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    • Unicorn cottage
    • By Unicorn cottage 25th Apr 17, 8:11 AM
    • 29Posts
    • 24Thanks
    Unicorn cottage
    Debt busters!
    • #1
    • 25th Apr 17, 8:11 AM
    Debt busters! 25th Apr 17 at 8:11 AM
    Hi all

    It’s a long one!

    Gah! 2016 was really touch and go for us financially. We were regularly within a few pounds of maxing out my partner’s £2k overdraft, we had used the full £3k of a 0% credit card to furnish the house we had bought in 2015 and we also had another large loan. In addition to this I was also temping so my wage was not guaranteed.

    BUT we clung on and by using all of our money saving techniques and a few sprinkles of good luck, by the end of the year, we had paid off the overdraft and credit card.

    Here’s what we did:

    Sold everything we did not need – 2 cars, a huge Ikea wardrobe left by the previous owners (£200 ker-ching!), massage table, dish washer (which we picked up free off gumtree but needed a few repairs and a good clean), bike panniers, someone even gave us £20 for some old tonne bags!, the list goes on.

    Changed current accounts in order to benefit from cash incentives for switching. Got a much appreciated £150 in December from the Co-operative Bank.

    Kept an eye out for freebies off Gumtree and Freecycle which meant we were able to landscape our garden for a relatively low cost. We picked up sand, cement, shingle, breeze blocks etc which saved us about £1k.

    Things were starting to look much more promising for the New Year…then the big ‘ole bite on the bottom.

    My OH’s work contract was not extended following a fall at her workplace, (sustaining a very nasty knee injury), which meant she was not able to work. This meant we were down to 1 wage only and in addition to this I was on a fixed term contract until late 2017. The pressure was on! On top of this we desperately needed work doing on the house as the kitchen roof was leaking and the bathroom was extremely old, unhygienic & stinky! We had lived with this for over a year and it just had to get done.

    So here we are in April 2017. We got the work done on the house by borrowing from the bank of Mum & Dad and getting a 0% APR/low cost money transfer credit card. We are back up there again with the debts but we are not resting on our laurels. We are due to take on our very first lodger this month which will bring in £450 a month, I managed to secure a permanent job with a higher salary and my partner has taken on a part time job. Her knee will probably require an operation but what can you do? I also switched to the M&S current account for the £100 incentive which will be great for pressies for birthdays and Christmas etc.

    Debts – state of play

    Bank of Mum & Dad (Start date: January 2017, 0% APR!)

    Loan (Start date: October 2016, length: 5 years, 3.9% APR)

    Credit card (Start date: January 2017, 0% APR until 2019)

    Overdraft (Ongoing!, ? APR)
    Hovering around £2k

    Mortgage (Start date: October 2015, length: 5 years fixed term, 2.68% APR)
    £144k – Total remaining at March 2017

    My partner also has a student loan but crikey we don’t even think about this one!


    So the point of this exercise is to get it all down on paper and make sure we use this opportunity, (increase in salary and rent money), to hammer the debt down. The priority at the moment is the overdraft and the bank of mum and dad. I’m always looking to the future too and want to make sure we are in good shape when we come to re-mortgage but that is thankfully a way off yet.

    Thanks for reading this and I’ll be back to update with repayments and the like. I have a lot to thank Martin Lewis for!
    Last edited by Unicorn cottage; 18-06-2017 at 9:44 AM.
Page 2
    • Chrystal
    • By Chrystal 7th Sep 17, 8:57 PM
    • 72 Posts
    • 373 Thanks
    That must have been really upsetting. I was under the impression that an MRI showed all the soft tissue as well as the bone, so surely they should have been able to 'see' the ligaments?

    Good that the employer has admitted liability, (and that the debt is going down) but not good that your DP is still in pain. Were they able to prescibe anything to help and are they going to do more tests?

    Will be keeping my fingers crossed for you both.
    • Unicorn cottage
    • By Unicorn cottage 14th Sep 17, 1:55 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 24 Thanks
    Unicorn cottage
    Hi Crystal

    Tramadol was prescribed but it made my OH feel nauseous so we've knocked that on the head just Ibuprofen (non-branded!) for pain now. A meeting with the soft tissue specialist is being arranged so fingers crossed that gets booked in soon.

    In other news it looks like a may get a payment from my accident which happened in November last year. Yeah it was a stinker of a year! I got knocked off my bike and had some severe bruising but thankfully no other more serious injuries. I am hoping with a payment from this months salary combined with the accident payment, whenever that happens, will pay off the debt to Mum & Dad. Would be such a relief and a nice note to end the year on. I realise now that we now need to make more effort to knock the overdraft on the head rather than the credit card so that will be next.

    It also looks like my weekend job will be finishing in September so will have to have a look round for something else. Really really want to get debt free so we can start "living".
    • Unicorn cottage
    • By Unicorn cottage 16th Sep 17, 7:53 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 24 Thanks
    Unicorn cottage
    Lightbulb moment - I should pay off the overdraft with the money I get from the accident. Duh. Was fixated on paying off the in-laws as was worried they would think bad of me. They have taken a risk in trusting me after all but they will already be more than 50% paid off in a year so they will be cool with our plans.
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