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    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 24th Sep 17, 1:22 PM
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    HairyHandofDartmoor
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    • #1
    • 24th Sep 17, 1:22 PM
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally 24th Sep 17 at 1:22 PM
    My DH and I have been in debt for 34 Years, apart from brief periods, ever since I was offered my first credit card at the tender age of19.

    Our debts were caused by us being impulsive spenders and not being very skilled at budgeting or managing our money, so we know it is our own fault. We always believed that one day we would have more money, mysteriously, and that this would bail us out .

    Our full light bulb moment came when we realised, "What if we never have any more money than we do right now?"

    A couple of years ago we were coping with the minimum payments, but didn't have enough to overpay on any of them. We were forking out £1300 a month in minimum payments, and the interest alone was £1000 a month .

    But then in 2015 our small business started to bring in less, and a family bereavement, and illness affected our ability to work. We could no longer afford the minimum repayments and we were scared we would lose our home. We were stricken with stress and depression .

    Step Change shone a light in the darkness for us and they arranged for us to make token payments of £1 a month to our creditors. This saved our sanity and we were reassured that our home was unlikely to be taken from us.

    My DH recently turned 55 and drew out his pension so that we could make full and final offers to our creditors. All but one accepted an offer of 50% of what we owed (which is all we had to offer). We are continuing negotiations with the final creditor and hope to be debt free by Christmas .

    Being so close to being debt free has made me realise what a heavy burden the debts have been all these years, like living our lives wearing lead boots.

    Once we are debt free we will still need to live very frugally because we have no emergency fund or savings, and our income can be irregular. I hope that starting a diary will help to focus me on frugal living, avoid impulsive spends, and keep my spirits up. Because frugal living can be a lonely and isolating experience.

    This site and Step Change has helped me so much, and I hope that my diary will help to inspire others that it's never too late to change your life .
    Last edited by HairyHandofDartmoor; 18-11-2017 at 9:49 AM.
    My Diary http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5716867
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 October 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build an Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund
    Emergency Fund 1 = £818/Emergency Fund 2 = £203.76
Page 50
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 29th Nov 17, 7:53 PM
    • 2,268 Posts
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    HairyHandofDartmoor
    We are all allowed an off day. I know what you mean about the parking fine, I never park anywhere I shouldn't but I know plenty of people who do, I would be devastated about a fine, it is a lot of money but all we can do is learn from it and move forward, unfortunately these things happen and I'm sure your DH won't do it again.
    Originally posted by DebtFreeDuo
    Thanks DFD. He'd better not do it again or there could be a divorce in the offing .

    Sometimes life can just seem pants.
    Keep plodding xx
    Originally posted by beanielou
    Thanks beanie, just one of those days .
    My Diary http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5716867
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 October 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build an Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund
    Emergency Fund 1 = £818/Emergency Fund 2 = £203.76
    • mummytogirls
    • By mummytogirls 29th Nov 17, 7:56 PM
    • 5,621 Posts
    • 18,467 Thanks
    mummytogirls
    Oh HHOD, its sounds like a very stressful time for you guys at the moment, the parking ticket is just the cherry on the top.

    Tomorrow is another day though, hopefully it will be more positive xx
    Mummytogirls x

    £23164.32 - 12/12/10
    £6936.45 - 04/09/17 - 70.99% paid off
    • Nicnak
    • By Nicnak 29th Nov 17, 8:11 PM
    • 546 Posts
    • 2,709 Thanks
    Nicnak
    Sorry itís a down day. Iíd be annoyed about the parking too x
    September 6th 2017 start Updated 25th NOV 17
    Credit Card £430 now: £1181 Tesco Loan £7500 = £6700 Car loan £17,500 = £9,875 Total = £25,330 £17,756 EMF #252
    Sealed pot challenge #589
    Pay off all your debts by Christmas #170
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 29th Nov 17, 8:24 PM
    • 2,268 Posts
    • 10,896 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    Oh HHOD, its sounds like a very stressful time for you guys at the moment, the parking ticket is just the cherry on the top.

