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Unsure whether to consolidate - please advise

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Loans
242 replies 102.6K views
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  • zippygeorgeandbenzippygeorgeandben Forumite
    1.2K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Debt-free and Proud!
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    @taff - hey sorry I did not reply to your question regarding the 12k. My partner had to stop working due to being diagnosed with non hodgkin lymphoma and it just put a bit of a strain on rent and bills. He then didn't go back to work and did an MA last year which of course, isn't cheap. Don't get me wrong and don't give me sympathy as some of the money went on holidays together, household purchases etc.
    I love re reading this whole thread as it reminds me of what I've got to pay and gives me clearer direction.
    Savings as of June 2020
    Savings account 1 - £14081.15(14063.93)Savings account 2 - £4500.00(4000.00)
    Current account - £4116.53(3136.31)
    Total - £22697.68 (19453.38)
    Plus £840 (£120 per month between CS/BS) HTB £600
  • zippygeorgeandbenzippygeorgeandben Forumite
    1.2K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Debt-free and Proud!
    ✭✭✭
    Hello everyone,
    Nothing to report really - just saw it was exactly a month since my original post so it's another £653 off the £17k or so debt!
    Savings as of June 2020
    Savings account 1 - £14081.15(14063.93)Savings account 2 - £4500.00(4000.00)
    Current account - £4116.53(3136.31)
    Total - £22697.68 (19453.38)
    Plus £840 (£120 per month between CS/BS) HTB £600
  • zippygeorgeandbenzippygeorgeandben Forumite
    1.2K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Debt-free and Proud!
    ✭✭✭
    Hello everyone,
    Two months since my original post and I've paid another £653 off this month.
    I also knocked off another £417.87 of the Virgin CC. This amount was the total of my April, May and August paper statements. Trying to clear as much of this as possible before the 0% ends in July.
    I'm so pleased I decided to tackle my debts and this thread definitely now probably deserves to be in the DFW instead of taking out loans.
    Currently
    1) £5267.54 loan(started at £11k)with Zopa @ 4.8% - I pay £230pm
    2) £7123.52 loan(started at £12k in 07/2014)with Tesco @ 4% - I pay £222.61pm
    3) £3393.32 credit card with Virgin Money @ 0% until June 2017 - I pay £200pm (which is more than the £50pm they ask for)
    Total debt equals £15,784.38.
    Total monthly payments are £653pm

    Thank you for reading.
    Savings as of June 2020
    Savings account 1 - £14081.15(14063.93)Savings account 2 - £4500.00(4000.00)
    Current account - £4116.53(3136.31)
    Total - £22697.68 (19453.38)
    Plus £840 (£120 per month between CS/BS) HTB £600
  • By all means stick this in DFW, but here's my twopenneth.


    I had a very similar amount of debt, and like you it was part CC and part loan. The only way I could get clear of it was budget months ahead and be ruthless about paying as much as possible off each month (to the extent that sometimes I did feel absolutely miserable). I made a resolution at the end of 2013 to keep on top of my bank balance and transactions and I've stuck to it. As it stands I can tell you how much spare money I should have left in my account at the end of this November and all the months in between.


    I would focus on paying off the credit card. Ignore the loans for now. It might be that you need to swap CC providers when your deal with Virgin comes to an end and you might wish to save a credit application for that time, ideally to another zero % (zero fee) deal.


    By all means, when you've got the CC licked, then I would look at the loans. The Tesco one at 4% isn't that bad really, the zopa one is perhaps on the high side, but you've got to remember that providers don't give you the 3% headline rate unless you're their target and almost certainly those rates are for debts of £7,500 or more - you don't really want to get into applying for larger loans than you need just to get those rates.


    What you can do, when the CC is clear, is look at making overpayments to the Zopa loan (with the highest interest) - you need to advise them that you want to make regular overpayments ... that £200 a month you pay to Virgin would help clear off the loan quicker, with savings in interest.


