21 and in a complete mess : ( !!



  • 8pnoodles
    8pnoodles Posts: 295 Forumite
    Definitely check out house shares. It's sociable, fun, and SOOOO much cheaper. I am in a house share with two others, it's not ideal but it has it's ups and downs.

    I pay £258 for a largish room in Salisbury, with a garden, right in the town centre.

    The best bit is the council tax, gas and electric, and water bill, even the phone line rental and tv licence, are all split three ways! I'm dreading having to pay a full heating bill on my own again (moving out soon to live with OH).

    It would solve a lot of your problems. 18 months ago I owed £10649 and was bringing home £1003 a month. So I owed less than you but got paid less too. I managed to get rid of my car, I lift share to work (costs £35 a month in petrol!) and did bar work for a bit too. Once you learn to live within your means and learn to effectively live on a small % of your salary, I can even live on half my salary (only £500 or so) a month if I need to now, once you're out of debt it means you can have the world's biggest savings account/pension/emergency fund/holiday fund/etc.

    Lol, I forgot to say, I owed £10,649 18 months ago, now I owe a grand total of £5667. It's definitely doable. I even managed to go on holiday once in that time, and some other stuff too. And you learn SOOOO much about money in the process.

    Good luck. :)
    Pay off CC debt by Xmas 2017 #095 £0 of £11,416 :eek:
  • Hiya,

    Just wanted to add my voice to those saying get a bike! It's a brilliant way to get round London and I rarely use public transport at all now. Even if you do move a bit further out, central London's only about 30-40 minutes by bike from zone 3 (I don't cycle very fast).

    If you're in S London, PM me if you like - I know the roads fairly well and would be more than happy to accompany you from your place to where you work some weekend - someone did this for me when I started cycling and it's really helpful if you're nervous!

  • Interest is probably a big cost and can be reduced. Spend a couple of days working on your interest. Find out the APR on all your debts. Try to get some of your debt onto interest free cards.

    Try shuffling your debts onto the lower interest rates:

    http://www.whatsthecost.com/snowball.aspx is an excellent website that will show you your debt-free date, and the difference lower interest rates will make.

    And it's likely your salary will go as you get more experienced, so you'll be able to pay off your debts faster.
    Lightbulb moment: June 2006:shocked:
    Debts June 2006: £18,100
    Egg Card [strike]£13,400 [/strike] £12,350; Loan [strike]£3,500[/strike] £2,300; Other [strike]£3,700[/strike] £3,100; Overdraft [strike]£1,500[/strike] £585
    Debts Setp 2006: £15,300
  • IMHO the key to riding in London is confidence. You have a right to be on the road too. Ride like you have that right. Don't let cars/vans/buses bully you.

    I searched on Google for learn cycle london and found the following:
    Lightbulb moment: June 2006:shocked:
    Debts June 2006: £18,100
    Egg Card [strike]£13,400 [/strike] £12,350; Loan [strike]£3,500[/strike] £2,300; Other [strike]£3,700[/strike] £3,100; Overdraft [strike]£1,500[/strike] £585
    Debts Setp 2006: £15,300
  • - Move into shared house, ask around at work. More fun anyway

    - Dump the insurance. What have you got that is worth insuring? Sell it...

    - Phone bill is very high. Switch to texts...

    - Flog stuff off on eBay

    - Get a p/t job - weekends maybe?

    You are probably better off staying in London. Sounds odd, but as there is so much free to do there, that you can have a good life even if you spend very little - e.g. picnic in parks with friends, many fantastic museums and galeries to explore, great libraries. For that reason I would keep the travel card - just use it more at weekends.

    Have your bf come visit you in London!
  • Hey Danni

    Just thought I'd say - if you're cycling to work in London please wear a helmet. You can get a good one for £20 these days and if you ever have to 'use' it it will pay for itself many hundreds of times over. I cycle, scoot and drive in London and the roads can be nasty, but if you take your time, stop at the lights and remember to look over your shoulder occasionally, you'll be fine.

    For moving flat, the best site I've found is MoveFlat:

    No ads, and seems to be run by one bloke called Julian, if memory serves. My friends have all used it and found flats or tenants in record time.

    Good luck on the money saving!
  • eileenamcc
    eileenamcc Posts: 14 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Dear Danni I felt so sad reading your story but you have done well facing up to your problems.I would have a chat with your Mum and Dad.They will want to help you .If it really isn't possible for you to move back home,you may find your Mum and Dad will be able to help you in other ways.Not being on your own worrying about it is a great step.Your ideas about Ebay and a part time job could help.I'm sure Martin will have verygood advice as how to make the payments ,on all your debt, more manageable.Perhaps your existing credit cards could freeze the interest permanently and allow you to make minimum payments for an agreed length of time.If they realise that you are doing your best to sort out the debt,I would think they would try to help you.Although this is a really hard time for you , you do have Time on your side,as you are so young.This horrible lesson will save you from lots of heartache later on in life.I really wish you the best sincerely eileen
  • x_raphael_xx
    x_raphael_xx Posts: 4,318 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary Photogenic
    Dear Dannil...Do not dispair!!

