The Delay Connoisseur

edited 7 May 2019 at 6:03PM in Debt Free Diaries
7 replies 886 views
XavieXavie Forumite
7 Posts
First Anniversary
edited 7 May 2019 at 6:03PM in Debt Free Diaries
Hi,

Starting my diary today - expecting it to be a place to brain dump whilst I try to sort my life out.

Over the past year I have been diagnosed with several mental and physical disorders. I've had to stop work, get my head around being disabled, and start rebuilding my life in a way I can manage. Work, even part time, is not a possibility at the moment, but I have the blessing of having beaten the Universal Credit roll out, so I'm on the better legacy benefits (at least, I am considerably more well off than I would be on UC). Today, my Grandad died, and whilst I'm incredibly sad, it has also made me realise that he was very sensible with money, and I need to repay my debts and start saving what I can. His funeral is entirely paid for by his savings, which has massively relieved the stress for my Grandmother, and I find it very admirable. I had several debts when I was in full time employment that I am now trying to manage. My credit rating isn't great (around 820) and I have a sub-50% chance of getting any balance transfer cards, so that's unfortunately out of the question.

Debts

Littlewoods: £404.98 (0% until Sept)
Capital One: £1148 (31.1%)
Monzo: £750 (£14pcm)
Affinity Water: £150

Total Debt: £2452.98

Monthly Min Repayments: £54 (Awaiting agreement on water)


I have a partner, and no children (or plans for them). My partner lives on the other side of the country, so there is an infrequent outlay for trains, but I have found it cheaper booking far in advance. Although an easy option seems to be move in with my partner to cut costs, under our Government disabled people lose all benefits when moving in with a partner, and the partner is expected to support them almost entirely (even if unmarried) so that's not an option.

My temptation is to launch all my spare cash into debts, but as any disabled person knows, costs spring up from the ground constantly. I don't drive (although am doing lessons) so I have to pay for public transport which is crippling to get anywhere, and I live in the countryside where buses are once per hour if you're lucky, so that's also out.

I am considering moving to a cheaper area (I rent a small 1 bed for £650) however this would involve losing my support network of physio/pain management/psych's and also an initial deposit - I currently have literally about £1 in my savings account (on revision, this is actually £3.50!).

I have roughly £400pcm to cover all extra costs (toiletries, cleaning costs, extra food, GP trips, visiting partner, gardener, birthdays, house expenses etc).

I have no idea where to start, what kind of plan to go for and how much to repay. My gut says to repay the biggest interest debt first, but I have also seen plans where you repay the smallest debt, then repay the next biggest etc. I feel 31.1% is too large to leave, but I may be wrong.

I'm also working on cutting out some costs. I've gotten rid of all TV things so I don't need a TV license, although I've kept NowTV as I won a year sub to the entertainment package in McDonald's monopoly (the only useful thing I've won!!). I frequently need to order take out due to being unable to cook, pot noodles are too heavy to hold on a bad day but I ordered the super noodles cup version in my last shop which were a lot lighter so I'm going to order a heap of those in my next shop so cut out that. Part of me doesn't want to cut out too much as I'm housebound most days, but I am looking out for as many alternatives as I can.

If you've read through this long blog anxiety attack, apologies :eek: I have "the fear" from having seen my debts and now panicking about how to proceed, but firstly, I need to settle on a plan!!


Will update with a plan later :)

X
Credit Card: £111.04/£1148 (9.67%)
1p/day: 2.10p/VSP: £18.10

Replies

  • XavieXavie Forumite
    7 Posts
    First Anniversary
    Okay, shortened the initial post!! A lot of it was panicked waffle :grin:

    Feeling a lot more in control now. Having done some research, I've decided to organise by % of interest. I realise that this means it will take longer to pay off the initial debt, however, I think this will be the most beneficial for me, as long term it costs the least (and relying on benefits long term means this over rides all!).

    My Dad has also said he wants to sell a bunch of comics (we are talking about 3,000 comics!), he is willing to split profits with me 50/50 if I cover the whole online side. Will probably be an extra £10-£20 a week, but I spoke to the benefits office and my permitted work is 16h per week/£95(ish) per week before it affects anything, so I got the green light from them too.

