Two years and then downsize...

Sapindus Posts: 374
First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
edited 5 March 2022 at 7:07AM in Mortgage-free wannabe
Hello - I wanna be mortgage free!
I have a mortgage in the high £40k's which has 14 years left to run and fixed at 3.04% until end Jan 2024. I'm divorced and have a grown up son living at home and job hunting, plus a teenager.  September 2019 I got a temporary promotion at work and made the decision that all the pay rise would go into overpaying the mortgage.  I have a good chance of making the TP permanent this September.  The interesting thing compared to some others I've seen posting on here is that my bank haven't reduced my monthly payments at all. So I'm allowed to overpay off 10% of the outstanding balance as at the start of each year, but because they're not reducing the monthly payment I'm actually overpaying more than that.
My plan is to move house entirely when the fixed rate ends, which more or less coincides with my youngest finishing sixth form and hopefully heading off to uni.  I'm pretty flexible where in the country I could move as far as work goes, so I could get a cheaper house and conceivably be mortgage-free in a little over three years.  Chances are I'll end up with a mortgage again because I'll see a doer-upper...
I feel like my spending is screwed down to the bone, especially after last year when we didn't do anything or go anywhere. My mobile is PAYG for emergencies.  I have no TV subscription, no tumble drier, no dishwasher, drink less than a unit a week, eat out about twice a year and takeaway every couple of months.  I use my credit card for rewards points and pay it off every month.  I don't use a hairdresser and buy most of my clothes in charity shops and wear them til they drop off. We have one holiday a year in this country.  I've switched all my bills and switch off lights obsessively.  I tried to join Prolific but was rejected!  It's feeling harder and harder to find ways to cut back... but I'm still trying!  Getting loads of ideas from reading these forums!



  • Poppycat1
    Poppycat1 Posts: 376
    Photogenic Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary
    Just wanted to say Hi and welcome.  I'm in a similar situation to you.  Divorced, DS1 at uni but in the same city so we see him regularly.  DS2 is 14 and at home with me.  I have a plan to pay off the mortgage in 3.5 years but hopefully stay in it.

    I have got all my expenses down as much as I can and to be honest I quite like it that way.  I do have money but chose to overpay the mortgage to give me choices later on.

    Have you tried Olio?  Free food.  Worth looking in to.

    I will keep up with your diary and wish you all the best.
    Without overpayments: 15 years, 1 monthsBecause of overpayments: 10 years, 10 months left until paid off
  • Sapindus
    Sapindus Posts: 374
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    edited 30 March 2021 at 5:58AM
    This is going to be another boring diary.  But I decided I had too much money in my emergency fund and have paid off the rest of my allowed 10% for this calendar year.  So now I have 6 months wages as an emergency fund which will also have to do in case the car dies, and that would take it down to 3 months wages.
    The exciting bit about paying off the OP for the year now is pasting my new details into an OP calculator and seeing that my monthly payment "should" now be £112 a month less than it is currently stuck at.  So that means I will be able to make an extra OP of £1116 by the end of the year, which would save me another £587 interest over the rest of the mortgage term (if I had any intention of letting it run to term!).  Always supposing my bank don't decide to reassess my payments or something unforeseen happens and I have to ask for a payment holiday.
    So now the rest of the year is just ordinary scrimping and saving...
  • FtbDreaming
    FtbDreaming Posts: 1,118
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    Haha I love the thought of an elderly me giving financial advice to a younger me lol! Sounds like good advice though! 
    Mortgage started August 2020 £69,700
    Mortgage ends Aug 2050 MFW: Aug 2027 
    Current Balance: £60,700
    MFW2020 #156 £723.13
    MFW2021 #26 £1184.71
    MFW2022 #11 £197.87
    MFW2023 £785
    MFW 2024 £174.73

    Determined to make it! 
  • I’m the same with another potentially boring diary. I’ve paid off the 10% already and have maternity leave coming up so just hoping to remain financially stable this year. I switched my fixed deal to 10 years so my repayment won’t adjust before then either. My ERC does expire after 5 years though so hoping desperately to have some funds in place to repay early. It’s unlikely but even a small amount gets us a bit closer..

