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  • FIRST POST
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 12th Feb 17, 9:56 AM
    • 1,709Posts
    • 17,596Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed....
    • #1
    • 12th Feb 17, 9:56 AM
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed.... 12th Feb 17 at 9:56 AM
    67,031.92. Seriously. 67,031.92. That is a SCARY number. I can't believe our debt has peaked (and it is the peak, I am determined) at this level.

    Our light bulb moment actually happened a few months back, but it's taken since then of wrangling utilities and carefully watching out income/outgoings (using You Need a Budget) to really figure out where we were overspending and how the monthly shortfall of anything from 200-1,000+ was happening.

    We have literally nothing to show for this debt, it's just crept up over the past 8 years or so, and has always been at manageable levels, but back in October we realised we were spending more on credit cards each month than we were paying off.

    We committed that cardinal sin of taking out a consolidation loan, but alongside it we looked really carefully at our spending over the next couple of months, budgeted realistically for what we spend and have (I think) picked off all the easy 'low hanging fruit' of budget cuts and really identified why we were overspending.

    The main reason for the debt is, erm, me. Not that I'm the biggest spender (neither of us are amazing), but because I am self employed with a hugely variable income and basically worked out our budgets on the basis I would always earn my 'best' month's income. Which was, with hindsight, maybe a TINY bit deluded.

    The aim of this diary is to keep us on track with actually reducing our debt every single month, not doing it in a three steps forward, two (or four) steps back sort of way. Having sat down and put our numbers into the whatsthecost site, it appears that we are looking at 7 years and 1 month of repayments to clear the debt (and that's assuming we can get rid of the shortfall showing below). I REALLY want to reduce this term as that just seems bonkers.

    SOA below, with a couple of explanatory notes.

    Statement of Affairs and Personal Balance Sheet

    Household Information

    Number of adults in household........... 2
    Number of children in household......... 3
    Number of cars owned.................... 1

    Monthly Income Details

    Monthly income after tax................ 250 (variable, but this is the minimum I have earned in any month in the last 5 years)
    Partners monthly income after tax....... 2711.86
    Benefits................................ 192
    Other income............................ 0
    Total monthly income.................... 3153.86


    Monthly Expense Details

    Mortgage................................ 698
    Secured/HP loan repayments.............. 0
    Rent.................................... 0
    Management charge (leasehold property).. 0
    Council tax............................. 174 (including overpayment for a period when we messed up during a house move 18 months ago and didn't restart the direct debit for the new property. Will drop by a little under 50 after either March or April, can't remember which)
    Electricity............................. 52 (gas and electricity are one combined DD, I haven't checked the exact split but the total is 104)
    Gas..................................... 52
    Oil..................................... 0
    Water rates............................. 104 (also including a debt from previous property, but I think this will be included for another 6 months or so. I'm not sure what our actual usage is)
    Telephone (land line)................... 18.5 (includes internet)
    Mobile phone............................ 85 (45 for my contract, which I use for work as well, 40 for DH)
    TV Licence.............................. 12.12
    Satellite/Cable TV...................... 0
    Internet Services....................... 0 (included in landline cost)
    Groceries etc. ......................... 520 (Includes 40 for one lot of school lunches. I am REALLY struggling to reduce this, but feel I could and should be able to!)
    Clothing................................ 100 (growing children, plus see notes below re clothes)
    Petrol/diesel........................... 225 (90% DH commuting costs)
    Road tax................................ 16.27
    Car Insurance........................... 25.22
    Car maintenance (including MOT)......... 30
    Car parking............................. 0
    Other travel............................ 50
    Childcare/nursery....................... 70 (this will disappear in April as child 3 gets free 15 hours)
    Other child related expenses............ 81.85 (music/swimming lessons x2, cubs and beavers, National Trust membership as they love visiting them)
    Medical (prescriptions, dentist etc).... 5
    Pet insurance/vet bills................. 0
    Buildings insurance..................... 27.07
    Contents insurance...................... 0
    Life assurance ......................... 16.26
    Other insurance......................... 0
    Presents (birthday, christmas etc)...... 90
    Haircuts................................ 20
    Entertainment........................... 135
    Holiday................................. 75
    Emergency fund.......................... 25
    Total monthly expenses.................. 2707.29



    Assets

    Cash.................................... 0
    House value (Gross)..................... 210000
    Shares and bonds........................ 0
    Car(s).................................. 800
    Other assets............................ 0
    Total Assets............................ 210800



    Secured & HP Debts

    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Mortgage...................... 173733...(698)......3.14
    Total secured & HP debts...... 173733....-.........-


    Unsecured Debts
    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Barclaycard....................6880.21...156...... .0
    MBNA...........................9614.71...98....... .0
    Parental loan..................20000.....0.........0 (see notes below)
    Tesco loan.....................21000.....377.......10
    Total unsecured debts..........57494.92..631.......-



    Monthly Budget Summary

    Total monthly income.................... 3,153.86
    Expenses (including HP & secured debts). 2,707.29
    Available for debt repayments........... 446.57
    Monthly UNsecured debt repayments....... 631
    Amount short for making debt repayments. -184.43


    Personal Balance Sheet Summary
    Total assets (things you own)........... 210,800
    Total HP & Secured debt................. -173,733
    Total Unsecured debt.................... -57,494.92
    Net Assets.............................. -20,427.92


    Created using the SOA calculator at stoozing.
    Reproduced on Moneysavingexpert with permission, using other browser.


