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  • FIRST POST
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 19th Aug 13, 9:39 PM
    • 950Posts
    • 5,037Thanks
    Tahlullah
    The impossible dream
    • #1
    • 19th Aug 13, 9:39 PM
    The impossible dream 19th Aug 13 at 9:39 PM
    Hello everyone. I am new to the forum, but have been reading for several years. It has been a help and inspiration, but I have never felt the need to get involved until today.


    I have been financially aware for many years and now have set a goal which I know I cannot achieve. My aim is to be mortgage free within 2 years. It is impossible to do, I have read everything, looked at spread sheets, calculated within an inch of my sanity, but I cannot do this without becoming a hermit and stopping Ďlivingí. The one thing the diaries have taught me is that people have great intentions, but after a while, the frugality can become grating and somewhat depressing and so the aim becomes a chore.


    As I still want to live my life to the full, I am not prepared to give up all luxuries; I do not have any debt and I do not overspend. I regularly have no spend days, sometimes going a whole week without letting the moths out of my purse for air! I donít smoke, drink in excess, have a gym membership, shop frivolously for food; Iím not into handbags, makeup, shoes or clothes. In fact, I am the most boring person I know. But I do like holidays!


    I bank with F.Direct, in my opinion a great bank. The mortgage is an offset. I already overpay, but I cannot seem to find any other substantial spare cash to over overpay with.


    I already save bits of change, xbay, Tilly Tidy, use the sweep function to put extra bits into the mortgage, whilst maintaining a small amount of savings. I decided I preferred to pay off the mortgage than save as I feel better about watching the capital reduce.


    I made my decision to do the impossible and this weekend, conjured £200 out of nowhere to overpay on top of what I normally pay - cashed in my £2 coins. Now, I have come to a dead stop and hit a brick wall. No more conjuring until payday!
    So, I am going to keep this diary to help me to focus, and see what progress I can make out of nothing at all. I am going to aim at reducing my capital by £500 by the end of the financial year, in addition to my normal mortgage payments, without having a substantial negative effect on my way of life.


    I am going to take small steps. I shall begin by trying to xbay or Gumtree anything that is not tied down, including the cat if anyone will pay me for him. I will continue with my sweep every month. I will continue with my no spend days. I will continue to collect change in the hope of knocking small amounts of the amount owed, so I can see a difference being made.


    The spread sheets say I could be mortgage free in 4.5 years. I would like to be free in 2, by my 50th birthday. I could stretch it to 3 years as I am still technically 50 until I am 51! I am committing to posting once a week, even if to say, I have made no progress. Hopefully, someone will be able to inspire me to great heights.


    Thank you for your help so far. Let the games begin.
Page 15
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 5th Feb 19, 9:53 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    So, nearly at the 6 month probation at work. Made it this far so clearly happy to see it through.

    Looking towards early retirement, so have managed to begin the process of putting all my pensions into one pot except the LA final salary, which seems to be doing ok on it's own.

    Getting to a point where I can see that I am spending 'frivolously'. If I can see this, then it means I have excess income, which could be put to better use.

    Hopefully, I have one more big expenditure to accommodate and then the accessories to go with the spend. This will hopefully give me the opportunity to reduce my monthly expenditure in another area. I am looking to buy a motorbike to reduce travel costs.

    The best made plans have a habit of unravelling. But one should never be afraid to try. It is better to try and fail than to never try at all. If I can reduce my fuel costs over the summer period, then I should be able to identify money to pay off the mortgage.

    However, I am still trying to finish paying off my Via bill. It remains stubbornly at £2,500 ish per month. This is because I cover my spend but don't reduce the capital.

    Plans going forward are to -

    Buy a motorbike and accessories to stay alive
    Take firm action to pay back the visa card
    Identify monies to pay down the mortgage - every little helps.
    Get my mojo back regarding ebay

    1. This month, the mortgage will remain the same as I buy the bike because I will redirect the mortgage payment.

    2. Next month, March, I will get back to making monthly payments of £1000 on the mortgage. I still hope to be at £69k by December 2019.

    3. April, I will look to reduce the visa bill by £100 per month. I have to take determined and precise steps to tackle this debt. I could of course use my savings which are tied into the mortgage, but I am loathe do increase the mortgage on this basis.