    All the extra from comics will be thrown into my debts, which my Dad is obviously very pleased about! He has also said he will pay the Littlewoods debt in August before the interest sets in and I can just pay him back weekly from then to allow me more breathing room. Ideally I'd like to avoid this, but the 31.1% interest account takes priority currently! Also to avoid my panic about overspending with my debts, I will be making my biggest repayments the day before my paydays. This way, spare cash will go towards them, and I will just keep cutting down and being more sensible with my spending to allow for as much spare cash as possible!

    So, current order is:


    Capital One: £1148 (31.1%)
    Affinity Water: £150
    Littlewoods: £404.98 (0% until Sept)
    Monzo: £750 (£3.50pw)

    Total Debt: £2452.98

    Monzo is strange because it's a set amount of interest per week, regardless of how much you owe them. So I pay £3.50 per week regardless, so there's no real motivation to get rid of that as a priority.

    Now I know my amounts, it would currently take me 60 weeks of £20/week to repay my credit card. Aiming to do it in 52!! Made an initial payment today, then I can get myself sorted before next payday on 21st May! Wish me luck :T

    Current Repayments:

    Capital One: £20/£1148 (1.7%)
    Affinity Water: £0/£150
    Littlewoods: £0/£404.98
    Monzo: £0/£750
    Credit Card: £111.04/£1148 (9.67%)
    1p/day: 2.10p/VSP: £18.10
  • CreditCardJunkieCreditCardJunkie Forumite
    522 Posts
    500 Posts Fourth Anniversary Name Dropper
    ✭✭
    Just wanted to give you a little hurrah! Good luck!
    Debt Free as of December 2020 👏
  • beanieloubeanielou Forumite
    77.8K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Mortgage-free Glee! Name Dropper
    ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    HAppy shiny new diary :)
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~**
    MFW. Finally mortgage free February 2021****
    "A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of" Jane Austen in Mansfield Park.
    ***Fall down seven times,stand up eight*** ~~Japanese proverb.
    It starts with you, it starts from now. *** It is ok to be me.***
    ***Keep plodding***
    Out of debt, out of danger. ***Be the difference.***
  • XavieXavie Forumite
    7 Posts
    First Anniversary
    Thank you both :)

    Short post as it's almost bed time. Having a manic week, my Mum had an emergency appendix operation so have been helping as much as I can, but have stuck to my savings plans and had a NSD yesterday. I'd like to attempt having a lot of NSD's in the month, 10 would be ideal. Will need to reshuffle things to make this happen but I think it's possible. Shops seem to be spamming everywhere with discount codes, but I'm trying to think that instead of paying £20 for an item, I'm paying the 31.1% interest on top too. In the reasoning that if that £20 was paid off my debts, it would save me that interest. Not *quite* how it works, but it's working as a mental block for now!! I did find out today that the £20 repayment I made at the start of the week has come off of my monthly credit card direct debit payment for the month. I'm assuming anything you pay early gets knocked off that before it starts touching your actual balance. Food for thought if manipulating this could make my life easier some weeks down the line when I can anticipate money will be tight around the DD time.

    Feeling really motivated with savings, and just trying to find ways to keep myself interested. Maybe score sheets or mini goals? Not quite sure yet!

    X
    Credit Card: £111.04/£1148 (9.67%)
    1p/day: 2.10p/VSP: £18.10
  • Choccygirl123Choccygirl123 Forumite
    936 Posts
    Fifth Anniversary 500 Posts
    ✭✭✭
    Hi Xavie

    Congratulations on starting your diary and it's good your dad is so supportive. I have been struggling with health issues for the last year and need a 3rd op. I've found it a huge shock financially because the sick pay soon stopped. I've been trying to increase my income.

    I've been doing surveys on Profilic and onepoll which add a few pounds a month. It does take time but since jan I've cashed out £55 on 1poll and £100ish on Proflic. I can send you a referral code if you'd like to try.

