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  • FIRST POST
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 2nd Oct 12, 10:19 PM
    • 299Posts
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    Frugal Saver
    Diary of a "Frugal Saver"
    • #1
    • 2nd Oct 12, 10:19 PM
    Diary of a "Frugal Saver" 2nd Oct 12 at 10:19 PM
    I'd like to start my diary by making a declaration - I am currently neither Frugal nor a Saver .

    I'm starting a diary in the hope that it will help motivate me to become frugal and once debts are paid off I would like to become a saver.

    I have been watching over this forum for a number of years and felt inspired by so many stories but it is only recently I have felt the urge to get a grip on my debt. I think it might be an age thing, I'm getting to a point in life where I'd like to be married and have kids. The main thing holding me back on either of these is money (I have a loving boyfriend of 7 years, the main disagreements we ever have are about money).

    My debt is not a lot compared to a lot of people on this forum but to me it is a mountain (currently approx £10,030). I could go on for ages about how I ended up in this situation but that's not going to help me get out of the debt.

    I'm not worried if anyone reads my diary, there is a selfish element in that I hope it will help me change my spending/borrowing habits. But also I hope it will help inspire others in the same way I have been inspired reading other peoples diaries.

    I would also like to apologise in advance if I go off in a tangent, I am well known for starting a conversation about one topic and ending on something completely unrelated.

    Finally, I would like to thank anyone who takes the time to read my posts.
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
Page 12
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 15th Sep 18, 8:06 PM
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    Frugal Saver
    NSD today. Went to a birthday with LO but they had ordered a platter of sandwiches for adults as well as kids so that was really thoughtful.

    Tomorrow won't be so good as play date will be for lunch but that should be my only spend.

    Finally received money I cashed out for a survey site earlier in the week. Other survey site I think I might cash out on Tesco rather than amazon vouchers as they can then be used towards food shopping and the money I would have spent will go towards additional debt repayment.

    Getting closer to pay day but feel less motovated when I don't see the debt reducing for a long period of time. Think expenses won't come through until next Friday now by which time I will have probably spent more money which I'll need to claim on expenses.

    Trying to think of more ways to earn more money. I have a Fitbit which I don't use as it's small and I really need a large now. It's a few years old now but still I'm reasonable condition. Haven't sold anything on eBay for ages so not sure if it's really worth the hassle. Also have a huge bag of clothes which I keep meaning to take to cash4clothes. Wouldn't get more than a few quid for it but better than nothing.

    Will just have to push myself to do surveys for now. Close to cashing out £50 on two different survey sites so hopefully that will come through in the next month or so.
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 16th Sep 18, 10:09 PM
    • 299 Posts
    • 708 Thanks
    Frugal Saver
    Did well today, only spent £10 as we ended up going to the cinema so I used up my vouchers and paid a smaller contribution towards lunch even though I said not to worry as the vouchers needed using anyway.

    Undecided if I will make another payment on my credit card tomorrow. I’m on target to be able to pay an extra £100 but with 10days still to go until payday I’m paranoid something will crop up that’s I haven’t budgeted for.
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 17th Sep 18, 11:14 AM
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    Frugal Saver
    Been thinking about the overpayments on my credit card. As the interest is at 0% until the end of January I'm not going to make overpayments. Instead I will keep it in my current account which earns interest and pay it off just before the 0% deal ends. I know it won't earn that much interest but it's better than nothing. I will just keep a record of how much I am setting aside for overpayments so as long as I'm sticking to budgets it will still be there in January. Not as motivating as seeing the balance reduce but I will add this into my formula on my debt spreadsheet so I can still see the debt coming down
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 18th Sep 18, 7:42 AM
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    Frugal Saver
    First full day of holiday and DD was wide awake at 4am, couldnít get her back to sleep so put the tv on and just as I was drifting back to sleep she demands breakfast. After that we cuddle up on the sofa and sheís fallen asleep and Iím wide awake now.

