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  • FIRST POST
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 26th Jan 17, 12:20 PM
    • 1,836Posts
    • 6,820Thanks
    JoJoC
    Getting my shhh together
    • #1
    • 26th Jan 17, 12:20 PM
    Getting my shhh together 26th Jan 17 at 12:20 PM
    It's January 2017 and I want to make a stand against myself.

    I will let me sabotage myself no more and I will take control and make my finances better!

    Where to begin? Good question! Since my husband and I bought our first house together in 2009, we have bad financial decision after bad financial decision. Not through stupidity, but a combination of naivety, laziness and lack of foresight. We are very impulsive people and it's quite tricky to rein that in when it comes to finances but we've had endless talks over the last few months and 2017 is the year that we sort our sh!t out!

    A combination of astronomical childcare costs, unpaid maternity leave, paying the mortgage for our flat when it isn't let (second property) and a few other things has meant that the last 2.5 years have been really tight and we have built up some debt that I really want to reduce. I'll declare it below!

    Credit card 1: £6,000 (on 0% interest)
    Credit card 2: £3,800 (not yet on 0% interest)
    Overdraft: £600
    Owe to MIL: £120
    Owe to uncle: £700

    I CAN tackle this in 2017 because:

    - My eldest son is starting school in August, meaning i'll be saving on nursery fees
    - I have just started a new job and my earnings will increase by around £200 per month
    - My husband is busy with additional work in the form of 'homers' over the next couple of months

    Hurdles/ challenges/ costly things happening:
    - My sister's wedding in September
    - My sister's hen weekend in September
    - It's my mother in law's 60th and we are going away for a few nights to a cottage to celebrate
    - Husband is going on my brother-in-law's stag weekend to Prague
    - We need to save for spending money as my company is paying for myself and husband to go to Thailand for a week for work.

    As you can see, the opportunities to save, to rein in what we are spending and to pay off debts are there, but it's such a busy year of commitments so I know it's going to be hard going.

    How am I going to achieve this?

    Change the setup of our banking
    It's currently one big bank account for all income, bills and spending but that's not working for us at all, particularly because we have massive outgoings so I want to switch to having a bills account, a spending account and a savings account.

    Spend time weekly on budgeting
    I have set up a comprehensive spreadsheet detailing when money comes in, when it goes out, when money is transferred to savings and when money is transferred to spending accounts. I want to ensure that this is kept on target and we aren't left short so I want to spend time every Sunday night when my husband is at football going through our finances and the spreadsheet to make sure everything is running smoothly and tackle any adjustments that need to be made. I'm paid monthly and my husband is paid weekly so it's a tricky balance.

    Striking the balance
    I need to strike the balance between paying off debt that we have and saving up for the things that we've committed to this year - I know if I focus on debt alone, we'll end up further in debt to cover things. Vigilance is the key and I will need to keep on top of what we can and can't afford to do. Considered choices will work best and looking ahead to see what's coming up will help too. I want to tackle the family debt first, particularly as they are the smallest debts and the ones that I feel bad about the most.

    I appreciate that there's a lot of debt-free diaries on here and this one isn't solely about hammering debt, but I think it's important for me to be accountable and I want to make changes rather than plan then just bury my head in the sand.

    Any encouragement along the way would be appreciated!
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
Page 54
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 5th Mar 18, 2:08 PM
    • 1,836 Posts
    • 6,820 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Just thoroughly depressed myself by realising that it's 24 days until pay day... humph.

    However, I've been productive and ordered my aunt's present (a small token present - £25 between my sister and I) and have decided on my mum's mother's day present (£40 between my sister and I).

    Just need to sort MIL for mother's day and think about MIL's birthday and a diamond wedding gift, both of which are next month.

    It's a busy time of year!
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • boxofpaws
    • By boxofpaws 5th Mar 18, 10:49 PM
    • 493 Posts
    • 2,130 Thanks
    boxofpaws
    £205 - it could have been so much worse. At least you're spending mindfully, and you did resist eating out.

    For gifts recently I've been making planters. But a nice plant pot, add a tall green plant, a trailing ivy, something variegated and a few colourful flowering plants and, hey presto, you made something that looks quite expensive for about £12. Line the pot or buy a lined basket if it's for indoors.

    I am also on the countdown to payday...
    Debt 03/01/17 = £42000
    Debt today = £27,819.22
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 7th Mar 18, 9:40 AM
    • 1,836 Posts
    • 6,820 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Thanks for the support BoP - I still feel disheartened at the spending but I need to shake it off and get over it. Much of it was unavoidable and I know I shouldn't really count groceries when totalling up spending like that. It looks way overinflated and makes the spending look worse than it is.

