Climbing hills

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  • April is here and it's a bonus payout month! I also got my first solar panel FIT cheque so I'm feeling happy about that. The FIT return was only £130 for 5 and a half months but they were the winter period; I'm excited to see next quarters readings, especially after this recent spate of sunny weather. I managed an overpayment of over £530 which has brought the mortgage down to 231,000. It'll be nice to see it go below 230,000 in the next couple of months. I could have stretched to more, but I'm also trying to build up my savings for work on the house that needs doing - and it's still yet to be quoted. Non of the work is urgent though, we can live comfortably as-is for now but it'll be nice to get on with a larger project.
    Council tax is still being taken out at the old, lower rate so I imagine I'm going to get hit will a bigger bill soon.
    I have opened a Moneybox Stocks and Shares account, contributing small amounts each week. I imagine it won't be more than £75 a month, but it's nice to allocate some funds away so I don't get tempted to spend. It's a really nice app to use and I've already seen a 1% return in under a month! My goal is to use this pot for saving towards a new (to us) car. Our car still has plenty of life left in it so there's no urgency there, yet...
    I have been dropping hints to my husband to reducing our outgoings, especially on food. We do spend a lot on convenience food and I'm hoping to do more from scratch cooking. My excuse is that it's pretty hard to get in the kitchen as the youngest is constantly wanted to be carried so everything has to be done one handed. Looking forward to this phase ending soon, not that I want to wish their time away faster! 
    Happy Spring all! 
    Mortgage | Started Oct 2020 £235,875  | Now Dec 2023 £215,439
    MFW | Dec 2035
    Premium Bonds £6275 Investment ISA  £1775 | Ready Access Savings £488 Moneybox £3539

    My Mortgage Free Wannabe Diary
  • Every_penny
    Every_penny Posts: 48 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    A small overpayment of £350 ish this month. It will feel nice to enter the £220K's next month but I'm still such a long way off!
    Looking at my diary compared with others, I feel I could do a lot more to reduce the mortgage. However, I do like having the savings and I'm almost equally motivated to keep these increasing as I am to reduce the mortgage. I'm even toying with the idea to move the £10K ISA into a higher performing account or investment. I've enjoyed saving with moneybox and I'm currently seeing a 3.5% return but I'm not sure I want by bulk savings going into such a high risk account.

    Once I start to near the end of my two year fixed mortgage period, I'll plan to evaluate the savings pots and dip into them to top up the overpayments as much as I feel comfortable with. Perhaps a better aim for me might be mortgage neutrality.

    Great news is that my pay rise was quite a bit more than I was expecting which relates to an extra £350 per month but given the increase in council tax and cost of living in our bigger house, it's sort of neutralised. I am under no illusions that I can go on shopping sprees every month. Now that bills and pay rise have been settled I plan to do an SOA to see where I can improve.

    Note: I have a chunk sat in Premium bonds but 2/3rds this pot have been put aside till January for my husbands self-employed tax return. Any return on this will be a happy bonus though!.

    Mortgage | Started Oct 2020 £235,875  | Now Dec 2023 £215,439
    MFW | Dec 2035
    Premium Bonds £6275 Investment ISA  £1775 | Ready Access Savings £488 Moneybox £3539

    My Mortgage Free Wannabe Diary
  • Every_penny
    Every_penny Posts: 48 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    edited 5 May 2021 at 3:09PM
    Statement of Affairs and Personal Balance Sheet

    Household Information
    Number of adults in household........... 2
    Number of children in household......... 2
    Number of cars owned.................... 1

    Monthly Income Details
    Monthly income after tax................ 3676.61
    Partners monthly income after tax....... 0
    Benefits................................ 0
    Other income............................ 0
    Total monthly income.................... 3676.61
    Monthly Expense Details
    Mortgage 1................................ 639
    Mortgage 2.............. 252
    Council tax............................. 308
    Electricity & Gas............................. 127
    Water rates............................. 68.32
    Telephone & Internet ................... 30.05
    TV Licence.............................. 13.25
    Satellite/Cable TV...................... 9.99
    Groceries etc. ......................... 800
    Clothing................................ 150
    Petrol/diesel........................... 80
    Road tax................................ 11
    Car Insurance........................... 40
    Car maintenance (including MOT)......... 20
    Car parking............................. 6
    Childcare/nursery....................... 132
    Buildings insurance..................... 20
    Life assurance ......................... 20
    Presents (birthday, christmas etc)...... 60
    Haircuts................................ 30
    Entertainment........................... 60
    Holiday................................. 50
    Emergency fund.......................... 75
    Swimming Lessons........................ 108
    Personal Pension ....................... 60
    Total monthly expenses.................. 3169.61

