Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 2nd Jan 18, 2:38 PM
    • 32,404Posts
    • 191,545Thanks
    Karmacat
    Travelling On
    • #1
    • 2nd Jan 18, 2:38 PM
    Travelling On 2nd Jan 18 at 2:38 PM
    2018 really is a “travelling on” year for me: the final push, as far as finances and organisation are concerned. But I still need to look after the rest of me, so here it all is, adapted from the review I did on the last few pages of my previous diary:

    Make good memories.
    Building on last year. Carrying on reconnecting with old friends and new.
    Make new friends, especially locally.
    Our little board games group - we're all retired now!
    Rejoin the local writing group?

    Plus holidays and creative work, see below.

    Holidays
    A UK holiday for all three of us, probably to Hadrian's Wall.
    A cruise: current thinking is a 14 day-er with Tui to Norway; you could really do Norway in that time.

    Creativity
    I wanted to do lots of writing around one blog, and lots of design work around another, and I haven't done either of those things. I've missed it. A second edition of my original kindle book is needed, a new kindle is nearly ready, I can do a novel. There are a couple of options for another factual one.

    And if I'm ever going to design any cat cards or geometric patterns, this is the year.

    Jobs around the house
    The house is definitely my house now, not a work-live space. Replaster the hall, repair the hardstanding and the patio, some electrical work on the ground floor. Lots of other bits that are really little.

    Garden
    Weeding, getting compost, topsoil and bark chippings down, so I can plant edible perennials.
    Frences need weatherproofing. Prunings from hedging plants need burning to add to the soil.

    Health
    I'm carrying on
    getting better – need to get enough sleep. And I need stamina and strength – just enough to have a day out in London for instance.
    Healthy walks run by the local council. Dance classes, by the end of the year?

    Finances.
    MSE wins
    Swagbucks and You Gov right now, but I'll be going for Pinecone Research and Prolific Academic. Anything of that type that I can do from my armchair!
    Pensions
    I haven't done anything – luckily, the Stock Market hasn't collapsed, but I really do need to safeguard it, simply because I don't earn money any more.
    Online Sales
    I've kept some items back from the charity shop, things that will probably net £5 or more. Spread throughout the year, do it or donate it.
    Change current account
    HSBC have irritated me with their crazy fraud software for the last time. When my Regular Saver terminates, I'm moving.
    Insurance
    I just renewed last year, for ease, it was less than a month after the funeral. But I want a cheaper alternative, and I need to get quotes for insurance of all this jewellery I now have.

    Accounts
    2016/17 in the UK, and 2017 in France. I don't know if I'll need to do UK accounts after this year – I might have to, even though I've no UK earnings, because of the French apartment.
    French accountant
    I have the possibility of shifting accountant, people have got a computer programme going for leaseback properties like mine. Do I take the risk of moving? I'll have to decide really soon. Probably not worth it if I'm selling.
    Tackle French mortgage.
    The mortgage ends in September next year! About 630 euros a month goes to capital repayment, and the interest rate is 0.95% p.a.
    Ability to sell the French apartment?
    If I could sell it without penalty (huge VAT payment) I'd love to get rid of it now. I don't care too much what I'd get for it, even.
    My mother's house
    We'll be putting it up for sale in the summer; it was recently rewired, which is good, but it's still a fixer-upper, there's no doubt. Quite a bit of work in it.

    Counting Blessings”,says greent.
    I used to do that all the time. Last year felt short on blessings, to be honest, but even so my brother and sister and I have come together very strongly, we've met up with the Norfolk rellies, a new baby was born, I went catsitting twice, and that's just the big stuff.
    Next year will be more settled in the basics, so that everyday events feel more fun, and there'll be lots more opportunity for fun one-offs: I'm off to London this week and the next for days out. Another baby will be born in summer 2018!

    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
Page 142
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 28th Apr 19, 7:12 AM
    • 32,404 Posts
    • 191,545 Thanks
    Karmacat
    https://www.homebase.co.uk/franke-spark-reversible-kitchen-sink-1-bowl_p424321


    https://www.homebase.co.uk/carron-phoenix-logica-reversible-kitchen-sink-1-bowl_p257880


    https://www.diy.com/departments/franke-aton-1-bowl-polished-stainless-steel-sink-with-reversible-drainer/1097870_BQ.prd


    https://www.diy.com/departments/fema-chrome-effect-4-lamp-ceiling-light/1702722_BQ.prd


    https://www.diy.com/departments/reece-chrome-effect-3-lamp-ceiling-light/3663602251255_BQ.prd


    https://www.diy.com/departments/reece-chrome-effect-5-lamp-ceiling-light/3663602251279_BQ.prd
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 28th Apr 19, 8:13 AM
    • 13,401 Posts
    • 227,214 Thanks
    greenbee
    Re. Lights, consider Ikea. When my original kitchen light gave up I got the 5-spot one of these (it’s a long, narrow room) and it made a huge difference after the central three-bulb fitting as I could angle the lighting so I could see properly. They are also cheap! (And bulbs are replaceable).

