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  • FIRST POST
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 12th Feb 17, 9:56 AM
    • 1,506Posts
    • 14,665Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed....
    • #1
    • 12th Feb 17, 9:56 AM
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed.... 12th Feb 17 at 9:56 AM
    67,031.92. Seriously. 67,031.92. That is a SCARY number. I can't believe our debt has peaked (and it is the peak, I am determined) at this level.

    Our light bulb moment actually happened a few months back, but it's taken since then of wrangling utilities and carefully watching out income/outgoings (using You Need a Budget) to really figure out where we were overspending and how the monthly shortfall of anything from 200-1,000+ was happening.

    We have literally nothing to show for this debt, it's just crept up over the past 8 years or so, and has always been at manageable levels, but back in October we realised we were spending more on credit cards each month than we were paying off.

    We committed that cardinal sin of taking out a consolidation loan, but alongside it we looked really carefully at our spending over the next couple of months, budgeted realistically for what we spend and have (I think) picked off all the easy 'low hanging fruit' of budget cuts and really identified why we were overspending.

    The main reason for the debt is, erm, me. Not that I'm the biggest spender (neither of us are amazing), but because I am self employed with a hugely variable income and basically worked out our budgets on the basis I would always earn my 'best' month's income. Which was, with hindsight, maybe a TINY bit deluded.

    The aim of this diary is to keep us on track with actually reducing our debt every single month, not doing it in a three steps forward, two (or four) steps back sort of way. Having sat down and put our numbers into the whatsthecost site, it appears that we are looking at 7 years and 1 month of repayments to clear the debt (and that's assuming we can get rid of the shortfall showing below). I REALLY want to reduce this term as that just seems bonkers.

    SOA below, with a couple of explanatory notes.

    Statement of Affairs and Personal Balance Sheet

    Household Information

    Number of adults in household........... 2
    Number of children in household......... 3
    Number of cars owned.................... 1

    Monthly Income Details

    Monthly income after tax................ 250 (variable, but this is the minimum I have earned in any month in the last 5 years)
    Partners monthly income after tax....... 2711.86
    Benefits................................ 192
    Other income............................ 0
    Total monthly income.................... 3153.86


    Monthly Expense Details

    Mortgage................................ 698
    Secured/HP loan repayments.............. 0
    Rent.................................... 0
    Management charge (leasehold property).. 0
    Council tax............................. 174 (including overpayment for a period when we messed up during a house move 18 months ago and didn't restart the direct debit for the new property. Will drop by a little under 50 after either March or April, can't remember which)
    Electricity............................. 52 (gas and electricity are one combined DD, I haven't checked the exact split but the total is 104)
    Gas..................................... 52
    Oil..................................... 0
    Water rates............................. 104 (also including a debt from previous property, but I think this will be included for another 6 months or so. I'm not sure what our actual usage is)
    Telephone (land line)................... 18.5 (includes internet)
    Mobile phone............................ 85 (45 for my contract, which I use for work as well, 40 for DH)
    TV Licence.............................. 12.12
    Satellite/Cable TV...................... 0
    Internet Services....................... 0 (included in landline cost)
    Groceries etc. ......................... 520 (Includes 40 for one lot of school lunches. I am REALLY struggling to reduce this, but feel I could and should be able to!)
    Clothing................................ 100 (growing children, plus see notes below re clothes)
    Petrol/diesel........................... 225 (90% DH commuting costs)
    Road tax................................ 16.27
    Car Insurance........................... 25.22
    Car maintenance (including MOT)......... 30
    Car parking............................. 0
    Other travel............................ 50
    Childcare/nursery....................... 70 (this will disappear in April as child 3 gets free 15 hours)
    Other child related expenses............ 81.85 (music/swimming lessons x2, cubs and beavers, National Trust membership as they love visiting them)
    Medical (prescriptions, dentist etc).... 5
    Pet insurance/vet bills................. 0
    Buildings insurance..................... 27.07
    Contents insurance...................... 0
    Life assurance ......................... 16.26
    Other insurance......................... 0
    Presents (birthday, christmas etc)...... 90
    Haircuts................................ 20
    Entertainment........................... 135
    Holiday................................. 75
    Emergency fund.......................... 25
    Total monthly expenses.................. 2707.29



