!!!
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 1st Jul 17, 2:54 PM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    £142.60!!!! FFS. B told me to get loads of booze. 18 pack corona, 12 carlsberg export, 6 bottles wine. Plus sides (to be fair, they were reduced to 79p each), rolls, salad, baguette, pudding, cream, sausages, chicken, sauces. Plus stuff for lunches next week, the papers, bin liners, milk, veg for next week. I really don't know how it all added up to that. Because booze was around £55 so just not sure how rest added up. Maybe I better check my receipt. Got cereal too.

    Really not feeling like drinking tonight. We had a fair bit at friends last night. They got out about 15 different bottles of whisky so tucking into that. Feeling rough today but B feeling fine.

    Have just made garlic bread for tonight so that can go in oven when time comes and we are doing jacket potatoes too. I personally think we have too much food and lots of it will go to waste. Oh, got cheese and crisps too. Now see where it's all adding up. There are only going to be 5 of us and have 10 burgers, 12 sausages, 8 chicken thighs, jacket pots, coleslaw, potato salad, salad, rolls, crisps and cheese.

    Gah, I do like socialising but it's bloody expensive!!!!

    Hoping that is IT now until next week for food and drink. I think if we could cut down on shopping bills then we would be loaded! But we have so much on over the summer with people coming for bbq's and visiting and what not.

    Not quite sure when life became so expensive. B seems oblivious.
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 2nd Jul 17, 11:25 AM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    so night was good but lots of wasted food!!!! Garlic bread barely touched. Friend took leftover sausages for her dog. We have lots of grated cheese left and we have some left over chorizo/salami from what we took to B's mum's thursday so will use some towards omelette B going to make at lunch. B is currently at his mum's clearing out the loft - hopefully he will find plenty we can car boot. Going to aim for one next sat and then anything we can't shift give to charity shop.

    Lazy day today though - we might go for a walk later and have to plan our september hols. I just honestly don't know when life got so expensive.

    Doing my shredding this morning too - loads of stuff from when I was with my ex years and years ago. Upsetting to think I wasted 4.5 years on that b*stard!!!!!! (he ran off with someone else 6 months before we were due to get married) and found the information insert to our wedding invitations earlier - was good to put that in the shredder!!!!
    • sauceoclock
    • By sauceoclock 4th Jul 17, 10:24 AM
    • 742 Posts
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    sauceoclock
    I find when I entertain and have my girlfriends or the guys over for dinner I tend to portion things out per person, I tally in my head ‘2 of those, 1 of those, 1 of those each’ etc. and make the meal in my head… I then cook and buy that much. People will eat what you make them in that scenario but it limits waste… When I used to eat meat if I had people coming over I would either go to the butcher counter and ask for the specific amount of meat I needed each or buy a multipack thing that had the exact number in…. It’s wonderful having the house you can entertain in but food wastage does become part and parcel so it’s just about limiting that – easier said than done (especially when your friends are fussy, veggie, vegan, allergic to everything etc.)

    How is Marley getting on?

    Exciting news about trying for a baby, really pleased for you. Also great to hear the maternity pay thing isn’t stopping you, yes it may be a bit of a struggle but there is never a ‘perfect’ time to have a baby and rather this than waiting and then potentially missing the opportunity.
    Christmas Shopping: £30 Amazon £30 Argos £10 Tesco
    Loan: £3,000.00
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 5th Jul 17, 7:56 PM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    Thanks Sauce - yes, I do try to do that in my head too but it's B thinking we don't have enough - he literally drives me insane!!!

    He's doing really well thanks. He seems to like new house though he;s not very good at shoo-ing other cats away!!!

    Yeah, I think that it would be better if we are successful in september (or any time onwards) but given my age and fact its harder to conceive and also more chance of miscarriage, much better to go for it now.

    We are a bit brassic right now as just booked 2 weeks to Sicily in Sept/Oct. Paid deposit and all flights yesterday but balance due 21 July! Can just about do it as get paid on 20th but means nothing out of july's pay towards house stuff and all my holiday account gone!!!

