Smiling my Mortgage Away

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Mortgage-Free Wannabe
14 replies 1.1K views
smilingbrightsmilingbright Forumite
17 Posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Mortgage-Free Wannabe
I have been reading the mortgage free wannabe diaries for some time and was inspired to start my own mortgage-free journey a while back. I thought starting a diary would help to motivate me, give me a way to record my progress and hopefully contribute to some of the mortgage-reducing inspiration on here. I hope there is room for one more mortgage free diary :j

About me. I am married with one child and we currently live in Ireland, where my DH is from, so all of my figures will be in euros (though I still think in pounds and don't know if I will ever stop that!). We bought our current house two years ago with a mortgage of €202,000. As of November 2018, we owe €163,000 so have overpaid just under €40,000 in two years.

On the one hand, I am very pleased with this figure and seeing it written down gives me a boost. On the other hand, for a few reasons, both me and DH feel we could do better than this. Firstly, we are both in our early 40s and are keen to reduce (or eliminate) the mortgage as much as possible by the time we reach 50. We were a little later than some of our peers in getting on the property ladder so feel we are playing catch up. Secondly, we have both got back into full-time employment recently and are on good salaries which, combined with living reasonably frugally, means we should be able to allocate some very decent amounts to the mortgage.

We do want to balance living in the here and now with overpaying the mortgage and still have family holidays and do not go without anything but we certainly live more simply than many people we know. For us, eating out is a treat that we do every month or two. We bring packed lunches to work every day. We buy good quality clothes but I hunt for things on sale before I buy them. I shop around for the best deals for things like gas, electricity and broadband and just generally make savings where I can.

I will post again with a bit more detail on financials but for now, hope you will welcome me to this very inspiring board! :beer:
Mortgage November 2016- €202,000
Mortgage November 2018- €161,500


  • Welcome! I have only recently started my diary, so I shall watch with interest.

    Happy shiny new diary!
    2016 MFW#46 O'Pd- £3641.26; 2017 MFW OP'd £7779.28 ; 2018 MFW OP'd £11,515.16
    MFiT-T4 # 59 - reduce mtg to £195,000; MFit-T5 - reduce mtg to £140,000
    Mortgage at start (01/2/2015) - £243,750. @31/12/15 - £235,906.71. @31/12/16 - £224,120.98. @31/12/17 - £210,224.06. @31/12/18 - £190,821.21
    Mortgage today £157,719.83
  • Thank you MortgageMinimiser for your kind comment! I shall make sure to check out your diary and appreciate the support. It looks like our figures are fairly similar :T
    Mortgage November 2016- €202,000
    Mortgage November 2018- €161,500
  • So I said I would come back with a bit more on the financials.

    Our overpayments have slowed down since the summer of this year, as a family member was unwell and I decided to go part-time at work in order to be more available to them. They are now in a situation where they have carers in place and this has freed me up so I have agreed to go back to full-time hours from the new year. As well as my day job, I am involved in a small business with a friend of mine and earlier this year, we took on an office and decided to put a bit more energy into it. So far it has done ok in terms of the work we have put in to develop it, but with the costs involved particularly in having office space, it has pretty much just broken even for this year. Also, most of the work I have taken on for clients (which fitted conveniently around my caring responsibilities) has been off-site, so I am considering whether I can keep this going in the future but without the need for an office space. We have agreed to continue with the office until next summer and review the situation then. The work itself is potentially quite lucrative, so if we can find a way to deliver it while minimising overheads, it could be a nice stream of income. Realistically, I will also be able to do less of it from the new year as my hours in my main job will increase.

    My DH also has a day job and a sideline small business of his own. While the small business brings in a relatively small profit (perhaps €4000 in a year) this has paid for things like our family holidays, so has been very helpful in that regard. Both DH and I recently discussed how in another year we will review the true profitability of our 'sidelines' and decide whether they are truly worth continuing with as they do take up our time and effort and it is still unclear whether the financial rewards will be worth it.

    In terms of our main incomes, our current joint income stands at around €5000 per month after tax, not counting anything from sidelines. From the new year, this should increase to about €7000 per month when I increase my hours again. DH's sideline business sits in a separate account and brings in a few thousand in a year, that goes on separate things like holidays or a new laptop for him. Currently, my sideline is just breaking even, mainly due to costs of office space.

