Drowning - What Can I Do?

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  • The only place I can reasonably see where you can cut back is entertainment. Brutal, I know. But maybe a few quiet months could get your head above water? Do you have any unique skills that you could put into a side hustle?
  • Heya. 
     
    This is a list of helpful tips in order to begin with. For example you can get free books at your local town library. You can buy movies there too. In terms of games try your luck in charity stores. Most bookstores have a selection. You can find own brand products these days on the cheap in question here. My local mall has a printed copy of a weekly paper that is totally free of charge. See if your local area does the same. Good luck. 

    It is better to explore your alternative options. Make sandwiches at home. This is a nice way to save money. Try baking your own cakes and biscuits. And perhaps see if you can get Christmas cards and so on on a budget. 
  • kimwp
    kimwp Posts: 1,646
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    Hiya! Lots of good advice from the posters above. If I were in your situation, I would:
    - look at house-sharing or lodging nearer work. This would reduce your rent, bills and petrol. Sell your belongings rather than put them in storage - if you have bought them second hand, then they shouldn't have lost much value. 
    - continue your gym membership if you use it more than four times a week - unless you can replace it with a cheaper alternative eg running outdoors. 
    - cook from scratch. I spend about the same as you, but mostly buy Sainsbury's organic, which is about four times the cost of buying in Lidl or Aldi. Look online for healthy meals that you can make and freeze.
    Statement of Affairs (SOA) link: https://www.lemonfool.co.uk/financecalculators/soa.php

    For free, non-judgemental debt advice, try: Stepchange or National Debtline. Beware fee charging companies with similar names.
  • Altior
    Altior Posts: 596
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    Definitely consider disposing of the car and getting a lower cost vehicle for a while. Is it a desirable model?

    Sell for £15K, acquire for £5K, gives you £10K to clear some debt down, save interest, and gain some headroom on the monthly payments. Perhaps you could even achieve some savings on the tax/insurance/service/fuel, model depending.

    You could get a nicer model again once you've cleared the debts and have the capital to buy it outright. That's what I would do. And I appreciate we can get very attached to our cars, and there is a theoretical risk in swapping it for a used one if your current one is running well. However, that's quite a straight forward measure that would take a lot of the burden off. I love my cars, but I purchased a nice enough one for £8K in 2018, and it is valued £6K today. 
  • foxgloves
    foxgloves Posts: 10,931
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    Hi,
    Everything seems to have been well-covered already, but I just wanted to add my voice to others suggesting to check your energy bills as well as those v high water costs. 
    Of course it's difficult to make comparisons for energy use as there are lots of variables. However, unlike you, we are in a draughty 1936 house. It's a 3-bedroom semi & there are 2 of us. We don't have a shower so bear in mind we are also using gas to heat water for baths. We have gas central heating. We don't have a microwave & everything is cooked from scratch (gas oven & a slow cooker). Our monthly direct debit for combined gas & electricity has just been reduced from £120 to £79. Now it maybe that you are paying off a bit of energy arrears or you are using more  than you think you are, but I think it's worth just having a look at whether your meter readings are accurate & up to date, as well as whether your provider is unhelpfully sitting on a wodge of credit.
    F
    "For each of our actions there are only consequences" (James Lovelock)"For in the true nature of things......every green tree is far more glorious than if it were made of gold & silver" (Martin Luther King Jnr)
  • I’m just wondering, and I’m not asking the OP to answer this, if there is either 
    a) an element of OCD (excessive hand washing)
    and/or
    b) an excessive use of the toilet due to a medical condition 
    I read that toilets can be up to 10litres per flush..

    I think the OP has missed the point that some have suggested extra work (such as a pub) could ALSO meet the need to socialise at the same time. 
  • Floss
    Floss Posts: 8,121
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    The OP hasn't been back online yet - hopefully he will come back at some point over the weekend.
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  • kiss_me_now9
    kiss_me_now9 Posts: 1,328
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    edited 24 September 2023 at 9:17PM
    I don't have much to add but if OP comes back I just wanted to say that sometimes TopCashback has really good deals on shopping delivery. We recently got £10 back on our A$DA home delivery (£55, 2 adults and 1 baby which will last about 10 days, with a couple of top up shops - but we eat veggie) and have had similar amounts from the other big supermarkets. We tend to use it as a search engine, anything that we're going to buy online we look on TCB for first and if it's on there we use their link. If it's not then it's no big deal. 

    I think between the two of us, having had an account each for about 3 years, we've had nearly £500 back. Majority of that is small amounts 1 - 10% on lower cost purchases but it all adds up. You can also exchange the £ reward for vouchers for pubs/restaurants/experiences at a higher rate if you wanted to as well. It's a very useful site! 
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