    Sounds like lovely gifts

    Yesterday's spends
    £56 on fuel
    £5.50 parking at work
    £0 on lunch - we were treating new colleagues to a welcome lunch so was on the company
    60p on breakfast club at school.

    Good things about yesterday
    • Caught up with some colleagues that I haven't seen for ages
    • Husband actually got paid ON TIME today!
    • I have paid the final payment of our holiday
    • It's only 3 weeks tomorrow until our holiday!
    • I'm heading to the gym shortly so looking forward to clearing my brain for an hour

    Not so good things about yesterday
    • I wasn't very productive at work today for various reasons...
    • Work is busy and piling up on me a bit - I can feel the stress rising
    • My head hurts

    *I wrote this yesterday but forgot to press post so changed it to yesterday's lists and here you go!*
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 7th Mar 18, 4:45 PM
    • 1,836 Posts
    • 6,820 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Holiday
    Just paid the final balance for our holiday! YES! So excited to be going...three weeks today

    So glad that is out of the way. Next on the list to attribute our spare income to is to pay my dad for our summer holiday accommodation (end of March wage) then to pay off our flights (end of April wage). End of May and end of June disposable income will cover our spending money and car hire then once July is out of the way and holiday season is done, we'll be able to focus on overpayment of debt and saving to build up our emergency fund.
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • monz
    • By monz 8th Mar 18, 9:08 AM
    • 3,224 Posts
    • 10,299 Thanks
    monz
    You are so organised Jojo!!! and woo paying off the holiday xx
    Debt (1/9/14) £6,702.11 Debt free (30/11/2016)
    house deposit £6,720.99/10,000
    car PCP - 468.98/11848.25 (0 overpayment) mum and dad 0/£4,000 paying back from 29 June
    mums July birthday vouchers 20/50
    Holiday spending 300/300, Belfast 500/500 (£252 for apart
    ment)
    • doingitanyway
    • By doingitanyway 8th Mar 18, 9:28 AM
    • 3,147 Posts
    • 15,782 Thanks
    doingitanyway
    Holiday
    Just paid the final balance for our holiday! YES! So excited to be going...three weeks today
    Originally posted by JoJoC
    Yay, well done JoJo
    JANUARY 2016/SECURED DEBT=24,822/March 2018=0 DEBT FREE 23/03/18
    MORTGAGE FREE 25/07/16
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 8th Mar 18, 12:48 PM
    • 1,836 Posts
    • 6,820 Thanks
    JoJoC
    You are so organised Jojo!!! and woo paying off the holiday xx
    Originally posted by monz
    Thanks Monz, I don't always feel very organised but just need to keep on trying!
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 8th Mar 18, 1:12 PM
    • 1,836 Posts
    • 6,820 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Trying to keep myself together
    Feeling a bit overwhelmed today (and for the last couple of days), just with the sheer volume of things whizzing about in my brain. Work is manic, I have now got work travel to do the week before my holiday, holiday is less than 3 weeks away and I need to start thinking about that, I've got a lot of family events and kids parties coming up, and basically I'm just not giving brain space to any of it properly.

    So, today and tomorrow I have blocked out my calendar in chunks to make sure I get the urgent stuff done. On my lunch break today, to force myself away from my laptop, I did a 15 minute ab workout on my phone and went up and down the stairs 5 times to get some exercise in to clear my head a bit. Not sure it worked but it'll be good for me one way or another.

    Money-wise, we're ticking along just about.

    Nothing else to report really. I'm doing the pick ups for both kids today so need to be super organised with dinner so that we're not sitting down to eat at 7pm!

    Looking forward to the weekend...

    Days until payday: 21...yawn...
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 8th Mar 18, 4:32 PM
    • 1,836 Posts
    • 6,820 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Annoying energy suppliers!
    Just got a final bill in from old energy supplier... £107... only two weeks after I made a double payment to my new supplier inadvertently.

    I had to pay new supplier a month in advance (i.e. pay first month on the day supply commenced) which was mid-month. I wanted my bill to come out at the end of the month so changed it and didn't realise they'd start taking it the same month. So i've been with them less than one month and they have £170 of my money! At least it'll be a good starting platform but now i need to find £107 to pay the old supplier... who funnily enough didn't take payment up front! Supplied me for a month then took a payment.

    Gah.
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • Mumoffourkids
    • By Mumoffourkids 9th Mar 18, 6:25 AM
    • 646 Posts
    • 3,137 Thanks
    Mumoffourkids
    Oh no boo to energy suppliers! I was thinking about switching because my deal ends this month but most of the ones I looked at were going to take payment in advance so I held off. Then my current supplier brought out a new deal so I switched to that and I don't have to change now but will be paying less!

