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Single Mum - Struggling to get realistic SOA

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  • MikeJXE
    MikeJXE Posts: 3,149 Forumite
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    My credit score isn't just bad, it's minus 37!! (-37).

    Having just checked my phone contracts, mine is £13 a month, sim plan only, and ends in March this year. My daughters however costs £44 (plus picture texts extra) a month on an unlimited plan, but doesn't end until March 2024. How on earth did I not notice that price difference! I'm stuck with that price for another year. :(
    Take no notice of your score you don't need it as your are not going to apply for anymore credit cards plus you are not going to get a loan. 

    might have guessed you daughter would have top whack. Ring them up tell them you are struggling and they will offer a cheaper tariff. It's the unlimited data thats costing. Plus it could go up 15% in April

    If you are sim only you could cut your bill in half even with unlimited calls and texts on a rolling month contract. 

    Tell your daughter she can only send picture on wifi and whatsapp, no hardship free wifi is everywhere, shopping centres, pubs, coffee shops. The more she uses them and whatsapp the less data she will need 

    Butlins don't cancel that it's loads of fun, Skeggy and Minehead Love it 


  • comeandgo
    comeandgo Posts: 5,765 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
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    Have you no contents insurance or is that covered in the bank account you pay monthly for?  Can you honestly only pay £100 per month on all household and grocery items with a teenager and two cats?  Well done you if that is correct.
  • Sarahwithlove
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    I would suggest having a chat with your daughter so she knows that she won't be able to have the newest phone when it comes out so she needs to look after hers. 
    I would stop all payments to credit cards now and get started with the process you can do a self managed DMP if you don't want to go through stepchange. 
    I would definitely cancel experian. I use clearscore and MSE credit club both which are free. If you are going onto a DMP you score is going to get ripped to shreds anyway. 
    Also check your bank account, who is it with? Do you need an account you pay for? 
    Also I would suggest talking with your council tax department to see if you can spread the repayments over a longer period to give you a bit more flexibility in your budget. 
    After this holiday don't book any more until you are sorted. It's a big expense that needs saving for in the future. 

    *Dad loan - £5300 - £1700
    *Virgin Credit Card - £3552.50 - £0
    *Barclaycard - £0

    *Total debt - £1700*

    *Sinking Fund - £2000/£3000*
    *Emergency Fund -£50/£2000

    *Debt Repayments Pot - £0/0*

    New diary- https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6474943/the-three-cs-coffee-clothes-credit-cards/
  • Pre_Approved_Junkie
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    MikeJXE said:

    Take no notice of your score you don't need it as your are not going to apply for anymore credit cards plus you are not going to get a loan. 

    might have guessed you daughter would have top whack. Ring them up tell them you are struggling and they will offer a cheaper tariff. It's the unlimited data thats costing. Plus it could go up 15% in April

    If you are sim only you could cut your bill in half even with unlimited calls and texts on a rolling month contract. 

    Tell your daughter she can only send picture on wifi and whatsapp, no hardship free wifi is everywhere, shopping centres, pubs, coffee shops. The more she uses them and whatsapp the less data she will need 

    Butlins don't cancel that it's loads of fun, Skeggy and Minehead Love it 



    Thanks MikeJXE,
    Yes, She's a good girl, and will totally understand.
    And yes, we go to Minehead, but we haven't been since 2018 so looking forward to it. :)
  • Pre_Approved_Junkie
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    comeandgo said:
    Have you no contents insurance or is that covered in the bank account you pay monthly for?  Can you honestly only pay £100 per month on all household and grocery items with a teenager and two cats?  Well done you if that is correct.

    Hi comeandgo,
    No, no contents insurance at all. It's a council house, so the building insurance is in with the rent, but contents insurance confuses me, so many different policies, I don't know what to choose. Same with life insurance.

    The groceries are low because I use our local community food table every saturday morning where I'm allowed a bag of groceries free weekly. The hundred in the budget is basically cat food, bread and meats for dinners with what I get off the community table, and sandwich fillings for our sandwiches all week, plus a few things like squash and milk. I don't do one big shop. I shop daily (or when needed) at my local One-Stop or Co-Op.
  • MikeJXE
    MikeJXE Posts: 3,149 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
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    comeandgo said:
    Have you no contents insurance or is that covered in the bank account you pay monthly for?  Can you honestly only pay £100 per month on all household and grocery items with a teenager and two cats?  Well done you if that is correct.
    I was wondering about the bank account fee, for what ? why is that ?

    £!00 on food is exceptional. I live alone and my monthly Tesco shop has just gone over £100 a month for the first time since April I doubt the cats are on that, Pets at home maybe 
  • Pre_Approved_Junkie
    Options
    I would suggest having a chat with your daughter so she knows that she won't be able to have the newest phone when it comes out so she needs to look after hers. 
    I would stop all payments to credit cards now and get started with the process you can do a self managed DMP if you don't want to go through stepchange. 
    I would definitely cancel experian. I use clearscore and MSE credit club both which are free. If you are going onto a DMP you score is going to get ripped to shreds anyway. 
    Also check your bank account, who is it with? Do you need an account you pay for? 
    Also I would suggest talking with your council tax department to see if you can spread the repayments over a longer period to give you a bit more flexibility in your budget. 
    After this holiday don't book any more until you are sorted. It's a big expense that needs saving for in the future. 


