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  • FIRST POST
    • pinknsparkly
    • By pinknsparkly 15th May 17, 5:08 PM
    • 405Posts
    • 888Thanks
    pinknsparkly
    PinknSparkly's Mortgage Wannabe savings dairy
    • #1
    • 15th May 17, 5:08 PM
    PinknSparkly's Mortgage Wannabe savings dairy 15th May 17 at 5:08 PM
    So this is a savings diary with the intention of getting my husband and I into debt (i.e. a mortgage) as soon as possible

    I am currently finishing up a PhD and as such we won't be in a position to apply for a mortgage until I have been employed for at least 6 months. In addition, I am now at the fun stage of my PhD where I have no income (my bursary/stipend finished in March this year). This puts us in a position where our outgoings are more than our income. We knew this would happen and have pre-planned for it by building up a pot of savings to get us through this.

    My aim therefore, is to use up the minimum possible amount of savings to get us through until I am employed and to then save as much as possible towards a house deposit.

    I estimate that each month we will need to use around 250 - 300 from our savings to cover the short-full in our income.

    Current savings: .................................................. ............38,000

    Property value: .................................................. ............275,000
    Stamp duty: .................................................. .....................3,750
    Other house purchasing expenses: ......................................2,250
    (assuming 1000 legal fees and 1,250 for everything else)

    House deposit:.................................................. ................32,000
    (total savings minus house purchase costs)
    LTV:.................................................. ....................................88%

    As you can see, we're already in the excellent position of having a 10% deposit. However, since we will have a minimum of 6 months of two full time incomes before we can get a mortgage, I hope to be able to get us up to a minimum of a 15% deposit by the time we apply. This is a very ambitious target of saving 10,000 in six months (plus whatever we've spent from our savings in the meantime), but what's the point in aiming low, right??

    What do you guys think of the plan? Do my estimates for house purchasing-related costs seem reasonable?

    In the meantime, I'm doing my best to get back to meal planning and making lunches to reduce our expenses as much as possible. The car is also being used as infrequently as possible to save on petrol (I'm mostly working from home at the moment). We've minimised how much we spend out and about (though my husband still ends up getting food out of the house probably once a week or so). We've also planned for no "proper" holidays this year (other than a week camping in South Wales). I'm going to a conference abroad which will be paid for, so that will satisfy my inner travel bug and my husband is quite happy spending his time off at home.
Page 7
    • savingwannabe
    • By savingwannabe 22nd May 19, 5:03 PM
    • 14,081 Posts
    • 47,555 Thanks
    savingwannabe
    So sorry about leg - I hope it soon get's better what a shame for it to happen in your work abroad. Good luck at dr's appointment tomorrow. Hurrah for your new garden and the lovely furniture for it. The weather is gorgeous here and I am planning to make the most of it.
    Christmas Fund 188 Summer money earned 359 No spend month?
    • pinknsparkly
    • By pinknsparkly 6th Jun 19, 10:50 AM
    • 405 Posts
    • 888 Thanks
    pinknsparkly
    Thanks SW!

    It's been all go around here.... I've been booked in for my operation the week after next so have been running round like a blue ars3d fly trying to arrange cover at work for the three weeks I'll be off (4 weeks in total as I'm away at a conference and then a long weekend away before having the operation on the day I should have been back at work!). I also managed to turn up to a GP appointment this morning 24 hours early Though at least I was 24 hours early rather than 24 hours late!

    On a different note, I was due to have my annual appraisal this week and instead it turned into a review of my job role. I have a joint job that is split between two very different organisations with very different claims on my time. I have been struggling a LOT with trying to balance the requirements from both sides, and my managers were aware of this. Similar joint positions have been successfully in place in other departments for a number of years, but the staff in the joint positions are much more senior than I am (so are very much managerial and don't have any involvement in the day-to-day running of the department workload). My managers have decided that the joint role is not working out the way they hoped and they wish to terminate the position. From an employment point of view, this isn't an issue for me as I am currently permanently employed at one of the organisations and will simply work for them full-time rather than a 50/50 split. If I had to choose between the two organisations and job roles, this is the job role I would choose to move to. Being pragmatic and honest with myself, this is almost certainly a good thing as my workload and stress levels due to trying to juggle what is effectively two full time jobs is just immense, but I still feel incredibly guilty and disappointed that I couldn't make the joint position a success My managers from the two organisations are going to discuss the various contract options whilst I am off sick, and we'll meet up when I'm back. There is a possibility of me retaining an honorary contract with the second organisation and doing work on am ad hoc basis (though pay would need to be discussed - currently they pay half my salary to the other organisation who are the ones that officially employ and pay me which they would no longer be doing).