    So this morning I have already checked bank accounts, updated spreadsheet to include Ďcredit card overpayment potí in current account per last post to keep track of that.

    Checked energy reading from home, weíre on a smart meter and Iíve found it motivating to keep an eye on it and try and keep it as low as possible. This year the monthly total has reduced every single month and Iím hoping to keep that trend for another month before heating and shorter daylight hours come into play. Last time we were away gas and electricity was still 66p a day with just the standing charge and things left on standby. This time Iím hoping it will be less as I made sure I switched off everything at the wall except kitchen appliances. Wonít be much of a saving but I love a challenge,

    While weíre away I have plans to keep spending as minimal as possible. I meal planned lunch and dinner for all but one day and did click and collect for food shopping. I also packed a lot of things from home such as snacks, toilet roll, kitchen roll etc.

    I will take coffee as tea sachets home with us as brought our own from home but these can be handy to have. Same with toiletries, there are small bottles of shower gel etc but will use our own. Those ones could be good if ever travelling abroad.

    Will not pay for extortionate activities. Iíve booked two activities for DD at £7.50 each which are already paid for. The rest of the time will be spent swimming, at the park or exploring the forest.
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 19th Sep 18, 6:14 AM
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    Frugal Saver
    Awake before DD this morning, not as early as yesterday thankfully. I don’t mind waking up (slightly) early when I’m on holiday or at weekends, it gives me a chance to think about the day ahead and plan things.

    Yesterday was a NSD, think I’m doing well to reach target this month, need to update and check physical diary. Might get another one today or at the very least it will be minimal spending.

    Checked bank accounts this morning. Expenses from work showing in my account now but won’t be rushing to pay off this off credit card, it can stay in my current account earning (very small) interest.

    I’ve seen there is TSB current account which you can earn 5% on balances up to £1,500, you just need to pay in £500 a month. This is much better than Lloyds which I use but I have no plans to switch banking. I know loyalty counts for nothing with banking but I get anxious when it comes to making changes to things and I’m not a fan of big changes. The TSB account would be useful for me so I have a bank with a branch nearby as I live in Scotland where there are no Lloyds branches. I think I would put some of my savings in the TSB account to utilise the £1,500 then set up a standing order for the £500 a month and use the account for food shopping and entertainment spending. At the end of the month I’d move everything over £1.5k back to Lloyds account and start again. Just need to find time to visit a branch as you can’t apply online.
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 20th Sep 18, 7:15 AM
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    Frugal Saver
    Just a small spend yesterday as I forgot ketchup . Gas and electricity is 1p cheaper after I turned everything off standby, oh well every penny counts. Need to get organised and meal plan for next week so I can order food delivery for the weekend.
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 21st Sep 18, 6:47 AM
    • 299 Posts
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    Frugal Saver
    Argh, so after my penny saving on gas and electricity I’ve logged on to find gas was used on Wednesday. The only conclusion I can come to is that the weather was so cold the heating has come on although I thought we had it switched off completely. No electricity used and no one could have been in the flat.

    Small spend yesterday for milk.

    Resisted the next sale invitation, rarely order anything even when I do register for it but best to stay away and avoid temptation.

    Home today but hoping to make the most of facilities here before we leave. Have to check out of accommodation by 10am but can stay on site all day so will probably go swimming as we don’t get to go that often usually.
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 22nd Sep 18, 6:42 AM
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    Frugal Saver
    Back home now, time to get back into routine and organisation.

    Today will be busy with housework. Need to meal plan and book food shopping for tomorrow. Timed a visit to Morrisons well last night, picked up fresh battered fish for 15p which will do for dinner one day this week and green beans for 5p.

    Less than a week to payday and bank account is still looking good. Long may this continue!
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 22nd Sep 18, 8:25 AM
    • 7,280 Posts
    • 15,959 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    You are doing really well with the savings and reducing debt. Getting down to £5k by January 2019 would be awesome.