    Claimed back £12 in expenses from work - £3.90 was for sandwich I bought last week whilst in other office and rest was for sandwiches when I went to other office in Jan which had not got round to claiming back so the £8.10 can go to savings and the £3.90 to credit card as put it on that.

    B at band practice then going for a drink which is great as means have tv to self. Tomorrow will be spendy as out for dinner with friends - 15 of us so bar bill will be massive and people going mad ordering drinks and I am driving!!!!
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 7th Jul 17, 8:11 AM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    Yesterday was ok in end. Walked too and from work thereby saving petrol money. Took lunch (even though it was horrid and made me and B feel sick!!). Then out for dinner with friends. Ended up being 13 of us. Was £33.50 a head including tip which wasn't too bad though I wasn't drinking. That was 2 courses, 2 pints lime and soda and a coffee. The boys drank lots of pints whereas the girls who were drinking (5) only got through 2 bottles wine and 4 G&T's so in a way subsidising drinkers as some couples had both drinking and some had just 1, but I don't mind that too much. I'd thought it was going to be about £40 a head so in a way saved. Was good to catch up with people but felt for B as he hadn't really met many of them before (it's the group with the 2 girls who are mean to me in though both were really nice last night) and the boys didn't really talk to him much. They can be cliquey.

    Tonight is B's work summer ball so having hair done at 330. Just a cut on blow dry. Could have done with highlights but she couldn't fit those in. Budgeting £50. Will be minimum spend as free bar and food but getting taxi home so maybe a fiver and we are getting a lift there. Not tried my dress on yet so not actually sure it fits!!! I won't drink. Slight chance I could be pregnant but won't know for 2 weeks. Am probably not but at my age it's just not worth taking risk, need all the help I can.

    Then we have NO plans, other than to B's mums sunday. So happy about that. We will do big shop and just potter at home, do garden, maybe go for walk etc.

    Ordered new bed frame yesterday - locally was £575 but online £324! So as we sold old mattress for £150 and are going to sell our current bed frame (either to B's new tenants or just advertise), it should pretty much be paid for by that which is good. Hoping that gets delivered next week.

    Just sitting here now in lounge with double doors open and it is so peaceful, birds tweeting etc. I love this house. So glad we went for it in the end. Can't believe we ever weren't sure about it!
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 7th Jul 17, 8:18 AM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    oh, and found out yesterday exactly how underpaid I was in my last job. In an equivalent role in a bigger firm (but not hugely bigger) they were paid 48k a year more than me, plus had loads of benefits (pension, private health, death in service, critical illness, travel insurance) (whereas I had zero benefits) and chance of 30% bonus (we never had a bonus scheme). I cannot believe I let myself be underpaid for so long. 5 flaming years (well, I suppose the 3.5 I was a partner). Feel very annoyed at self now given all the health problems I had - at least a salary like that would have allowed me to squirrel loads away.
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 8th Jul 17, 8:33 AM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    hair was £67.10 but that included shampoo which I do need. Because of my alopecia, my scalp is v sensitive so it's a special shampoo which seems to work for me in terms of managing my scalp pain. So guessing hair was £53 which is slightly over budget but then I was under budget on thurs night dinner. Bought milk, crisps and face wipes on way home (face wipes were only 99p) so that was £4 something but some of that will be paid by B as was joint.

    Friends gave us a lift last night there and back so fiver saved on taxi and also meant we left an hour earlier which I was grateful for as B got quite drunk!!!! To be fair to him, it was one of those where the staff were just topping up everyone's glasses when they weren't looking. He is a bit hungover today and neither of us could sleep so been up since 6am but he's in garden now. All free last night and was lovely food so a good night.

    Think today we will just be pottering and maybe go for a walk or something. Big shop later and we need expensive stuff like coffee so not expecting that to be cheap but hoping with a bit of meal planning we can control it. Tonight will be night in with netflix! We are away with B's dad and stepmum next weekend then my parents are here the weekend after, whilst looking forward to both, also looking forward to having this weekend really quiet!
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 9th Jul 17, 9:10 AM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    ended up going out for lunch - our fave pizza place. £17.50 each so not too bad.

    Then big shop ended up being £41 each - we did need things like coffee and extras like chocolate made it into our trolley. We also got one of those posh charlie bingham meals for dinner which was almost £9 and an emergency pizza for when we get back late next sun which I figure is cheaper than getting a take out/going out.