    Tomorrow is another day though, hopefully it will be more positive xx
    Originally posted by mummytogirls
    Sorry itís a down day. Iíd be annoyed about the parking too x
    Originally posted by Nicnak
    Thanks. It's because I'm still tired from the wedding that I'm not coping well I think. When I'm tired I get miserable really easily. I expect I'll feel better tomorrow .

    Today was my big Mr T shop and I overspent a bit. I spent £88 instead of £74 but we seemed to have run out of lots of things. Still I used to spend over £100 in the bad old days .

    On the plus side I did book my £5 hair cut for Monday.
    My Diary http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5716867
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 October 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build an Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund
    Emergency Fund 1 = £818/Emergency Fund 2 = £203.76
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 29th Nov 17, 10:27 PM
    • 2,268 Posts
    • 10,896 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    We finished DS1's UCAS form tonight too so it's ready for him to send. I have mixed feelings about that. I want him to go so that he can become qualified for a good job, but I'll miss him and I'm worried about how he'll cope because of his anxiety and panic attacks .

    In addition DS2 wants to go to America next week. He wants to meet someone about some kind of business deal. He's never even been to London by himself let alone America .

    He's 22 but he's a bit naive and I'm worried about him getting mugged, shot, or being cheated out of all his money through shady business deal. He only leaves his room to go to the food shop normally. How is he going to find his way to the airport, let alone America?

    I may be being overdramatic, but he wants to go to New Orleans. Isn't it a bit rough there?

    Kids never stop giving you stress, no matter what age they get to .

    So my list of worries is getting longer now. It includes worrying our work is drying up, the parking ticket, BIL, DS3 going to uni and now DS2 going to America .

    I thought writing it all down might help, but I'm not sure that it has .
    My Diary http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5716867
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 October 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build an Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund
    Emergency Fund 1 = £818/Emergency Fund 2 = £203.76
    • please-let-me-be-lucky
    • By please-let-me-be-lucky 30th Nov 17, 1:48 AM
    • 8,400 Posts
    • 47,242 Thanks
    please-let-me-be-lucky
    Is it feasible for DS to actually go to America in terms of having the funds available and a valid passport etc?

    I donít think you are being overdramatic - thatís a huge step up from grocery shopping Xx
    Debts @ LBM £23,729.31. Debts @ 08/04/2016 £0

    NSDs achieved in December 1/5
    Lbs lost 10/107.
    • Eager_Elephant
    • By Eager_Elephant 30th Nov 17, 5:49 AM
    • 4,118 Posts
    • 22,850 Thanks
    Eager_Elephant
    I'm sorry HHOD but I'm thinking scam....

    Most business deals involving different countries are done by Skype nowadays unless you are a big corporate organisation and then you would probably fly over there.

    What do you know about this business deal? Is it something that DS could legitimately run as a business?

    I know he is an adult but I would be asking more questions, my son is 21 but still very naÔve so I would have to step in.
    Ninja Saving Turtle No. 15 for November
    NSD - 1/15
    (up to 01/11/17)
    My Diary is here - http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=2175629 (Eager Elephants Effective Everyday Excursion)
    • Eager_Elephant
    • By Eager_Elephant 30th Nov 17, 5:52 AM
    • 4,118 Posts
    • 22,850 Thanks
    Eager_Elephant
    Wikipedia says this - New Orleans. In 2011 there were 16,761 crimes in New Orleans including 200 murders, 163 forcible rapes and 14,013 property crimes. With a murder rate of 57.6 per 100,000, New Orleans had the highest murder rate of any U.S. city with a population of 100,000 or more in 2011 and ranked 28th in the world in 2014.

    Crikey there is even a murder map - http://www.nola.com/crime/index.ssf/page/new_orleans_murders.html
    Ninja Saving Turtle No. 15 for November
    NSD - 1/15
    (up to 01/11/17)
    My Diary is here - http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=2175629 (Eager Elephants Effective Everyday Excursion)
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 30th Nov 17, 8:04 AM
    • 2,268 Posts
    • 10,896 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    Yes DS2 does have a valid passport and funds to go there. He gets PIP for his mental illness and earns money from his online business.

