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  • FIRST POST
    • FiscalPickle
    • By FiscalPickle 4th Dec 17, 5:38 PM
    • 24Posts
    • 50Thanks
    FiscalPickle
    Time to turn this around
    • #1
    • 4th Dec 17, 5:38 PM
    Time to turn this around 4th Dec 17 at 5:38 PM
    I had my lightbulb moment recently. Despite the fact I have a good job in an industry that means I should know better, I've got myself into a bit of a pickle. The goal for the next 2 years will be getting out of debt, out of the consolidation trap and into a good position re savings. The 2 years after that will be aimed at saving for a house deposit. My debts are:-

    HSBC loan £7872.48
    Virgin credit card £4019.39
    MBNA credit card £2825
    Car loan £5011
    Tax bill £139

    Grand total of £19,866.87

    Once Christmas is out of the way and I've paid the tax bill, which is due at the end of the year, I've worked out a budget as follows:-

    Rent, household bills, food 1060
    HSBC loan 238.56
    MBNA CC 75
    Virgin CC 400
    Car 94.89
    Car ins 29.08
    Car service & repairs 50
    Contact lens scheme 26
    Entertainment 50
    Christmas & birthdays 80
    Clothes/shoes 50
    Hair 40
    Holiday fund 60
    Emergency fund 50

    This comes to £2303.53, my nett wage is £2,305. I'm throwing all I can at the Virgin balance until I've paid the spending part off, £1200 of this is on 0% until November. Then I'll concentrate on the MBNA, then the HSBC loan. Then I'll reevaluate. The HSBC loan is 7% APR, I'm halfway through paying that so most of the interest has probably been paid. I've set up the piggy accounts for car maintenance, holidays and emergencies. I've been in the habit of saving for Christmas and birthdays all year for some time now. Here goes!
Page 2
    • Scott_Weiland
    • By Scott_Weiland 7th Dec 17, 12:12 PM
    • 659 Posts
    • 1,629 Thanks
    Scott_Weiland
    Hi Pauper1, the only bill I can significantly reduce is the food shop, where I live there is only 1 electricity provider, gas, phone etc. However I will see where any savings can be made, I think groceries is the biggie. If I meal plan and list better this will reduce the amount of top-up shops needed, which could be as much as £50 a month extra going out. When the mobile phone contract is up that will save me a bundle, at least £20 a month, unfortunately not until this time next year though.

    A successful day so far, I took the enormously heavy bag of coins to the bank but the machine was on the blink. I've left the bag and my details for a member of staff to pay it into my account - there was no way I was lugging that there and back again. Hairspray in Boots cost £1.79 for 450ml, it is priced at £1.99 but I get a discount on their own branded products for being a member of the contact lens scheme.
    Originally posted by FiscalPickle

    re toiletries hairspray etc try home bargains or b and m etc i would bet you could get a decent brand without buying a cheap boots branded product.
    Debts 15981.64 total paid 2078
    Cashback Earnings YTD £167.28 Survey Earnings YTD £552.88
    • FiscalPickle
    • By FiscalPickle 7th Dec 17, 4:56 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    FiscalPickle
    re toiletries hairspray etc try home bargains or b and m etc i would bet you could get a decent brand without buying a cheap boots branded product.
    Originally posted by Scott_Weiland
    Thanks Scott, unfortunately those stores are not in easy travelling distance of where I live. Will try the local £ shop next time, I was buying £10 a pop hairspray before from the hairdresser!

    Madness
    DFD - 26/10/19
    Away with you debt!
    • Scott_Weiland
    • By Scott_Weiland 7th Dec 17, 6:56 PM
    • 659 Posts
    • 1,629 Thanks
    Scott_Weiland
    Poundworld/poundland blahhhhh blahhhh all are other options

    ten quid on hairspray jaysus thats mad.
    Debts 15981.64 total paid 2078
    Cashback Earnings YTD £167.28 Survey Earnings YTD £552.88
    • FiscalPickle
    • By FiscalPickle 7th Dec 17, 9:41 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    FiscalPickle
    I’ve done some of the Christmas cards and boxed up my brother’s card and present ready to post tomorrow. Also have another eBay sale to post, I stocked up on the Harry Potter things in Primarni before they sold out, making a good profit there. Haven’t put the jumpsuit on eBay yet, must do that tomorrow.