    Regarding the (relatively) high clothes expense, it is a combination of 3 growing children (8, 6 and 3), plus the fact that my job is in the fashion industry, and as a self employed person I need to have the right sort of 'look' in order to get work (think along the lines of a self employed personal shopper - people need to see you looking good in order to book with you).

    The parental loan was for a house deposit. The parent in question has no idea about our debts. She is not desperate for the money back and isn't charging us interest, but has asked us to save 150-200 every month into a savings account and then once we've saved a decent sum to either repay them or 'reborrow' it for work on the house (basically they want us to be able to make repayments if they suddenly need the extra income, but meanwhile are happy for us to benefit from it. I am not saving the money while our debt payments are so high - we are hoping to have paid enough off that if the parent ever needs it that we can reborrow it and pay them back). This isn't great, but realistically I think the best solutions is to treat it as the lowest priority for snowballing - once we have paid back the other debts we will throw the entire 630+ at this debt.

    So, there is a freaking enormous shortfall every month, which is somewhat depressing. Most months it is covered by the fact that I earn more than my 'bare minimum', but it is those months where it isn't covered that the debt creeps up again, and I am a total disaster for going 'oh well, we've spent on the credit card, we might as well keep going' and buying more clothes or something for the house - this is probably a significant proportion of our debt problem.

    We have managed to get rid of the balance on the one credit card we were spending on, so the remaining ones are both on 0% deals (although one expires in September). I have not cut up the remaining credit card, because we don't have an emergency fund in case of eg boiler repairs, but it has not been used for all of a month, and I hope to keep it that way.

    A DMP or similar isn't really on my horizon right now - I feel like we should be able to make the cuts to make our budgets balance, and I am optimistic that as my income goes up (when I can work more as child 3 starts school) that we will be able to make overpayments.

    My plan for now is:
    1) Try to wiggle those budget numbers around enough that we don't have a shortfall any more.
    2) Make a plan for any months where I make extra - do I use it for an emergency fund, as a fund to cover future months' shortfalls, to throw money at the debt to try to reduce minimum payments in case of future 'shortfall' months?
    3) Try to make more money. Not quite sure how this will work as I am largely limited to working around DH's working hours (I work evenings and weekends and the 5hrs childcare per week we are paying for for child 3).

    Now that's all down in black and white I am feeling a combination of relieved (to be clear on the numbers) and immensely stressed (by the semi-regular 180+ shortfall).

    Onwards and downwards (for the debt, not me)!

    edited to add: the original 67,031.92 figure was based on the total figure for the Tesco loan, which included all interest payable over the entire term of the loan. I have updated the debt figure in my signature and in all posts going forward as at 4th June 2017 to reflect that actual current debt balance rather than the balance plus interest over the lifetime of the loan. This has knocked 7,911.62 off the debt figure, but means that each monthly payment will have the interest for that month deducted from it, so it won't affect the DFD if I don't make overpayments.
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 04-06-2017 at 2:58 PM.
Page 185
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 7th Sep 18, 7:32 PM
    • 2,088 Posts
    • 21,866 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    You are so good at tracking. I would have compressed that to-do list to 7 new things but you keep going. Well done.

    I confess I pick up a bag of 100 tea lights in Ikea when we go (rarely). The aluminium cups are recycled here
    MFiT T4 #2 update 94.29% after Q10 ahead of where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after August 78.83% 7,883.47/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 1,530.09/3,000 including stores 51% of my annual budget at the end of August.
    My DFD is here
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 8th Sep 18, 6:18 PM
    • 1,709 Posts
    • 17,596 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 82: Day 6

    Hello! Just popping on for a quick catch up as I don't think I'll get a chance tomorrow, and then we'll be into another new week.

    We have had a day just pootling around the house and town today, and it has been wonderful - so nice to slow down! I have instigated a 1hr family clean up session on Saturday mornings, with the aim that I have less to do during the week, and that went surprisingly well, then DH occupied the DCs while I got on with some admin work and briefly met them in town. Must must must get better about saying no to plans so we can have more days like that.

    A busier one tomorrow - we are driving to a christening (well, I and the DCs - DH is going away for work). I bought a gift that was both nice and cheap (this book), which I was pleased with - I'm not religious, so a token gift feels fine for a christening to me.

