Damsel in Debt

Hey! I've been reading lots of people's diaries and it's such a good idea to keep track of things and keep motivated so thought I'd start mine. I've built up just over £10k of debt on credit cards over the last two years. It started from a couple of big holidays in 2019 then crazily has continued to build up over lockdown with me putting everyday things on. I went from living in house shares to a flat on my own so I knew my living costs would go up but I had to make the sacrifice at the time. 

I've been ignoring it really for months and not thinking about the full amount all added together, majority of it is on 0% after doing balance transfers so because I'm not paying interest they havent felt as bad, but finally facing up to the reality of it all now 🤦‍♀️

I owe £10974.96 altogether 
Barclaycard £6861.54 at 21.1% £2276.72 is 0% until 1/1/2022
MBNA £2223.54 0% until 8/2022 £191 0% until 4/2023 then 27.93%
Fluid £1047 0% until 2/1/2022 652 0% until 2/3/2022 then 37.692%
£200 interest at 29.5% only in this at the end of the month

So I can afford around just over £300 per month which covers minimum repayments and then some. I've got overtime coming in end of November pay stands at £211 at the moment which will go straight off credit cards. I'm likely to be able to get another 0% balance transfer then I'll transfer the Fluid balance atleast. I am worried though about minimum payments going up in January though with the interest free periods ending on a couple of cards. I was looking at DMP's but I dont want my credit score to be affected and at the moment I can afford the payments so doesnt seem necessary. Any tips or advice would be very welcome! 

I will post my SOA below too, I've been trying to cut back alot, cancelled netflix, stricter budget with food, stopped buying as much clothes, cutting down coffees out, drinking and eating out. I was saving towards to a deposit for a house through a LISA but had to stop that so my goal is to be able to start saving again as soon as I can! But it's looking to be 3 -4 years at the moment 😒
March NSD 14/15

Debt £9607.54/£11296.89
CC2:£2274.64/£2299.36 CC3: £1848/£1924.91 CC4:£25/£978.50 CC5: £1155/£1331.24 CC6: £3754.90/£4191.09 CC7: £550/£607.39
CC1: paid off 14/02/23

PAYDBXMAS23 #4 £1432.74/£4000
Saving for Xmas 23 £30/£365
4.94% £570.89/£107 
make £2023 in 2023 #24 £71.24/£2023
«134

Comments

  • bekah89
    bekah89 Posts: 421 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    Statement of Affairs and Personal Balance Sheet[/b][b]

    Household Information[/b]
    Number of adults in household........... 1
    Number of children in household......... 0
    Number of cars owned.................... 0

    Monthly Income Details[/b]
    Monthly income after tax................ 1585.24
    Partners monthly income after tax....... 0
    Benefits................................ 0
    Other income............................ 7[b]
    Total monthly income.................... 1592.24[/b][b]

    Monthly Expense Details[/b]
    Mortgage................................ 0
    Secured/HP loan repayments.............. 0
    Rent.................................... 650
    Management charge (leasehold property).. 0
    Council tax............................. 96
    Electricity............................. 67.08
    Gas..................................... 0
    Oil..................................... 0
    Water rates............................. 26.39
    Telephone (land line)................... 0
    Mobile phone............................ 49.57
    TV Licence.............................. 0
    Satellite/Cable TV...................... 0
    Internet Services....................... 21
    Groceries etc. ......................... 125
    Clothing................................ 50
    Petrol/diesel........................... 0
    Road tax................................ 0
    Car Insurance........................... 0
    Car maintenance (including MOT)......... 0
    Car parking............................. 0
    Other travel............................ 154.4
    Childcare/nursery....................... 0
    Other child related expenses............ 0
    Medical (prescriptions, dentist etc).... 0
    Pet insurance/vet bills................. 0
    Buildings insurance..................... 0
    Contents insurance...................... 3.33
    Life assurance ......................... 0
    Other insurance......................... 0
    Presents (birthday, christmas etc)...... 20
    Haircuts................................ 40
    Entertainment........................... 0
    Holiday................................. 0
    Emergency fund.......................... 0
    Bank fee................................ 4[b]
    Total monthly expenses.................. 1306.77[/b]
    [b]

    Assets[/b]
    Cash.................................... 0
    House value (Gross)..................... 0
    Shares and bonds........................ 0
    Car(s).................................. 0
    Other assets............................ 0[b]
    Total Assets............................ 0[/b]
    [b]
    No Secured nor Hire Purchase Debts[/b]

