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  • FIRST POST
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 11th Mar 18, 6:28 AM
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    Cheery Daff
    Cheery's country living adventure
    • #1
    • 11th Mar 18, 6:28 AM
    Cheery's country living adventure 11th Mar 18 at 6:28 AM
    Hello lovely people

    I'm Cheery, been around these parts a long time now and had several DFW diaries over the years, most recently here.

    We are two - Mr Cheery and I. We've been together over 12 years now, and last week we moved from the middle of the city to the middle of nowhere. We were snowed in within 24 hours and unable to leave for a week Quite an introduction to country living

    I now have a mortgage for the first time in my life Mr Cheery had one before, but as it was near the end when I met him, we never added me, and then it got to the end of its 25 year span a few years ago. Now we have a brand new one, and I would like to pay it off as soon as possible

    It's going to take a while - we've borrowed 215,000 over 25 years A reasonable rate though (1.8%), fixed until Sept 2019. Our monthly payment is 890, and I'd like to overpay by 10 at least - with the aim of on average paying off an extra 110 a month to take it up to a round 1000.

    If we don't pay it off early, it'll run til I'm 62, and Mr Cheery is 80 A good incentive to get on with it

    Sadly our building society doesn't have online banking for mortgages (bloody ridiculous) and only sends annual statements, so it looks like I'll be ringing them up every five minutes for a new balance

    I would love it if you dropped in occasionally for a nice cup of tea, especially if you brought along some cake

    More details in a minute
Page 41
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 13th Jul 19, 8:29 PM
    • 8,801 Posts
    • 45,239 Thanks
    Cheery Daff
    Hello again

    Finally got my backside into gear and checked the re-fixes with the existing mortgage company Certainly not as dire as Mr Imaginary Mortgage Broker would have had me believe yesterday

    However, there are FIFTEEN OPTIONS that I need to choose between Fortunately I am a seasoned MSE-er and can instantly dismiss most of them anyway, but I'm going to put it all down as a record here, with a traffic light system of red for NO, amber for maybe, and green for the ones that look like reasonable options to choose from.

    (and yes, I probably could think of something more productive to do than listing them all here but, well, we're all learning from each other and I often read really detailed things in people's diaries that I find extremely useful )

    For info, we're currently on a 2 year fix (which started when we were offered the mortgage, which was several months before we actually moved, so it ends at the end of Sept). That's 1.8%, monthly payments of 890 (ish -slightly lower as we overpaid a couple of grand but kept the payments the same)

    All have a 199 fee for early repayment - so we could get out after the initial fix without too much bother.

    A few are similar but with minor tweaks (mostly the upfront rate) - have separated into groups so our eyes don't go funny
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 13th Jul 19, 8:49 PM
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    Cheery Daff
    Initial 1 year fix then 4 years discount
    1. Fixed 3.99% for 1 year, then 1.25% discount on SVR for 4 years, APRC 5.35%, 99 fee, monthly payment 1106.26 - fix too high and not long enough

    Initial 2 year fix then 3 year discount
    2. Fixed 1.8% for 2 years, then 1.25% discount on SVR for 3 years, APRC 4.87%, 1599 fee, 879.74 monthly - closest to existing but with large upfront fee
    3. Fixed 1.81% for 2 years then 1.25% discount on SVR for 3 years, APRC 4.84%, 499 fee, 880.70 monthly - closest to existing with more reasonable fee
    4. Fixed 2.01% for 2 years then 1.25% discount on SVR for 3 years, APRC 4.87%, no fee, 900.13 monthly - as above but with no fee

    Initial 3 year fix then 2 years discount
    5. Fixed 2.01% for 3 years, then 1.25% discount on SVR for 2 years, APRC 4.69%, 499 fee, 900.13 monthly - appealing having a longer fix
    6. Fixed 2.15% for 3 years, then 1.25% discount on SVR for 2 years, APRC 4.68%, no fee, 913.88 monthly - appealing having a longer fix, but 5 year fix seems slightly more appealing

    5 year fix
    7. Fixed 2.06% for 5 years, APRC 4.38%, 1599 fee, 905.03 monthly - maybe...
    8. Fixed 2.15% for 5 years, APRC 4.37%, 499 fee, 913.88 monthly maybe...
    9. Fixed 2.26% for 5 years, APRC 4.39%, no fee, 926.78 monthly maybe...