    But first, I need to get through the operation and hopefully start feeling like a semi-functional human being again!! In preparation for that, my sister, partner and puppy are coming to stay on Saturday and we're doing a wine tasting afternoon. Puppy is coming to become acquainted with the smell of cat (and possibly the sight of cat, our cat is very friendly and tries to make friends with everyone but doesn't really meet any dogs so he may well just hide in our bedroom until Puppy goes home!).

    I am LOVING our new garden, the flowerbeds are still completely bare and empty but it's so nice to just be able to sit outside in the evening sunshine and chill with a cup of tea after work!
    MFW 2019 challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 6,000 (4,500 is in "offset" pot)
    MFiT-T5 (Jan 2019 - Jan 2022) challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 30,000
    Save 12k in 2019 challenge #99: 18,030 / 12,000
    2019 keep moving challenge: 271.3 / 1000 miles
    Last updated: 28/06/2019
    Initial MF date (18th Dec 2018): Jan 2054 Current MF date: Sep 2052
    • savingwannabe
    • By savingwannabe 7th Jun 19, 6:39 PM
    • 14,081 Posts
    • 47,555 Thanks
    savingwannabe
    Well done on getting the operation sorted so quickly! I hope the recovery is quick too. I hope the job will be less stressful and more doable after your return and that the salary isn't affected.

    This wine tasting sounds great. I hope you are enjoying the garden - it is chucking it down with rain here. lol. My garden is full of slugs, I am trying to get them! lol. SW the snail killer.
    Christmas Fund 188 Summer money earned 359 No spend month?
    • Skint yet Again
    • By Skint yet Again 8th Jun 19, 5:32 AM
    • 3,626 Posts
    • 19,275 Thanks
    Skint yet Again
    Hope things work out with the job and good luck with your op. Enjoy the puppy ! Hopefully it will not be a chewer like ours and keep it away from those flower beds !!! even without flowers ours loves to dig in soil
    Balance 0% credit card to pay 1360 848
    Balance 0% Car Loan to pay 940 finishes 1/1/2020
    Emergency fund 100/500 Car Fund savings 300
    • pinknsparkly
    • By pinknsparkly 11th Jun 19, 6:51 PM
    • 405 Posts
    • 888 Thanks
    pinknsparkly
    Thanks guy! And Skinty - the puppy belongs to my sister. Whilst I'd LOVE one, we simply don't have lifestyles that are compatible with having a dog (we both work quite long hours, five days a week) and anyway, I'm not sure the cat would ever forgive us!!

    I can't remember if I've mentioned it already either, but we've FINALLY booked time off for our honeymoon The year we got married was the year my PhD stipend finished so we couldn't afford it (spent a year living on my husbands income only) and then last year we were saving to buy the house so that took priority. We're going to South Africa for safari, which is going to be priiiiiiicey but safari is what I've always dreamt of doing for honeymoon. If we're fortunate enough to be able to make any small humans in the near future then big holidays will be out for several years so we figure we should make the most of it while we can! We've booked flights and time off work (we're going in September), but I really need to get round to booking the rest of it!
    MFW 2019 challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 6,000 (4,500 is in "offset" pot)
    MFiT-T5 (Jan 2019 - Jan 2022) challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 30,000
    Save 12k in 2019 challenge #99: 18,030 / 12,000
    2019 keep moving challenge: 271.3 / 1000 miles
    Last updated: 28/06/2019
    Initial MF date (18th Dec 2018): Jan 2054 Current MF date: Sep 2052
    • pinknsparkly
    • By pinknsparkly 11th Jun 19, 6:53 PM
    • 405 Posts
    • 888 Thanks
    pinknsparkly
    And SW, fortunately my salary won't be affected at all - I have a permanent contract with the organisation I will be working for full time, and the other other organisation simply contribute half my salary directly to them. So I never see the money from the second organisation, and my contract and pay are entirely coordinated by the first organisation. It's likely that the job description will need to be adjusted, but the pay will remain the same.
    MFW 2019 challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 6,000 (4,500 is in "offset" pot)
    MFiT-T5 (Jan 2019 - Jan 2022) challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 30,000
    Save 12k in 2019 challenge #99: 18,030 / 12,000
    2019 keep moving challenge: 271.3 / 1000 miles
    Last updated: 28/06/2019
    Initial MF date (18th Dec 2018): Jan 2054 Current MF date: Sep 2052
    • Skint yet Again
    • By Skint yet Again 12th Jun 19, 8:42 PM
    • 3,626 Posts
    • 19,275 Thanks
    Skint yet Again
    Safari sounds amaaazing !