    Hi Sarahwithlove,
    I'm definitely going through Step Change as I wouldn't trust myself doing the DMP on my own.
    I'll cancel Experian tomorrow!
    The bank account is with Halifax and it is the Ultimate Reward Account, that comes with four benefits, but only one of them is useful to me, which is the breakdown cover. I've had to use that once. I could downgrade the account, but I have a £250 overdraft with them at the minute, which I'm in constantly. Hopefully I can wipe that out next month and be in the black, then switch it. I have no other debts with Halifax.
  • Pre_Approved_Junkie
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    MikeJXE said:
    comeandgo said:
    Have you no contents insurance or is that covered in the bank account you pay monthly for?  Can you honestly only pay £100 per month on all household and grocery items with a teenager and two cats?  Well done you if that is correct.
    I was wondering about the bank account fee, for what ? why is that ?

    £!00 on food is exceptional. I live alone and my monthly Tesco shop has just gone over £100 a month for the first time since April I doubt the cats are on that, Pets at home maybe 

    I think I've answered both your questions in the other posts (cross posting :):smiley:

    'The groceries are low because I use our local community food table every saturday morning where I'm allowed a bag of groceries free weekly. The hundred in the budget is basically cat food, bread and meats for dinners with what I get off the community table, and sandwich fillings for our sandwiches all week, plus a few things like squash and milk. I don't do one big shop. I shop daily (or when needed) at my local One-Stop or Co-Op.'

    'The bank account is with Halifax and it is the Ultimate Reward Account, that comes with four benefits, but only one of them is useful to me, which is the breakdown cover. I've had to use that once. I could downgrade the account, but I have a £250 overdraft with them at the minute, which I'm in constantly. Hopefully I can wipe that out next month and be in the black, then switch it. I have no other debts with Halifax'


  • Sarahwithlove
    Options
    I would suggest having a chat with your daughter so she knows that she won't be able to have the newest phone when it comes out so she needs to look after hers. 
    I would stop all payments to credit cards now and get started with the process you can do a self managed DMP if you don't want to go through stepchange. 
    I would definitely cancel experian. I use clearscore and MSE credit club both which are free. If you are going onto a DMP you score is going to get ripped to shreds anyway. 
    Also check your bank account, who is it with? Do you need an account you pay for? 
    Also I would suggest talking with your council tax department to see if you can spread the repayments over a longer period to give you a bit more flexibility in your budget. 
    After this holiday don't book any more until you are sorted. It's a big expense that needs saving for in the future. 


    Hi Sarahwithlove,
    I'm definitely going through Step Change as I wouldn't trust myself doing the DMP on my own.
    I'll cancel Experian tomorrow!
    The bank account is with Halifax and it is the Ultimate Reward Account, that comes with four benefits, but only one of them is useful to me, which is the breakdown cover. I've had to use that once. I could downgrade the account, but I have a £250 overdraft with them at the minute, which I'm in constantly. Hopefully I can wipe that out next month and be in the black, then switch it. I have no other debts with Halifax.
    Definitely look to change it if the only thing is breakdown. I just renewed mine for £32 for the year using comparison tool. It all adds up. 

    Make that call to stepchange ASAP as longer you leave it the more debt you'll get into. 
    *Dad loan - £5300 - £1700
    *Virgin Credit Card - £3552.50 - £0
    *Barclaycard - £0

    *Total debt - £1700*

    *Sinking Fund - £2000/£3000*
    *Emergency Fund -£50/£2000

    *Debt Repayments Pot - £0/0*

    New diary- https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/6474943/the-three-cs-coffee-clothes-credit-cards/
  • MikeJXE
    MikeJXE Posts: 3,149 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    Options
    MikeJXE said:
    comeandgo said:
    Have you no contents insurance or is that covered in the bank account you pay monthly for?  Can you honestly only pay £100 per month on all household and grocery items with a teenager and two cats?  Well done you if that is correct.
    I was wondering about the bank account fee, for what ? why is that ?

    £!00 on food is exceptional. I live alone and my monthly Tesco shop has just gone over £100 a month for the first time since April I doubt the cats are on that, Pets at home maybe 

    I think I've answered both your questions in the other posts (cross posting :):smiley:

    'The groceries are low because I use our local community food table every saturday morning where I'm allowed a bag of groceries free weekly. The hundred in the budget is basically cat food, bread and meats for dinners with what I get off the community table, and sandwich fillings for our sandwiches all week, plus a few things like squash and milk. I don't do one big shop. I shop daily (or when needed) at my local One-Stop or Co-Op.'

    'The bank account is with Halifax and it is the Ultimate Reward Account, that comes with four benefits, but only one of them is useful to me, which is the breakdown cover. I've had to use that once. I could downgrade the account, but I have a £250 overdraft with them at the minute, which I'm in constantly. Hopefully I can wipe that out next month and be in the black, then switch it. I have no other debts with Halifax'


    Well done on the groceries

    You might get Green Flag for breakdown. I have full cover for £5.65 a month 

    If you switch your bank go for one with the switch reward if you can open one. 
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