gingernutbizkit's dfb blog

hi everyone,

my light bulb moment arrived on saturday and was long overdue! I have known for sometime how bad our finances were but just continued spending - kind of a 'what the hell approach'.

I have now realised that i can take control of this mess..... more like i need to. When i was a teenager my parents lost our house because they couldn't keep up with the repayments so i am well aware of what's at stake.

So, here i am a MSE virgin and thought i might blog my story to inspire me if not anyone else!

This is the ugly facts.....

My wife and i have a beautiful home with a £122K mortgage. Including interest there's a northern rock loan of £20,000, Cahoot loan of £1100, kitchen loan of £783, Homebase card of £250 and overdraft of £250.

Our total debt is £22,383.00 :eek:

My wife has a good income of approx £25K but mine is just £12K and simply not enough to make a decent contribution..... interview for a better position tomorrow though so fingers crossed.

Basically we need to make more and spend less...... funny how long it's taken us to grasp that simply equation!

Work done in the past 3 days.....

1. spent tons of time on MSE reading articles and blog - so much i didn't know about.
2. set a letter yesterday to LLoydstsb requesting repayment for bank charges of approx £1000
3. in the process of writing a realistic budget for us to stick to.
4. realised what a mug i am for spending all our voucher in store at tesco - genuinely had no idea about the tesco clubcard deals.
5. signed up for a nectar card for when i occasionally buy at sainsbury's
6. signed up for a cashback creditcard
7. registered with pigsback, quidco, ipoints and rpoints - still trying to find my way around the sites!

i'll keep you posted x


  • Bambywamby
    Bambywamby Posts: 1,608 Forumite
    Photogenic First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Good luck.

    You will soon be rattling down those debts.

    Look forward to reading your progress.

    x x
    *Frugal Living 2015* *Not Buying It 2015*
    "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." ~ MARK TWAIN

  • gingernutbizkit
    thanks bambywamby!
  • azzywazzy
    azzywazzy Posts: 12 Forumite
    Hi Gingernut!

    I'll be following your blog very closely - my husband's and my situation is quite similar to yours - I've just taken a new job with approx a £25k salary, and he is aiming to get a new job circa £12k (which would make quite an impact for us), and we have debts of £24k - eep! We are in the process of buying our first place (beautiful flat, rotten timing) and it's worth about the same value as your mortgage - so it seems a bit like you and your wife are in a rather similar situation to us! :)

    Best of luck to you mate - we all need it!
    Finally debt free!
  • gingernutbizkit
    Thanks Azzy.

    Finishing looking at my current budget using martins fab budgeting tool and realised where everything has been going wrong! Our bills and living expenses are just (and i mean just!) about covered my our income but the area we seem to be falling down on are the one off expenses - christmas, birthdays, holidays, the new kitchen and bathroom we had last year, oh yeah and our wedding in Sept!

    We also have no room for spending money at all (i did say it was tight!) which just isn't realistic. So what's been happening is that we have been taking a bit of money out of our food and petrol money pots and as the month has gone on we've then ended up borrowing money for food/petrol which we have felt justified in doing because they were essentials!

    So here's the plan of action....... we have two, YES TWO, pigs! :D

    Pursey the pig - he's our savings pig for things we want to do - days out, holidays etc.
    Homey the Hog - He's our savings pig for our savings. He's named Homey because our dream goal is to have a nice house in the country.

    The rules are simple.
    When adding money to the pigs the majority must go into Homey.
    We can open up pursey at any point and use the money if we both agree, but Homey must never be opened up. When he's full up we will take all the money and put it into a high interest account.
  • ifstar
    ifstar Posts: 487 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary
    Might be worth posting up your budget when you get it done and some people on here can maybe make some suggestions things you can perhaps cut down on.
  • gingernutbizkit
    I'm starting to really get into the cashback sites now. I know they're never going to earn me loads so i can retire at 40 but every little helps. At the moment i'm doing everything online that doesn't require spending money so therefore making money from nothing but my time :j

    Signed up 3 days ago and already have 470 piggypoints - £4.70.
    If i earn 1000 i can get a £10 gift voucher for friends birthday.
    I signed up OH yesterday and she's made £3.20 plus when she has made her first £5 i will get a five pound bonus :D

    Ok, i did spend money here but wait and here me out before you judge me! My OH and i have a magazine addiction. Typically we buy 3-4 magazines a week which is costing us a fortune. We have both agreed to have 2 each a month. One of my choices is 'Grow your Own Fruit and Veg' as we have an allotment - more about that later. Buying it in the shops costs £40 per year. In the magazine it offers a subsription for £36 plus a free ring binder but through Quidco i discovered the magazine group. they did the subscription for £32.50 (i think i can live without the binder!) PLUS i would gain £4.80 from quidco.

    so far i've made £7.50 in two days from signing up to r points and agreeing to receive more junk mail! I use junk mail for my compost bin so it's a win win!

    I've earnt £2.20 for sining up to a lot more junk and email newsletters - i've created a new email account to receive all the crap!

    So, in 3 days that's £22.40 for not really doing a lot :j
    Feeling pretty please with myself!
  • gingernutbizkit
    i'll do that, thanks ifstar.
  • gingernutbizkit
    ok, so the allotment.....

    basically 18 months ago we had the sudden desire to become organic-back-to-earth hippy types and grow our own fruit and veg. Due to the fact that we have a dog that eats everything in sight we decided to take on an allotment.

    We have half a site which we pay £26 a year for but last year the novelty wore off quick and we never actually planted anything except potatoes! we did however buy all the seeds and tools we need and did a bit of clearing.

    So, i have a week off at the end of this month and now plan to make a list of everything we could grow and really get stuck in with it this year. I think our small plot could sort most of our fruit and veg needs out for the year???

    I've already paid the fee this year so the cost should be minimal if anything and we will be adding what the veg should have cost to our pigs.

    Thinking of keeping chickens but the OH refuses....... maybe when we have that dream house in the country!
  • gingernutbizkit
    just managed to save a printer cartridge from the works bin.... and half a banana but i don't think i'm that desperate yet!

    so, the cartridge is worth 50 tesco cc points and i now know that's £2.00 in deals.
  • gingernutbizkit
    pants! just realised that my work account was overdrawn yesterday because my partner paid into the wrong account! :mad:

    i guess the letter will arrive today :(
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