    Our mortgage payment is currently around €850 per month. Our mortgage overpayments have varied from several thousand to nothing in recent months, depending on circumstances. In September we had to pay a tax bill for DH's business for last year plus initial tax for this year. We also had to spend a couple of thousand euro on set-up costs for my sideline business in the two months before and we replaced our boiler in the summer, which was very costly but will ultimately reduce our heating bills.

    SO! After a period of increased expenditure, reduced income from salary and having to put work into a business that is not yet profitable, the last few months have meant not much mortgage overpayment and a general sense that we are not doing as well financially as we were (though we are obviously very fortunate financially overall).

    Our goals going forward are to overpay what we can between now and December, even if these are not huge amounts. I am also putting what I can into our savings account, as this has not got much in it and we don't have a proper emergency fund.

    From January our goals are:
    - bigger overpayments to the mortgage
    - build up proper emergency savings fund
    - put money in savings to upgrade main family car
    - allocate money to complete some refurbishments to the house
    Mortgage November 2016- €202,000
    Mortgage November 2018- €161,500
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Forumite
    0 Posts
    500 Posts Third Anniversary Name Dropper Mortgage-free Glee!
    MoneySaving Newbie
    Good luck on your journey smilingbright!! :D
  • beanieloubeanielou Forumite
    77.1K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Mortgage-free Glee! Name Dropper
    Happy shiny new diary :)
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~**
    MFW. Finally mortgage free February 2021****
    "A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of" Jane Austen in Mansfield Park.
    ***Fall down seven times,stand up eight*** ~~Japanese proverb.
    It starts with you, it starts from now. *** It is ok to be me.***
    ***Keep plodding***
    Out of debt, out of danger. ***Be the difference.***
  • Thank you Squirrel and Beanielou for the welcoming words!
    Mortgage November 2016- €202,000
    Mortgage November 2018- €161,500
  • greentgreent Forumite
    9.9K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    Hello and welcome :)
    I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul
    Repaid mtge early (orig 11/25) 01/09 £124616 01/11 £89873 01/13 £52546 01/15 £12133 07/15 £NIL
    Net sales 2021 £361.84/ £500 Decluttering 2021: 1050/1250
  • So I came home to a pleasant surprise today. The bank have sent us a letter following October's overpayment (we overpayed €500 in September and October) and the updated mortgage figure is actually €161,938, just prior to November's payment going out :j

    I had thought the figure was closer to €163,000 so I'm really pleased! And taking the capital part of the payment just gone at the start of November, this should be closer to €161,500. Yes I know interest will build up over the month, but I try not to think about that bit. Annoyingly I can't check my mortgage account online, as I would need to have another account with the same bank and for now I don't, but I may do this when I can get around to it. Although our OPs have slowed recently, I did think it would be great to get just below €160k by the end of this calendar year. Even a figure of €159,999 I would be really happy with! So maybe that is something we could aim for, before increasing overpayments in the new year.:T

    Things are ticking over with the sideline business and I have a couple of possible pieces of work that should at least get it to pay for itself for November, so that's something.
    Mortgage November 2016- €202,000
    Mortgage November 2018- €161,500
  • Things are a little quiet on the money front for November, apart from the boost of finding the mortgage balance is a bit lower than I had thought. We have had an expensive few months with a tax bill, my reduced income and some other expenses so I am keen to have more money at hand from the new year when my hours increase. Although I would love to get just below 160k by January and get into the 150s, I'm not sure if we will manage this. We have done a few renovations to the house since we bought it and agreed that we would do some work on the kitchen in the new year. This will run into thousands and I need to allocate money from savings to this as well as money to savings for a car upgrade next year. Hopefully an increase in our income will allow for bigger overpayments plus money for these projects. It is difficulty to find the right balance between overpaying and allocating money for other things. The kitchen really does need doing although DH would prefer to throw everything at the mortgage. I have said to him that there is no point owning a house that is falling into disrepair, we need to also spend some money on the house itself. I need to look in more detail at the costs of the kitchen and get some quotes. I have about 2k in savings and would like to put as much as possible towards this fund in January and February and see about getting the work done then.
    Mortgage November 2016- €202,000
    Mortgage November 2018- €161,500
  • VDOT47VDOT47 Forumite
    277 Posts
    Hello Smilingbright - you are certainly correct when you say that it is difficult to find the right balance on these things. if you are anything like me, your decision making and views on where the balance should sit will change on an almost monthly basis!

    Good luck with getting below 160k by the end of the year!
    Original Mortgage (Feb '17) £269,995
    Current Mortgage (End 11/19) £226,790
    End Date November 2039 Original End Date February 2042
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