    Assets

    Cash.................................... 0
    House value (Gross)..................... 210000
    Shares and bonds........................ 0
    Car(s).................................. 800
    Other assets............................ 0
    Total Assets............................ 210800



    Secured & HP Debts

    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Mortgage...................... 173733...(698)......3.14
    Total secured & HP debts...... 173733....-.........-


    Unsecured Debts
    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Barclaycard....................6880.21...156...... .0
    MBNA...........................9614.71...98....... .0
    Parental loan..................20000.....0.........0 (see notes below)
    Tesco loan.....................21000.....377.......10
    Total unsecured debts..........57494.92..631.......-



    Monthly Budget Summary

    Total monthly income.................... 3,153.86
    Expenses (including HP & secured debts). 2,707.29
    Available for debt repayments........... 446.57
    Monthly UNsecured debt repayments....... 631
    Amount short for making debt repayments. -184.43


    Personal Balance Sheet Summary
    Total assets (things you own)........... 210,800
    Total HP & Secured debt................. -173,733
    Total Unsecured debt.................... -57,494.92
    Net Assets.............................. -20,427.92


    Created using the SOA calculator at stoozing.
    Reproduced on Moneysavingexpert with permission, using other browser.


    Regarding the (relatively) high clothes expense, it is a combination of 3 growing children (8, 6 and 3), plus the fact that my job is in the fashion industry, and as a self employed person I need to have the right sort of 'look' in order to get work (think along the lines of a self employed personal shopper - people need to see you looking good in order to book with you).

    The parental loan was for a house deposit. The parent in question has no idea about our debts. She is not desperate for the money back and isn't charging us interest, but has asked us to save 150-200 every month into a savings account and then once we've saved a decent sum to either repay them or 'reborrow' it for work on the house (basically they want us to be able to make repayments if they suddenly need the extra income, but meanwhile are happy for us to benefit from it. I am not saving the money while our debt payments are so high - we are hoping to have paid enough off that if the parent ever needs it that we can reborrow it and pay them back). This isn't great, but realistically I think the best solutions is to treat it as the lowest priority for snowballing - once we have paid back the other debts we will throw the entire 630+ at this debt.

    So, there is a freaking enormous shortfall every month, which is somewhat depressing. Most months it is covered by the fact that I earn more than my 'bare minimum', but it is those months where it isn't covered that the debt creeps up again, and I am a total disaster for going 'oh well, we've spent on the credit card, we might as well keep going' and buying more clothes or something for the house - this is probably a significant proportion of our debt problem.

    We have managed to get rid of the balance on the one credit card we were spending on, so the remaining ones are both on 0% deals (although one expires in September). I have not cut up the remaining credit card, because we don't have an emergency fund in case of eg boiler repairs, but it has not been used for all of a month, and I hope to keep it that way.

    A DMP or similar isn't really on my horizon right now - I feel like we should be able to make the cuts to make our budgets balance, and I am optimistic that as my income goes up (when I can work more as child 3 starts school) that we will be able to make overpayments.

    My plan for now is:
    1) Try to wiggle those budget numbers around enough that we don't have a shortfall any more.
    2) Make a plan for any months where I make extra - do I use it for an emergency fund, as a fund to cover future months' shortfalls, to throw money at the debt to try to reduce minimum payments in case of future 'shortfall' months?
    3) Try to make more money. Not quite sure how this will work as I am largely limited to working around DH's working hours (I work evenings and weekends and the 5hrs childcare per week we are paying for for child 3).

    Now that's all down in black and white I am feeling a combination of relieved (to be clear on the numbers) and immensely stressed (by the semi-regular 180+ shortfall).

