I can't quite believe it's got this bad

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  • beanybop
    beanybop Posts: 93 Forumite
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    Hello again

    I thought of another one or two

    Never go food shopping on an empty stomach, if anything make sure you are fairly stuffed, you will not want to spend lots of money on food, and you will want to get home to sleep it off.!! You spend more if you are hungry.

    Make your own packed lunches, it need not be boring sandwiches, you can make pasta salad really cheaply for example.

    T T F N

    Karen
  • moon_goddess
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    Hi,

    Just a further thought on the menu suggestion - go food shopping strictly once a week and before you go write a list of what you're planning for lunch/dinner each day, check the cupboards etc and ONLY buy what you need for that week. Keep a check on what needs using up too and plan it in.

    My ex & I halved our food costs this way. We always had a couple of things on the list that could keep until the following week if something unexpected came up, eg dried pasta & pesto. Another benefit was not having cupboards full off stuff past it's sell-by date!

    Good luck.

    x
  • robin58
    robin58 Posts: 2,802 Forumite
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    beanybop wrote:
    Hello there

    Low energy lightbulbs - get one for the light you use most, and buy an extra one each month - I am sure that someone offers a couple of free ones, but I do not remember the criteria

    If you can't get free ones, Morrision were doing an offer of buy one at 99p get one free, So bulbs are 48.5pence each These are not cheap rubbish ones which pack up in notime, these are made by Philips. These are sold by some companies at about £3+.

    So buying all that you need in one go, may save you the cost very quickly.

    Both BC & ES available. 60w and 100w equvelants

    Do check very soon as this offer ends this August but I can't tell you the date.

    Robin.
    The more I live, the more I learn.
    The more I learn, the more I grow.
    The more I grow, the more I see.
    The more I see, the more I know.
    The more I know, the more I see,
    How little I know.!! ;)
  • Linguistic_Chimp
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    Hi Talheedin,
    I can't offer you any financial advice - I am a 25 year old with no mortgage, though I do have 17 000 quid worth of student debt and a credit card that needs paying off of about 2000 quid.
    I just really want to provide some moral support. You shouldn't feel bad or crap about this all now. You have seen the light as it were and are taking decisive action to get you and your family out of debt - that is more than most people in the UK!
    It is an uphill struggle I know, and I can't even contemplate the worries and concerns you must have given that your debt is undoubtedly affecting your family too. But I have to stress to you how much I and everyone else who posts on this website supports you and hopes to help you in your efforts to get debt free.
    Keep your nose to the grindstone and although it will be hard work getting through it, the prize at the end of being in the black and relatively carefree is really really worth it.
    Two small things: - take your own lunch to work, it saves tonnes of money and might even be healthier, there are loads of recipes in the forums on this website
    - don't feel bad about stopping your childrens' savings, it is no good to them in later life to have lots of money when their parents are broke. They may have to spend the money supporting you. Plus it is really not good for children to grow up in a house of debt, they may seem like they don't know anything about what's going on, but believe me they do. Use this difficult period of your life to teach them about money management and the dangers of debt - that lesson is invaluable, and worth much more than savings alone.
    OK that's my message over. Good luck Talheedin!
  • MaximUK
    MaximUK Posts: 10 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker
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    You mentioned that you jog to work. I take this to mean that work isn't a vast distance away? If so can you not commute to work by bicycle? I started cycling to work about 10 years ago and it saves me at least £500 a year (I have to pay for parking) which doesn't include the extra wear and tear on the car.

    I am also surprised how, for me, the journey time is very similar, especially if you need to commute during rush hours. Just get yourself a set of waterproofs (which you won't wear anywhere near as often than you think you will) and please get some lights and a high visibility jacket. Your life is worth so much more than the initial embarrassment of wearing the jacket and LED lights will last a whole year on one set of AA batteries. It also does wonders for keeping your general fitness level up although this doesn't seem to be a problem for you if you can run the whole way already.

    Good luck. Seems to me you have taken the biggest step of acknowledging you have a problem that needs to be addressed head on.