    https://www.ikea.com/gb/en/products/lighting/ceiling-lights/basisk-ceiling-track-3-spots-nickel-plated-white-art-80262583/

    https://www.ikea.com/gb/en/products/lighting/ceiling-lights/tidig-ceiling-spotlight-with-5-spots-nickel-plated-art-90262653/

    I also got my utility room double ceramic sink from ikea and everyone raves about it, so worth looking at those too.
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 28th Apr 19, 8:44 AM
    • 32,404 Posts
    • 191,545 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Thanks greenbee with the lights, I've gravitated to them naturally, I *really* like the upside-down-tealight effect, and once I realised they had a remote and could change colour, I was sold everything is very plain, and I like the idea of a bit of fun.

    The sinks - I'd have quite liked ceramic, the material and the texture and look are beautiful, but reading the recommended cleaning routine makes me *know* it will end up looking awful.

    I definitely don't need a double sink, and I currently have a 1.5 sink - the only thing I use the 0.5 for is to hold the washing up liquid etc, I don't really have the need for it. So I thought I'd go simple
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 28th Apr 19, 8:51 AM
    • 13,401 Posts
    • 227,214 Thanks
    greenbee
    No one has told me about a recommended cleaning routine for a ceramic sink... I just like the fact that it doesn’t sow water marks from my hard water ☺️
    • greent
    • By greent 28th Apr 19, 12:01 PM
    • 8,188 Posts
    • 83,184 Thanks
    greent
    We have a 1.5 sink and I wouldn't be without the 0.5bit - aside from the fact the drainer bowl bit in there holds my sponge and cloth in the day (thrown in wm at night/ in morning) I like the fact I can drain things down there/ throw away the dregs from my mug / someone's glass when I have a full bowl of clean wu water (I don't use a wu bowl) However, you can also do all of these things (except store cloths!) straight into the dw

    How's the vacuum/ mop debate coming along?
    x
    I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul
    Repaid mtge early (orig 11/25) 01/09 £124616 01/10 £104927 01/11 £89873 01/12 £76317 01/13 £52546 01/14 £35356 01/15 £12133 07/15 £NIL
    BTL Mtge 12/16 £69786 12/18 £54829 2019 OPs (#18) £3757/£5K
    Net sales 2019 £513.64/£500
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 28th Apr 19, 2:27 PM
    • 32,404 Posts
    • 191,545 Thanks
    Karmacat
    No one has told me about a recommended cleaning routine for a ceramic sink... I just like the fact that it doesn’t sow water marks from my hard water ☺️
    Originally posted by greenbee
    Thats a big benefit, its true, in my area as well. Oops.

    We have a 1.5 sink and I wouldn't be without the 0.5bit - aside from the fact the drainer bowl bit in there holds my sponge and cloth in the day (thrown in wm at night/ in morning) I like the fact I can drain things down there/ throw away the dregs from my mug / someone's glass when I have a full bowl of clean wu water (I don't use a wu bowl) However, you can also do all of these things (except store cloths!) straight into the dw
    Originally posted by greent
    My sister loves her 0.5 sink- but I've never got into the habit of using it, and only use it for storing a sponge, a cloth and the wu liquid. It got really grungy in there

    How's the vacuum/ mop debate coming along?
    x
    I'm leaning towards a steam mop again, simply because I have so much more floor area that's relevant to that, rather than a vacuum. It doesn't feel right for me to do those areas with a vacuum No research has been done, however!

    I met up with my sister, and we went B&Q/ Homebase/ B&Q - bought both things from B&Q in the end. The sink is a single drainer, universal fitting, a Franke, very plain, classic lines, with a 50 year guarantee that will definitely see me out. £130, really nice quality, plus £10 for fittings.

    The light fitting - I went for the 3 upside tealights thing in the end, £30 plus £5 P&P. I like it, but it's neat rather than funky, I'm going to have to have a moment of drama in there somehow

    Total spent £165. Thats fine, and I like this sink **much** more than the one I just said goodbye to.