    Glad you enjoyed your few days away. Was it Centre Parcs you went to?
    Debt free and mortgage free and early retiree. Living the dream

    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Mortgages and Endowments, Banking and Budgeting boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com. Pease remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 22nd Sep 18, 9:32 AM
    • 299 Posts
    • 708 Thanks
    Frugal Saver
    Thanks, it's taken me a while to get to this stage but I'm optimistic that this time I can clear debts altogether even if it takes a bit more time.

    Yes it was center parcs. Not very MSE but did my best to keep costs down. Spent less than £20 on activities for LO. Hoping to go again before she starts school next year so we can go during term time when it's cheapest. Will just have to see how I get on clearing this debt and saving money
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 23rd Sep 18, 8:10 PM
    • 299 Posts
    • 708 Thanks
    Frugal Saver
    Monthly target update
    • 10 NSDs On target (just) currently at 6/10 with a week to go
    • Increase savings by £200 On target
    • Get credit card debit back below £6k Done
    • Take lunch to work everyday On target - just 4 days to go
    • Keep heating off all month on target (not counting while we were away as Iím still confused by the gas usage, the heating hasnít come on again since weíve been back
    Originally posted by Frugal Saver
    I think I will add to this next month and set a target for raising additional funds from surveys etc
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 23rd Sep 18, 8:29 PM
    • 299 Posts
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    Frugal Saver
    Last night I signed up to MSE credit club and was surprised to find that although my credit rating was really good at 991 out of 999 (I know this is a made up number) my affordability score is really low. I guess this explains why I didn’t get the 0% balance transfer I was looking for the other week. I think there are a number of factors at play here but this shows how I really need to reduce the debt before the current 0% deal ends or I may struggle to find a decent balance transfer.

    Anyway, need to continue with life and stop dwelling on debts.

    Today I received a refund on shopping delivery as it wasn’t packed very well and a number of items were damaged/soiled. The driver told me to keep everything but would process a refund. My delivery pass expires next month so I’m going to try another supermarket and see how they compare.

    This afternoon we visited a local museum which had an event on. Didn’t spend a single penny and walked there so a very MSE day. Went to the same event last year but wasn’t so organised, didn’t take lunch and paid for parking (to be fair we didn’t live so close last year).

    Just a few days left until pay day and a week until the end of the month. Budget spreadsheet has been updated, looking forward to seeing how much money is left over at the end of the month, this is a new concept to me!
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 24th Sep 18, 9:09 PM
    • 299 Posts
    • 708 Thanks
    Frugal Saver
    NSD 7/10 today. Not much else to report. Counting down to pay day now
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 25th Sep 18, 8:54 PM
    • 299 Posts
    • 708 Thanks
    Frugal Saver
    NSD 8/10. Another boring day, doing my best to stay on track. Pay day on Thursday. Will try for another NSD tomorrow but I think we might need milk
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 26th Sep 18, 8:50 PM
    • 299 Posts
    • 708 Thanks
    Frugal Saver
    NSD 9/10. Payday tomorrow.

    Looking forward to that money hitting my account and spending some time at the weekend sorting my budgets for next month. Currently on target for £150 over payment on credit card.

    Cupboards, fridge and freezer have never looked so empty yet there is still enough for plenty of meals maybe not snacks but that's not a bad thing.
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 27th Sep 18, 8:31 PM
    • 299 Posts
    • 708 Thanks
    Frugal Saver
    NSD 10/10 and payday!

    Already updated budget for next month. Started a meal plan for next week and shopping ordered for the weekend.

    Really want to find the motivation to find ways to earn more money to pay off debts. I’m struggling with surveys at the moment as I loose interest very quickly.
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 28th Sep 18, 9:06 PM
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    Frugal Saver
    First spend of the week today but it was only £4.00 for a charity cake sale at work so I can live with that. Shopping arriving in the morning then I think I will head out to pick up the bits I can’t get delivered. Will also try and open an account with TSB if I can find a bill anywhere, forgot to print one off at work today as I was so busy (in between scoffing my face with cakes!)