    I'm sure you will find the money from somewhere, we always do. And just remember to look forward to your holiday.
    Total debt Dec 2017 £23090.83
    Ma7 2018 £3691.78 84.01% paid
    Emergency fund £150/£600
    Total Savings £1328.05
    • Cumbria lass
    • By Cumbria lass 11th Mar 18, 6:13 PM
    • 1,891 Posts
    • 11,492 Thanks
    Cumbria lass
    I bet you can't wait to get away on your holiday. Boo to having to travel for work the week before .
    CC1 £3475 May 2018
    • Storm89
    • By Storm89 11th Mar 18, 8:10 PM
    • 581 Posts
    • 1,314 Thanks
    Storm89
    Hi jojo I'm just catching up. Sounds confusing re energy suppliers . Holiday countdown is closing in now!! Good job on fitting in exercise as well I'm so lazy at the moment.
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 12th Mar 18, 9:35 AM
    • 1,836 Posts
    • 6,820 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Morning all,

    Hope everyone had a good weekend?

    Mine was fine, just rushed off my feet (three birthday parties...) plus mother's day yesterday so it was pretty much non stop. I'm so tired today and the kids are tired and grumpy which made for a fun start to a Monday morning trying to get them out of the house to school and nursery.

    The weekend had plenty of necessary spends in there - prosecco for aunt's birthday, cards for all the birthdays and mother's day, flowers for husband's mum and a bottle of wine, shorts for my son for holidays... it just never stops. My husband also had to spend around £70 of our own money on work materials on Friday (because his boss needed him to pick up supplies for a job) so we're still waiting on him transferring that into our account. Husband gets paid tomorrow too but almost all of that will be eaten up by bills this week. Let's hope he's paid on time!

    In terms of our savings, they're looking a bit pitiful at the moment, but that's because my husband has had to use some to buy work materials (and hasn't been paid for the jobs yet) and our friends still owe us money for a weekend away that we're going on at the end of April. We're owed £400 total from them and my sister owes me £40 from gift purchasing which i'll be paid on 20th.

    Money is just all over the place this month. I feel like I've completely lost track but it's not because we've gone mad spending, it's just been an expensive month gift-wise and there's money owed left right and centre (from other people to us, thankfully). Just confusing and hard to keep track of!

    The holiday countdown is well and truly on and I think we are organised. I just need to get a million work things out of the way this week and work travel (to Europe) out the way next week and then I can get my holiday face on.

    Days until holiday: 16
    Days until pay day: 17

    Good things about the weekend
    - I got a lovely home made card from my boys
    - My aunt gave us 20 euros to have a drink on her on holiday as a thank you for giving her the bed from our spare room. She also gave the boys some euros to spend on holiday in lieu of Easter eggs. Sweet

    Not so good things about the weekend
    - Too much spending
    - I ran about like a blue a***d fly all weekend and was barely in my house.
    - Beyond the card, Sunday was business as usual. I don't need presents or anything, just maybe some kind of acknowledgement of mother's day from them would have been nice. A bath run for me or some coffee and toast while snuggled up to my boys would have been lovely. (I'm grumpy hence the moaning - usually wouldn't bother). Spent Sunday making the day nice for my mum and MIL which I wanted to do, but i'm a mum too.
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • doingitanyway
    • By doingitanyway 12th Mar 18, 10:17 AM
    • 3,147 Posts
    • 15,782 Thanks
    doingitanyway
    You are a mum too and a lovely one judging by your postings. I'm sorry you didn't get properly acknowledged. Sounds like your hubby was too busy with work to sort this out. Let him know how you feel so it doesn't happen again.

    It will soon be holiday time
    JANUARY 2016/SECURED DEBT=24,822/March 2018=0 DEBT FREE 23/03/18
    MORTGAGE FREE 25/07/16
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 14th Mar 18, 9:39 AM
    • 1,836 Posts
    • 6,820 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Hi all - hope you're all having a good week so far?

    Mine is so-so... just a bit of a 'meh' feeling and I'm not sure why.

    Good stuff
    • I got paid my £40 from OnePoll finally, so siphoned that off to the holiday fund
    • Eating well this week and feeling better for it. I'm off to the gym tonight for a fitness class, some running and some Yoga
    • This time in 2 weeks, i'll be mid-air on the way to our holiday and I cannot wait to just switch off from normal life
    • My son's reading is coming on so well, it put a real smile on my face last night doing his words with him
    • My husband's phone has been ringing pretty regularly with people wanting jobs done. Not so good for time management since we are already so busy but really good for a bit of extra cash over the next couple of months.
    • My husband's boss not only paid him on time yesterday but also gave him money back that he owed him (in cash, which is annoying but better than nothing).