    He won't say much about why he is going. He told DH he was going to take travellers cheques. DH thought maybe if we wrote down some safety instructions etc he might read it. He won't take advice very well because of his condition .
    My Diary http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5716867
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 October 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build an Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund
    Emergency Fund 1 = £818/Emergency Fund 2 = £203.76
    • WannabeFree
    • By WannabeFree 30th Nov 17, 8:49 AM
    • 428 Posts
    • 2,931 Thanks
    WannabeFree
    Oh HH I have no advice I am useless Sorry

    But sorry to hear there's so much going on x
    ďOnce you hit rock bottom, that's where you perfectly stand; That's your chance of restarting, but restarting the right way.Ē
    • in need of direction
    • By in need of direction 30th Nov 17, 9:05 AM
    • 4,737 Posts
    • 26,832 Thanks
    in need of direction
    That's the problem particularly with adult children. When dd was 20 she went and worked for a charity in ny projects. This year she visited New Orleans for the first time and was grand. Remember, the bits you hear about are always the bad bits. I grew up in belfast, was born at the start of the troubles and things could get hairy but I was always ok. In the early 90s, I had some work in Brixton. My mum, also from belfast, was worried that that was where the riots were!
    Has he access to any form of credit either personally or via his on line business?
    Mortgage at 01.01.14 £119,481.83 today £79,389.12, target £75,000 by 31/12/17 Offset fund today £4,055.43 target £5,500 by 31/12/17
    Emergency fund £5k/5.5k & £130/200 cash.
    Current weight loss 7/32 by 28 feb 2018
    determined to stop defining myself by my mistakes.
    Progress not perfection.
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 30th Nov 17, 9:19 AM
    • 2,268 Posts
    • 10,896 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    Thanks Wannabe and inod.

    I don't know whether he has any credit. I don't think he does. He was talking about taking out a credit card recently, but as far as I know he hasn't got one yet.

    DH chatted to DS3 on the way to college this morning and DS3 said he thought it was mainly a social visit, that it was natural for DS2 to want to travel and that he was sensible and wouldn't go to the dangerous parts of New Orleans. DS3 said that DS2 always thinks about things before he does them and that he always has a plan.

    So maybe DH and I are underestimating DS2. It's just that he never tells us anything and so in our minds he's the same as he was at 18 .

    We will insist that he gives us the address of where he is staying (presumably a hotel) and the name and addressof who he is visiting. I'll also ask him to go online every day and tell us he is safe via FB.

    He hasn't even booked his plane ticket yet!
    My Diary http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5716867
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 October 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build an Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund
    Emergency Fund 1 = £818/Emergency Fund 2 = £203.76
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 30th Nov 17, 9:25 AM
    • 2,268 Posts
    • 10,896 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    That's the problem particularly with adult children. When dd was 20 she went and worked for a charity in ny projects. This year she visited New Orleans for the first time and was grand. Remember, the bits you hear about are always the bad bits. I grew up in belfast, was born at the start of the troubles and things could get hairy but I was always ok. In the early 90s, I had some work in Brixton. My mum, also from belfast, was worried that that was where the riots were!
    Has he access to any form of credit either personally or via his on line business?
    Originally posted by in need of direction
    Thank you INOD that does make me feel a bit better. You must have been so worried when DD went the the NY projects

    You can't stop them can you? You can only give advice and hope that they take it.