    [b]Unsecured Debts[/b]
    Description....................Debt......Monthly...APR
    Barclaycard....................6861.54...220.......21.1
    MBNA...........................2414.16...54........0
    Fluid..........................1699.26...17........0[b]
    Total unsecured debts..........10974.96..291.......-  [/b]

    [b]
    Monthly Budget Summary[/b]
    Total monthly income.................... 1,592.24
    Expenses (including HP & secured debts). 1,306.77
    Available for debt repayments........... 285.47
    Monthly UNsecured debt repayments....... 291[b]
    Amount short for making debt repayments. -5.53[/b]

    [b]Personal Balance Sheet Summary[/b]
    Total assets (things you own)........... 0
    Total HP & Secured debt................. -0
    Total Unsecured debt.................... -10,974.96[b]
    Net Assets.............................. -10,974.96[/b]

    [i]Created using the SOA calculator at www.stoozing.com. 
    Reproduced on Moneysavingexpert with permission, using other browser.[/i][/font]
    March NSD 14/15

    Debt £9607.54/£11296.89
    CC2:£2274.64/£2299.36 CC3: £1848/£1924.91 CC4:£25/£978.50 CC5: £1155/£1331.24 CC6: £3754.90/£4191.09 CC7: £550/£607.39
    CC1: paid off 14/02/23

    PAYDBXMAS23 #4 £1432.74/£4000
    Saving for Xmas 23 £30/£365
    4.94% £570.89/£107 
    make £2023 in 2023 #24 £71.24/£2023
  • bekah89
    bekah89 Posts: 421 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    Trying to do atleast 12 no spend days this month, day 1 for me today 🙌 

    also got a free two months of Apple Music until 1/1/22, I was paying for Amazon music through prime but cancelled it to save money so been jumping around free trials for music!
    March NSD 14/15

    Debt £9607.54/£11296.89
    CC2:£2274.64/£2299.36 CC3: £1848/£1924.91 CC4:£25/£978.50 CC5: £1155/£1331.24 CC6: £3754.90/£4191.09 CC7: £550/£607.39
    CC1: paid off 14/02/23

    PAYDBXMAS23 #4 £1432.74/£4000
    Saving for Xmas 23 £30/£365
    4.94% £570.89/£107 
    make £2023 in 2023 #24 £71.24/£2023
  • Those percentages are crazy and 0% running out fast. I would have seriously considered getting a loan if you can get one to get the APR down. You will barely pay the interest off at 20% plus. Otherwise I imagine you'll be in a DMP early next year (which isn't a bad thing). I would be negotiating with creditors. Can mobile be cut down - some great sim only deals if out of contract?
  • savingholmes
    savingholmes Posts: 27,371 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Anniversary Photogenic First Post
    I wouldn't jump to a DMP yet  - I think you still have other options and you could struggle to get credit or a mortgage later if you go down that route.

    • Can you get your phone bill down that is extremely high? You can get sim only deals for £6. 
    • Your food you could shave a little off - perhaps try the old style money saving board.
    • You can't afford to buy presents so that £20 needs to come out.
    • Can you look at upping your income through surveys and receipt scanning? There are lots if up your income challenge threads.
    • Are there any other jobs you could apply for to bring more money in? 
    • Could you work in a pub a couple of nights a week or a shop to get you out of the mess?
    • Could you sell stuff on ebay or FB to raise some cash?

    I'm surprised that you can get 0% deals given how leveraged you are - but that does suggests that you are at least meeting your payments - so well done for that.

    On MSE we don't generally recommend loans (consolidation loans) as people often just get back into the same debt again. However, if your interest rate went up your debt could get unsustainable quite quickly. Given that you need a lot of deals close together - could you use the MSE credit club as a gauge of what offers would be open to you? It might be worth switching some of them on a phased basis before they run out (max 1 a month) - especially as interest rates are starting to rise. Different CCs have different minimum payments too so try and work out what the minimum payment is that they would expect.

    I hope that helps. I've had high levels of debt in the past and am almost through it now - so it can be done but requires a lot of effort and commitment and the ability to be honest with yourself and others about what's affordable and learning to say no a lot - starting with ourselves. 