    Got an IV of nice hot tea at the moment
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 28th Apr 19, 2:40 PM
    • 13,401 Posts
    • 227,214 Thanks
    greenbee
    Glad you've got things you like. You'll have to think of other ways to introduce drama into the kitchen instead of the lights. What about a blind in a contrasting fabric?
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 28th Apr 19, 3:17 PM
    • 32,404 Posts
    • 191,545 Thanks
    Karmacat
    That's a good idea! I've seen people have amazing images printed on the inside of venetian blinds. Doing it on a Roman blind would be even better!
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 28th Apr 19, 3:38 PM
    • 13,401 Posts
    • 227,214 Thanks
    greenbee
    Something more to research!
    • apple muncher
    • By apple muncher 28th Apr 19, 4:29 PM
    • 9,360 Posts
    • 71,846 Thanks
    apple muncher
    A 50 year guarantee on a sink ?!?!
    NST October mudman #2; NSD /15; Ex /31; remove bagfuls (40)

    Mortgage £15,451 (01/14: £78,201; 01/15: £59,629; 01/16: 39,915; 01/17: 27,295; 01/18 23,143; 01/19: 18.275) MFWDate???
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 29th Apr 19, 9:39 AM
    • 32,404 Posts
    • 191,545 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Yep! I'll be a hundred-and-eleventy so that's fine

    Plasterers arrived on time at 8am ... their glue keeps tripping the electrics, so my broadband is extra-glitchy this morning, but they seem good at their job, so I don't really care. Been watching a youtube video, before the glitchiness started, of climate scientist Paul Beckwith on polar vortexes/ dying gulf stream/ overheated Arctic. Really, really bad news for us in the medium term, let alone the long term.

    Because of the glitchy broadband, I've been doing little bits of tidying in my desk - it's the only bit I can reach right now, thats fairly normal but still needs to be tidied.... I might treat myself to a cuppa then go clean one of the cupboards thats destined for the shed, I've got to do *something* thats related to getting the house straighter. Plus, weirdly, I need to check on the dates of the caravan holiday and then buy visitor tickets to Dungeness Nuclear Power Station
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 29th Apr 19, 9:56 PM
    • 3,299 Posts
    • 29,322 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    I love my Franke sink - it is coming up to fifteen years old and as new - like this one link - I wash up in the mini sink which just fits a saucepan or use it for the dregs if I have water in the other one like greent - you won't regret it!
    Save £12k in 2019 - #68 target is £7k £8,766.30 after Sep
    OS Grocery Challenge 2019 target £3k - 57.28% spent after Sep
    Mortgage Free Wannabes 2019 #37 108.23% £43,292.24 including Sep - reducing now to avoid fees
    MFIT T5 target to clear our mortgage completely (£59,998) Q2 £30,085 or 50.14% paid
    My DFD is here
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 30th Apr 19, 7:51 AM
    • 32,404 Posts
    • 191,545 Thanks
    Karmacat
    That's good to hear, SL - nobody says "we use x amoung of metal per square centimetre", or anything like that, so price, brand name and experience count for a great deal.

    My light fitting wasn't delivered yesterday I mean, if they promised 48 hour delivery, that would still have been fine, but they said next day. Doh!

    Nuclear power station tour tickets booked - only just squeaked in, I didn't realise they were so popular. You have to register and fulfil a fair list of obligations on the day, which is interesting of itself

    Plasterer (on his tod) says he'll be finished soon after 1pm,

    Today, I must:
    - phone builder to get quote for painting the kitchen.
    - send my sister the other *four* documents Dungeness sent me.
    - phone brother.
    - write a blog.
    - faff about with surveys.
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • rtandon27
    • By rtandon27 30th Apr 19, 8:47 AM
    • 2,510 Posts
    • 16,208 Thanks
    rtandon27
    Boo to botched delivery! Hope they will refund the delivery charge at least!

    Loving that you have a list for today It's good to have a sense of normality in the day!
    2 YEARS & 11 MONTHS DEBT FREE!!! (24 OCT 2016)
    (With heartfelt thanks to those who have gone before us & their indubitable generosity.)
    Working hard to keep all the balls in the air and juggle the budget!
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 30th Apr 19, 9:49 AM
    • 32,404 Posts
    • 191,545 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Boo to botched delivery! Hope they will refund the delivery charge at least!
    Originally posted by rtandon27
    Ooh, I didn't think of that! Will investigate


    Loving that you have a list for today It's good to have a sense of normality in the day!
    It really, really is, you hit the nail on the head there. Update on that:
    - discovered I'd booked the tour for the wrong caravan holiday which entailed phone calls and emails
    - phoned the builder, I've sorted a quote with the current plasterer, who's also a decorator, hurray.
    - rest of the week will be free while the plaster dries, more hurrays, very loud ones
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 30th Apr 19, 9:54 AM
    • 3,299 Posts
    • 29,322 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    My new back doors were fitted on Friday and the frame of one is damaged so we must wait for another frame and for them to schedule the remedial work. They both open outwards now - amazing amount of additional space!