    Onwards and downwards (for the debt, not me)!

    edited to add: the original 67,031.92 figure was based on the total figure for the Tesco loan, which included all interest payable over the entire term of the loan. I have updated the debt figure in my signature and in all posts going forward as at 4th June 2017 to reflect that actual current debt balance rather than the balance plus interest over the lifetime of the loan. This has knocked 7,911.62 off the debt figure, but means that each monthly payment will have the interest for that month deducted from it, so it won't affect the DFD if I don't make overpayments.
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 04-06-2017 at 2:58 PM.
Page 123
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 6th Feb 18, 5:23 AM
    • 1,506 Posts
    • 14,665 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 52: Day 3

    Bleurgh, have woken up all bunged up and exhausted. Don't want to get ill, has been nice having a healthy household for a few weeks after the post-Christmas colds! Although poor DS1 was feeling very sorry for himself yesterday - he tumbled over at school and has a horribly graze/bruise down one leg and on his shoulder. I remember so well that horrible stinging burning pain of a grazed knee as a child.

    DawnW that is such a good way of looking at things, we did indeed have a lovely afternoon. And even better, I have discovered we have a spare back door key, so I don't even need to pay to get a key cut. I am going to find somewhere to hide it today.

    Enquiries have slowed down for work, which is good (I am knackered) and bad (no more money!). I do have a couple in the pipeline, so fingers crossed they will come through, but nothing like the post-Christmas flurry. Feeling very relieved I have my buffer in place - almost all of May's money saved, but not quite there yet. I have a few days where I can focus on getting ahead on my contract work and back on top of my social media, which I'm pleased about - my poor neglected website needs some attention. In previous years I would have been so thrilled with this chunk of money coming in and the whole lot would have been spent, and then it would have been panic stations and CC spending for the next few months.

    Oh, annoying news on the Virgin balance transfer. They rang last night. Apparently they can't do a balance transfer where the debt is in a different name (I have been named with my married name on the Virgin account, but the Partnership card is in my maiden name). So irritating. DH is going to phone them today and see what can be done, but if they can't do anything at Virgin's end I have to take my marriage certificate into a John Lewis to prove the name change, then wait for it all to go through before we can transfer the balance. Grrrr.

    In brighter news, I'm over halfway towards my monthly 'rounding down' overpayment goal, which is rather pleasing. And have finally crossed the 1k barrier in my 2018 debt repayments. Slightly ahead of schedule for paying back 5k this year, but not wildly so.

    Savings/Spends:
    - 14.48/28 February 'rounding down' overpayment pot
    - 1,046.80/5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.

    To do today
    1. Clear emails and chase up some non-responders for a work issue.
    2. Line up some social media posts.
    3. Get further ahead on contract work.
    4. Give the kitchen a proper clean.
    5. Make soup for dinner. Has to be done while the DC are at school as they don't like butternut squash soup, but they do like 'pumpkin soup' - i.e. butternut squash soup made by a mother who lies to them.

    To do this week
    1. More decluttering - particularly the lego! DONE DONE DONE.
    2. Finish planning any handmade gifts for birthdays/Christmas 2018 so I can ensure they are done well in advance. Done.
    3. Arrange a refund for a cancelled swimming lesson of DC2's.

    To do in February
    1. Restart social media for my website, which has really been on the back burner so far this year.
    2. Eat the contents of the freezer and defrost it. Ongoing, doesn't feel like we've made much of a dent yet!
    3. Play around with designs to discuss with the architect in early March.
    4. Have a laid back half term with the DC, doing activities at home, walks and crafts. Too many busy weeks recently.
    5. SLOW DOWN. This started well at the beginning of the year, but has fallen by the wayside. I have a couple of fractionally less busy weeks coming up, must make a real effort not to fill them with All The Things. This is going pretty well, I'm feeling fairly calm.
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: 58,608.13/Dec 2026
    debt on 6th Apr 2018: 34,168.99/Feb 2026