    4. Find stuff to ebay. Reduce my monthly expenditure on pocket money etc within YNAB.

    Will revisit this in March and see if I have made any progress.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 6th Feb 19, 10:02 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    Pah! Went to buy a motorbike this evening. What a wasted journey. The seller was really dodgy, and the bike even more so. The log book said it was silver but the bike was blue.

    Goes without saying I still have my money in my bank account! Better there than not I guess. I will continue to look.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • TallGirl
    • By TallGirl 7th Feb 19, 8:02 AM
    • 4,381 Posts
    • 9,060 Thanks
    TallGirl
    Sounds like you had a lucky excape I’m sure the right one will come along soon. Glad you’re settled in and sticking to the plan.
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 7th Feb 19, 9:17 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    Hi TG. Yes lucky escape. I am certain there will be a few buyers out there who wouldn't bother to check the details in the log book, and would just accept that it is what it says on the outside.

    Anyway, I am eyeing up another one. Have to spend more but moving away from the lower price bracket buys a better quality bike. Same with anything, you get what you pay for.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • Moneyfordreams
    • By Moneyfordreams 9th Feb 19, 6:44 AM
    • 1,257 Posts
    • 6,152 Thanks
    Moneyfordreams
    Are you still keeping the car? or swapping to a bike?
    Mortgage restart June 2018 £119950
    Feb 19 mortgage £112650, £4850cc, £6500, £1489, car £7550 (holy cr@9 )
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 12th Feb 19, 10:40 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    Hello Moneyfordreams and thanks for popping in. Yes, I am keeping the car. I am a fair weather biker and so will only ride in nice, warm, dry weather. Otherwise, I will be in the car.

    Anyway, I bought the second one I looked at. It's not perfect but it is in good condition, comes with full service history and is currently MOT'd. Just have to wait for the weather to improve. Will be SORNing it once the log book comes through.

    I also managed to pick up a 'new' set of leathers from ebay for £40 plus postage. It says new and unworn but even if they have had light use, its a great price. Looked at a brand new helmet in the shops. It will have to wait until March payday for that extravagance, along with a pair of protective boots. Luckily I still have my gloves from when I used to ride and they are in good condition, so one less thing to worry about.

    Despite my complaining about no money, I managed to buy the bike without it affecting my mortgage payments and without using the visa card, so whatever happens, my frugal ways are still allowing me the opportunity of splurging without adding debt.

    Also managed to sell a couple of things on ebay, so feel positive about that and finally, I got a 'good news' message from Ernie. Not got the details to check in to see how much I have won, but expecting the lowest amount. Can't complain as anything is better than nothing.

    My list of things to do remains unchanged bar the bike. Will still look to see where I am in March, but don't have to worry about the extra gear and the insurance until April when the weather starts warming up.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 15th Feb 19, 11:20 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    So, I spent an evening staring at my finances, at my outstanding mortgage and wondering where I went wrong. Sadly, my life plan was to be mortgage free by this age, considering early retirement. Instead, I find I am almost where I was 5 years ago, with a huge mortgage and a desire to pay it off early. I was a mortgage free wanabee and I failed.

    As clearly something needs correction, I have made the decision that I am going to overpay by £100 per month. Every month, whatever happens I will make a payment of £100 into the second mortgage. Hopefully, this will help deal with my need for symmetry, the need to work in whole numbers. I won't overburden myself and if it remains reachable, then I have a hope of maintaining the goal until December, where I will have reduced the mortgage by £1k this year.

    It also allows me to continue living without feeling that I am in purgatory. Hopefully, I will still have enough disposable income to pay for the things that life throws up, which will allow me to continue believing that I work to live, not live to work.

    £100 per month without disrupting the rest of my life and my finances. I should be able to achieve that.

    1st payment made today.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 16th Feb 19, 11:38 AM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    Wow!! I won £2.80 on last nights Euromillions lottery draw. Considering it cost £2.50 to buy the ticket, I am pleased with my 0.30p win.

    Living it large tonight!!
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 28th Feb 19, 9:38 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    End of February. And what have I achieved?

    -Managed to make a second £100 payment to the mortgage. So the mortgage currently stands at £78,300.

    -Emptied Ermintrude, which is where I store the coins that I am collecting. Now only £6.00 short of £100, so next time I empty her, I will be able to make a payment into the mortgage, but that will be a couple of months off.