    Aside from Olio, there’s also the Too Good To Go app. 

    MFW diary:

    Original MF date: October 2036 (£81,500)

    Current MF date: December 2029 (I think!)

    OP 2021: £8807, EF / maternity fund: £6300

    Outstanding August 2021: £44106

  • Sapindus
    Sapindus Posts: 374
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    My 50 year old self just has to remind my 80 year old self what she said when the time comes...

    I don't know why, but it feels wrong taking free food when there are others who need it more than me.  Need it, or want it?  I don't have any compunction about buying stuff off the reduced shelf in the supermarket, so what's the difference?  I've had things off freecycle, after all.  Maybe the truth is I'm too lazy to organise myself to do the Olio thing!
  • South_coast
    South_coast Posts: 4,795
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper Photogenic
    Olio is more about preventing waste than getting stuff for free. Most of the things on offer are those that supermarkets haven't been able to sell reduced and are going to go to landfill if they aren't claimed. 

    Plus, don't forget that people who are in need are able to request items too x
    Mortgage start: £65,495 (March 2016)
    Cleared 🧚‍♀️🧚‍♀️🧚‍♀️!!! In 5 years, 1 month and 29 days
    Total amount repaid: £72,307.03. £1.10 repaid for every £1.00 borrowed

    Finally earning interest instead of paying it!!!
  • Sapindus
    Sapindus Posts: 374
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    Unexpected expense yesterday when the back door lock broke.  Luckily it was shut at the time, unlike when the front door went inoperable in the open position and I had to barricade it until I could get a locksmith to come.  Thing with locksmiths is you aren't really in a position to haggle or shop around, and you don't have one you use regularly so you could get to know and trust them.  At least this one charged me exactly the same as the one who mended the front door, so it must be in the ballpark, and now I've had both doors fixed HOPEFULLY it won't happen again before I move out.  It'll be something else I hadn't thought of.

    On the plus side, I've discovered Prolific surveys through this site.  Not the best earning option for me as I spend all day at work sat at my computer it's really not good for me to sit all evening as well, but as an alternative to time I end up spending sat here anyway watching osprey live-streams etc, it's rather satisfying to scrape a few pennies from it.  And I quite enjoy being a human lab-rat.  If I keep going at the current rate (which included a four day dearth over Easter) I'll cover the locksmith in six months!

    I am looking at Olio again.  I've got some chilli plants I could offer.
  • Sapindus
    Sapindus Posts: 374
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    This morning I am musing on the ups and downs of money saving.  It's not so much the unexpected misfortunes like broken locks, it's things I blame myself for.  Like forgetting to cancel a subscription that I really didn't want.  Or booking tickets to the zoo on the day my son is supposed to be doing his DofE expedition.  Or doing a really careful supermarket shop looking at ingredients and price per 100g and then blowing it all on a pack of reduced to clear Pringles.  But mostly the zoo tickets!  I am hoping they will let us reschedule.  At worst I will have to think of it as an extra donation to a conservation organisation that's been nearly brought down by the pandemic.  Because I can't let my kids suffer for my idiocy, I will buy more tickets, so that's just another £60 I will have to deny myself in "luxuries" until I feel like I've paid for it!
  • Sapindus
    Sapindus Posts: 374
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    So, the zoo were kind enough to reschedule the tickets.  And I did a rather exhausting study on Prolific about balancing risks which has brought my daily average up to £1.30 over my first 18 days.  But I didn't pay enough attention to my anti-virus subscription and I think I've spent too much money, especially as I have to disable the firewall because it stops me using the internet on my antiquated laptop.  And after a short trip to visit my mum I have been reunited with my expensive hobby - my 19 and a half year old cat.  I just splurged £5 on a trial of one of these subscription cat food services you see advertised, which in the short term might look like a good deal but if he ends up refusing to eat anything else I may regret it.  I keep thinking, he deserves a bit of pampering and it can't be much longer... I have been thinking that for the last year...
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