    Mortgage = c.192,200
    • try harder
    • By try harder 6th Feb 18, 5:53 AM
    • 755 Posts
    • 2,876 Thanks
    try harder
    Well done on the debt repayments
    • Silver Queen
    • By Silver Queen 6th Feb 18, 7:59 AM
    • 345 Posts
    • 1,704 Thanks
    Silver Queen
    Pumpkin soup
    Debt Totals April 2018::
    350 Natwest Credit Card / Now 0 (paid off and closed 04/2017) 15,500 postgrad loan from parents/ Now 10,500 500 train ticket loan from parents / Now 0 (paid off 16/02/18) 2,000 Overdraft Now 0 (paid off 09/03/18)
    • apple muncher
    • By apple muncher 6th Feb 18, 8:24 AM
    • 7,180 Posts
    • 54,010 Thanks
    apple muncher
    Hooe you feel better soon.
    NST April #17; NSD 16/15 ; Ex 17/20 ; craft 16/30 (48); remove 402
    2018 Pay off: 1188; 2
    018 sell

    Mortgage 21,904 (01/14: 78,201; 01/15: 59,629; 01/16: 39,915; 01/17: 27,295; 01/18 23,143) MFWDate Dec 2018
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 6th Feb 18, 9:20 AM
    • 1,917 Posts
    • 20,239 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    You just have to decide who keeps, or where you keep the spare key. Our builder (who is in the Village) used to hold ours. Now we keep a spare in case work is done while we are out (we trust him) and one with our Son, in the neighbouring town. We also have a sticker on a front window so the police can check who holds our keys if they needed to get in for some reason.

    Maybe one of those number-entry key boxes on a doorpost if you are considering hiding it - I always worry - we all think "Oh they won't look there" but it is really amazing how few places we all collectively choose. And keys rust if left outside, under, or inside things like pots, plant roots, sills, gaps or ledges. You know what I mean. What about the friend whose house you went to?

    Yes, what Silver Queen said!
    Last edited by Suffolk lass; 06-02-2018 at 9:28 AM.
    MFiT T4 #2 update 51.75% after Q8 5,203 behind where I should be
    Save 12k in 2018 #53 - after Feb 13.3%/10,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2018 spent 452.64/3,000 including stores so far
    My DFD is here
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 6th Feb 18, 9:26 AM
    • 1,671 Posts
    • 6,119 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Great news on the goals - keep up the momentum You're doing really well with your debt repayment goal - will the amount you pay to debt lessen in the months that you earn less? Or is your debt payment fixed at 500-ish per month and when you earn more you can pay off more?

    It's so pleasing to see good progress towards a target!
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • XSpender
    • By XSpender 6th Feb 18, 9:40 AM
    • 2,945 Posts
    • 30,176 Thanks
    XSpender
    5. Make soup for dinner. Has to be done while the DC are at school as they don't like butternut squash soup, but they do like 'pumpkin soup' - i.e. butternut squash soup made by a mother who lies to them.
    Originally posted by Treadingonplaymobil


    Just like my DS who hates ketchup but loves tomato sauce
    Action Plan Part 1 - Clear First 3 Balances
    Target Debt Lloyds (Me) Part 1 666.22/0
    Target Debt Virgin (Me) Part 1 1176.49/599.42
    Target Debt Virgin (Me) Part 2 1038/1038
    Big black hole of debt - 53,515.15 @ 16.12.17 52,811.64 @ 28.02.18, 50,638.77 @ 28.03.18, 49,778.78 @ 20.04.18
    • Honeybug
    • By Honeybug 6th Feb 18, 5:57 PM
    • 19 Posts
    • 180 Thanks
    Honeybug
    Hi!
    Hi TOPM,

    It has taken me nearly a week but I have just finished reading you diary and just wanted to say how well you are doing.