    DH is going to write down a list of things DH2 needs to know (safety advice etc) and then say to him," you've probably already thought of this, but just in case..."
    My Diary http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5716867
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 October 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build an Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund
    Emergency Fund 1 = £818/Emergency Fund 2 = £203.76
    • in need of direction
    • By in need of direction 30th Nov 17, 9:29 AM
    • 4,737 Posts
    • 26,832 Thanks
    in need of direction
    A friend of mine once told me that you have to trust your children's upbringing. It's too easy for us to underestimate that values that we brought our children up with. DS may be naive but he knows right from wrong. Also, if the only hit he has to take is financial, there's clear evidence on here that people can come back from that. He'll be fine
    Mortgage at 01.01.14 £119,481.83 today £79,389.12, target £75,000 by 31/12/17 Offset fund today £4,055.43 target £5,500 by 31/12/17
    Emergency fund £5k/5.5k & £130/200 cash.
    Current weight loss 7/32 by 28 feb 2018
    determined to stop defining myself by my mistakes.
    Progress not perfection.
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 30th Nov 17, 10:18 AM
    • 2,268 Posts
    • 10,896 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    Thank you INOD . That is very good and thoughtful advice and we will bear that in mind.

    I've been for my walk thus morning to help with my stress levels and we're focusing on work for the rest of the day. It should be a NSD apart from DS3's bus fare home and I'm hoping for more surveys.

    Have a good Thursday everyone.
    My Diary http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5716867
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 October 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build an Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund
    Emergency Fund 1 = £818/Emergency Fund 2 = £203.76
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 30th Nov 17, 4:01 PM
    • 49,047 Posts
    • 182,123 Thanks
    beanielou
    I hope it goes well for both your DS's.
    As you say you never stop worrying about them.
    My ds is 24 & still my baby
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~** **Weight loss 2 stone 2 lbs **

    "A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of" Jane Austen in Mansfield Park.
    ***Fall down seven times,stand up eight*** ~~Japanese proverb.
    It starts with you, it starts from now. *** It is ok to be me.*** ***Keep plodding***
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 30th Nov 17, 6:49 PM
    • 2,268 Posts
    • 10,896 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    They will always be our babies beanie .

    I feel less anxious about the America trip now because DS2 is going to stay in a hotel which he wants DH to help him book and he's agreed to give us the names and addresses of some of the people he wants to meet. He's also agreed to contact us via FB messenger every day so we know he is safe . DH just helped him apply for a visa type thingy which was approved straight away .

    So just his travel insurance, hotel and plane to book .

    I did two surveys and cashed out £11 from PA which will end up in Emergency Fund 2 eventually . Didn't feel very focused work-wise, but if DH can get the America stuff sorted tonight then it should be easier to concentrate tomorrow . We also have the accountants chasing us for info, so we need to carry on sorting that out for them tomorrow .

    I also did two loads of laundry. At least it dries quicker now we've had to give in and put the heating on.
    My Diary http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5716867
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 October 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build an Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund
    Emergency Fund 1 = £818/Emergency Fund 2 = £203.76
    • Nicnak
    • By Nicnak 30th Nov 17, 7:09 PM
    • 546 Posts
    • 2,709 Thanks
    Nicnak
    I'm sure he will be fine. If he is willing to keep in touch and let you know, it will hopefully reassure you loads. x
    September 6th 2017 start Updated 25th NOV 17
    Credit Card £430 now: £1181 Tesco Loan £7500 = £6700 Car loan £17,500 = £9,875 Total = £25,330 £17,756 EMF #252
    Sealed pot challenge #589
    Pay off all your debts by Christmas #170
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 30th Nov 17, 7:14 PM
    • 2,268 Posts
    • 10,896 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    I've just posted on your diary Nicnak .

    Thank you I do feel less worried now, it's just that he kind of sprang it on us and with everything else that's been going on it seemed too much!

    I slept really deeply last night and feel much more able to cope with things today .
    My Diary http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5716867
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 October 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build an Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund
    Emergency Fund 1 = £818/Emergency Fund 2 = £203.76
    • Nicnak
    • By Nicnak 30th Nov 17, 7:20 PM
    • 546 Posts
    • 2,709 Thanks
    Nicnak
    A nice sleep seems to make a lot seem a lot better. x
    September 6th 2017 start Updated 25th NOV 17
    Credit Card £430 now: £1181 Tesco Loan £7500 = £6700 Car loan £17,500 = £9,875 Total = £25,330 £17,756 EMF #252
    Sealed pot challenge #589
    Pay off all your debts by Christmas #170
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