    10 year fix
    10. Fixed 2.92% for 10 years, APRC 3.72%, no fee, 991.79 monthly - Hmm, 100 a month more and who knows what will be going on in 10 years? Not appealing right now.

    Variable discount - NOPE!
    11. Discount of 4.39% for 2 years, then discount of 1% for 3 years, APRC 4.8%, 499 fee, 832.34 monthly
    12. Discount of 4.27% for 2 years, then discount of 1% for 3 years, APRC 4.17%, no fee, 843.57 monthly
    13. Discount of 4.17% for 5 years, APRC 4.17%, 1599 fee, 852.99 monthly
    14. Discount of 4.04% for 5 years, APRC 4.18%, 499 fee, 865.35 monthly

    Standard variable rate
    15. No fix, no discount, APRC 5.72%, no fee, 1302.31 monthly - NO THANKS!

    Offset
    16. Fixed 2.26% for 2 years, then 1.25% discount on SVR for 3 years, APRC 4.92%, no fee, 926.78 monthly - hmm, didn't realise we could have an offset, will investigate...
    17. No fix, no discount, APRC 5.72%, no fee, 1302.31 monthly - nope!
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 13th Jul 19, 8:53 PM
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    • 45,239 Thanks
    Cheery Daff
    Well that took forever but it feels good to have it all laid out like that, feels much simpler. So basically we need to decide:

    * how long to fix for
    * whether to pay an upfront fee
    * whether to go for an offset

    We've got enough in the current matched betting pot to pay a larger fee if it was going to make the most difference - I'm sure I remember reading on here when we were originally looking that it was best to pay a fee upfront rather than add it to the mortgage so presumably that applies here too.

    Must go and re-read Martin's remortgaging guide

    Happy with choosing between these options though. I don't feel remotely inclined to go to the open market again given the stress of last time and our slightly unusual circumstances. Very happy to stay with who we're currently with so just need to make some choices...
    • Throwaway1
    • By Throwaway1 13th Jul 19, 9:06 PM
    • 437 Posts
    • 763 Thanks
    Throwaway1
    Personally, I'd go for a 5 year fix as security is important to me. (We got a mortgage for the first time in Nov and fixed for 10 years with a stupidly ambitious plan to overpay the maximum 10% every year so we'd be finished by the time the 10 year came to an end. Feel free to visit my diary so see how that's going).

    We asked ourselves two questions: 1) If we go for a long fix, are we happy paying this amount monthly even if the interest rate somehow drops lower than it currently is? 2) If we go for a short fix and interest rates were to rise by say 5-10% at the end of it, could we cope with the new forced payments that would bring?

    On balance, we would much rather potentially overpay (as in waste, not 'Overpay') a few quid a month than be in a situation where we couldn't afford the repayments and default.
    Make 2019 in 2019: 760/2019
    MFW: OP in 2019: 10,458.32/16,125
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 13th Jul 19, 9:34 PM
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    • 45,239 Thanks
    Cheery Daff
    Ok, done some messing around with calculators etc (goodness me I LOVE this website)

    Offset
    Doesn't really make sense for us given our relatively low savings compared to the cost of the mortgage Over 2 years (the max length of the offset fix) we'd actually pay 1500 MORE in an offset (I've allowed or a 1.5% savings rate, as our higher accounts don't take that much anyway, and assumed we'll have 400 extra a month fro MB, which isn't always necessarily the case). Interesting - in my head I always thought offsets were always great but apparently not necessarily in our case.

    Length of fixed rate
    Hmm, sadly the fixed mortgage comparison calculator doesn't seem to be working right now so I'll check that tomorrow.