    Anyway, these are just my thoughts based on past experience. I found it better to focus on one thing at a time, reducing the number of debts I had to keep track off and you might find that helpful too. Don't forget to budget though, it really is crucial.
    174 BPM >> CC Balance (0%) -£3,565.99 - Target DFD Dec 2017 >> Loan (Car) (3.1%) -£19,803.74 - Target DFD Nov 2020
  • edited 5 February 2017 at 3:49PM
    zippygeorgeandbenzippygeorgeandben Forumite
    1.2K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Debt-free and Proud!
    ✭✭✭
    edited 5 February 2017 at 3:49PM
    HI Moneyrollercoaster,
    Thanks for the reply. (I actually tried to private message you but you've opted not to receive them).
    This morning I have applied and been accepted for a 25month 0% interest on balance transfers and 0% transfer fee credit card. It's the VirginMoney I'm transferring. They have made a £6500 limit but when I activate the card I'll be reducing this as I have no intention of spending on it. I will keep to that also.
    The interesting thing is though is that I got these loans which definitely weren't a necessity yet paying for 2 people's holidays in August went all on the credit card which is extremely unlike me. EDIT: Actually I did spend some of the money on a hobby collection of mine which actually became an addiction I'm trying to sell this collection off but it's not that easy to do. The value is about £5,000.
    Like I've said in a previous post, I know I have interest on these loans but I've never paid interest on credit card balances and I want to keep with that record. I note down everything that I spend on my Macbook daily and what it was. I have £600 each month to spend once all debts have gone and I try to make as much of a dent as I possibly can. I'll admit though that £100 per month since September has gone towards my Easter holiday fund which you might scoff at however I've managed to dent my debts still, get through Christmas and when it comes to booking this April holiday, it won't be using a credit card.
    Once again, many thanks for your reply.
    Ben
    Savings as of June 2020
    Savings account 1 - £14081.15(14063.93)Savings account 2 - £4500.00(4000.00)
    Current account - £4116.53(3136.31)
    Total - £22697.68 (19453.38)
    Plus £840 (£120 per month between CS/BS) HTB £600
  • zippygeorgeandbenzippygeorgeandben Forumite
    1.2K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Debt-free and Proud!
    ✭✭✭
    Hello everyone,
    Just popping in for my monthly update.
    Any of you wanting a brief summary of what my thread is about well in December I was looking at possible consolidation to reduce monthly payments. I'd been budgeting since September and doing well. I got various advice/food for thought from the many posters on here and instead of consolidating, have decided to face my debt HEAD ON and try and spend less than I earn and therefore reduce the debt.
    Since September I have paid nearly £4k off my debt which includes overpaying on the Virgin CC. I'm waiting to get a balance transfer CC to shift the Virgin debt to a 24 month 0% interest with 0% fee so I can hammer away at the debts even more.
    This really ought to be in the DFW pages now i feel.
    Thanks for reading and it's great to look back on personally to see how I was thinking about my debts just a few months ago.
    Savings as of June 2020
    Savings account 1 - £14081.15(14063.93)Savings account 2 - £4500.00(4000.00)
    Current account - £4116.53(3136.31)
    Total - £22697.68 (19453.38)
    Plus £840 (£120 per month between CS/BS) HTB £600
  • Hey, pleased to hear you're making headway. You must feel so much better having looked at it in the eye!


    It's a real brain ache when you realise you're in a pickle. I remember consolidating (more than once) and I can even remember shifting money that was sat at 0% or low interest rates, just for the sake of tying off loose ends. Rational thought sometimes just goes out of the window.


    Go start yourself a DFW thread and we'll all pop in there and cheer you on ... ;)
    174 BPM >> CC Balance (0%) -£3,565.99 - Target DFD Dec 2017 >> Loan (Car) (3.1%) -£19,803.74 - Target DFD Nov 2020
  • zippygeorgeandbenzippygeorgeandben Forumite
    1.2K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Debt-free and Proud!
    ✭✭✭
    MoneyRoller - thanks for the reply. I keep thinking of starting a DFW but I enjoy reading others' diaries and contributing with words of advice/encouragement etc I don't think I'd find the time to start my own!
    I keep piggybacking on Exerbusi2 diary, he doesn't seem to mind!
    Thanks once again. I'm like a dog with a bone with my budgeting in 2017.
    Savings as of June 2020
    Savings account 1 - £14081.15(14063.93)Savings account 2 - £4500.00(4000.00)
    Current account - £4116.53(3136.31)
    Total - £22697.68 (19453.38)
    Plus £840 (£120 per month between CS/BS) HTB £600
  • Hello,

    Just stopping by to say well done on the last 6 months. You seem to be doing very well. I can sympathize with you looking to initially consolidate, I just did it with a £10K loan to pay off other stuff. Sometimes paying one person feels better than paying 2 or 3.

    Anyway, stick with it. You've done great so far and it won't be long before it's all gone away :cool:

    As for a debt diary, maybe asked to get this moved to there and you could use this as yours. I just started one and it feels like a great place to write stuff down / vent / organize :)
    Ex Gambling Addict :( - Last bet made on 15/03/2017 - 29 Days
    Slowly building an emergency fund - £1000/£6000
  • zippygeorgeandbenzippygeorgeandben Forumite
    1.2K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Debt-free and Proud!
    ✭✭✭
    Thanks for taking the time to post a reply Hillwalker17 - I'll have to search your username and see what you're up to on these boards. Hope you pay off your debts.
    Savings as of June 2020
    Savings account 1 - £14081.15(14063.93)Savings account 2 - £4500.00(4000.00)
    Current account - £4116.53(3136.31)
    Total - £22697.68 (19453.38)
    Plus £840 (£120 per month between CS/BS) HTB £600
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