Here’s to the future...

in Debt free diaries
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ScloudScloud Forumite
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Starting credit card debt (combined) was £37488. 

Current debt: £35285 (-£2203 6%)


It was a shock when we tallied it all up. It is a mixture of our recent wedding and being completely frivolous in our 20s. It’s now time to face the music as we want to start a family and so the debt life has got to stop & be cleared. 


I’m working together with my new husband (!) on this - we have been just as bad as each other with debt and this is the first time we’ve look at our finances as our joint problem. We’ve not spent anything on credit card since October which is a huge step for us. We’ve never come so far and been so determined to sort our finances out. 


I’m feeling a little disheartened as we’ve been our journey for 4 months now and have paid £2203 off which is a grand old total of almost 6% HOWEVER we are going on honeymoon in April and expect to add some back on. (We’ve prioritised paying off high interest debts vs saving for honeymoon... no judgements please!) 


In that time though I have finally cleared my overdraft which I’ve been in for the past 13 years and paid our annual car insurance with CASH which felt incredible. 


I suppose I am writing this diary to celebrate these little successes, hold myself somewhat to account & to replace some of the time spent staring at my excel spreadsheets of figures! 


Here’s to the future.... 

LBM November 2019
Starting Debt: £52,803
September 2021 total: £36,471
Total paid: £15,683 29.9%
My debt free diary: https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6110976/here-s-to-the-future/p1
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Replies

  • ScloudScloud Forumite
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    A great start! I meant to post on diaries....  :#
    LBM November 2019
    Starting Debt: £52,803
    September 2021 total: £36,471
    Total paid: £15,683 29.9%
    My debt free diary: https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6110976/here-s-to-the-future/p1
  • edited 4 March 2020 at 8:42PM
    Willing2LearnWilling2Learn Forumite
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    edited 4 March 2020 at 8:42PM
    Ask @sourcrates to move this thread into diaries.  (sourcrates is a board guide)  :)


    You may need a visual aid, to help you chart your debt-busting progress, so that you don't feel 'disheartened'.  :)


    Edit:  And good luck on your (debt-busting) journey!!
    I work within the voluntary sector, supporting vulnerable people to rebuild their lives.

    I love my job

    :smiley:
  • FootyFanDanFootyFanDan Forumite
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    Good luck with your debt busting journey :)
  • Mrs_F_2017Mrs_F_2017 Forumite
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    You are off to an amazing start with your debt busting & sound determined. Have an amazing honeymoon! 
  • EchoBEchoB Forumite
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    Well done! Looks like you’ve made a great start. Getting out of the overdraft is a great feeling, and you’ve done it in good time seeing as they now cost so much more 💪
  • ScloudScloud Forumite
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    Yes - the overdraft being gone has come at a good time! It feels so good knowing that I’ll be in the black (of this account..) at the end of the month! So motivating as you get so used to being in minus numbers. 
    LBM November 2019
    Starting Debt: £52,803
    September 2021 total: £36,471
    Total paid: £15,683 29.9%
    My debt free diary: https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6110976/here-s-to-the-future/p1
  • ScloudScloud Forumite
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    Some good (ish) news came through and I’ve been able to get my Barclaycard out of persistent debt. I don’t plan on using this card but I’ve decided against an emergency fund (apart from putting future car expenses aside) with the thought process that if an emergency arises I will have to resort to credit. It’s nice to know that my biggest available balance card will be there just in case something big crops up. 

    I’m currently paying £20 over the minimum so need to consider now whether to continue to do that or to snowball that payment elsewhere... 
    LBM November 2019
    Starting Debt: £52,803
    September 2021 total: £36,471
    Total paid: £15,683 29.9%
    My debt free diary: https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6110976/here-s-to-the-future/p1
  • ScloudScloud Forumite
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    I’ve been caught in a bit of obsession with checking spreadsheets and redoing budgets and predictions. I think I’m trying to find the magic answer that means I can be debt free without having to make any life style changes / sacrifices. That’s just not happening. NSDs don’t work for me because I tend to spend very little day to day and then when I do spend- I go big! I need to learn to say no to social events but this is what I am finding so difficult to be willing to do. I think it doesn’t help that it will take a minimum of 3 years to pay off this debt -  I don’t want to waste 3 years.


    In positive news - one of my short term goals is to reduce minimum payments to ensure we can get through maternity leave without adding to debt if we are lucky to fall pregnant. One of my debts minimum payments just fell by £15 so that’s a big jump towards the target of reducing outgoings by £400. (!!!) we have now reduced by 100/400. So 25% there. I am overpaying at the moment - but tracking minimums for if we temporarily have to drop to them. It also helps me feel calmer about the lack of an emergency fund as I can use the overpayment money one month if needed.  I used the trick of paying minimum payments one month and then freezing the payment at that amount. I am now overpaying about £150 a month to my debt thanks to this approach! When I am overpaying a debt by £10 I look at my snowball calculator and adjust accordingly.
    LBM November 2019
    Starting Debt: £52,803
    September 2021 total: £36,471
    Total paid: £15,683 29.9%
    My debt free diary: https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6110976/here-s-to-the-future/p1
  • ScloudScloud Forumite
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    Wow what a whirlwind these past 3 months have been! When I last posted in this diary I had absolutely no idea what the next few weeks lay ahead of me. I am one of the very fortunate people who's income has not been affected by Covid which I feel very grateful for. I have been mostly working from home and when I have had to go into work I have made the most of the great weather and cycled in. (I kept meaning to start cycling to work but never found the time for it pre-Covid). This has been great for one good reason - the money I saved on petrol has covered the large amount our weekly shop has risen by! I'm not sure I have ever used BBC Good Food more trying to find some new recipes to bring something different to each day.
    I go back to work 4 days a week from next week and am really looking forward to some sense of normality and routine coming back to my days.

    Debt wise I have been making progress. It is very slow but it is going in the correct direction. I have to keep reminding myself to be the tortoise and plodding forwards is my goal. I find it very hard and slow going but I am only 9 months into a 4/5 year journey so trying my hardest to find the positives. 

    I have rounded up all of my minimum payments to the nearest £10 so I am overpaying slightly on everything and then focusing on one debt in a kind of snowball/avalanche technique. After conquering my overdraft my next debt is a store card which has a very high minimum payment and really just needs to go! 

    June Updates:
    Total Debt: £31590 / 37488. (£5898 paid since November 2019). 
    Focus Debt: £2303 / £3007 (£704 paid)
    Overdraft: Paid off and not used since Feb 2020! 
    Not used a credit card since October 2019! 

    Off to read some more diaries as they are so inspiring! I love especially to read the diaries where people were in my position years ago and have made it. They really boost me. :) 
    LBM November 2019
    Starting Debt: £52,803
    September 2021 total: £36,471
    Total paid: £15,683 29.9%
    My debt free diary: https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6110976/here-s-to-the-future/p1
  • ScloudScloud Forumite
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    Oh and also to add that I have been able to start an emergency fund! My husband is very anti-savings whilst paying off the debt  especially as we are paying quite high interest on some of it at the moment. For me it feels great to have a bit of cash put aside for emergencies so we don't have to use debt. I have a book where I colour in a square each time we pay 1% of our total / focus debt off and the thought of having to go backwards on our achievements is what stops me using the credit cards.
    So June savings total: £800. 
    LBM November 2019
    Starting Debt: £52,803
    September 2021 total: £36,471
    Total paid: £15,683 29.9%
    My debt free diary: https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6110976/here-s-to-the-future/p1
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