    Leaning towards a longer fix right now though, especially given that the exit fee is only 199... (although I have a vague feeling there's a difference between exit fees and early repayment fees?! Can't see any mention of two separate things though on the options). Feel more comfortable with 5 years rather than 10, but might check that on the fixed rate calculator when it's, er, fixed

    Interestingly, I just changed our overpayments spreadsheet so the interest rate was 2.06% (rather than the current 1.8%) for the rest of the life of the mortgage - and it seems to suggest our mortgage will be paid off in December 1899 That would be nice, wouldn't it?!

    Methinks there may be a small error in my accounting somewhere
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 13th Jul 19, 9:37 PM
    • 32,128 Posts
    • 189,778 Thanks
    Karmacat
    That's a lot of work to get them sorted like that, well done Cheery. Some of those upfront fees are huge though! Dear me **faints**


    Can I ask about the discounts after the fix ends? Options 2 - 6: actually, its in your notes already, the discount is on the SVR. What are you leaning towards, after letting all that work sink in?
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 13th Jul 19, 9:46 PM
    • 8,801 Posts
    • 45,239 Thanks
    Cheery Daff
    Hmm - spreadsheet seems to suggest that the given monthly payments at the interest rate I put in won't actually pay the mortgage off in time...

    .... which made me suspicious, so I've gone back to check and all the options suggest we'd be starting the 25 year time again Which presumably they won't let us do anyway as that will take Mr Cheery to being over 80, which was their initial cut off

    Gosh I SO do not want to have to go down the 'ringing for advice' route - not given the list of things it wants to know from you

    Oh, and I just checked the MSE list of mortgages and there are quite a few 2 year fixes at 1.39%... YAWN. Wonder how much of a difference that few percent would make... (I suppose that's easy enough to find out ) But will they also lend til Mr Cheery is ancient, and on all our land, which were the sticking points before?

    YAWN YAWN YAWN. I was all excited at working it out and now I am just BORED

    Will come back tomorrow when the calculator is working
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 13th Jul 19, 9:50 PM
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    Cheery Daff
    Ha KC - I think I actually pre-empted your question and answered it while you were typing
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 13th Jul 19, 10:24 PM
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    • 45,239 Thanks
    Cheery Daff
    As for upfront fees - yes, massive But given that we were probably going to pay that much in MB overpayments over the next couple of months anyway, it might be best just to do it like this (because otherwise that fee is effectively added on to the mortgage and we pay interest on it).

    Done some snooping on the policies of the other best options according to the MSE mortgage finder

    All 2 year fixed

    Coventry
    Fixed 1.39%, APRC 4.2%, 1007 fee, 829 monthly
    No mention of limits on land, but max age 75


    Santander
    Fixed 1.39%, APRC 3.6%, 1034 fee, 829 monthly
    Will lend up to 10 acres (fine - that's the same as now), but max age 75


    HSBC
    Fixed 1.41%, APRC 3.8%, 1529 fee, 831 monthly
    No mention of limit on acres, will lend to 80


    Barclays
    Fixed 1.42%, APRC 3.8%, 1034 fee, 832 monthly
    Doesn't mention limits on land, assess on individual basis for age, but should be fine given proof of pension and my income


    Lloyds
    Fixed 1.43%, APRC 3.8%, 1034 fees, 833 monthly
    No mention of limits on acres, will lend to 80


    Platform (part of Co-op apparently, never heard of them)
    Fixed 1.44%, APRC 4.4%, 999 fees, 834 monthly
    Up to 3 acres, only up to 75


    Ok, that's enough for tonight. Will do some calculations tomorrow to see if it's worth going to a broker (a different one!! ) to sort out one of these cheaper deals.

    Right now it feels like I'm happy to pay a certain price not to have to go through all the uncertainty and nonsense again But we'll see
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 14th Jul 19, 7:58 AM
    • 8,801 Posts
    • 45,239 Thanks
    Cheery Daff
    Personally, I'd go for a 5 year fix as security is important to me. (We got a mortgage for the first time in Nov and fixed for 10 years with a stupidly ambitious plan to overpay the maximum 10% every year so we'd be finished by the time the 10 year came to an end. Feel free to visit my diary so see how that's going).