    Not so good stuff
    • I've been really lazy on the survey front so will need to get my finger out and get back into the swing of things
    • Our tenants have decided to stay on a rolling contract instead of signing up for another 6 month contract
    • This month has been a complete write off money wise. Just need to limp on through to the end of the month and try to make next month better! It has made me realise that we 100% need a present fund and I 100% need to sort that ASAP! This is what has knocked us off entirely this month
    • Work is overwhelming me completely right now. In fact, life is overwhelming me. The next 8 weeks are beyond busy with 3 work trips, a holiday, a weekend away, my birthday, sister's birthday, grandparents' special anniversary party, and a MOUNTAIN of work to get done in between.

    Surveys
    Onepoll: £0.75/ £25.00
    VO: £5.75/ £15.50
    PA: £4.60/ £20.00

    Days until pay day: 15
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • Storm89
    • By Storm89 14th Mar 18, 10:01 AM
    • 581 Posts
    • 1,314 Thanks
    Storm89
    You'll be fine jojo. The holiday is something you can look forward to. Present fund is a good idea it does sneak up on you doesn't it. I have spent a lot on birthdays this month too then we've got Easter !
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 14th Mar 18, 10:07 AM
    • 1,836 Posts
    • 6,820 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Also, my £50 DD went out to CC2 yesterday so another little chunk chipped off the edge of the debt.

    The loan payment is due out on Monday and that will bring me into the £18ks

    I'm really looking forward to getting to a point (in the summer) when I can take a look at our disposable income and split between savings and overpayments. It's rather depressing seeing a £4k credit card bill come down by only £50/60 p/m and I'll be changing that as soon as our holidays are out of the way.

    I need to do some proper mapping out of how each month should look post-August (when my son gets his funding) but I also need to factor in some over payments for holiday club during the summer holidays so need to think about that.

    I'm going to keep my son at home with me as much as possible and my MIL and BIL will help out with him when they can but won't know their shifts until the week before so we'll just need to take it as it comes. My BIL will be able to take him a day per week or maybe more depending on his shifts (to let me get some work done) and my MIL will be able to take him a few hours depending on her shifts. Any work I don't get done, i'll just catch up with when they kids are in bed. Thankfully my youngest will still be at nursery so I've only the eldest one to keep occupied and he's easier to occupy. I've also got the option of taking him to softplay and working from there (they have wifi) while he plays. Not fool proof and definitely not peaceful but if it entertains him while I get some stuff done, i'm happy to do that. It's such a juggling act but I'm so lucky to be able to work from home or else i'd be looking at £600 for July and £360 for August. As it stands, it's looking like £109 for July and £163 for August.
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 14th Mar 18, 10:11 AM
    • 1,836 Posts
    • 6,820 Thanks
    JoJoC
    You'll be fine jojo. The holiday is something you can look forward to. Present fund is a good idea it does sneak up on you doesn't it. I have spent a lot on birthdays this month too then we've got Easter !
    Originally posted by Storm89
    Thanks Storm - I know that we'll get through the crazy period and, dare i say it, even enjoy it! But I know myself, i just get daunted when there's so much going on and it's like my brain goes into denial/ procrastination mode to protect itself from the pressure. Must look to resolve that and take the short road rather than the long, avoiding way round.

    Thankfully we don't really do much for Easter - we buy me nephew something in lieu of an egg because he doesn't like chocolate (he's 10 so it's getting harder!) and we'll do something fun for the boys but spend is minimal. We're away almost a week of the holidays and the following week will be mostly me working while entertaining my eldest so not much room for spendyness! Although my food bill will undoubtedly go up that week with my son in the house. He eats like a horse these days. Must be growing!
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 14th Mar 18, 11:44 AM
    • 1,769 Posts
    • 10,662 Thanks
    redofromstart
    Glad he got paid on time, must be so stressful waiting to see if its in the bank.

    Much sympathetic noise from me on the busy patch.
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 14th Mar 18, 5:08 PM
    • 1,836 Posts
    • 6,820 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Another price hike to report! My son's swimming lessons have gone up by 75p per month as of 1st April.

    You may be laughing at the amateur dramatics of this, but it seriously all does add up! That's the third price rise in the last month for bills that we pay for (I'm just waiting on the bad news from council tax - that's bound to rise!).

    Considering I didn't even get a cost of living pay rise this year every extra penny that our bills are being put up is coming out of our disposable income so it's a bit annoying to say the least.

    If this is what it's like now, just think of how hideous it'll be post-Brexit!

    Anyway, rant over.
    CC1: £4481.14/ £5031.14 (12% paid off, £600) | CC2:£3307/ £3807 (14.4% paid off, £550) | Loan: £10,528.20/ £15,792.30((33% paid off, £5,264))

    July debt total: £24,630.44 | New debt total: £18,316.34 | Total debt paid: £6,414.10 (26%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
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