    -The NS Days are going well. I regularly manage 4 a week.

    -Have now paid everything I need to for my winter holiday. Insurance, car parking at the airport and money for Rufus's hotel. Spending money is also covered, so holiday done. Just the actual 'going' to do.

    -Still have a helmet and boots to buy but plenty of time for that.

    -Food shopping down to a reasonable spend in my opinion.

    -Diesel costs still high but this will be tackled in summer.

    -Need to do more ebaying, but still not got my groove back on this one.

    -Expecting an increase in all the bills in April. using YNAB to help prepare and budget.

    -Still paying small amounts into Moneybox weekly.

    -Still purchasing Premium Bonds in the hope Ernie comes in at a bit more than £25!

    -Still using Top Cashback when possible, as well as Shop and Scan, collecting Tesco vouchers and Nectar points. Not so keen on Swagbucks. I may get back into it in the future.

    Will look to pay a minimum of £100 in addition to the normal mortgage payment of £1k in March, despite my holiday absence.

    Just taking it a day at a time.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 3rd Mar 19, 7:33 AM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    Great start to the new month - not. The same tooth that cracked off a bit of cosmetic filling in November 2017 has broken again. In the same place. Considering how much it cost me to fix approximately 1 year ago, I am loathe to spend that amount again. A lot of money to be paying out annually. So, I am going to go and see my normal dentist and ask him to file and shape the cracked edge, rather than go back to the cosmetic dentist and ask him to re-attach another bit of filling. I am lucky that this is purely cosmetic and has no affect on the actual tooth so I can get away with this minor adjustment, which will be a permanent solution.

    New month and ready to see what lies ahead.

    Forgot to say that I passed probation at work so I am now a permanent member of staff. This is great news. Downside is they will now start piling the work on because I am not going anywhere.

    Trying to return the bike boots I bought from ebay. Usual scenario where the seller doesn't list the defects so at the start of the long drawn out process where the seller avoids contact, whilst waiting for ebay to deem it a suitable period of no contact before they intervene. Oh well. I will get the money back whatever happens.

    Went out with a friend and her family at the weekend and spent £16 on coffee at Costa. Stupid amount of money but I don't see them that often. Not very MSE but couldn't be helped.

    Nearly holiday time!!
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 27th Mar 19, 9:34 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    And today I was ripped off for the sum of £25 by an Insurance company. Purchased Bike insurance to start on 1 April. Noticed when the details came through that it didn't cover pillion passengers. Rang immediately and told they couldn't deal with the issue but someone would ring me Monday morning. No call but rude texts telling me they would cancel the insurance if I didn't get in touch.

    Finally managed to speak to them and they were questioning why the details of the bike were different - because I didn't buy the first one and I was getting an idea of price. Why were the details of where it would be stored changing - because I was getting an idea of price!

    Anyway, finally get round to the issue of pillion and they said they would charge £25 to cancel the cover and set up new cover. In the end, I just agreed. Couldn't be bothered to argue further. Not enough to break the bank but still disgusting considering the cover hasn't even started yet.

    Anyway, you live and learn. Be careful purchasing insurance online.

    Update on mortgage repayments - currently at £77,100. Hoping I might be able to find £100 by the end of the month to start April with a nice whole number.

    Bike boots issue resolved. Just my crash helmet to buy next month and waiting for the good weather to arrive.

    Still in holiday mode but this will end soon.

    Ideal Home Show this weekend. Combining it with a trip to Bubba Gumps for some Shrimp. Friends birthday on Saturday. Just getting her Argos vouchers as she is going to be a mother soon and I think will appreciate the opportunity to buy what she wants as opposed to getting something which is nice but not needed.

    Colleagues leaving do on Friday as well, so all in all, including the holiday, March has been an expensive month.

    Expectation is that I will reduce the mortgage by a minimum of £1100, so should owe £76k by the end of April.

    On target to meet target of £69k by the end of December 2019. If I can stop spending, it may be lower.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 1st Apr 19, 8:28 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    Start of the new month. April Fools day, so anything goes.

    Quick roundup of where I am in my quest to be mortgage free.

    Currently as of today, the mortgage stands at £77,000. Small steps but going in the right direction.

