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£69k debt free wannabe

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  • Jensfrugalyear
    Jensfrugalyear Posts: 255 Forumite
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    Thanks everyone, your support is very much appreciated!
    Here is my budget then
    Wages me - 3099
    Hubby - 1250
    Outgoings:
    Mortgage 476, just got a better deal on this it was 525.
    Home insurance 16.90
    Life insurance 33 - we need to look at getting this sorted
    Water 66
    Car insurance 66 for both cars
    Car tax hubby 13
    Council tax 130
    Gas and electric 165 - we need to change supplier as this just went up
    Internet 23
    Hubby mobile 22
    Healthy pet club (jabs, flea and worm treatment etc) 40 as we have 2 dogs and a cat
    After school club 200 for childcare purposes
    School dinners 62.50 as my son won't eat sandwiches and this means he will eat (I know this is a luxury but it gives up peace of mind)
    Sons music lessons 20
    Petrol 100
    Food 640 this does sometimes reach 700 but have been able to bring it down slowly. This includes weekend beer, all pet food, cleaning stuff and toiletries
    Husband union 15 (he works in a school)
    TV licence 15
    Husband breakdown cover 5
    My breakdown cover 4.20 (put in a sinking fund to pay annually)
    My phone 16.50
    Daughters phone 20, next year she can pay for herself as she will be 18
    Pet insurance 51, they are all getting on a bit so costs more 
    Car service 20 into a sinking fund
    Both cars MOTs 8.30 into sinking fund
    Car loan 160
    Natwest loan 458
    My barclaycard 200
    MBNA CC 130
    Tesco CC 100
    Marbles CC 100
    bank of Scotland CC 138
    Savings uniforms christmas birthdays 200
    My moms mobile 16 (needed for emergencies and she can't afford it)
    General spending that if we didn't have we would get worse in debt 200
    National trust membership 12 - used regulary as cheap days out
    Dogs drugs for arthritis 17.50
    Netflix 6
    Bin collection 3.5 put in sinking fund as paid annually
    Spotify 15 the whole family uses this
    Car loan 136
    Sainsburys CC 153
    Kids savings 25

    I know there are some obvious things we could cut, but as this is going to take some time we still want some comforts/luxuries  otherwise it wont work for us. We tried being really tight before when I was on a lower wage and ended up further in debt as we would have blowouts.

    We have just moved some of the debt over to a 0% (hubbys barclaycard onto his sainsburys card) so that should help. My credit rating is slowly going up so hoping I can move some more by the end of the year. Also the credit cards listed, that isn't the minimum but the difference between my amount and the minimum goes onto pay the smallest credit card.

    I've been doing my budget on excel for the last year, but only really tracking spending since December. This made a massive difference in what we were spending. In March I didn't track as I had a bonus and we went a little crazy, but back on it now.





    On the long journey to debt freedom...here we go....

    Credit cards:
    Natwest card - now closed was £500 balance
    Tesco credit card £1878.89/3300
    Husband Bcard £4100/9400 - 0%
    Sainsburys cc £4839/6000 -0%
    My bcard £5215/8000
    Halifax CC £6588/8000 -0%
    MBNA CC £9150/12000 -0%

    Loans:
    Natwest Loan £14167 - ends sept 26
    Old car loan £1897 - ends May 24
    Consolidation loan - £6020 ends oct 26


    Tax bill -57 ends next month
    Student loan about 5k ends Mar 24



  • Debt_Me_Out_Of_Here
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    Hi, I'm new to your diary and have bookmarked to follow along.
    SOA looks good. I think an obvious place to cut spending is groceries. Do you shop in Aldi/Lidl? Cleaning stuff is really cheap in Home bargains or B&M. Meal planning really helps (I'm still trying to do this myself, do as I say not as I do haha).
    Do you need both cars? We got rid of our only car and it has saved us so much money. It was a scary step to take, but life has been fine without it (we live in a big city though so this might not apply to you). 
    We also had an old pet so I know you can't skimp on their care in their old age. We decided not to replace him when he passed on last year. This has made a huge difference to our finances over the last year but obviously isn't something you plan or even wish for!
    You will find that your credit rating slowly going up will give you access to better interest rates over time. 4 years ago we had £25k in debt, all in expensive overdrafts and CCs, and credit rating was poor. We're now down to £16k (could have been more but had another baby...) and most of it is in a 3% interest loan, with both our credit ratings at Excellent now. 
    Slow and steady wins the race and those little changes all add up over time. Keep on keeping on. :)
    Starting debt 2018: £26,000
    Current debt as of 1st July 2021: £15,278
  • Debt_Me_Out_Of_Here
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    Forgot to say, a few tips for getting your finances in order that have helped me a lot:
    - have a look at You Need a Budget and see if it could help you. It's something like £60 a year but has saved me thousands! I used to do my budgets on a spreadsheet but could never work it out to the level I am doing now. They have a free month trial I think so you could try it and see if you like it?

    - sign up for some survey sites for some extra cash - I only really use Prolific Academic now, but usually manage to get at least a tenner a month from it for mostly interesting surveys

    - check if you have anything to sell in your house - throw old books/CDs/DVDs on Ziffit or MusicMagpie, see if you can sell some stuff on eBay or Facebook Marketplace - this can give you a little initial boost which really helped my mindset personally (also a good lesson in seeing how much unnecessary stuff I had in the house!)