    I also have started using receipt scanners...it's very slow going! Nearly at £10 each on Receipt hog and shoppix.

    I've been selling bits and bobs on FB and eBay too. All my extra income has gone into my 'sealed pot' bank account and I'll use it for Christmas. My total from
    These is just over £415 since January, which I'm amazed. It does take time and keeping cash I've made separately a great motivator.
  • XavieXavie Forumite
    7 Posts
    First Anniversary
    Thank you Choccygirl123! Health issues are devastating. Last year I was pulling 12 hour shifts, now I'm suddenly struggling to even get out the door. Also a massive pain as you view your financial obligations as within your budget, as nobody anticipates sudden chronic illness and a huge dip in income, it really takes a lot of acceptance and adjustment.

    I'm not sure about online surveys, using all my "good hours" for shifting stuff on eBay and with my Dad but definitely hoping that the side hustles will start accumilating slowly but surely. Wondering about setting targets?

    Bought a piggy bank too, which seems stupidly backwards but it was on sale for £3 so I'm not too disgruntled! I find a lot of change in my purse makes it bulky and stop closing so I give it away, give it to family for parking etc, but considering I'm struggling financially I think putting it aside for a rainy day is smarter. My partner glued the bottom shut so it will be a bit of a sealed pot type thing, although I'm not doing the challenge and just using it as a dumping ground!

    Kept up with my penny challenge all week, saved £7.70 in the first week VSP and penny challenge combined. If that number stayed stationary, I'd have saved £440 in a year. Total will be higher than that as the penny challenge obviously increases daily - very excited to see what I can do in a year.
    Credit Card: £111.04/£1148 (9.67%)
    1p/day: 2.10p/VSP: £18.10
  • XavieXavie Forumite
    7 Posts
    First Anniversary
    Seen a lot of people posting in their diaries change the font colour, think this is really smart so will implement it! I've been told blue is the most universally seen colour so let's go for that.

    In other news, stressed as f tonight. My partner asked last week if I wanted him to visit this weekend and I said no. I'm travelling to see him next weekend, I had a super busy week last week and the upcoming week is worse, I'm obviously very tight for money and wanted to get lots of jobs and laundry done, as well as progress on the comics. Anyway, he shows up Friday afternoon as a "surprise" :rotfl: I was not too pleased!! I hate surprises anyway but it just felt like a huge invasion of my space and it meant I couldn't do all the things I needed to do. I know he wanted to come because of my Mum being ill and my Grandad passing, but I haven't had time to grieve myself as I'm being pulled in all directions, and really had made it clear I needed some time alone. Very frustrating. Also frustrating because he drove 3hours to see me, so on the one hand I look incredibly ungrateful, but on the other hand, I made it very clear that I wanted some time by myself which he didn't respect. We got through it but I did have a frustration cry.

    I'm now incredibly behind on everything, and some ££ down. I only had super cheap food in as it was just me at home. so was planning a weekend of pasta and noodles, but obviously with two of us it wasn't even enough for two meals (OH is an amateur footballer and works in construction so eats like a horse). He also whenever I say "what do you want for breakfast/lunch/dinner/snacks/drinks" refuses to give me anything to work with and just says "I don't care/whatever you want" so all the meal planning plus food buying is down to me (he buys all the food when I'm at his, although I still have to plan meals). So it was just overall very invasive and an unplanned expense so I got the hump. I felt like a complete scrooge and got over it relatively quickly but it really has screwed with my week.

    Pointless rant really as there's nothing to do about it now! Next week promises to be triple hectic now I've been set back 3 days of progress, so that's going to be interesting. I need to get onto PIP, I sent back my self assessment in Feb and haven't heard anything, I'm currently getting the standard daily living rate but should be entitled to the higher rate plus mobility. The cash would really help me out, and pay towards driving lessons that will help me regain some independence. Looking at college courses for Sept, although I can't work I don't want to stagnate!

    All for now,

    X
    Credit Card: £111.04/£1148 (9.67%)
    1p/day: 2.10p/VSP: £18.10
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