    I am 22 and I owe just under £9000.

    First thing...talk to your parents, they may not be able to help, but getting the truth out in the open is a big help. About a year ago I didnt realise how much money I owed, and I suddenly found out when I couldnt get £150 together to pay bank charges for bounced direct debits.
    I went for a walk with my friend and my dog in the woods and suddenly burst into tears, which surprised my friend because Im not the crying sort of girl.
    It all spilled out to my friend who lent me the money to cover it, and since then both my friend and her mum have been very supporting and just knowing they are there for me makes me feel more positive. With their help and advice Im finally getting ontop of my debts and aim to pay them all off by the start of 2008.

    I used to pay to a charity too, but my friend advised me to cancel my direct debit until I could afford to pay it, although it was very important to me. She also said that as I was paying it from my overdraft it was actually the banks money paying for it, not me. Also as I get charged interest on my overdraft, I was also paying MORE than I should. So Ive cancelled it until I get out of my overdraft, which will come after my loans as my loans have a higher interest rate.

    Dont let it get on top of you, rank your debts into highest interest rates and pay the highest first. Any extra pounds, no matter how little it seems, always adds up and mades a difference.

    Make a budget, write down all your income and outcome, everything...even lunches for work etc. Make sure you also factor in a little for surprises, I budget about £40 a month, just incase something crops up that Im not expecting.

    Set your video for Monday morning 0200-0600 BBC 2, there is a couple of very helpful programmes about budgeting and paying off your debts.

    Good luck and keep smiling.
    Debt Free as of 17/01/2009 Turtle Power!!

    EF Challenger #3 £138.36 / £5000
    MFW 2024 #100 £00.00 / £10,000

    MFiT #40 Jan 2025 Target - £99,999.00
    Mortgage at 30/09/22 £113,694.11 | Mortgage at 24/01/23 £110,707.87
    Mortgage at 21/04/23 £107,701.01 | Mortgage at 20/07/23 £106,979.65
    Mortgage at 04/10/23 £106,253.77 | Mortgage at 10/01/24 £105,324.57
  • kiranj
    kiranj Posts: 63 Forumite
    First Post
    Hi Danii

    Well done for trying to sort yourself out - it's tough!

    I echo other people's suggestions that you move into shared accommodation or lodgings - it will be a lot cheaper.

    Also, your mobile bill is incredibly high! I'm on a tariff which gives me 400 mins (any time any network) & 250 texts per month @£35/month. And if that's not enough the next tariff up was around £40 for around 700mins + 200 texts (if memory serves). I strongly suggest you change tariffs / provider! If you look around on the internet, there's loads of companies offering cashback deals too - but you have to be VERY organised if you are going to use these offers (read the small print!!). I've managed to get my ANNUAL mobile bill down to around £100 using these cashback offers, and I've been doing it for 3 years now.

    And if you can't change yet, then call your existing provider to request a more cost-effective tariff for your usage levels. They are usually quite accommodating. You should be able to knock a lot off your monthly bill.

    One last thing.....
    Has anyone mentioned an IVA? It's not ideal, but it's a better option than bankruptcy. I've not been in your position, but a friend of mine has.
    He took this option as the debt was accumulating faster than he could keep up with it! He saw a debt counselling agency (see Martin's advice on this), and decided to go for this option.
    They assess your incomings & outgoings, and work out how much you can afford to pay each month (whether it covers the full debt or not). You're then committed to pay that amount for 60 months (5 years) and it freezes the debt. Be aware though, there's little room for missing a payment. And they usually reserve the right to take large chunks of any pay rise you get in that time. You have to send in copies of salary slips every 3 months.
    If you go down this route, bizarrely it's in your interest to have higher outgoings at the time the assessment takes place. If you then reduce this, they don't seem to reassess your outgoings whether they go up or down.

    (My friend has just made the last payment on his IVA this week - hurray!)

    Get some professional advice on the IVA option though.....as I'm not sure of the full implications. But make sure you go to one of the places Martin recommends.

    Good Luck!

  • wrighty_3
    wrighty_3 Posts: 48 Forumite
    Hey danni!

    There is always light at the end of the tunnel trust me! I am 23 and was in a similar position to you at the beginning of the year I owed about £12k altogether . You have come to the right place. Thanks to the great people on this board and parents support I now only owe £9k thats £3k wiped off my debts in about 3 months!! At this rate im looking at debt free this time next year!

    Its always comforting to know people are in the same boat as yourself!
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