    A question about balance transfers - the balance transfer has gone through to Santander. When are we likely to get a statement? Will it be a month after the balance transfer do we think? Or the 1st of next month? Or sooner? I'm basically wondering whether we actually need to pay the usual minimums off the debt this month - the balance transfer (from Barclaycard to Santander) went through before the Barclaycard statement date, which means we only had to pay 82 as a minimum payment on the remaining balance of the Barclaycard, and I'm wondering whether it will be October before Santander sends out a statement. Obviously I know we should pay the full 244 that we budget for the Barclaycard each month off the debt, but I'm wondering about diverting some of this into the 'spend some time together' fund for DH and I, as there isn't realistically any spare for that, and even 50 would cover two nice brunches out, which would be two more than we managed across the whole of last year! Things are so much better over the past couple of weeks and I think we both really want to keep it going, and a bit of indulgent time together would be lovely (and by 'indulgent' I mean 'a 10 fry up and coffee' ).

    Ordered DC1's birthday presents today - the ones that I couldn't get locally. I won't pretend it was the must budget friendly order ever, but the presents total is under 150 for everything - the main gift from us, plus a couple of little ones from DC2 and 3, and a couple of books from us too. The actual party will be dirt cheap - just the cost of camping (20 I think) plus any special cake decorating bits needed (I have a pretty good stash of food dye, piping nozzles etc though, so not anticipating a big spend) - which makes a change as we have spent a small fortune in the past. The birthday pot is going to be very slightly in the red, but the next birthdays within our immediate family aren't for a few months.

    I got paid for some work yesterday so am inching closer towards October's income goal, but still an alarmingly long way to go. Have got a big provisional client booking which I'm keeping fingers crossed about as it will cover about another 300 of the income I need.

    To do this week
    1. Try on uniforms and triple check the DCs have everything they need for the new school year (I am 99% sure they do, but panicking nonetheless as I haven't actually yet opened the bag of new uniform).
    2. Check birthdays for September and write cards.
    3. Make veg soup.
    4. Make rolls.

    5. Confirm balance transfer has actually gone through after DH phoned on the weekend.
    6. Find a couple of alternatives to current architect to obtain quotes from.

    7. Read planning officer email regarding drainage and establish how much of a rush we are in to sort a drainage query raised on there.
    8. Properly clean and tidy a few rooms that are looking particularly grim:
    (a) sitting room.

    (b) dining room.
    (c) kitchen.

    (d) our bedroom.
    (e) utility room.

    9. Go through cupboards and menu plan appropriately - SO MUCH food in the house right now, although not much fruit and veg. Plan in food shopping deliveries/top up shops in town.
    10. Make tealights (I saved all the empty tealight cups from the last batch we had, and bought some little tealight wicks, in an effort to reduce, reuse and recycle!).

    11. Get rid of charity shop stuff lurking in the utility room.
    12. Shop local for DC1's birthday presents, leaving time to order online for anything I can't find.
    13. Pack orders for smaller business.
    14. Contract work for next week.
    15. Update work mileage tracker with journeys last week.
    16. Restart social media for work, even if it's just one or two posts this week to get back in the swing.
    17. Clear work email enquiries - lots of enquiries coming to nothing at the moment, but hopefully some clients will confirm work soon.

    Wow look, I've done everything and it's only Saturday! Clearly I needed more to do.

    September money goals:
    - 10.14/30 September rounding down pot.
    - 3,766.98/5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.
    - 124/864 income needed for October.
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017: 38,608 unsecured debt/20,000 parental loan/173,282 mortgage = 231,890
    debt on 1st Sept 2018: 12,221.27 unsecured debt/19,940 parental loan/191,003.72 mortgage = 223,165
    • PositiveBalance
    • By PositiveBalance 8th Sep 18, 8:48 PM
    • 808 Posts
    • 4,125 Thanks
    PositiveBalance
    When I transferred from my old CC to Santander recently I didn't get a bill for the first month, much to my surprise. However, I think it is to do with the billing cycle and when the transfer occurs in relation to the billing date so call them and check so you don't end up having a nasty surprise.

    Well done on keeping all the plates juggling. Now go spend some time with your OH. X


    P. S. LOVE the book and will be buying a copy for the new daughter of a physicist and granddaughter of a physics lecturer.
    Last edited by PositiveBalance; 08-09-2018 at 8:53 PM.
    Original debt to source: 11,640.02; debt repaid: 6771.01 (58%); remaining debt: 5069.01
    0% CC balance: 4999.67 now
    2914.55 (42% repaid)
    Emergency Fund (#187): 0/500
    Terrimundi: fleeced!
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 9th Sep 18, 9:11 AM
    • 2,088 Posts
    • 21,866 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    I think you should budget to pay the normal minimum payment on the residual on the Barclaycard - you and DH are already appreciating your frugal dates - there is plenty of time to increase the budget when you have certainty - and the last thing you want is a black mark on your credit record before you go for the extension and need to remortgage
    MFiT T4 #2 update 94.29% after Q10 ahead of where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after August 78.83% 7,883.47/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 1,530.09/3,000 including stores 51% of my annual budget at the end of August.
    My DFD is here
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 10th Sep 18, 5:11 AM
    • 1,709 Posts
    • 17,596 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 83: Day 1

    Well it's nice that we appreciated the car passing the MOT. Yesterday it started belching black smoke and losing power every time we went uphill . Couldn't get above 30 uphill on the dual carraigeway/motorway, which was a bit anxiety inducing. I was by myself with the DCs and it was a very unrelaxing drive to and from the christening. Going to phone the garage this morning and get them to take a look at it. AGAIN.

