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Giving every £ a job

edited 30 November -1 at 12:00AM in Debt Free Diaries
435 replies 20.9K views
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  • FranalamadingdongFranalamadingdong Forumite
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    That's brilliant news! Do you not end up paying tax etc on expenses? Mine got added to my pay packet, which meant some went to NI, tax and pension. Was a bit annoying. Make sure you don't colour anything until it's in your account :-)
  • BlackcatsBlackcats Forumite
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    Fran, I'm pretty sure that expenses shouldn't incur any deductions. They can be paid with wages but as a separate line if you see what I mean. The principle is if you've spent £10 on work related costs that are re-claimable then you should get the whole £10 back. It's worth double checking if and why your company hasn't been paying you in full. I shall indeed wait til mine hit my bank account before colouring in my squares although I'm itching to get colouring.
    I've had a quiet day today which has been lovely. I've repaired a jumper where the side seam had come undone a little bit. It's relatively new and I had a hurumph at the unravelled seam but weighed up the time involved to drive 12 miles to return it, queue up in the shop, maybe buy a cup of tea to reward myself and realised that it would be quicker and cheaper to do it myself. Previously I would have just left it in the wardrobe ....
    I'll be making some soup later with fridge bottom veggies - will call it spiced winter vegetable soup to make it sound exotic and glamorous.
    It's busy on the diaries which is great, lots of enthusiasm to manage money better and lots of inspiration.
    Happy new year to us all.
  • FranalamadingdongFranalamadingdong Forumite
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    Happy new year!
    Well done for repairing the jumper! Simple skills can save so much money and time sometimes!
    I'll have to double check my milage payment from a couple of months ago now!
  • BlackcatsBlackcats Forumite
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    A busy couple of days with family, some spends which I was expecting but hadn't really budgeted for.
    I realise that whilst I've been diligent with recoding spending across various categories this is not the same as setting a budget and sticking to it, planning ahead and adjusting spending as needed. I know that this is screamingly obvious but it's really only just made sense to me.
    I will do my January budget tomorrow and try to approach the month with a thrifty and responsible attitude.
    I have just set up a switch for my energy provider. The bills had been creeping up and I had been complacent in just grumbling and then paying the higher bills. The switching calculator shows a sizeable saving so I hope that will actually happen.
  • MidsHollieMidsHollie Forumite
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    Hi Blackcats,
    December is the first month that I really set a budget and wow...... I was way off! My eating out spend was almost 3 x over budget! I'm going to sound way older than I actually am when I say this: I think in this day and age we are just used to getting what we want when we want it. We don't have to save or wait or adjust, because we can order online with next day delivery or get from the shops open 24hours a day and pay next month / year / decade on our credit cards.
    This waiting, saving, planning and adjusting is going to be a steep learning curve for me!

    https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6086606/debt-free-by-23/p1

    True LBM, December 2019 = £32934. Current Debt = £21927. 1% Challenge = 30%. #304 £1000 EF challenge = £700