    Maxim
  • 2giraffes
    2giraffes Posts: 40 Forumite
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    Hi Talheedin,
    I haven't read all the posts, so sorry if someone has already said this. Just a couple of things I thought might help - your house insurance, we get our buildings & contents through Swinton and it is about half what yours is, so I'd shop around a bit!! I think our contents cover is up to 50,000 and the buildings 250,000 - both much higher than we need. The other thing was the magazine subscription: obviously it depends what magazine it is, but we shop in Tesco and use our clubcard points to get my good housekeeping magazine so I haven't paid hard cash for it for about 3 years now!!!
    Also, you may have a Christians Against Poverty (CAP) office near you and they could help you, give you advice, and just give you someone to talk to who understands. They have a website - https://www.capuk.org
    Hope that helps, and good luck.
  • Tamesis
    Tamesis Posts: 9 Forumite
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    I know we are looking at reducing costs here, but can I throw a cautionary spanner into the works? Mortgage protection insurance.
    I was seriously considering getting it sorted out recently on our new £245k home - I even got quotes and they weren't that bad (insuresupermarket.com). However, I left it for a few days and then on the one day that I decided to arrange it that evening, I was made redundant. As soon as you are told of possible redunandancies, these insurance companies refuse to pay out, so that was us stuffed. I only got £2300 in redundancy money, and so things are getting tight now.

    As you are so heavily reliant on your salary to sort out your problems (as we were on mine), please do consider this for your own sake. The last thing you want is to get made redundant on top of everything else and then to have to go for bankruptcy.

    You may decide that this is a cost you don't need and can't afford and that is up to you. All I know is that if we had had it, we wouldn't be in as much of a mess as we are getting after 6 months of unemployment.

    Best of luck
    Tamesis
  • r1chard_2
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    Man - your story is a tough one - but no tougher than those of a lot of other people on these boards.

    Couple of things.

    You need to do what so many others here have done and make a note of where/when/what your debts were at worst.

    You have already taken positive action and improved things.

    Your situation is already better than it was!

    Now you need to get some really good advice (and forgive me if I'm duplicating here but I didn't have time to read all 5 pages of posts:D )

    Speak to the CAB or Debt Advisory Service. You have some priority debts which you have to keep paying - Council Tax/Mortgage/Utilities and some outgoings which you have to maintain - Food (although you can reduce)/Car (same) etc.

    You have some creditors however that you can be more bullish with and renegotiate. This will affect your credit rating - but we're talking survival here not the niceties of an A1 credit rating.

    Get hold of a book called the Money Trap by Rob Parsons - it is quite simply one of the most practical books about budgeting/planning and getting a bad situation sorted that you can read.

    Now listen - I'm no expert but I can understand a little of the despair you're feeling. When I read your story it sounded like mine in many respects.

    I too had about £100 left over a month and three hungry mouths to feed and I consolidated the debt! Without any shadow of a doubt it was the worst thing I ever did because two years later I had to consolidate again.

    My wife and I just sold our house to pay off all of our debts - get rid of the consolidation loans and other unsecured debt that we had and at 36 I am starting again in a rented house but with manageable outgoings trying to get a deposit together to get back on the housing ladder.

    The amount of interest we were payig out was stunning - the debt hardly diminishing and we paid the price. DO NOT make the same mistake we did....please.

    Rich

    PS - Get those credit cards back off your wife cut them up AND close the accounts. You've given them to her JUST IN CASE and that is like giving up smoking and keeping a pack in your jacket! The temptation will always be there.
  • kaygc
    kaygc Posts: 1 Newbie
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    Hi Talheedin
    I agree about getting the kids involved. I'm not sure how old they are, but I think you mentioned teenage. How about getting them to be frugal with water, power, shopping and so on - make them calculate the cost of what they've saved - it'll help their maths! - and give them a quarter of it?
    And don't worry about them going without - kids are tough. When ours were little, my daughter desperately wanted a pair of jelly sandals like her classmates. Even though they were only £1.99, we couldn't afford them. Now grown up, she remembers wanting them, but not that she didn't get them.
    Hope it gets better soon
  • mandleberry
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    Congratulations Talheedin on making a start on sorting your situation.You have inspired me to do the same.

    One way of saving water that noone seems to have mentioned is to fill a 5 litre water bottle with the water that you run off while waiting for the hot water to flow in the kitchen. My hot tap is quite a long distance from the hot water tank and I discovered I was letting nearly 5 litres go down the drain waiting for the water to flow hot. So now I save it, and use it in the garden or to rinse items I have washed by hand. JUst a little thing, but when your supply is metered it all helps!

    Good luck with your money issues - you can do this!
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