    Did you survive the puppy visit ?
    Balance 0% credit card to pay 1360 848
    Balance 0% Car Loan to pay 940 finishes 1/1/2020
    Emergency fund 100/500 Car Fund savings 300
    • savingwannabe
    • By savingwannabe 15th Jun 19, 7:22 PM
    • 14,081 Posts
    • 47,555 Thanks
    savingwannabe
    Safari!!!! How utterly fantastic, what an amazing thing to look forward to!!!!!!!
    OMG I have always wanted to go to Botswana's Okavango Delta - OMG OMG.

    One day...……….
    Christmas Fund 188 Summer money earned 359 No spend month?
    • pinknsparkly
    • By pinknsparkly 28th Jun 19, 6:24 PM
    • 405 Posts
    • 888 Thanks
    pinknsparkly
    Hi guys, sorry for going AWOL for a while. I had my operation last week and haven't been up to doing much beyond sitting on the sofa feeling sorry for myself!! I had vague intentions of doing lots of work while I was off sick but so far haven't checked a single email (I've seen them coming in as I get alerts on my phone). I'm signed off until the middle of next week so might do some work next week but in the meantime it's actually been really good for my mental health as well as my physical health to have had this time doing nothing. I was on St John's Wort before the operation (as an alternative to antidepressants) but had to come off them for the operation and the GP recommended I stay off them if we're going to try for a baby so I was rather worried I'd struggle mentally this week but so far (touch wood!) I've been absolutely A-OK

    Skinty - yes, we survived the puppy visit but the cat REALLY wasn't impressed I think he's forgiven us now though (that, or he need to boss us around is stronger than his desire to sulk at us!)

    And I'm soooooo excited about safari! Today is the first day I've felt up to much so I've been researching it - we're constrained to South Africa as we need a malaria-free area (on the rather slim, but ever hopeful chance that I may be pregnant by then and have to avoid malaria areas). Sadly, that means Kruger (north east) is not an option. I think I've settled on spending up to a week doing two parks in the north west region of South Africa (as we fly into and out of Johannesburg). The first one will be for a couple of days in a private reserve that you can't drive in so you need to have tour guides, with the idea that this will "get our eyes" in at spotting wildlife and then a second one that you can self drive, but also still have the option of joining organised tours if you want to. Then we'll head back to the airport, drop the car off and fly down to Cape Town for the second week. There we'll hire a car to do Table Mountain and a bunch more animal seeing (a beach full of penguins, cage diving with sharks, whale watching, an elephant national park and a zebra national park) and some outdoor activities mixed in along the Garden Route drive to Port Elizabeth. Fly back to Johannesburg from there for our connecting flight back to the UK Neither of us are particularly beachy or nightlifey people so we're intending to skip out the cities to spend more time in the great outdoors! Now to actually start booking stuff!!!
    MFW 2019 challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 6,000 (4,500 is in "offset" pot)
    MFiT-T5 (Jan 2019 - Jan 2022) challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 30,000
    Save 12k in 2019 challenge #99: 18,030 / 12,000
    2019 keep moving challenge: 271.3 / 1000 miles
    Last updated: 28/06/2019
    Initial MF date (18th Dec 2018): Jan 2054 Current MF date: Sep 2052
    • pinknsparkly
    • By pinknsparkly 28th Jun 19, 6:35 PM
    • 405 Posts
    • 888 Thanks
    pinknsparkly
    And I didn't mention a word about finances or money - MSE fail!

    This month I finally added some money to my husband's S&S ISA - this was from two regular savers that matured. I sent the interest earned over as a mortgage overpayment and the rest went into his ISA. Nominally, this is our "early retirement" pot whilst my S&S ISA pot is our mortgage "offset" pot. At it's current size and our current expenses, it would allow us to retire maybe 2 months early but we have to start somewhere, right??

    I have continued with sending all Tilly Tidies, interest and TopCashBack payouts to the mortgage as OPs, plus the fixed 12 overpayment each month (from rounding up our monthly payment) and we've managed to knock another month off the mortgage term! That's 16 months off 6.5 months! This is definitely not something we'll be able to keep up long term but I'm determined to make hay while the sun shines as the saying goes
    MFW 2019 challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 6,000 (4,500 is in "offset" pot)
    MFiT-T5 (Jan 2019 - Jan 2022) challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 30,000
    Save 12k in 2019 challenge #99: 18,030 / 12,000
    2019 keep moving challenge: 271.3 / 1000 miles
    Last updated: 28/06/2019
    Initial MF date (18th Dec 2018): Jan 2054 Current MF date: Sep 2052
    • savingwannabe
    • By savingwannabe 28th Jun 19, 8:28 PM
    • 14,081 Posts
    • 47,555 Thanks
    savingwannabe
    Pinky I can't get my head round how switched on you are. Overpaying is great. Well done on your husbands accounts. I didn't know anything when I was younger other than never to be overdrawn. Good on you!