    So I won't be making any assumptions about what I'll be doing with any extra money at all, since I'm going to need to hire a car for work this Friday if the garage can't see it before then (which will wipe out 70% of my profit from the day). I'm really about the whole thing - I really thought we might get more than six days use out of it after a full service! I'm going to stamp my foot a bit and hopefully they'll at least check it for free, since really any major issues should (presumably?!) have been picked up when they serviced it a week ago. I know it's not their fault that it's an old car with high mileage, but I feel like going so catastrophically wrong six days after a service isn't quite the done thing.

    Ugh. That aside, it's another week, another ton of stuff to do. Feeling a bit stressed despite a lovely weekend, which is mostly down to the car, partly down to DH being away and everything being on my shoulders and partly down to needing to speak to some more people for quotes for the extension drawings so we can move forward with it. And also the really nice builder we met who promised a quote by the weekend hasn't delivered a quote, which has annoyed me disproportionately because I am annoyed about everything else.

    I'm in the frame of mind where once upon a time I would have booked a day out with a friend (shopping or a meal out or a spa) for when DH was back home, taken a day off work and spent the money without guilt. And now I can't even relax enough to do that because of the cost/lack of earning. ARGHHHHH when do we get to take a break from it all?! In a decade or three, I guess.

    Since it would be nice to interject some good news, I'm going to mention the fact that we spent hardly any money all weekend, as we had vouchers for ice cream to use on Saturday and didn't need to spend any money at the christening party yesterday. That's all I've got for positive things right now!

    Right, rant over, back to the here and now. Job list for the week....

    To do this week
    1. Sort the car!!!
    2. Phone the potential extension drawing chap who replied to my enquiry email last week.
    3. Find at least one other extension drawing person to get a quote from.
    4. Chase first builder for a quote.
    5. DH to phone another builder for a quote.
    6. Contract work for next week.
    7. Contract work for the following week.
    8. Make cake etc for DC1 birthday party.
    9. Stick to social media schedule for work.
    10. Pack orders for smaller business.
    11. Make some packed lunch supplies - quiche, savoury muffins etc.
    12. Piece of work for client A.
    13. Piece of work for client B.
    14. Life coaching check in.
    15. Swim club subs.
    16. Snack subs for DC3.
    17. Clear the ironing mountain.
    18. Order trainers and another pair of school trousers for DC2 (why do they keep growing?!).
    19. Top up fruit and veg shop.
    20. Contemplate the upside of the house/car/work stress, which has meant losing 2lb over the past week. If I can keep the stress levels up my 'how do I lose weight?' crisis may be averted .

    September money goals:
    - 10.14/30 September rounding down pot.
    - 3,766.98/5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.
    - 124/864 income needed for October.
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 10-09-2018 at 5:15 AM.
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017: 38,608 unsecured debt/20,000 parental loan/173,282 mortgage = 231,890
    debt on 1st Sept 2018: 12,221.27 unsecured debt/19,940 parental loan/191,003.72 mortgage = 223,165
    • Sea Shell
    • By Sea Shell 10th Sep 18, 6:38 AM
    • 947 Posts
    • 1,497 Thanks
    Sea Shell
    Oh no!!!!!! I feel really guilty that I somehow jinxed you now.
    " That pound I saved yesterday, is a pound I don't have to earn tomorrow "
    • CathT
    • By CathT 10th Sep 18, 9:00 AM
    • 5,713 Posts
    • 39,915 Thanks
    CathT
    Fingers crossed for the car TOPM.
    Sept 2018 -
    part 1 - 75,557
    part 2 - 44,913
    Total - 120,470
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 10th Sep 18, 11:24 AM
    • 1,709 Posts
    • 17,596 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    The garage can at least look at it tomorrow morning, so I can hold off booking a hire car until we know whether it's fixable. I'm at the stage of wondering whether we should still get rid - if it can be fixed for a couple of hundred quid, but has a year's MOT and fresh service, we might be able to get 800 or something for it (no idea if that's realistic - it's a 2004 Mondeo estate in fairly dreary condition with a couple of dents and scratches and 140K on the clock) which could be the basis of a new car fund. I can't make that choice without talking to DH though, as it's him who uses it for commuting.
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017: 38,608 unsecured debt/20,000 parental loan/173,282 mortgage = 231,890
    debt on 1st Sept 2018: 12,221.27 unsecured debt/19,940 parental loan/191,003.72 mortgage = 223,165
    • graemec23
    • By graemec23 10th Sep 18, 12:06 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 15 Thanks
    graemec23
    Hi Just wanted to say that I have enjoyed reading your blog and wanted to ask a quick question.