    Good luck on your journey and well done for starting.
    Achieve FIRE/Mortgage Neutrality by mid 2030
    1) MFW Nov 21 £201,999 with 237 payments to go - now £184,341 Equity 26.26%
    2) Spend on handyman & external building works & new patio door £12.3K
    3) CC £4.9K on 0% spends card but offset by £34.1K savings (part EF, part future home improvement)
    4) Mortgage neutral by June 2030 AVC £9.6K/£127.5K AVC target 7.5% value at 15/4
    5) FI Age 60 annual income target £13.7/30K 45.7%
  • MalMonroe
    MalMonroe Posts: 5,783 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper Photogenic
    Hello,

    Have you thought of contacting one of the free debt help agencies?

    When I had lots of debt I contacted Stepchange, who helped me turn my life right around. It's a free phone call as well as free advice so you don't lose anything by having a chat with one of their advisors.

    They do ask that you prepare a SOA before speaking to them, and you have done that on here, so you're good to go. Sometimes just talking through your options with someone who knows what they are talking about - and what the best options are for cases such as yours can be very helpful

    I usually recommend Stepchange, because they are the ones who really helped me when I was at my wits end. There are other agencies but do make sure that you don't pay for advice. Excellent advice is available, all you have to do is phone.

    Link -  https://www.stepchange.org/      Good luck! And well done on taking the first few steps.  :)
    Please note - taken from the Forum Rules and amended for my own personal use (with thanks) : It is up to you to investigate, check, double-check and check yet again before you make any decisions or take any action based on any information you glean from any of my posts. Although I do carry out careful research before posting and never intend to mislead or supply out-of-date or incorrect information, please do not rely 100% on what you are reading. Verify everything in order to protect yourself as you are responsible for any action you consequently take.
  • +1 for step change. Definitely wasn't saying to go DMP now but you need to work out how to cover those crazy interest rate %. We're rooting for you and it's great you've faced the reality as you said.
  • savingholmes
    savingholmes Posts: 27,371 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Anniversary Photogenic First Post
    Is sharing the flat an option or is it one bedroom?
    Achieve FIRE/Mortgage Neutrality by mid 2030
    1) MFW Nov 21 £201,999 with 237 payments to go - now £184,341 Equity 26.26%
    2) Spend on handyman & external building works & new patio door £12.3K
    3) CC £4.9K on 0% spends card but offset by £34.1K savings (part EF, part future home improvement)
    4) Mortgage neutral by June 2030 AVC £9.6K/£127.5K AVC target 7.5% value at 15/4
    5) FI Age 60 annual income target £13.7/30K 45.7%
  • peb
    peb Posts: 1,787 Forumite
    Name Dropper Combo Breaker First Post First Anniversary
    Phone and clothes jump out at me, assuming you are in contract for the phone when does that expire?  Clothing, that is unnecessary at the moment.  If you actually need anything then second hand/charity shops/supermarket sales - only if needed.
  • bekah89
    bekah89 Posts: 421 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    @MalMonroe I’ve filled out all my information on step change but not spoken to anyone. They’ve advised on the site to ask for a breathing space on interest so I might contact them and see what they say. Thank you!  
    March NSD 14/15

    Debt £9607.54/£11296.89
    CC2:£2274.64/£2299.36 CC3: £1848/£1924.91 CC4:£25/£978.50 CC5: £1155/£1331.24 CC6: £3754.90/£4191.09 CC7: £550/£607.39
    CC1: paid off 14/02/23

    PAYDBXMAS23 #4 £1432.74/£4000
    Saving for Xmas 23 £30/£365
    4.94% £570.89/£107 
    make £2023 in 2023 #24 £71.24/£2023
  • bekah89
    bekah89 Posts: 421 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    @peb yes I’m in my phone contact until April then I’ll go sim only. Clothes was wishful spending really 😅 I definitely don’t need more clothes so can cut that out
    March NSD 14/15

    Debt £9607.54/£11296.89
    CC2:£2274.64/£2299.36 CC3: £1848/£1924.91 CC4:£25/£978.50 CC5: £1155/£1331.24 CC6: £3754.90/£4191.09 CC7: £550/£607.39
    CC1: paid off 14/02/23

    PAYDBXMAS23 #4 £1432.74/£4000
    Saving for Xmas 23 £30/£365
    4.94% £570.89/£107 
    make £2023 in 2023 #24 £71.24/£2023
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