    The only thing left to purchase in my bid for cheaper travel is the crash helmet, so will do this mid month around pay day.

    Otherwise, everything just ticking along.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 3rd Apr 19, 9:39 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    Made my first £100 overpayment for April.

    According to my budget, I will still have left myself with enough money to buy my crash helmet.

    2 out of 3 NSD's so far this month, but the spend was big.
    Budgeted for new monthly bill payments. Should be ok.
    On track to owe £75900 by the end of April, so exceeding my target.

    All positives. But spent money on my red line, which is my winter holiday. Booked for next March 2020. If I were to put the holiday spend into the mortgage, it would reduce significantly very quickly, but this is something I am not prepared to forgo.

    Had another conversation about pensions with one of the government bodies set up to give the masses further generalist advice on the matter. Talked about what is happening with mine and whether I will have enough to live on come retirement. Looks like I am on track to be ok. Not rolling in it, bit not living purely on the state pension.

    Every little helps.
    Last edited by Tahlullah; 03-04-2019 at 9:51 PM.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 6th Apr 19, 1:26 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    I read somewhere that as you get older, you lose the desire to work and it becomes more of a chore than a vocation. I have felt this happening for a while and no amount of changing jobs seems to do it for me any more. I still work in the same field, helping others, but somehow, I have lost that loving feeling.

    I know that going back onto the front line isn't the answer. When you become jaded in this field, you lose your empathy and become short and abrupt with others. So, going back to the coal face won't cut it. To be honest, I don't know what the answer is.

    So, I have spent this morning catching up on diaries. My over-riding feeling is that compared to others, I am am failing abysmally and just playing at wanting to be mortgage free. I am questioning my judgement. For example, I have booked next years winter holiday after just returning in March this year. Wouldn't a better use of my money be to help reduce the mortgage to become mortgage free? The things that I buy to smooth the path of everyday life, wouldn't that money be better utilised in the mortgage account?

    I am hoping that this is just a phase I am going through. It appears that everyone at some point gets to this type of plateau, where they have to step back and re-evaluate. Perhaps stop saving and just live life to the fullest.

    I am nearly 54 years old and I still have a mortgage. All calculations show I will still have one when I am 60. This is soul destroying! What to do? Well, right now, today, I owe £76,900. I haven't made this months mortgage payment yet. If I plan to make my £100 overpayment per months as promised, that means I have 69 payments to go, which takes me to 60 years old.

    State retirement age is 67 for me, so I am going to look at 60 as my next goal. I plan to retire from my line of work at 60 and find a nice job in a shop or something that is less stressful and less regulated.

    So, countdown begins now! If I manage to get to a point where I have managed to pay off the mortgage before the predicted 69th payment, that will be great. Otherwise, I am succeeding just by not working until the age of 67 and reaching mortgage freedom by 60.

    So, my next post will be to say that I have made payment number 1 of 69 and I am counting down from then onwards.

    I will continue with my tilly tidying, my YouGov, ShopandScan and collecting £2, 20p, 50p and 5p coins. I will continue to look at my monthly food spend and not spent recklessly. I will try to sell some stuff on eBay although I really dislike it. And I will endeavour to take more holidays in the UK rather than abroad during the summer months to save on the cost of flights and hotels.

    I will also ensure that I post on here once a month to keep track of how I am doing. So, now I go, into the abyss to return on or around the 10th of the month going forward.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • TallGirl
    • By TallGirl 7th Apr 19, 7:30 PM
    • 4,381 Posts
    • 9,060 Thanks
    TallGirl
    I read somewhere that as you get older, you lose the desire to work and it becomes more of a chore than a vocation. I have felt this happening for a while and no amount of changing jobs seems to do it for me any more. I still work in the same field, helping others, but somehow, I have lost that loving feeling.

    I know that going back onto the front line isn't the answer. When you become jaded in this field, you lose your empathy and become short and abrupt with others. So, going back to the coal face won't cut it. To be honest, I don't know what the answer is.
    Originally posted by Tahlullah
    This really struck a cord with me I so agree as I remember were in the same field. I agree it's a vocation or you cannot do it. I had to leave front line after 9 years as it had become too much just lost what's needed to do the job properly. Anyway I've enjoyed other roles in the 8 years after that with no clients but I've enjoyed having them back in the last 6 months. However I couldn't continue doing it for someone else too stressful so I agree that's not the answer. Can you set up as a consultant and choose your own work/clients or doesn't it quite work like that?