    I seem to have missed when you arranged for additional lending on your mortgage to pay off your bank loan. When was this? I'd be interested to read about this and get any other comments you had about the process etc.

    My situation is quite similar to yours.
    Slightly younger kids
    Higher unsecured debt (~40k)
    Lower Mortgage (120k - 50% equity)
    Also have a 2nd mortgage (75k - 50% equity) on a rental property(its our old flat that we couldn't sell)

    My unsecured debt is ever more eye-watering than yours!

    Transferring the unsecured debt to my mortgage was not something that I had considered before, due to my high unsecured debt my credit rating is pretty poor and I figured they would have rejected any sort of request.
    • ellen vannin
    • By ellen vannin 10th Sep 18, 2:53 PM
    • 261 Posts
    • 1,185 Thanks
    ellen vannin
    Maybe you could get a quote for the car from one of these buying sites where you just put in the reg. number.

    Then you will be able to take a decision based on the facts.

    Does not seem right that anything major not picked up when the service was done.
    • Moreplease
    • By Moreplease 11th Sep 18, 2:34 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 23 Thanks
    Moreplease
    Quick question on your budget pots - are they actual pots (different bank accounts) or do you keep a spreadsheet and break the pots down on there? ☺️
    • Courgette
    • By Courgette 11th Sep 18, 2:51 PM
    • 1,754 Posts
    • 18,554 Thanks
    Courgette
    Sorry to hear about the car TOPM. We're car-free partly for reasons such as these. Just for info, I sold an old banger with a full year's MOT for more than I paid for it a couple of years ago. We're talking about 400 but, as I said, old banger. Gumtree is your friend here rather than places like Awto Trraader. Good luck whatever you decide. How easy car-free will be will depend on public transport in your area (most obvious statement of the century). We manage but I do miss the spontaneity at times plus being able to get off the beaten track. Definitely a big cost saving though
    A reminder to myself: Persistence Pays Off
    Mortgage 1: 95,000 78,900 at 3.1%
    Mortgage 2 (BTL): 83, 489.15 at 2.99% (I.O.)
    Savings (S&S ISA): 3000 Plus 6 months emergency savings earning 3%
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 12th Sep 18, 5:34 AM
    • 1,709 Posts
    • 17,596 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 83: Day 3

    Caution, epically long update below!
    (I even used sub headings)

    Car update
    Another day, another spend on the car. It turned out to be 178 to fix. I paid it on the basis that we absolutely would have needed to hire a big car this weekend for my work and DC1's birthday camping trip, which would have been over 100. However, I have decided (although not discussed with DH) that we need to set a lowish upper limit for any further spending within the next four months. Including tax and insurance, we've spent 1,870 on it in 2018 (1,343 just on garage bills), not including diesel. If we'd gone car free in January we'd have been able to replace it with something fractionally newer and better by now. The car pot is now an epic 271 in the red. Oh, and regarding whether it should have been picked up on during the service, I'm reasonably confident it was just an unfortunate coincidence - a pipe burst, which was just one of those sudden catastrophic failures, rather than a gradual wearing away.

    Courgette being car free would be a pain for us, but not impossible. It would have to be a temporary solution rather than a long term one I think, as it would make DH's commute such a challenge, as well as the usual weekend outings etc. I think we'd aim for a minimum of six months without a car, maybe up to a year, and use what we'd saved in the monthly car pots to buy the new car.

    Mortgage/consolidation
    graemec23 Oooh, the dreaded consolidation. We consolidated some of our debt into the mortgage in January this year when our fixed rate deal expired and we remortgaged. I hadn't actually considered it before, but our mortgage broker said it was the best way to get a good deal. What I would say is that although it's been great for reducing our monthly outgoings, it absolutely wouldn't have worked in the early days of this journey - we would have spent the money again within months. It was only after almost a year of budgeting and genuinely reducing our outgoings that I felt confident that we wouldn't run up all debt we had just 'cleared' (because of course it isn't cleared, it's just elsewhere, and will cost us more in the long run if we don't overpay, even at a low mortgage rate). We were totally deluded about our outgoings at the start of the journey and just did not have the skills to be trusted with a sudden availability of 20k of credit! It has also moved our debt free date significantly further away, which is depressing.

    How I budget
    Moreplease I budget using YNAB (You Need A Budget), so everything is in one account, but split into different pots. YNAB is a real learning curve, but I can honestly say it has revolutionised our finances, and been 95% responsible for our ability to repay our debts. Yes, it has a small cost attached, but I reckon we saved that cost in the first month of using it. Well worth it for us. We have so many budget pots (over 50) that different accounts would be unmanageable.

    Stress levels
    Still feeling slightly hectic and stressed with DH being away and everything being on my shoulders - I have been speaking to people who can take over from our ex-architect and getting quotes, and chasing builders for quotes as well as managing the usual house-running stuff with three DCs and my own work which is having to be fitted into 2.5 hours a day while DC3 settles into school. Not the most relaxing week/month. Can't see any particular solution though apart from to keep on keeping on. I have said to DH that if the expectation from his work continues to be as high as it currently is then we need to assess my working hours, because I am not going to be able to manage my current frantic paddling to keep all the plates spinning indefinitely. Although he fully appreciates and supports me, DH really doesn't grasp how much physical time it takes to keep everything together, from extension stuff to housework to homemade food to running DCs to clubs and so on and so on.