    Spending should be minimal today - need to get B's brother in law some beers for his birthday (so maybe a fiver each) and some spinach as the stuff they had in yesterday was about to go off. This week should be cheap during the week - have a team meeting tomorrow where lunch is provided then will take lunch in rest of week. We will probably only need a top up of milk. Next weekend we are away but accommodation and hire car already paid for and so will just be meals out, drinks and petrol. Should be able to pay for that from holiday account though thinking of doing it from this month's expenses as have a fair whack left (new pay on 20th) as out holiday balance is payable 21st so really need it for that.

    My parents arrive on 20th so it's good timing pay day wise though I think that the next pay month I won't be able to save much from budget (may even go over) given parents here and then we've got loads of people coming round for bbqs as we've been to so many bbqs and dinners at their houses over the years that we really need to repay that kindness
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 9th Jul 17, 11:07 AM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    spoke too soon! B's sister has messaged saying lets do an impromptu bbq at his mums so we have to get food. Hoping we don't get stung like normal for getting the expensive bits of meal, esp as I could actually be pregnant (would be a shock as first time trying and given my age....) and if so, then it will be due end March and so I won't get maternity pay!
    • dionysia
    • By dionysia 9th Jul 17, 11:54 AM
    • 63 Posts
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    dionysia
    Nice weather for a bbq . Could you proactively say what food you'll bring instead of waiting to get lumbered with the expensive meat and booze?
    June 2017: owe £16,818.
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 10th Jul 17, 8:04 AM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    thanks D - in the end it was fine - we got 3 for £10 on burgers so got 12 burgers and actually only 4 got put on the bbq as there were some already out so we suggested B's mum freeze the other 8 we bought so we could have them another time (which should mean we have to bring less next time) then of course I felt bad for moaning at B about bringing stuff!

    So we spent around £11 each in supermarket which was the burgers, plus B wanted sunday newspaper, bottle coke and cloudy lemonade for house plus we had to get B's brother in law some beers for his b'day. So that was fine.

    Then £12.99 on the old a**zon as we have an issue with silverfish (scary little critters!) so ordered a spray but that will come out of house account.

    Should be min spend this week - we have all the food we need (and free really nice lunch at work today as team meeting) so just need a milk top up. Go away thurs night though so £££ of course all weekend. And this month cannot come out of hol account as haven't got enough given we need to pay our sept hol balance on 21st. But over half monthly "spending" budget left and only got to get to 19th so might pay for this weekend after that. Found out yesterday that accommodation (already paid for) thankfully includes continental breakfast plus eggs from the woman's chicken! So will just be petrol, meals out and drinks etc.
    • Poor_Single_lady
    • By Poor_Single_lady 10th Jul 17, 8:05 PM
    • 947 Posts
    • 3,436 Thanks
    Poor_Single_lady
    Coastal it only takes 1! Awww I hope you are pregnant. You don't have to tell us but wishing you the very best. If you are trying it could happen easily. I don't think your age is the barrier you think it might be - you're hardly ancient! Very exciting times. xxx
    2017- 5 credit cards plus loan
    Overdraft And 1 credit card paid off.

    2018 plans - reduce debt
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 11th Jul 17, 8:11 AM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    awww thanks PSL. If I'm 100% honest, I would rather it didn't happen until sept as I will then def get contractual pay (18 weeks full pay) whereas if I get pregnant before then I will get only 2 weeks full pay then rest unpaid (though HR said that if I was close to the entitlement I might get some extra discretionary pay as that's what she would be recommending). We could pay mortgage, bills, food from B's salary but we wouldn't be able to go away/go out much plus babies are expensive. It is a lot to lose but then I would have regretted it if we didn't start trying and that 2 months could've made difference. Not sure if I am. I suspect not and that I am imagining symptoms but will see!

    NSD yesterday though we got a letter from planning saying that there is unauthorised stuff on our land (put on by last people) and asking for £280 for a retrospective permission! Going to discuss with our planning expert at work today - don't think they should be able to charge us for it because it was the last people so why should we have to pay. But that said, I don't want to annoy them as we want the permission to be granted.