  • Important update! We have recently reviewed and updated our Forum Rules and FAQs. Please take the time to familiarise yourself with the latest version.
  • BlackcatsBlackcats Forumite
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    Hello Midshollie. At least you've seen the eating out overspend so you can tackle it this month. It certainly adds up doesn't it. It's also a category I badly overspend on.
    Meeting family and friends for meals seems much more usual than taking it in turns to cook at our own homes. The cost of drinks really adds to the bill. I'm going to try and use vouchers where possible this year and drink soft drinks more often than wine. Very often the quality of restaurant wine is mediocre but the price is premium. I still want to enjoy socialising but I want to feel like I've had good value for money too.
    I've swopped to meeting for brunch with some friends and that's quite fun. A nice hearty breakfast, cup of tea and a chat is nice and much cheaper than an evening meal. A meet up for coffee and cake would work well too.
    Most of us on these boards are "work in progress" but well done to you for making a start. I agree that waiting, saving, planning and adjusting is the key. I shall try and apply these principles in 2020.
  • foxglovesfoxgloves Forumite
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    Blackcats - Well done on not buying a new mug. I actually reckon that virtually nobody needs a new mug. I think most people have a mug tree or rack containing the ones they currently use & a stash of spares in a cupboard which have been gifted or overbought. They are a regular gift item. In finding one you already had, you have shopped from home! Yay, my favourite solution to saving unnecessary spending AND over-consumption. I've done a tiny bit of that today......not with mugs, but with stuff on my fireplace. We took the Christmas tree & decs down today and that meant a big gap on the mantlepiece. I couldn't replace the Christmas items with the lovely candle bowl that was there previously because sadly, it got swept off when Mr F brought the Christmas tree in from the garden & shattered into pieces on the hearth. I was so sad as I'd had it (a present from my Mum & Dad) since I was 19. Well, I looked at that gap today & wondered what I could display there & there was just the smallest flicker of 'I might see something at the weekend' (when we hope to have a city centre trip & will almost certainly also be visiting the emporium where you spotted your tempty little friend the plastic cactus.......) Then I had a word with myself. I have been a spender in the past, so I have a lot of nice items which could easily be pressed into service on the mantlepiece. In the end, I moved a nice distressed mirror glass candle holder into the middle, & fetched out two identical metal cutwork lanterns to stand at either end. They have battery lights inside, so look very pretty on an evening, as I also have a string of tiny white fairy lights around the overrmantle mirror. So shopped from home - Yes, cash outlay - Nil. I know there is an argument that for a £10 to £20 spend I probably could have found something decent to buy, but the way I look at it these days, is that I'd rather have that £10 to £20 saved for something bigger that we need to buy at some point, instead of chucking it straight onto a credit card, like the old me would have done.
    So 10 out of 10, m'duck for not caving in to a new mug. Result!
    F x
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £418 2019 = £227 2020= £53
  • BlackcatsBlackcats Forumite
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    Ahh Foxgloves, your "shopping from home" mantra works so well for reforming spenders. It's the best advice from these boards and you should patent the technique. We spenders all have 'things" we have bought tucked away in cupboards and drawers and finding them again is almost as good as buying them in the first place. Actually buying them when in a spendy era probably gave very little pleasure after the initial thrill of handing over the credit card.
    Your mantelpiece sounds lovely, twinkly lights and candles in the winter are so, so pretty.
    A couple of years ago I bought 3 fake candles that run on batteries from Laura ashl*y. Completely on a whim because they were reduced by some or other tempting % to a price that was still quite expensive but I "needed" them so I bought them. I've dug them out of the sideboard and they are twinkling prettily on my mantelpiece tonight.
  • BlackcatsBlackcats Forumite
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    My January motivational mantra is " it's not how much money you make but how much money you keep and how hard it works for you".
    This fits for me as my income is good but I've always spent it all (and more) and had no real recognition of the cost of debt. I've only recently taken notice of the rates offered on savings too (some are so low that they are either a joke or an insult). Of course I've never really had any savings to "worry" about until recently!
    This month I WILL NOT buy :- candles, clothes, fancy tea bags, shower gel, body lotion and wine. Is there anything in life more lovely than these things? I'm not buying them because I've got plenty in stock so I won't miss out on any of these pleasures but I won't be spending money from this months budget on them.
  • BlackcatsBlackcats Forumite
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    A NSD today. Went for a nice walk close to home so didn't even use any petrol.
    Risotto for tea using leftover chicken. I had previously frozen some white wine in an ice cube tray so I had some wine for the stock. I don't usually have leftover wine for freezing but this particular wine was rather err .... industrial.
    Bank account shows final direct debits for this month are pending payment on Monday. I receive money in to my account later in the month that will be this month's savings. In previous months I have not properly managed this money. It arrives when all bills have been paid and I've found it all too easy to just fritter most of it away. This month every £ will have a job.
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