    - I forgot to get a cat flap until the night before so ordered same day delivery from Argos so the fitter would still be here. I got the "your delivery will be with you in the next 2 hours" message three minutes before the "we were unable to deliver your item, please reschedule it". I cancelled it. Not good feedback for them today. That reminds me, I must check for the refund. I feel your pain!
    Save £12k in 2019 - #68 target is £7k £8,766.30 after Sep
    OS Grocery Challenge 2019 target £3k - 57.28% spent after Sep
    Mortgage Free Wannabes 2019 #37 108.23% £43,292.24 including Sep - reducing now to avoid fees
    MFIT T5 target to clear our mortgage completely (£59,998) Q2 £30,085 or 50.14% paid
    My DFD is here
    • rtandon27
    • By rtandon27 30th Apr 19, 12:58 PM
    • 2,510 Posts
    • 16,208 Thanks
    rtandon27
    Have to say I giggled at your loud hoorays, in effect to celebrate the silence you will have for the rest or the week!
    2 YEARS & 11 MONTHS DEBT FREE!!! (24 OCT 2016)
    (With heartfelt thanks to those who have gone before us & their indubitable generosity.)
    Working hard to keep all the balls in the air and juggle the budget!
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 30th Apr 19, 1:40 PM
    • 32,404 Posts
    • 191,545 Thanks
    Karmacat
    My new back doors were fitted on Friday and the frame of one is damaged so we must wait for another frame and for them to schedule the remedial work. They both open outwards now - amazing amount of additional space!
    Originally posted by Suffolk lass
    Such a difference, isn't it! My back door opens outwards now, and therefore doesn't block the cupboard immediately inside. Love it
    I forgot to get a cat flap until the night before so ordered same day delivery from Argos so the fitter would still be here. I got the "your delivery will be with you in the next 2 hours" message three minutes before the "we were unable to deliver your item, please reschedule it". I cancelled it. Not good feedback for them today. That reminds me, I must check for the refund. I feel your pain!
    And I feel yours! Hope you managed to post the feedback, and that the refund is there.
    Have to say I giggled at your loud hoorays, in effect to celebrate the silence you will have for the rest or the week!
    Originally posted by rtandon27
    That's exactly what my loud hurrays were about you've got it. Plasterer went almost an hour ago, blissful silence
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 30th Apr 19, 1:53 PM
    • 32,404 Posts
    • 191,545 Thanks
    Karmacat
    B and Q are getting a *very* bad review from me, if they let me post at all. At RT's mention of a cancelled delivery fee, I thought "ooh", and went for it. They agreed, no problems.

    Then they rang me back ten minutes later to say that possibly the hitch in delivery was because they were out of stock Ummed and aahhhed for a few minutes, then cancelled the whole thing.

    And then ...

    A phone call from the customer services assistant who helped me on Sunday. I thought I'd bought a sink and a lamp on Sunday, but he says they gave me a credit note for the light, not an invoice requesting payment. I was tired, after the plasterer going, but eventually I realised this shop assistant was just going to go on and on, as he couldn't accuse me of anything and couldn't ask for the money outright, as he still didn't know what had happened.

    So I went to look at my paperwork. All there is, is a credit note for the lamp. It doesn't look like I paid for the sink at all "I'll phone you back later", he says.

    "Oh no", says I. "Put it in writing, I'm not doing anything without it being in writing. I'm not a thief, but the company has wasted a lot of my time yesterday and today, and I'm tempted to ask for compensation". He agreed to the in writing bit


    ETA - and while this lot was going on, half a dozen police cars were screaming about, so my neighbour tells me. Glad I missed that, don't know what it's about yet.




    EETA - some bright-voiced young thing just rang from B&Q, left a message for me to return her call. In your dreams...
    Last edited by Karmacat; 30-04-2019 at 2:06 PM.
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • rtandon27
    • By rtandon27 30th Apr 19, 3:15 PM
    • 2,510 Posts
    • 16,208 Thanks
    rtandon27
    ...EETA - some bright-voiced young thing just rang from B&Q, left a message for me to return her call. In your dreams...
    Originally posted by Karmacat
    INDEED! The cheek! They make a mistake & then expect you to do double backflips to rectify their error?

    Should be the other way round!
    2 YEARS & 11 MONTHS DEBT FREE!!! (24 OCT 2016)
    (With heartfelt thanks to those who have gone before us & their indubitable generosity.)
    Working hard to keep all the balls in the air and juggle the budget!
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

612Posts Today

5,620Users online

Martin's Twitter