    South Africa on safari. OMG. OMG...… off to dream about giraffes, zebras and hippos. You might see lions. OMG OMG …...Life on MSE is so much better than real life.....
    Christmas Fund 188 Summer money earned 359 No spend month?
    • pinknsparkly
    • By pinknsparkly 3rd Jul 19, 7:56 AM
    • 405 Posts
    • 888 Thanks
    pinknsparkly
    Thanks SW - I'm trying to be switched on, but am definitely still learning as I go!!

    Today is my last day of sick leave so I'm planning on getting as much of our holiday booked as possible! I've finally managed to decide where abouts to go and an approximate itinary which is a good start
    MFW 2019 challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 6,000 (4,500 is in "offset" pot)
    MFiT-T5 (Jan 2019 - Jan 2022) challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 30,000
    Save 12k in 2019 challenge #99: 18,030 / 12,000
    2019 keep moving challenge: 271.3 / 1000 miles
    Last updated: 28/06/2019
    Initial MF date (18th Dec 2018): Jan 2054 Current MF date: Sep 2052
    • pinknsparkly
    • By pinknsparkly 13th Jul 19, 9:46 PM
    • 405 Posts
    • 888 Thanks
    pinknsparkly
    Hi all,

    So I've been back at work for just over a week (went back Thursday and Friday, and then did Monday - Friday this week) and I definitely underestimated how exhausted it would make me!!

    I spent today opening for various current accounts (Nationwide FlexDirect, HSBC Advance, First Direct and TSB) for the high interest rate (Nationwide and TSB) and access to regular savers (First Direct and HSBC). I did them all in one go as (apparently) it takes a few days/weeks for applications to show on your credit history so fingers crossed, most of them will get opened The First Direct account also comes with a nice 100 cashback (HSBC also offers a 175 cashback, but only if you do an account switch with at least 2 active direct debits, which is just too much hassle!).

    The plan for tomorrow is to sort car insurance (it's due for renewal 5th August and I FINALLY got myself organised enough last year to set a reminder in my calendar to do it a few weeks in advance this time - according to MSE 3 weeks is the "sweet spot" for getting the cheapest insurance deals). However, I've had an email from my current insurer saying that they'll automatically renew my insurance unless I tell them not to, for 50 LESS than last year which really really confused me! So I need to check whether I can get it even cheaper (even better if I can do it via a cashback website!) or if this is the best deal on offer... I certainly cannot complain if it is the best deal on offer though!! I also need to do a freezer audit, make a weekly meal plan and go food shopping.

    I have also FINALLY FINALLY FINALLY got my electricity meter details updated This has been an ongoing saga since October 2017 when my broken meter (economy 7, dual rate meter, recording all our electricity usage on the day rate ) was replaced by British Gas with a single rate meter, but recorded on the national database as a dual rate meter. A few days after the installation, I switched to Together Energy on a one year fix, and then to EON on another one year fix. It took me the best part of a year, two complaints to the Ombudsman, two late payment markers on my file and a 30 fine to get British Gas to agree to a reasonable final bill rather than making me pay for six months of electricity usage all at day rate. The entire year I was with Together Energy, they claimed to be "in the process" of updating my meter details, only for me to have to fight with them for six months after leaving to get them to manually produce a bill based on actual single rate readings, rather than their widely overestimated dual rate estimated meter readings. I then had to fight with their collections team who thought I owed them 50, when in fact their complaints team had already refunded me 150 and claimed my account was closed. And then for the 9 months I've been with EON, chasing them on a monthly basis about getting them to update my meter details. However, despite sending them photographs of electricity meter readings throughout the year, and them supposedly being recorded on my account, I cannot supply meter readings via my online account as there is no initial meter reading to compare the submitted meter reading to So I submitted an initial meter reading for October 2018 on Friday and hopefully it'll show up some time next week so I can give them an actual meter reading. Every two months they keep telling me they're going to increase my direct debit as I'm not paying enough to cover my usage and every time I tell them to take a long walk off a short pier and that my direct debit is staying exactly as it is until they produce a bill based on actual readings rather than estimated ones! They reckon my account is in the red by a little under 300 on estimated readings, I reckon they owe me money based on actual readings....
    MFW 2019 challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 6,000 (4,500 is in "offset" pot)
    MFiT-T5 (Jan 2019 - Jan 2022) challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 30,000
    Save 12k in 2019 challenge #99: 18,030 / 12,000
    2019 keep moving challenge: 271.3 / 1000 miles
    Last updated: 28/06/2019
    Initial MF date (18th Dec 2018): Jan 2054 Current MF date: Sep 2052
    • pinknsparkly
    • By pinknsparkly 18th Jul 19, 12:01 PM
    • 405 Posts
    • 888 Thanks
    pinknsparkly
    My renewal quote from Admiral was already 50 less than I paid last year, but I've managed to knock another 100 off that by switching provider I emailed Admiral to let them know I was leaving and not to renew my quote, and they (several days later) emailed me a much cheaper quote. It still wasn't as cheap as the one I've gone for though!