    Your mortgage is really small I really wouldn't stress about not making the over payments quickly I think your 69 goal is a good one.

    Holidays and something to look forward to is important so please enjoy it helps cope with a stressful job too.

    Anyway all the best hope you get the gist is my ramblings
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 10th Apr 19, 8:00 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    Hi TG, Hope all is well with you. As much as I look at it, as you so clearly have as well, the only way forward is to move outside of this field of work. But doing consultancy work doesn't appeal either. What I really need is to completely step away. Which is why Tesco's is still calling me. However, real life gets in the way and we both know that when we try to go for other work, we are knocked back because of the assumption we are overqualified and so won't stay long in that job

    So, the only way forward is retirement, and then when the pressure is off, we can volunteer our services, safe in the knowledge we can walk away at the end of the day without having to worry about any of the stresses that come with the work - from the clients or management responsibilities.

    So, 1st payment of 69 on my countdown to zero, and I now owe £75,700.

    Overspent stupidly today as I took a colleague out for lunch - £17.50. Excessive, but it comes out of my personal monthly budget on YNAB. I did womble 0.05p though so not all is lost. Will go well in Ermintrude until I am able to sort into the appropriate tins.

    Hoping I don't lose the momentum to keep going and succeed.

    68 to go.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 13th Apr 19, 7:19 AM
    • 356 Posts
    • 833 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Hi Tahlulah,
    Your post really resonated with me too. I am a similar age (52) and with a similar mortgage (£72,000). Although I enjoy many aspects of my job, I too am finding it harder as each year goes by!
    You say you feel like you are failing abysmally, but to be mortgage free by 60 is still in my mind a great achievement, I read that more and more people are still paying their mortgages into their retirement.
    I have no easy answers but I agree with TG that you need things to look forward to. I think balance is really important.
    Good luck with your journey!
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £71,438 I MFW Target August 2022 I Emergency fund £2000 I Car loan November 2018 £17,600 I Car loan now - £16,131 I
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 15th Apr 19, 10:19 AM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    Hi Glass half full. Thanks for dropping by and I am sorry that you are in a similar position to me. Neither of these scenarios are good in my opinion - still paying a mortgage and that work is starting to grate, although you do appear to have a more positive outlook than I do.

    Nonetheless, we are here and trying to do something about it rather than just accepting the status quo. I wish you every luck with clearing yours.

    I am now thinking of buying a camper van! If so, back up goes the mortgage. Not very good at this mortgage free malarkey. As I get older, the need to enjoy my life whilst I still can and am healthy enough seems to pull more than the need to pay off the mortgage. I don't want to get to 60 years old and feel that life passed me by whilst I was rationing my money and the mortgage company got their investment back to the detriment of my positive mental health.

    I have always wanted one. I believe I am now earning the most I ever will in life so waiting to buy until I am retired and using a lump sum out of my pension to purchase it seems like madness. I need my pension so I can have a comfortable lifestyle when retired. I just feel that I should have all the bits in place before pensionable age, rather than having to buy them as a pensioner.

    So, although it is another decision that takes me further away from mortgage freedom, it is a step towards ensuring that retirement is comfortable with everything I want in place before my income drops. Plus, if it doesn't work, I can always sell it and recoup some of my money. Seems like a win win because if I do decide to buy it, I can still pay off my mortgage before retirement. Seems mad not to.
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
    • BachSoon
    • By BachSoon 15th Apr 19, 6:27 PM
    • 97 Posts
    • 148 Thanks
    BachSoon
    I've not yet made it to the end of your diary - about a third of the way through, but thought I'd reply a little early to say that you keep making me sing!!

    ...To dream the impossible dream, to fight the unbeatable foe...
    • Tahlullah
    • By Tahlullah 15th Apr 19, 11:24 PM
    • 950 Posts
    • 5,037 Thanks
    Tahlullah
    To try when your arms are too weary
    To reach the unreachable star...
    Still striving to be mortgage free before I get to a point I can't enjoy it.

    15 February 2019 - Mortgage debt - £78,400
    23 April 2019 - Mortgage debt - £85,000
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