    We asked ourselves two questions: 1) If we go for a long fix, are we happy paying this amount monthly even if the interest rate somehow drops lower than it currently is? 2) If we go for a short fix and interest rates were to rise by say 5-10% at the end of it, could we cope with the new forced payments that would bring?

    On balance, we would much rather potentially overpay (as in waste, not 'Overpay') a few quid a month than be in a situation where we couldn't afford the repayments and default.
    Originally posted by Throwaway1
    sorry Throwaway, I missed you in amongst all my ramblings there! Good to see you I will indeed pop by your diary to see how you're doing with your plans - I hope it's splendidly

    Your questions are excellent ones of course

    1. Are we happy paying that amount for a longer fix even if rates drop? Our 5 year fix would be 2.06% (if we pay the upfront fee), while the 2 year fix is 1.8% - doesn't feel like that much of a difference but I'll have to get the calculator out again (yawn).

    I also need to find out for definite what the early repayment charges are as that will make a HUGE difference - technically the '2 year fix' is actually 2 years at a fixed rate, then 3 years of discount - and if we're stuck in THAT with a massive penalty I will NOT be impressed

    I kind of think rates can't really drop THAT much from 2%ish... Although the alternatives seem to be 1.39% which is a bit lower I suppose. My sister thought the same and fixed for 10 years at about 6% though so I'm slightly wary

    2. If we go for a short fix and interest rates were to rise by say 5-10% at the end of it, could we cope with the new forced payments that would bring?
    Hmm. The standard variable rate that we'll revert to at the end of this fix is 5.69% (I think) which increases our monthly payments by over 400 And that's only an increase from 1.8%. You're right - I would NOT be happy if we had to revert to that in 2 years time.

    It's difficult isn't it? A lot can happen in 2 years! And even more can happen in 5 years We can manage our payments at what they are now comfortably (and overpay a teensy bit, and a lot more with the MB income).

    We would definitely be struggling if our monthly payment increased to 1300, that's over half my income

    Hmm, this is all really helpful folks thank you for chipping in
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 14th Jul 19, 8:11 AM
    • 8,801 Posts
    • 45,239 Thanks
    Cheery Daff
    Main decisions seem to be (and I WILL shut up at some point, I promise )

    Do we want to stay with our current provider?
    Yes
    * can do online
    * barely any paperwork or speaking to anyone
    * already have mortgage with them so no uncertainty around assessment of income/valuation etc
    * perfectly happy with service (although I do wish they would let you manage it online!)

    No
    * rates a bit more expensive than elsewhere (1.8% for the 2 year fix compared to 1.39%; 2.06% for 5 year fix compared to 1.75%)

    Do we want to move to a different provider?
    Yes
    * rates cheaper (although of course no guarantee that we'd actually get them!)

    No
    * aaarrggghhhh, not sure I can face the fiasco of providing proof of everything
    * aaargggghhhh, not sure I can face the uncertainty of a valuation again (and also our building work is not finished yet it's not anything prohibited of course, but it doesn't look very good right now!)
    * we'd probably want to go through a broker but how to find a reliable one after being badly burned last time?

    How long do we want to fix for?
    2 years
    * cheapest rates, especially if we switch (but see above)
    * BUT - 2 year fix deal might actually be a 5 year fix/discount deal depending on early repayment charges - need to find these out (but couldn't see a way of doing that through the website)

    5 years
    * slightly more expensive - need to work out how much
    * certainty for the next 5 years (by which time we'll have paid off much more, I'll be earning more, and things won't feel as tight as they do now)
    * no faffing around going through this process again for 5 years (which I confess is appealing!)
    * BUT - I suppose there's a (very small) chance we might want to move in the next 5 years (although obviously I'm never moving house again after last time ) - a longer fix will mean possibly paying more to get out of it I suppose, but I think we can deal with that if it happens. Apparently it's usually eg 1%, which would at this point be 2000, so that's something we could absorb into house moving costs in the unlikely event that we DID want to move in the next 3 or 4 years.