    Financial update
    Financial news (which is what we're here for, after all), the big client booking still hasn't paid, and I'm miles short of meeting October's salary, which is annoying and another stress. I have a couple of small bits of work and my contract work to invoice for at the end of the month, but it won't cover what I need. DH will get some overtime income this month, but I have no idea how much.

    Looking at it dispassionately I can see that I was mad to think I could manage a normal month's income this month, with DC3 only in school for three hours a day for the first three weeks and DH away so much. I think we'll just have to work with what we've got for next month, and some of the savings pots won't get topped up if we're short. I need to be realistic about what can be achieved in the time available, and I just don't think that another 739 of profit is realistic in the next two weeks.

    I am also feeling slightly nervous about DH's work expenses - he has been away all week and has spent an absolute fortune. He got a cash advance from his work for most of it, but I'm so worried there's going to be some issue with clearing it. Not that he's been living the high life (it's mainly on taxis and food, and the nature of what he's going meant endless taxis were inevitable, so his work were expecting it). It's the first time he's had serious work expenses beyond a 100 or so at a time, and it's making me edgy! I think if this is going to become standard I'm going to ask him to discuss a work credit card with them. However I'm sure this will all be fine, I just want it sorted as it's such an enormous sum of money!

    I haven't made any additional payments to the Barclaycard or Santander with the minimum payment budget pot, which may or may not be needed this month depending on the statement date of the Santander card. I've decided to leave it there until the end of the month and if it's still not used it can either be used for October's budget or to top up the car pot. So much for date money for DH and I.

    To do this week
    1. Sort the car!!!
    2. Phone the potential extension drawing chap who replied to my enquiry email last week.
    3. Find at least one other extension drawing person to get a quote from.

    4. Chase first builder for a quote.
    5. DH to phone another builder for a quote.
    6. Contract work for next week.
    7. Contract work for the following week.
    8. Make cake etc for DC1 birthday party.
    9. Stick to social media schedule for work.
    10. Pack orders for smaller business.
    11. Make some packed lunch supplies - quiche, savoury muffins etc. Quiche and flapjacks made, will do muffins today.
    12. Piece of work for client A.
    13. Piece of work for client B.
    14. Life coaching check in.
    15. Swim club subs.
    16. Snack subs for DC3.
    17. Clear the ironing mountain.
    18. Order trainers and another pair of school trousers for DC2 (why do they keep growing?!). Have found a pair of DC1's old trousers that will do, so just trainers needed.
    19. Top up fruit and veg shop.
    20. Contemplate the upside of the house/car/work stress, which has meant losing 2lb over the past week. If I can keep the stress levels up my 'how do I lose weight?' crisis may be averted .

    September money goals:
    - 10.14/30 September rounding down pot.
    - 3,766.98/5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.
    - 125/864 income needed for October.
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 12-09-2018 at 6:02 AM.
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017: 38,608 unsecured debt/20,000 parental loan/173,282 mortgage = 231,890
    debt on 1st Sept 2018: 12,221.27 unsecured debt/19,940 parental loan/191,003.72 mortgage = 223,165
    • PositiveBalance
    • By PositiveBalance 12th Sep 18, 2:45 PM
    • 808 Posts
    • 4,125 Thanks
    PositiveBalance
    Well done on the epic post, ToPM!



    To be honest, I would draw a line under your car now. I can sort of understand why you paid to have to have it repaired this time as you definitely would have had to rent one in the near future for events that are already planned, but there comes a time when you have to draw a line for the sake of your finances and mental health and I think that time may have come.


    Unless, of course, I have misread and your car is worth a fortune and the amount you have put towards repair is a smallish percentage of its overall value (in which case sell it and invest in something cheaper and on better condition )



    Perhaps talk with your OH once he returns and decide where the line is in the sand is for you both and bid a fond farewell when you get there there e.g. next time it breaks down?
    Original debt to source: 11,640.02; debt repaid: 6771.01 (58%); remaining debt: 5069.01
    0% CC balance: 4999.67 now
    2914.55 (42% repaid)
    Emergency Fund (#187): 0/500
    Terrimundi: fleeced!
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 12th Sep 18, 5:51 PM
    • 2,088 Posts
    • 21,866 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    I was just re-reading your comment about the impact on your DH's commute if he has no car. I drove to my old office yesterday and it was remarkably stress-relieving to not worry about drop-off, pick up or whether everything was running. You might want to talk this through before ditching your old car. And I would sell it when working, not when it is broken, so you get some sort of return.