    Assets
    Cash.................................... 15000
    House value (Gross)..................... 304000
    Shares and bonds........................ 1600
    Car(s).................................. 5000
    Other assets............................ 0
    Total Assets............................ 325600

    Secured & HP Debts
    Description....................Debt......Monthly...APR
    Mortgage...................... 162612...(639)......2.24
    Mortgage 2.....................67584....(252)......1.99
    Total secured & HP debts...... 230196

    Monthly Budget Summary
    Total monthly income.................... 3,676.61
    Expenses (including HP & secured debts). 3,169.61
    Available for debt repayments........... 507
    Monthly UNsecured debt repayments....... 0
    Amount left after debt repayments....... 507

    Personal Balance Sheet Summary
    Total assets (things you own)........... 325,600
    Total HP & Secured debt................. -230,196
    Total Unsecured debt.................... -0
    Net Assets.............................. 95,404

    Created using the SOA calculator at www.LemonFool.co.uk. 
    Reproduced on Moneysavingexpert with permission, using other browser.
    Notes:
    • Mobile is paid for by work. 
    • Excludes bonus of 2 x £1800 per year after tax
    • Excludes any FIT from Solar panels - estimated £600 per year
    Mortgage | Started Oct 2020 £235,875  | Now Dec 2023 £215,439
    MFW | Dec 2035
    Premium Bonds £6275 Investment ISA  £1775 | Ready Access Savings £488 Moneybox £3539

    My Mortgage Free Wannabe Diary
  • caeler
    caeler Posts: 2,605 Forumite
    Mortgage-free Glee! Photogenic Name Dropper First Post
    Great news about the pay rise. Remember to go at your own pace, over pay what you feel comfortable with. And I agree having some savings is really nice. Think of savings as becoming mortgage neutral. It all counts! 
  • powerspowers
    powerspowers Posts: 1,111 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    I think a good savings buffer is really important as you’re the only one earning. Are you feeling settled in the new home yet? 
    MFW 2021 #76 £5,145
    MFW 2022 #27 £5,300 
    MFW 2023 #27 £2,000
    MFW 2024 #27 £1,075 /£3,600


  • remote_control
    remote_control Posts: 625 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    I had a look at the SOA and the thing that really jumped out was the groceries. We are a family of 4 and ours is around £550 a month and I've always thought that was high! Does the £800 include meals out? 
  • debtfreeoneday
    debtfreeoneday Posts: 4,814 Forumite
    Mortgage-free Glee! Name Dropper First Anniversary First Post
    We budget £11.50 a day for groceries and even that could reduce as I don’t always spend the budget each week.. so £800 jumped out at me too. 
    DFW (08/08) £64,346.53 Gone (02/19)
    MFW (08/08) £118k Gone (09/23)
  • Every_penny
    Every_penny Posts: 48 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    The grocery budget is definitely the target to reduce. It doesn't help that my husband does the cooking and therefore most of the shopping. Also, that includes his tobacco as he smokes - another thing I'm desperate for him to stop. I could easily take £200 - 300 off this without the tobacco and if I were in charge of mealtimes. However, I'm the only one working and kids are home all the time so often meal prep is difficult and we resort to convenience food. Definitely something to address though.
    Mortgage | Started Oct 2020 £235,875  | Now Dec 2023 £215,439
    MFW | Dec 2035
    Premium Bonds £6275 Investment ISA  £1775 | Ready Access Savings £488 Moneybox £3539

    My Mortgage Free Wannabe Diary
  • debtfreeoneday
    debtfreeoneday Posts: 4,814 Forumite
    Mortgage-free Glee! Name Dropper First Anniversary First Post
    It isn’t easy to be fair. Life is busy enough. 
    DFW (08/08) £64,346.53 Gone (02/19)
    MFW (08/08) £118k Gone (09/23)
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