    Right this is all REALLY helpful. Very much leaning towards 5 year fix with current people. Need to go away and do some calculations to make sure it's not going to cost us massively. Need to talk to Mr Cheery too, although rather suspect he'll be happy with whatever I'm happy with after all this calculating
    • Throwaway1
    • By Throwaway1 14th Jul 19, 8:56 AM
    • 437 Posts
    • 763 Thanks
    Throwaway1
    Main decisions seem to be (and I WILL shut up at some point, I promise )

    Do we want to stay with our current provider?
    Yes
    * can do online
    * barely any paperwork or speaking to anyone
    * already have mortgage with them so no uncertainty around assessment of income/valuation etc
    * perfectly happy with service (although I do wish they would let you manage it online!)

    No
    * rates a bit more expensive than elsewhere (1.8% for the 2 year fix compared to 1.39%; 2.06% for 5 year fix compared to 1.75%)

    Do we want to move to a different provider?
    Yes
    * rates cheaper (although of course no guarantee that we'd actually get them!)

    No
    * aaarrggghhhh, not sure I can face the fiasco of providing proof of everything
    * aaargggghhhh, not sure I can face the uncertainty of a valuation again (and also our building work is not finished yet it's not anything prohibited of course, but it doesn't look very good right now!)
    * we'd probably want to go through a broker but how to find a reliable one after being badly burned last time?

    How long do we want to fix for?
    2 years
    * cheapest rates, especially if we switch (but see above)
    * BUT - 2 year fix deal might actually be a 5 year fix/discount deal depending on early repayment charges - need to find these out (but couldn't see a way of doing that through the website)

    5 years
    * slightly more expensive - need to work out how much
    * certainty for the next 5 years (by which time we'll have paid off much more, I'll be earning more, and things won't feel as tight as they do now)
    * no faffing around going through this process again for 5 years (which I confess is appealing!)
    * BUT - I suppose there's a (very small) chance we might want to move in the next 5 years (although obviously I'm never moving house again after last time ) - a longer fix will mean possibly paying more to get out of it I suppose, but I think we can deal with that if it happens. Apparently it's usually eg 1%, which would at this point be 2000, so that's something we could absorb into house moving costs in the unlikely event that we DID want to move in the next 3 or 4 years.


    Right this is all REALLY helpful. Very much leaning towards 5 year fix with current people. Need to go away and do some calculations to make sure it's not going to cost us massively. Need to talk to Mr Cheery too, although rather suspect he'll be happy with whatever I'm happy with after all this calculating
    Originally posted by Cheery Daff

    Check if your mortgage provider allows 'porting' if you think you may move. That means that if you do move house they'll just move your mortgage with you so no early repayment charges.
    Make 2019 in 2019: 760/2019
    MFW: OP in 2019: 10,458.32/16,125
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 14th Jul 19, 10:00 AM
    • 32,128 Posts
    • 189,778 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Wow. You might move, Cheery? I thought you were there for life, to be honest. Is the travel not so great? Your neighbours sound lovely.
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 14th Jul 19, 10:02 AM
    • 8,801 Posts
    • 45,239 Thanks
    Cheery Daff
    Thanks Throwaway. We are really NOT considering moving (we only just got here last year and it was a huge fiasco!) so it's something I wouldn't want to make a decision on the basis of anyway.

    Had a chat with Mr Cheery, who has emphasized that my sanity is important and reminded me that for his previous mortgage (which I wasn't on as I didn't know him for most of it) he stayed with the same provider for the whole 25 years as he couldn't be bothered switching

    We've also decided that while my wages will increased a little year on year (and if I do get the promotion I"m going for this year there will be a bit of a jump), we're unlikely to be in a place in 2 years time where an increased of 400 a month (onto SVR) wouldn't be significant.

    So in that sense it makes sense to go for a 5 year fix.

    And given the months of stress and the fact that I'm having slight palpitations even thinking about trying to get a different mortgage after the nightmare of last time we have decided that it makes sense to stay with current provider.

