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How have things changed for you since you first joined?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Debt-Free Wannabe
46 replies 9K views


  • Like everyone else this site has been a great motivation for me to start controlling my debts instead of letting them spiral like they were at the beginning of the year. Since I joined so far I have:

    * almost paid off my Capital One Credit Card (1 payment to go, woohoo!)
    * cleared debts with 2 catalogues, 2 book clubs and a cards club (and closed all accounts down so no more temptation to spend
    * joined freecycle - not got anything from there but its a start
    * joined so any books I want come from there now
    * stayed inside my overdraft limit since March - one hell of an achievement for me and no more bank charges, hurrah!
    * sold plenty of things on Ebay and thrown the money at debts
    * got a lot more sensible with my spending, hunting out bargains and BOGOF offers like you wouldn't believe
    * changed Car Insurance was £49 p/month now £28 p/month
    * will soon be changing my mobile phone contract to save me another £15 a month.

    Ultimately, this site has encouraged me to change my lifestyle and deal with the debts I have. I know I'm going to be in debt for some time yet but I'm feeling better and better about it everyday.
    Thanks for the link to read it swap it. Have joined already.
  • wow! big :T to everyone!

    since joining in august i've
    -cancelled sky and tv license
    -cut mobile bill
    -cancelled gym (by...
    -got new job at gym so free use!
    -budgetted and meal planned, down to £10 a week!
    -started court proceedings to get back £623 of bank charges
    -payed off my one interest charging debt (od)
    -only used cc (0% purchases) for considered items

    mostly tho i've just managed to get to the end of the month with more than a penny in my bank accounts. i've consistently payed off more than the minimum on everything, and these days i'm more worried about how long it is till payday for debt payments rather than food shopping!
  • KevichoKevicho Forumite
    3.2K Posts
    Wow almost been a year since I signed up on here and to be honest its been the best year of my life

    Accomplishments include

    Paying off 7K of debt
    Invested 1.5k in a business
    Bought 50 shares (which currently are 20 quid up lol)
    Have 1k in savings
    Have quit drinking for 10 weeks now
    Have learned a lot about money and life from tapes by people such as Robert Kiyosaki, John Cummuta, David Bach, Paul Zane Pilzer, Dale Carnegie and of Course Martin ;) (Have loads more to go through as well)
    Quit watching TV, thus freeing up hours of time which was wasted before
    Lost lots of weight, thanks to healthier eating
    Helped friends and family with money
    Beat halifax twice for unfair penalty charges
    Become unemployed and not worried about money!
    and best of all, Got me a JD


    My mindset is completely changed, money is no longer an issue to me, as I dont need to spend money on anything i dont really need, no longer drinking is saving me money as i dont feel the need to be out every night, this is all improving my health, as i feel a lot more positive about life, and best of all I have given myself a commitment to learn and improve myself
  • gingerginger Forumite
    92 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    Where to start? Made savings on all the following:-
    Renegotiated mortgage
    Changed utitlity supplier
    Changed phone supplier
    Changed car insurance/travel insurance
    Reduced sky package
    Reclaimed bank charges
    Redcued food shopping
    Started using coupons
    Joined quidco, pigsback, i points, lightspeed
    Started mystery shopping with 5 companies
    Generally started being more aware of where money was being "wasted".
  • XbigmanXbigman Forumite
    3.5K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    What changed for me was the realisation I didn't know it all, despite clearing my debts before finding this site.
    I had shopped around for cheap house insurance, car insurance but since coming onto MSE I have cut back even more.
    I had already started taking a shopping list with me to Tesco's and I was convinced I had cut my shopping bill to the bone, then I saw people on hear boiling the bonemarrow out for soup stock and then selling the remaining bone on ebay:A Now thats moneysaving.
    I also learned a lot about mortgages and I've done a great 7 year fix that, with recent rises, saves me more every day. For the first time I am in control of that part of my life.

    But the biggest change was that I now think about the future. I have my pension forcast and I've even thought about early retirement and what I'll need to do to achieve it.

    Thanks Martin and everyone.

    Xbigman's guide to a happy life.

    Eat properly
    Sleep properly
    Save some money
  • Penny-Pincher!!Penny-Pincher!! Forumite
    8.3K Posts
    Over the past 18 months we have cut back alot and are saving just over £1000per month:eek: :eek: :eek: This is a mixture of:

    (1)Switching utilitites (phone, gas, electric)
    (2)Insurances (Car, home and life)
    (3)Buying only food we need or reduced. Meal planning. This saves us about £400+ per month alone.
    (4)Changed Internet providers
    (5)Buying clothes from the Next clearance stores or in sales
    (6)Using a 99p store for all our brand named items like, Colegate toothpaste/mouthwash, Dove soap, Shampoos/conditioners, ladies stuff.
    (7)Buying pressies for the year in the January sales. This years pressies (about 40) for all birthdays/anniversarys/xmas/etc came to about £50.
    (8)Make HM Cards with DD for different occasions
    (9)Moved to PAYG mobiles-theres 3 of us and we pay £5 a month between us
    (10)Opened an ING account and all extra goes in there. We have about £900 mad money ATM, but this will be used for home improvements
    (11)In the past 18 months have paid off about 11k of debt
    (12)Do Pigsback and have received £50 of JL vouchers and others

    All in all, this website has saved me a fortune. I became disabled 2 years ago and my OH is my carer. We both used to be on very good salaries, but TBH-we are so much happier now even on a limited income as we know exactly whats what!

    When working, I use to shop at M&S and Waitrose wasting £120+ a week. Through this site I found out that Waitrose take vouchers and do my shops normally there. So I can do a £50 shop (more than enough with luxuries and cupboards always full-I buy 1 item a week to put in the Xmas box for eith pressies or us:D ) and pay £20-£25 after using vouchers.

    I love MSE.

    To repeat what others have said, requires education, to challenge it,
    requires brains!
  • mintymoneysavermintymoneysaver Forumite
    3.5K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker Home Insurance Hacker!
    I've done lots of things over the last two years, but I think the main difference that I now see is that I know exactly how much is in my bank account or on my credit card as I check them every morning, and that's a habit that will now last for ever I think.
  • well done all of you - it's inspiring. good thread I-Angel
  • ummm since joining this forum (a year ago) i have become debt free ~ have loads of savings ~ now use cashback sites ~ now help people on here so i can put my little amount of knowledge to use ~ and i have met all of you lovely people ~ i havent changed any of my bills really except ditching my contract phone... but i am much more chilled and i dont worry as much :)
  • nearlyrichnearlyrich Forumite
    13.7K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker Hung up my suit! Mortgage-free Glee!
    What a great thread so inspiring and well done to all of you.

    I have finally plucked up the courage to sell on Ebay and I have actually made some money from things that I probably would have dumped before. I have the bank's money sat in my account earning interest and I have discovered that Aldi doesn't mean poor quality, it all helps to build my early retirement fund.
    Free impartial debt advice from: National Debtline or Stepchange[/CENTER]
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