    You could start looking into whether there is a community car scheme - (like a rental but the collective share the costs) that you might be able to join. Or you could try taking it off the road for six months with a SORN - you would still have to insure it (lower cost though) and it must be off the highway, but just so you can see how you manage without it, and whether you do save enough to replace it. Then you have the option to opt it back onto the road if needed, and possibly combine both its' sale price and your savings pot for a replacement.

    Or you could have a really small economical car for both your commutes, and one adult running 3 children around, but need to hire one for camping hols. Lots of the small electric jobs are 0 VED. Just a thought. If your business trips are short enough for a single charge trip...
    MFiT T4 #2 update 94.29% after Q10 ahead of where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after August 78.83% 7,883.47/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 1,530.09/3,000 including stores 51% of my annual budget at the end of August.
    My DFD is here
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 14th Sep 18, 6:13 AM
    • 1,709 Posts
    • 17,596 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 83: Day 5

    Woo hoo, my big booking has come off and I have been paid, so October's salary is looking a lot less uncomfortable! Still not completely covered, but will be covered by my contract work invoice even if nothing else comes up.

    I have also managed to balance our budget for September without needing the child benefit this month. This is great as it means I can put this month's child benefit towards next month's budget rather than adding it to the current month halfway through. It doesn't actually increase our pot of money, but does mean that I can assign all the money at the start of the month, without needing to wait until the CB comes in before everything balances, which I think will improve my budgeting very fractionally. A tiny thing, but it will make a bit of a difference, even if only in my head.

    Working again today, which is a last minute booking and was a pain to sort childcare for, but DH has been able to arrange to work from home. Only another 90 or so after expenses, but better than a smack in the face, as they say . I really need to put up my fees for this client - it's a longstanding client, and I have never charged mileage, because I am terrified of losing them, but I wonder whether I need to increase my daily fee or charge a small mileage fee, as it's a pretty low rate for a day's work once mileage is covered. But it is super easy and fairly enjoyable work, which is why I don't want to put it at risk.

    The car has managed a whopping two days without any problems . Haven't had a chance to talk to DH about it yet, must add that to the list so we have a firm number in mind if it needs another repair (or indeed whether he'd prefer to bite the bullet sooner and sell it so there's a small pot of cash towards a new car. I doubt it though - it's going to be really inconvenient for him if we're carless).

    Apart from the big spends - DC1's birthday, the car - general spending really isn't looking too bad this month. We haven't gone over our food budget yet, and there's plenty of food in the cupboards. I don't think we'll need a food shopping delivery until the middle of next week, although we'll need a top up of fruit and veg before then. We've spent very little of the entertainment kitty either, which is nice, and this weekend will be low spend too as all we need to pay is the 30 or so for camping.

    DH and I had one of our circular chats last night about how busy we are/I am. The extension is taking up a reasonable amount of headspace and time on top of the usual 'running the house' stuff, and he just doesn't have the time to keep on top of it, and the expectation from his work over his commitment level is ever-increasing, making it harder and harder for me to get significant chunks of work done in the evenings or whatever. He's hopeful of another pay rise at some stage, but there isn't a chance of it before January at the earliest as they are shuffling roles about a little (they are adding in a layer of management, which he will hopefully be promoted into). The other problem with that is that he's at the top of the banding for his current role, and will presumably move into the bottom of the next banding if he gets promoted, so the actual payrise will be minimal. Also he is very close to 50k now, which means CB will start tailing off if he earns much more. It would be much better for our budgets if I were to earn more, as I only pay basic rate tax and wouldn't impact CB, but life commitments seem to make that a major challenge.

    I'm not really sure what the solution is to the busyness, as I look at my list and don't see anything that could be reasonable cut (ok, apart from some of the really deranged cooking from scratch, like homemade frozen chips, but that was only because my mum gave me 10kg of potatoes and I needed to do something with them! ). It's partly that I have so little free time at the moment because DC3 is still only part time at school - I'm hoping it will improve significantly when she is full time and I'm just catastrophising after a summer barely working and then not being able to get stuck straight back in during September. I'm wondering about dividing up my time a little more, so I have four days a week for working and a day for domestic/extension project management stuff, as at the moment I can keep the extension stuff to just one day a week. It will be trickier once the build actually starts, but I think we are both resigned to me basically earning nothing over that period. Basically I feel like I never ever ever stop - I move from one job to another to another to another all day and into the evening, then sit down for five minutes, then go to bed, rinse and repeat. There is never ever ever a time when I just sit down and relax, to knit or watch TV or whatever. I mean really never, not 'oh, I only get to do it every third day'.

    I want to lower my expectations of myself each day, but then I look at the things that need doing and I'm not sure how to manage that - what can I actually stop doing that won't have a material impact on our lives? The domestic stuff still has to happen, we still need to eat, food shopping has to happen, laundry etc. I need to work as much as I do in order to keep our budget balanced, or accept that the debt will be paid off at an even slower snails pace, the extension needs to keep moving forwards if there is even the smallest danger it will be built next year (and with DC1 getting closer to puberty I think it's important to prioritise him not having to share with his little sister). Not sure. My life coaching buddy has agreed to sit down and look through my daily lists from the last few weeks with me (all in one notebook, thankfully, for ease of revisiting) and see what looks truly ridiculous from an outside perspective.