    I will run the numbers when the MSE calculator is up and running, but I think it DOES make sense to pay an upfront fee for a reduced rate, so we'll likely use the MB money for that, which will mean we'll be on 2.06% for 5 years (instead of our current 1.8%)

    Then once it's settled we can crack on with overpaying as much as possible before the fix is up
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 14th Jul 19, 10:04 AM
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    • 45,239 Thanks
    Cheery Daff
    Eek, no we are NOT considering moving, eek!!! I don't ever want to move again!!

    But I was just being realistic in that we never know what will happen in the next 5 years. I might lose my job (hope not!!) and we would have to downsize. Or if one of us couldn't drive for whatever reason living here would become quite difficult, if not impossible.

    But let's hope neither of things will happen
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 14th Jul 19, 10:09 AM
    • 32,128 Posts
    • 189,778 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Gotcha - thanks for that, yes, its always best to look at the worst case scenario. I love the conclusion you and Mr Cheery reached in your previous post - you were right about Mr Cheery's priorities, which are lovely
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • Pooky
    • By Pooky 14th Jul 19, 11:16 AM
    • 6,922 Posts
    • 45,272 Thanks
    Pooky
    Sometimes the sanity factor is the most important. When we took out our current mortgage we had a "non standard" income stream and whilst we could have got a cheaper rate with a fix we went for a life time tracker and have hammered it as much as we can. We're just about to move again and the mortgage provider has let us keep the same terms (even though it wasn't portable) and we are reducing it by 70k but this time have a tiny "standard" income. One 20 minute chat in branch, a few signatures and we were done. As sanity saving goes, it was more hassle finding somewhere to park for the appointment then the process itself .
    "Start every day off with a smile and get it over with" - W. C. Field.
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 14th Jul 19, 6:05 PM
    • 13,369 Posts
    • 226,894 Thanks
    greenbee
    I did the maths a couple of months ago Cheery, and worked out that it was worth paying the fee for the 5 year fix (can't remember exactly how much it saved, but it was worth it in terms of total payments over the period of the fix). I could have saved a little by changing banks, but not enough to compensate for the hassle...
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 17th Jul 19, 12:06 PM
    • 8,801 Posts
    • 45,239 Thanks
    Cheery Daff
    Thank you all

    The MSE calculator is back up and running again now, and it seems I can save around 800 over the 5 year fix by paying 1600 up front

    Need to do the calculations to figure out if it would be better if we just overpaid that 1600 (in fact I suppose we could overpay it now, before the interest goes up)

    Confess I'm slightly bored of all these calculations now though but there is no rush, and I will soldier on.

    All go today! Saw a walker looking lost on the footpath this morning (honestly, I do strim it and have even painted little yellow arrows on the walls!) so went out and it turned out I'd met her before walking her dog before somewhere else. We had a chat, and swapped numbers, and she's offered to chicken sit if we need her to Most jolly

    Then a nice bloke turned up to change my tyres - I'm a convert to having my tyres changed outside my house, especially now I don't live anywhere near the garage It wasn't any more expensive either, in fact I'm pretty sure it was cheaper HOWEVER they really shouldn't have worn down, as I'd only had them put on this year So now that stupid car has to go back to the garage again.

    Honestly, they take it in bloody turns those cars!

    Work is vexing me today. I have a large significant deadline at 4.30pm today which I CANNOT miss, and which I also cannot meet unless someone else provides their signature. They've had all week to do this - and this morning they have chosen to quibble about something.

    I literally can't do anything about it (it's in someone else's hands now), but I'm having to accept that today is not going to be a day for productively getting on with other things Today is going to be a day for chewing fingernails down to the bone, gaining a few grey hairs, eating far more than is good for me, composing witty insulting emails in my head, and looking for a new job

    Over-reacting? Moi?
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 17th Jul 19, 4:11 PM
    • 13,369 Posts
    • 226,894 Thanks
    greenbee
    I regularly look for new jobs when I find the idiot quota gets too high

    I had a load of deadlines today, all dependent on other people. Not all have been met, and I'm off for a couple of days - very well advertised, but people seem to have forgotten and are asking me for stuff for end of the week. So I've mowed the lawn.
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