    I have a planned day out on Saturday with colleagues, have allocated £20 for that. That is all I’m going to spend all weekend, I’m doing OK so far with the cash I’ve withdrawn. It makes a real difference in terms of mindset when handing over cold hard cash, as opposed to merrily shoving a piece of plastic in a card reader. I’m just glad I didn’t go contactless!
    DFD - 26/10/19
    Away with you debt!
    • FiscalPickle
    • By FiscalPickle 8th Dec 17, 10:55 AM
    • 24 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    FiscalPickle
    I committed the cardinal sin of spending on a 0% credit card, the Virgin one. MBNA sent me a new balance transfer offer, the handling fee is a lot less than leaving the interest to stack up would be.So I did a balance transfer of £2,050. The cards are now:-

    Virgin £1969.35
    MBNA £4945 (£75 payment due out next week)

    So the debt has actually increased a little, but this shuffle means the DFD is earlier than it would have been otherwise. No sign of my coin jar deposit appearing in my bank account, has the machine eaten them without a trace? May have to pop into the bank later to try and find out what has happened.

    Plan for this evening - more Christmas cards, eBay the jumpsuit, glass of port, stay warm and cosy, NSD just like yesterday
    DFD - 26/10/19
    Away with you debt!
    • FiscalPickle
    • By FiscalPickle 9th Dec 17, 2:58 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    FiscalPickle
    Coin jar came to £38, which is nice and better in my bank account than shoved in a corner. Yesterday turned out to be spendier than planned, I posted an eBay sale and my brother's Christmas box. We needed a pair of secateurs, the old pair had rusted shut. I found a decent pair for less than £10, hopefully they'll last for years oiled and stored carefully. I can now have a bit of a tidy up in the garden, pottering outside always makes me feel better about life in general.
    DFD - 26/10/19
    Away with you debt!
    • FiscalPickle
    • By FiscalPickle 11th Dec 17, 5:14 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    FiscalPickle
    Week 2
    I'm already in the second week of my diary, a little way along from my LBM and the rebalancing of the budget. I was doing some thinking over the weekend and having read some other diaries, my main thoughts were:-

    1. What did I spend it all on?
    2. Why did I do it?

    Well, as far as ‘stuff’ goes I bought clothes for work, which have all been worn, some to the point of falling apart. I did buy a designer handbag ‘because I deserved it’ – I would have felt like I deserved it a lot more if I had saved up for the thing in the first place. I had my terrible acne treated at a cosmetic medical place, which really helped my self-esteem. I got married, some of the debt was on the most fantastic wedding day possible with many happy memories. I took my husband and his daughter on a surprise trip to Lapland which was a chunk of the previous HSBC loan, now consolidated. We had a great time away, my stepdaughter still talks about that trip and those memories will last a lifetime. So my conclusion was that I have very little tangible ‘stuff’ as a result, what had any life left in it has been eBayed. The ‘stuff’ didn’t bring me any happiness, but the memories and experiences did.

    However, those feelings would be even more pleasant if I had planned my finances accordingly and not impulse bought along the way. I’ve been on a decent salary for some time and have basically nothing to show for it asset-wise. So it’s been an up and down weekend, I’m trying to be kinder to myself and acknowledge that a hard lesson has been learned, as well as:-

    1. The debt consolidation spiral can be tricky to get out of once you are in – at one point I felt sucked into a vortex
    2. More intelligent people than me have been lured by ‘good’ loan deals and shiny plastic cards with a fancy design you’ve picked out yourself
    3. You can’t borrow your way out of debt – you have to claw your way out tooth and nail if that is what it takes

    I’m very much in the ‘tooth and nail’ mindset now, as I am heartily sick of being beholden to financial intuitions and seeing over £800 of my salary simply disappear once a month. I read on TreadingOnPlayMobil’s diary (thoroughly enjoying lurking on that one so far) that debt is borrowing from your future self. I couldn’t agree more, Present Me could go back in time and give Past Me a good slap and a talking to about priorities. Still, I think at this point I need to start giving myself a bit of a break as the past is the past, I can’t change that. What I can change is the future, and hopefully give Future Me something to look forward to.
    DFD - 26/10/19
    Away with you debt!
    • FiscalPickle
    • By FiscalPickle 12th Dec 17, 9:08 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    FiscalPickle
    !!!!!!
    Today turned out to be spendier than planned, considering I'd intended it to be a NSD. I forgot my breakfast and lunch, both were inconveniently left on the kitchen worktop this morning.