    To do this week
    1. Sort the car!!!
    2. Phone the potential extension drawing chap who replied to my enquiry email last week.
    3. Find at least one other extension drawing person to get a quote from.

    4. Chase first builder for a quote.
    5. DH to phone another builder for a quote. This isn't going to happen until next week as DH is so busy at work.
    6. Contract work for next week.
    7. Contract work for the following week.
    8. Make cake etc for DC1 birthday party.
    9. Stick to social media schedule for work.
    10. Pack orders for smaller business.
    11. Make some packed lunch supplies - quiche, savoury muffins etc. Quiche and flapjacks made, will do muffins today.
    12. Piece of work for client A.
    13. Piece of work for client B.
    14. Life coaching check in.
    15. Swim club subs.
    16. Snack subs for DC3.
    17. Clear the ironing mountain.
    18. Order trainers and another pair of school trousers for DC2 (why do they keep growing?!). Have found a pair of DC1's old trousers that will do, so just trainers needed.
    19. Top up fruit and veg shop.
    20. Contemplate the upside of the house/car/work stress, which has meant losing 2lb over the past week. If I can keep the stress levels up my 'how do I lose weight?' crisis may be averted .

    September money goals:
    - 10.68/30 September rounding down pot.
    - 3,766.98/5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.
    - 664/864 income needed for October.
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017: 38,608 unsecured debt/20,000 parental loan/173,282 mortgage = 231,890
    debt on 1st Sept 2018: 12,221.27 unsecured debt/19,940 parental loan/191,003.72 mortgage = 223,165
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 14th Sep 18, 6:34 AM
    • 1,079 Posts
    • 5,008 Thanks
    Honeysucklelou2
    You are at a stage in life that is busy, as any working mother of young children will sympathise with you. Looking at your lists, the only thing that I can see could be cut, is your ironing mountain. I write that as someone who used to iron everything and I mean everything, underwear, towels, the lot. When I got to child number 3 and holding down a job, I realised I couldn't do it all without something giving. Nowadays, I fold everything carefully when it comes off the washing line and keep the ironing for any formal type clothes, DD2's chef clothing and bedding ( yes I know, but I can't quite give up ironing the bedding!)

    My days are frantically packed and I totally get the not having chance to have downtime, so I find that I snatch moments, like walking the dogs with my DSs or simply walking round the garden and savouring the changing colours, even for a minute or two, or walking across the beach. Can you incorporate any of those moments into your day?
    paydbx #93 804.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • arsenalbarnie
    • By arsenalbarnie 14th Sep 18, 9:07 AM
    • 275 Posts
    • 1,745 Thanks
    arsenalbarnie
    I had an ultra organised friend who had a list on the wall of what was in the freezer. When she took say a tub of home made pasta sauce out she changed the quantity left. This meant she knew when to make another batch. It sounds s bit noddy like the way I am explaining it but she managed to stagger the batch cooking. I have never managed to be that organised. I think the amount of cooking you do is staggering along with everything else in your life. I used to allow mine a lazy dinner once a week, 'beige tea' night they called it tho I made them have frozen peas for greenery. It was usually fish fingers, chips and peas. I have now invested in an air fryer. They make amazing chips with real potatoes and 1 Tbls of oil. The eldest two (21 & 19), still at home still like this dinner, but they have progressed to tartare sauce instead of ketchup lol. Fish fingers are plastic free, are they something you would consider feeding yours once a week? The Sainsbug taste the diff ones are really nice and don't look like they have any colouring in, tho from memory they may be in a plastic bag inside the box. . My daughter likes the Ald1 omega 3 ones and they are def pl free. Fish fingers is one lazy food I buy, as like you I avoid plastic where at all possible.

    Sorry am rambling but you have my sympathies. Having brought up a family of 5, I know what it's like. I still seem to fill my days and rush around. Do you think some of it is the way you are? I just think it's my personality. I can't bear to sit down if there is stuff that needs doing whereas my friend will sit on her a*se at every opportunity to do crocheting and couldn't give a stuff about the mess. She admits she is a lazy so and so tho Keep going
    • KxMx
    • By KxMx 14th Sep 18, 1:48 PM
    • 7,455 Posts
    • 10,808 Thanks
    KxMx
    Perhaps the DCs can take on more around the house, every little helps.

    And if you can lower your standards a little, you shouldn't be too tempted to go behind them and do the job again
    • stoozie1
    • By stoozie1 14th Sep 18, 2:40 PM
    • 608 Posts
    • 566 Thanks
    stoozie1
    WRT losing Child benefit with the promotion, remember you can deduct the gross value of all pension contributions and gift aid payments (including national trust membership etc) from his salary, and it's that figure which determines if the CB is to be repaid.

    HTH!
    Save 12 k in 2018 challenge member #79
    Target 2018: 24k Jan 2018- 560 April 2670
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