    - If you haven't already, join MSE Credit Club - it's free and you can view your credit score and also your eligibility for things like balance transfer credit cards

    Hope that helps. :)
    Starting debt 2018: £26,000
    Current debt as of 1st July 2021: £15,278
  • WinterWarrior
    WinterWarrior Posts: 5,890 Forumite
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    Are you in the u.k.? Just slightly surprised at the bin collection charges? It’s a good breakdown and brilliant that you are already sinking funds for mot’s, etc. I’m only just learning to do this.
    There are some great suggestions above.
    good luck. 
    Not all who wander are lost - J.R.R.Tolkien
    🌊 A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor 🌊
    2024 challenges - (1) £8k savings challenge = £2000 so far (2) 1 stone weight reduction = 6 lb’s so far
    My WW and friends diary is here 😁 … 
    https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6259606/must-try-harder/p1

  • Jensfrugalyear
    Jensfrugalyear Posts: 255 Forumite
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    Thanks all. @WinterWarrior I am in the UK and its garden waste collection.
    Some great suggestions for me to start looking at. We do have loads up the loft to get rid off just need to get up there and start sorting. There is definately lots of old kids toys and clothes that can go!
    On the long journey to debt freedom...here we go....

    Credit cards:
    Natwest card - now closed was £500 balance
    Tesco credit card £1878.89/3300
    Husband Bcard £4100/9400 - 0%
    Sainsburys cc £4839/6000 -0%
    My bcard £5215/8000
    Halifax CC £6588/8000 -0%
    MBNA CC £9150/12000 -0%

    Loans:
    Natwest Loan £14167 - ends sept 26
    Old car loan £1897 - ends May 24
    Consolidation loan - £6020 ends oct 26


    Tax bill -57 ends next month
    Student loan about 5k ends Mar 24



  • Jensfrugalyear
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    So just going through what we have spent so far this month (I work out from 25th of the month which is pay day) and so far we have spent 260 on additional shops. This is where we pop out to get something and end up spending 20 pounds! No wonder we are always bloody skint.
    If anyone has any good tips to avoid these I'd be happy to give them a blast

    On the long journey to debt freedom...here we go....

    Credit cards:
    Natwest card - now closed was £500 balance
    Tesco credit card £1878.89/3300
    Husband Bcard £4100/9400 - 0%
    Sainsburys cc £4839/6000 -0%
    My bcard £5215/8000
    Halifax CC £6588/8000 -0%
    MBNA CC £9150/12000 -0%

    Loans:
    Natwest Loan £14167 - ends sept 26
    Old car loan £1897 - ends May 24
    Consolidation loan - £6020 ends oct 26


    Tax bill -57 ends next month
    Student loan about 5k ends Mar 24



  • Debt_Me_Out_Of_Here
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    Great that you've identified this! Knowing where the money is going is the first step. I remember when I totted up that we had spent £1500 on takeaways in a single year.  :open_mouth:
    Definitely made me realise how much these things add up and has helped drastically reduce our spends in that area. 
    If you've spent £260 in a couple of weeks, that's £500+ a month, or £6,000+ a year! So definitely worth addressing. 
    For the additional shops - I would say don't be too scrimpy with your actual weekly shops. I find that if I'm overly restrictive with those, I overcompensate later in the week.
    Go to a cheaper supermarket for your main shop and top-ups if you aren't already.
    Meal plan if you can.
    Ask yourself if the top up is really necessary, or if you have something else in you could have instead to tide you over a few more days. 
    Write a list and stick to it. 
    I'm working on all of those too haha. It's a learning curve!
    Starting debt 2018: £26,000
    Current debt as of 1st July 2021: £15,278
  • BlueJ94
    BlueJ94 Posts: 2,585 Ambassador
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    Hey! Following your diary here so I’ve book marked ya! What do you buy from the additional shops? Do you meal plan? If not I’d recommend this, I only do his for work as my OH is a fussy eater so we take it in turns at home. Maybe make some soups out of anything you’ve left over? Like spuds and veggies? I also see you started the PAD challenge which is a great motivator! Your CCs, are you still getting charged interest on them? As I was using mine all the time but I ended up doing as you did by cutting them up. I’ve now set up payment plans with them all and get no interest charges as long as I pay my agreed amount on the agreed day. Good luck on your journey
     I’m a Forum Ambassador and I support the Forum Team on Debt Free Wannabe boards and spending & discounts boards. If you need any help on these boards, do let me know. Please note that Ambassadors are not moderators. Any posts you spot in breach of the Forum Rules should be reported via the report button, or by emailing forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com. All views are my own and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.

    Debt owed;
  • TheAble
    TheAble Posts: 1,621 Forumite
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    Your life insurance premium isn't outlandish, we pay around that. I'd take a look at your mobiles. If your mum's is just for emergencies then a £5/month sim would do the job. The rest of the family too maybe?
  • LittleMissDetermined
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    Came across your diary and subscribed to cheer you on.  Agree with some of the comments made around groceries and phone, there are lots of sim deals to be had if you shop around.  Our old dog ended up on meds for arthritis before we lost her. I spent a small fortune buying it from the vets and then found it at a fraction of the cost online, you need the prescription from the vet but it would perhaps help towards your budgeting? (mine went from £90 a bottle to just £20!) 

    Anyway - lots of luck and keep us posted on your progress.

    LMD x
    Life gets in the way...PADding is addictive...Saving's better than spending...
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