    Colleagues are asking how studying is going (to encourage me) but I’ve been waiting until I got my credit card statement before booking my next exam and I don’t feel motivated without having the exam booked so I’m hoping to book it next week and get back into a routine with studying.
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • Frugal Saver
    • By Frugal Saver 29th Sep 18, 7:48 PM
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    Frugal Saver
    Only one day left of the month and it's looking like I'll be able to make an extra payment on my credit card. I had initially thought of not paying more than the minimum amount until the 0% deal is nearly finished but the 4.3% interest is still interest so I will make all overpayments to this balance to keep interest as low as possible.

    Finally got enough points on one of the survey sites to get a £50 voucher, its only taken me a few years! Not sure when I will receive it but will be putting it straight to the credit card when it comes. Have made a decision on another site which has limited choice of vouchers. I used to get amazon vouchers but don't use them any more and then I thought of getting Tesco vouchers but you can only spend them im store whereas I would want to use it for online food shopping so I think I will get txmaxx vouchers as this gives me options to buy xmas presents or something for the house.

    Still need to put my Fitbit on eBay and take clothes to a clothes for cash place. Think I will add both items to my October to do list, hopefully this will motivate me to do it. Not going to get much money for either but something's better than nothing.
    LBM September 2012
    Debt at LBM £10,573.00
    Current debt £5,950 (09/09/18)
    • merida88
    • By merida88 30th Sep 18, 9:21 AM
    • 41 Posts
    • 353 Thanks
    merida88
    Only one day left of the month and it's looking like I'll be able to make an extra payment on my credit card. I had initially thought of not paying more than the minimum amount until the 0% deal is nearly finished but the 4.3% interest is still interest so I will make all overpayments to this balance to keep interest as low as possible.

    Finally got enough points on one of the survey sites to get a £50 voucher, its only taken me a few years! Not sure when I will receive it but will be putting it straight to the credit card when it comes. Have made a decision on another site which has limited choice of vouchers. I used to get amazon vouchers but don't use them any more and then I thought of getting Tesco vouchers but you can only spend them im store whereas I would want to use it for online food shopping so I think I will get txmaxx vouchers as this gives me options to buy xmas presents or something for the house.
    Originally posted by Frugal Saver
    Well done on both of these!

    I've been reading a bit of your diary, I think you've done so well and I take my hat off to you! Good luck with studying (in a similar boat there, got 3 exams in November ) and ebaying
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 30th Sep 18, 2:52 PM
    • 7,280 Posts
    • 15,959 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    Yes it was center parcs. Not very MSE but did my best to keep costs down. Spent less than £20 on activities for LO. Hoping to go again before she starts school next year so we can go during term time when it's cheapest. Will just have to see how I get on clearing this debt and saving money
    Originally posted by Frugal Saver
    There is a big difference in the prices between term time and school holidays. We love centre parcs and as our DGDs are preschool we can go out of school term time which keeps the cost down. If you stick mainly to walks, playgrounds, swimming and biking if you take your own bikes the cost is ok. We did the Go Ape experience and Segway and which are expensive but as a one off we were happy to pay. The water activities were not as bad.

    Cupboards, fridge and freezer have never looked so empty yet there is still enough for plenty of meals maybe not snacks but that's not a bad thing.
    Originally posted by Frugal Saver
    I think it is good to run cupboards down every so often as it gives you a chance to make sure everything is in date and have a clear out.

    Only one day left of the month and it's looking like I'll be able to make an extra payment on my credit card. I had initially thought of not paying more than the minimum amount until the 0% deal is nearly finished but the 4.3% interest is still interest so I will make all overpayments to this balance to keep interest as low as possible.
    Originally posted by Frugal Saver

    That sounds sensible.
    Debt free and mortgage free and early retiree. Living the dream

    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Mortgages and Endowments, Banking and Budgeting boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com. Pease remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com
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