    Taking lunch today and walking to work and back so petrol money saved plus increase fitness. Tea is jacket potatoes, beans and chilli cheese!! And poss some sugarsnaps on side as need to eat some veg in case pregnant (though am taking pregnacare pre-conception vitamins).

    Last night was tea from stores and we sorted out downstairs spare room as my parents arrive next thurs and it was just full of boxes! Now feels much better in the house as sorted that out. Will try to sell a few bits on eBay - car battery pack which isn't really big enough for our car, mirror, brand new top I never wore but bought years ago and now my b**bs are too big!!!!!, cordless kettle.
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 11th Jul 17, 6:01 PM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    arghhhh, car insurance also due for renewal on 23rd. Just over £100 each for me and B as we share a car. Hoping that I can pay for it from what's left over in this month's budget but feel have already spent that several times over (and no idea how much will be left yet!).

    Planning person at work said not to pay as it will bring the unauthorised stuff back within their jurisdiction whereas at the moment they can't touch it. So have written back (nicely), will see what that brings!

    Loads of bloomin' cakes at work today and could not help self!!!! Do feel like am not working hard enough. I get distracted too easily. Must rectify tomorrow.
    • Poor_Single_lady
    • By Poor_Single_lady 11th Jul 17, 8:43 PM
    • 947 Posts
    • 3,436 Thanks
    Poor_Single_lady
    I am confused. In the nicest possible way if you are not using protection then you are doing the 1 thing that will get you pregnant now. Right now.
    So I'm confused why you are trying now if you would rather hang on till September. Because it's only 3 months and I just am a bit confused.
    2017- 5 credit cards plus loan
    Overdraft And 1 credit card paid off.

    2018 plans - reduce debt
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 12th Jul 17, 7:05 PM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    I guess because of the stats - it can take 6 months, a year or more to conceive on average. Longer potentially at my age. So though I'd rather wait until sept, time is scarce, especially if we want 2. And so we figured better to get on with it now and if it happens great, but at least we won't think (if it doesn't happen now or for a while) why didn't we start sooner - if that makes sense? Obviously it could only take 1 as you say and it might happen now! But I think there's less chance of me regretting it happening now than regretting waiting.

    Spent £50 today on new bras - my b**bs are horrendously sore and whilst it could be a sign of pregnancy, I think its more likely to be that I've piled on so much weight my bra was too small. Got measured in good old m&s and was wearing 2 sizes too small!!!! So got 2 bras - 1 nude and 1 black in right size so will see how get on with those before getting more.

    Bought gloves for fake tan, B a toothbrush and some maltesers but that was all on b**ts points so doesn't really count. Other than that, NSD.

    Complained to gym I've been using re air con and they are giving me 2 weeks free all inclusive membership to start when air con fixed! So that's good news.

    Do have to pay OH £189 for bed frame today but that is coming from house account and once delivered, we will sell our bedframe so should get around £150/200 for that so should pay or almost pay for my half as I will keep that cash as it was my frame from 2009.
    • coastalchick
    • By coastalchick 16th Jul 17, 10:02 PM
    • 141 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    coastalchick
    Erm, so we went away for the weekend and on Friday B proposed!!!!!!!!

    Absolutely over the moon!!!!!!!!!
    • Poor_Single_lady
    • By Poor_Single_lady 17th Jul 17, 12:33 PM
    • 947 Posts
    • 3,436 Thanks
    Poor_Single_lady
    Awww congratulations. This is brilliant! xxx
    2017- 5 credit cards plus loan
    Overdraft And 1 credit card paid off.

    2018 plans - reduce debt
    • sauceoclock
    • By sauceoclock 17th Jul 17, 5:06 PM
    • 742 Posts
    • 663 Thanks
    sauceoclock
    Erm, so we went away for the weekend and on Friday B proposed!!!!!!!!

    Absolutely over the moon!!!!!!!!!
    Originally posted by coastalchick
    SOOO pleased for you woo! Big smile on my face. That's lovely. Congratulations!! xxxxx
    Christmas Shopping: £30 Amazon £30 Argos £10 Tesco
    Loan: £3,000.00
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