    As others have said you have a really easy writing style and I have laughed out loud at some points - thinking, the bloomin handbag, the 48 washbowl and the image of you as a crawling gorilla finishing a marathon whilst emptying your lake with a teaspoon. Priceless. Thank you.

    My thoughts are that money is a choice, everyone will make different choices that are right for them. Also, that noone really knows anothers financial position. It is very un-British to openly discuss such things.

    I know there has been much discussion about your food budget, please dont be disheartened but as a monther of 2 DS's, I am sure that once they hit about 11 they get hollow legs. I swear mine can eat their own bodyweight in food I am constantly trying to stay in budget but also really struggle with it.

    You have done amazingly well at turning that large tanker around, I hope it is now sort of in the right direction to drive it forward to where you want to go.

    Also, big thanks to enthusiastic, jojo, suffolk and all your other regular contributors. All of you have given me plenty to think about.
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 6th Feb 18, 6:55 PM
    • 1,671 Posts
    • 6,119 Thanks
    JoJoC
    It's funny you say that about butternut squash - my kids have been eaten noodles tonight despite not liking noodles. I told them it was spaghetti!
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 7th Feb 18, 6:02 AM
    • 1,506 Posts
    • 14,665 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 52: Day 4

    I'm chortling at all those mean parents out there who are similarly deceiving their children. The 'pumpkin' soup was cheerfully consumed, of course.

    My cold doesn't seem to be turning into much, just an irritating sniffle, for which I am grateful.

    JoJoC the debt repayment amount is fixed at a minimum of about 400 (can't remember the exact figure) whatever I earn, but I'm hoping to be able to pay extra over the course of the year. One of the reasons for trying to get the buffer in place in my business account is to ensure we don't struggle to meet those minimum repayments over the year.

    Honeybug thank you for your lovely comment, so nice to have new cheerleaders!

    I was thinking yesterday how much my attitude has changed. I went out for a walk with a friend a couple of days ago and we were browsing some nice shops on the high street on the way home, the sort of places I could (and would) have spent in before, and she bought a few things that she clearly quite liked, but none of them seemed to spark huge excitement in her. It literally did not occur to me to buy anything, and I was slightly at her 'oh, this'll do' attitude. Like she had decided to shop, and she was going to shop regardless of whether she actually loved what she saw. I don't know if I ever bought things that were just 'ok' (I'm good at finding things I love ), but it did remind me how easily I used to fritter money away - my friend probably sank 100 over an hour or so, on nothing particularly exciting, and made a comment later about not having bought anything much so she still had shopping money for another time. Not that she is in the same financial boat as us (although still not remotely rich), and it's none of my business what others choose to spend, but it was a really good reminder me that I used to have that attitude to shopping without the bank balance to back it up!

    In other news, I have agreed with my siblings to take my dad out for his birthday in April to an old favourite restaurant of his, which will be moderately expensive and I need to find the money for it. I'll put by (in a separate YNAB pot - god bless YNAB!) a tenner of my personal kitty each month until then, which will give me 30, and a little (maybe the 30 to pay for my share of his meal) can come from the birthdays pot, as it will be his present, but I probably need to find another 30 from somewhere, a tenner each month. First 10 will come from topcashback, where I've just realised I have 10.64 waiting to pay out. So only 20 to magic up before April.

    Savings/Spends:
    - 16.48/28 February 'rounding down' overpayment pot
    - 1,046.80/5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.
    - 60 on a new North Face coat for DC1 (from the children's clothing kitty). We have always bought excellent coats for DC1 and it has paid off as they (a) they are totally, genuinely waterproof even in full days of downpour, and (b) they can hand down to at least DC2, if not DC3 as well. The coat I am about to pass on from DC2 to DC3 was first bought for DC1 in 2014! It's a bit knackered now, but will do until the summer when I will buy a cheap lightweight waterproof to get her through until the winter.