    I've been getting various emails and letters through about the accounts I opened over the weekend and it looks like all the applications were accepted. Now I'm just playing the waiting game for cards, PINs and internet banking details to arrive in the snail mail so I can set them all up and pay money into them.

    I'm feeling much better this week. I have, unusually, been desk-based all week which has probably helped and I'm still avoiding anything too strenuous and bending/stretching/twisting. I am SO much less tired, even though I've had a lot of early starts (so less sleep than normal)

    And I am 78p away from shaving another month off our mortgage term!! That will be 17 months shaved off in total
    Last edited by pinknsparkly; 18-07-2019 at 12:04 PM.
    MFW 2019 challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 6,000 (4,500 is in "offset" pot)
    MFiT-T5 (Jan 2019 - Jan 2022) challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 30,000
    Save 12k in 2019 challenge #99: 18,030 / 12,000
    2019 keep moving challenge: 271.3 / 1000 miles
    Last updated: 28/06/2019
    Initial MF date (18th Dec 2018): Jan 2054 Current MF date: Sep 2052
    • savingwannabe
    • By savingwannabe 18th Jul 19, 2:20 PM
    • 14,081 Posts
    • 47,555 Thanks
    savingwannabe
    Well done on house insurance bargains!!!! I must look when mine is due to end. Congratulations on paying off another month early on the mortgage - Im sure you have found the 78p by now! lol.

    I hope you are able to get over your tiredness soon. I am sure its the op and also the heat. Fingers crossed that will soon go. Yuk to British Gas and the meter saga - I thought they were supposed to have good customer service. I hope that is resolved soon.

    Your bank accounts sound v smart and a bit complex and I do applaud you for this. I hope you continue to have a good month and you can rest a bit more hugs, swx
    Christmas Fund 188 Summer money earned 359 No spend month?
    • pinknsparkly
    • By pinknsparkly 19th Jul 19, 11:18 AM
    • 405 Posts
    • 888 Thanks
    pinknsparkly
    Thanks SW, I was quite astonished at how much cheaper it was this year compared to last. It's actually for car insurance rather than house insurance, and wonder if it's because I've cracked the magical 15 years NCB? Because that is the only thing that has changed (and, I guess, the car being a year older and less valuable!).

    None of the energy companies have come out of this well in terms of customer service to be honest! In this day and age of computers and electronic records, you'd think they'd at least consistently tell me the same lie rather than making a new and different one each time My account is still not showing the opening meter readings, and I spoke to someone on their online chat who said that the meter details update isn't due to be completed until the end of this month and at that point they'll contact me asking for opening meter readings. Still, it's a step in the right direction at least!!

    I've always had a couple of different savings accounts running, but decided to take the plunge and really go for it this year to try and maximise our pennies. We're using a 0% purchases credit card, so are saving the money for that to pay off at the end to earn some interest to go towards extra mortgage overpayments I've got a rather large spreadsheet of all our finances that I very sadly get quite a lot of enjoyment out of updating!

    We're all booked in to see the travel nurse to discuss vaccinations prior to our holiday and the form we had to fill in when booking the appointment included a tickbox asking if we'd booked travel insurance which reminds me, I really need to get on that! I'm terrible for only booking it days before we travel and I'm sure we pay a premium for that!!
    MFW 2019 challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 6,000 (4,500 is in "offset" pot)
    MFiT-T5 (Jan 2019 - Jan 2022) challenge #99: 6,778.51 / 30,000
    Save 12k in 2019 challenge #99: 18,030 / 12,000
    2019 keep moving challenge: 271.3 / 1000 miles
    Last updated: 28/06/2019
    Initial MF date (18th Dec 2018): Jan 2054 Current MF date: Sep 2052
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