Twelve Months To Turn It Around?
OK, so here goes! I think my lightbulb has been steadily flickering for a few months now. I really want to buy my own home after renting for years. However, a couple of things have happened which I hope mean I’ve truly had my LBM. Firstly, when I’ve looking into applying for a mortgage, despite the fact I have access to a sizeable deposit and earn a good wage I simply can’t borrow an amount I need to buy anything decent in the area I’d like to. Secondly, I’m a single mum to my daughter. My XH has consistently had access and paid child support since separating seven years ago but recently moved areas, changed jobs and ended up unemployed. The startling revelation that I do actually rely on his maintenance payments to survive due to my high monthly outgoings has made me seriously rethink my approach to finances.
I know there’s some immediate ‘quick wins’ I can be doing to turn things around which will stand me in good stead for when maintenance payments resume and I can tackle my debts more aggressively. Namely:
· Stopping smoking – no brainer!
· Creating a budget, monitoring and sticking to it religiously
· Cutting back in obvious areas like takeaways – I already meal plan yet still succumb at least 2 or 3 times a month haemorrhaging at least £50 a month which could be better spent
I made the decision to start my own diary after actively following lots of other people’s journeys to hopefully keep me accountable but also, I’m keen for advice on how to tackle my debts most efficiently. I understand the principles of focusing on higher interest debts first and snowballing etc. but my personal circumstances mean I’ve flip flopped between overpaying the debt with the highest monthly repayment in order to free up some much-needed cash and the highest interest one. I also could do with squirrelling away some modest savings. I rent my home and don’t run a car so don’t have the same emergency scenarios that others might. However, the Covid pandemic has taught me that a little put by will never be a bad thing. For example, my grocery bill has more than doubled. Under ‘normal’ circumstances my DD would have breakfast at my parents before school and more often than not they would give her her tea before I finished work. She would then spend some of her weekend with her dad so again, I would only need to feed myself. She’s now at home with me pretty much 24/7 and as we all know, kids love to snack! A little buffer would’ve really come in handy to tide me over during this lockdown period.
Will add a debt round up in the next post and my thoughts on how to proceed….
Current Debt - £13,543.62 (21.78% paid)