The Beginning of the End

Hello all,

Like many on here, I've decided to come out of the shadows and share my own debt-experience in the hope that tracking my progress will provide extra-motivation and support on the road to being debt-free.

I have been on a debt management plan (DMP) with StepChange since November 2015. Since this time I've paid off £744, leaving the following amounts outstanding:

On Stride - £2,130.33

HSBC (Personal Loan) - £1,371.94

HSBC (Overdraft) - £1,006.90

Capital One - £979.53

MyJar - £959.32

Wonga - £493.56

WageDayAdvance - £480.60

Different Money - £464.60

Satsuma - £455.00

HSBC (Credit Card) - £454.87

WizzCash - £331.86

TOTAL - £9,128.51

I will not go into much detail regarding how this debt came about. Suffice to say, it was a combination of poor budgeting, a gambling problem, and living beyond my means.

As my borrowing stacked up I eventually reached the point where I could no longer afford the minimum payments. When this happened, I made the fatal error of taking out further loans to try and pay off the others (this is how the smaller payday loans came about).

After a few months of treading water this way, the bubble burst and I defaulted on a few of the repayments.

This was when I had to take drastic action. I consolidated my debts via StepChange, shifted my spending habits and kicked the gambling.

Fast-forward to August 2016, and things are looking so much better. Whilst the debt is still there, it's decreasing month-by-month. There's still room for improvement in terms of my spending habits, but I'm getting better.

Overall, I hope this diary will help me to track my transformation from debtor to saver. Circa £9000 seems astronomical at times, but once it's gone I'll be 100% debt free (barring student loan).

That's an incredible motivation for me, and I hope to achieve it within the not too far flung future.

Wish me luck!
DMP:

Starting Total: £10,254.47 _pale_
/
Remaining: £3,386.94 :dance:
«1

Replies

  • louby40louby40 Forumite
    1.5K Posts
    Tenth Anniversary 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    Forumite
    Good luck and well done for starting a diary it's a good motivator to keep going.
  • edited 25 August 2016 at 1:58PM
    Perpetual_MiserPerpetual_Miser Forumite
    36 Posts
    edited 25 August 2016 at 1:58PM
    Slight set-back today:

    Having received a statement in the post, the Satsuma amount outstanding is actually £836.96. They have added the interest for the entire term onto the starting balance which I did not take into account.

    This puts my revised total outstanding at:

    £9510.47

    Not a huge increase, but still a bit of a downer.

    On the plus side, the Satsuma debt has still decreased overall and they don't appear to have any problem with my current payment plan.

    Onwards and upwards!
    DMP:

    Starting Total: £10,254.47 _pale_
    /
    Remaining: £3,386.94 :dance:
  • fourthtimeluckyfourthtimelucky Forumite
    64 Posts
    10 Posts
    Forumite
    Good luck, similar story to mine with living beyond means and bad money management. The clarity of having it all written down does seem to help.
    Starting point Aug 2016 - £13,853.38
    Current total May 2018 - £0.00 - 100.00% paid off
    Debt free date (worst case) - December 2019
  • nextyeartinanextyeartina Forumite
    749 Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    Forumite
    Could you not write to Satsuma asking them to stop interest?




    Tina x
    The £1,000 emergency fund challenge #163 - £536.16/£1000
  • Welcome and good luck. You're in this for the long haul! What's your debt-free date?
    My Debt Free Diary I owe:
    July 16 £19700 Nov 16 £18002
    Aug 16 £19519 Dec 16 £17708
    Sep 16 £18780 Jan 17 £17082
    Oct 16 £17873
  • Unfortunately the interest was pre-calculated and added to the total from the start.

    Because of this I don't think I'm in a position to dispute it.

    Could be worth a try though?
    DMP:

    Starting Total: £10,254.47 _pale_
    /
    Remaining: £3,386.94 :dance:
  • So I've made an extra payment of £20 towards the Wonga loan (in addition to my usual monthly DMP amount).

    My reason for doing this is that I'm targeting the payday loans first, as I consider them to be the worst/most risky.

    It's a good feeling to be able to pay off a bit extra for the first time in almost a year.

    Will update my totals accordingly!
    DMP:

    Starting Total: £10,254.47 _pale_
    /
    Remaining: £3,386.94 :dance:
  • StokieBecksStokieBecks Forumite
    5K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Photogenic Xmas Saver!
    Forumite
    Perpetual Miser

    Have you had lots of payday loans? If so I recommend you find the post on the debt free wannabeboard about reclaiming money from pay dayloan lenders and also have a read of debt camel and their templates for reclaiming some of the interest on your payday loans. I am not saying you will definitely get a result but I think you should look into it and see if it may apply to you (advance warning this is not a quick process but may help you a little more long term if you could get some redress or existing balances wiped)
    £2 Savers Club for 2022 #12
  • Perpetual Miser

    Have you had lots of payday loans? If so I recommend you find the post on the debt free wannabeboard about reclaiming money from pay dayloan lenders and also have a read of debt camel and their templates for reclaiming some of the interest on your payday loans. I am not saying you will definitely get a result but I think you should look into it and see if it may apply to you (advance warning this is not a quick process but may help you a little more long term if you could get some redress or existing balances wiped)

    Yes, I managed to pay off a few - sometimes by rolling them over/taking out loans with different lenders. This happened until the bubble burst. I've had a quick tally-up and around £3,500 of my current outstanding debt is with payday loan companies, so quite a substantial amount.

    I had a quick read of the information suggested and it seems very promising. I'm particularly keen to give this a go with Satsuma, as I'm still paying off the full term's worth of interest despite the fact that I'm on a DMP.

    The other payday companies have frozen interest, but I could claim for interest I've already paid.

    Thanks for the advice! This could prove extremely helpful. :)
    DMP:

    Starting Total: £10,254.47 _pale_
    /
    Remaining: £3,386.94 :dance:
  • I've had the opportunity to dig a little deeper into my loan history and I think I definitely have strong claims with at least a few of the lenders.

    Different Money, for instance, did freeze interest. However, they have not refunded me for interest already paid. Prior to starting my DMP I'd already taken out/settled two loans with them. I will argue that the most recent loan should not have been granted to me as I was clearly in an untenable position financially (rolling over loans to pay off others, resulting in defaults).

    I will be sending them an e-mail tonight outlining this position and making a formal complaint and requesting a refund for interest paid. If successful, I'm hoping to reduce the outstanding sum by around £200 on this loan.

    There are similar claims that I will be making on the other loans. Whether I will have any success with this I don't know, but I do genuinely feel that I have strong evidence to prove I was granted loans which I could not afford.
    DMP:

    Starting Total: £10,254.47 _pale_
    /
    Remaining: £3,386.94 :dance:
This discussion has been closed.
Latest MSE News and Guides

Check your Clubcard vouchers

Use our trick to extend them

MSE News

Preparing for summer

What MoneySaving things can you do now to get ready?

MSE Forum

Hot Diamonds 40% off code

Including already-reduced outlet stock

MSE Deals