    So I ended up buying not only a croissant from the bakery but also a hot chocolate to 'cheer myself up' (also warm myself up - it was like Siberia in the meeting room this AM). Then lunch was a pasta salad from M&S, so maybe I haven't learned as much as I thought. I felt a bit down after unplanned spending of almost £10 so I didn't even enjoy the food. The hot chocolate was overly sweet, I could make better in a flask to bring in. As long as I didn't forget the flask rotfl:
    Last edited by FiscalPickle; 13-12-2017 at 11:24 PM.
    DFD - 26/10/19
    Away with you debt!
    • FiscalPickle
    • By FiscalPickle 13th Dec 17, 11:26 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    FiscalPickle
    Today I made sure I ate breakfast before leaving the house and took my lunch; a successful NSD.

    Busy few days at work helps too. My Christmas shopping is done, £8 under budget on gifts.
    DFD - 26/10/19
    Away with you debt!
    • FiscalPickle
    • By FiscalPickle 14th Dec 17, 5:16 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    FiscalPickle
    I made an overpayment today to the Virgin CC of £6.01, this came from the £8 I was underbudget on Christmas presents minus £1.99 spent on birthday cards. My thinking is that whenever I can, no matter how little, I’ll pay bits here and there towards this credit card on top of the £400 per month regular repayment. This card is due to be paid off in June 2018, hopefully little extras here and there between now and then may bring that date forward by 1 month. Then I can start hoofing it all at the MBNA.

    By payday in December 2018 all CCs should be paid off, then the snowballs will be chucked at the HSBC loan. It is this kind of thinking that is so far keeping me on the straight and narrow, new as I am to this way of life. If I’m in town shopping for budgeted items and I spot something ‘pretty’, I find myself repeating the mantra ‘Do I need it? Is it worth it?’ then putting it back. So far it is working, the idea of being debt free and able to accumulate significant savings for the first time in my life is really spurring me on.

    In a way, I am both looking forward to and dreading 2018. I’m looking forward to clearing my credit cards, but I’m not looking forward to the painful months of not treating myself to things and sticking to a strict budget. I know it takes a good amount of time to create new habits, it’s going to be difficult at first not to follow my usual spending pattern. However, every time I’m in a shop or have my hand in my purse I am hyper-aware of the almost £20k deficit hanging over me like a shadow.
    DFD - 26/10/19
    Away with you debt!
    • FiscalPickle
    • By FiscalPickle 15th Dec 17, 11:05 AM
    • 24 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    FiscalPickle
    I’ve been having my hair coloured for a while now, it’s a colour that is better to have done at the hairdresser rather than home so I’ve decided to go back to my natural colour. I also have a short hairstyle which needs a cut every month, so I’m going to grow it out to the point where I only need a dry trim every other month, taking the £40 hairdresser spend down to £12.50 per month. I was reading online about the inversion technique, where you tilt your head forward and massage your scalp for 4 minutes, for one week of each month. This is supposed to increase blood flow to the scalp and encourage quicker hair growth. I’ll give it a whirl, I spent 4 minutes massaging coconut oil into my head this morning which won’t do my hair any harm. My scalp still feels pleasantly tingly. I shall report back in 1 week with any significant or noticeable hair growth!
    DFD - 26/10/19
    Away with you debt!
    • ladymay
    • By ladymay 15th Dec 17, 11:30 AM
    • 718 Posts
    • 3,317 Thanks
    ladymay
    I have nothing to add to everyone's else messages other than a massive good luck on your journey - you're in charge and you can do this!!

    And going back to hairspray - a hairdresser once suggested I try the Cien hairspray from L!dl - it's fantastic! I do a lot of vintage style styling which requires something heavy duty and this does the job
    Debt 14/04/12: £15736.77
    Debt 09/12/14 ZERO POUNDS
    Debt 15/10/17: £1714.40
    Debt 15/12/17: £1583.08
    Moving back to the UK 05/01/18
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