    To do today
    1. Continue to get ahead on contract work
    2. See if I can get the digital camera my sister gave me to work.
    3. Social media for work
    4. Give the dining room a proper clean - I tidied it yesterday so just cleaning to do.
    5. Make veggie burgers for dinner.
    6. Make flapjacks for snacks.

    To do this week
    1. More decluttering - particularly the lego! DONE DONE DONE.
    2. Finish planning any handmade gifts for birthdays/Christmas 2018 so I can ensure they are done well in advance. Done.
    3. Arrange a refund for a cancelled swimming lesson of DC2's. Done!

    Ooh, I have done all three things on my list for this week already. How pleasing.

    To do in February
    1. Restart social media for my website, which has really been on the back burner so far this year. Making a start.
    2. Eat the contents of the freezer and defrost it. Ongoing, doesn't feel like we've made much of a dent yet!
    3. Play around with designs to discuss with the architect in early March.
    4. Have a laid back half term with the DC, doing activities at home, walks and crafts. Too many busy weeks recently.
    5. SLOW DOWN. This started well at the beginning of the year, but has fallen by the wayside. I have a couple of fractionally less busy weeks coming up, must make a real effort not to fill them with All The Things. This is going pretty well, I'm feeling fairly calm.
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 07-02-2018 at 6:07 AM.
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: 58,608.13/Dec 2026
    debt on 6th Apr 2018: 34,168.99/Feb 2026

    Mortgage = c.192,200
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 7th Feb 18, 9:04 AM
    • 6,266 Posts
    • 12,467 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    I think your attitude has changed and good you did not waste money on buying stuff just for the sake of it. Maybe your friend could afford it but buying stuff saying that will do sounds like it will end up in landfill or the charity shop in 6 months time. At least you only buy stuff you love.

    I think I must have saved a fortune in both time and money over the years by overthinking purchases. I am not an impulsive shopper at all. I think, do I want this or need it. Where will it go, how often will I use it and can I get something better for that price? Only exception is clothes. I tend to go twice a year and if it fits, is the right colour and style and looks good then I will buy it. No trawling round numerous shops trying stuff on. Still planned trips though.
    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
    • Cumbria lass
    • By Cumbria lass 7th Feb 18, 9:07 AM
    • 1,685 Posts
    • 10,005 Thanks
    Cumbria lass
    Thank you for your get well wishes, much appreciated.

    All seems to be running smoothly in your world TOPM , can not believe you have been hear nearly a year , so much has changed in your way of thinking.

    I do hope you get some ideas for making your bedrooms bigger , my DD has just divided her master bedroom into 2 for the DGC . They now have 3 bedrooms 2 doubles and a single. They did this as they could not afford a 3 bedroomed house in the area they live so was easier to divide. It looks good and has been done properly. Can you divide your master easily or is it to small or not the right shape ?
    CC1 3655 April 2018.
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 7th Feb 18, 9:10 AM
    • 1,671 Posts
    • 6,119 Thanks
    JoJoC
    I think, do I want this or need it. Where will it go, how often will I use it and can I get something better for that price?
    Originally posted by enthusiasticsaver
    Oh how I wish I was a bit more like this. Both my husband and I are/ were impulsive shoppers/ spenders and that's a dangerous combination! We combat that now by just NOT GOING shopping...and my 2 and 4 year old boys are delighted with that!
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 7th Feb 18, 10:01 AM
    • 1,506 Posts
    • 14,665 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    I think your attitude has changed and good you did not waste money on buying stuff just for the sake of it. Maybe your friend could afford it but buying stuff saying that will do sounds like it will end up in landfill or the charity shop in 6 months time. At least you only buy stuff you love.

    I think I must have saved a fortune in both time and money over the years by overthinking purchases. I am not an impulsive shopper at all. I think, do I want this or need it. Where will it go, how often will I use it and can I get something better for that price? Only exception is clothes. I tend to go twice a year and if it fits, is the right colour and style and looks good then I will buy it. No trawling round numerous shops trying stuff on. Still planned trips though.
    Originally posted by enthusiasticsaver
    I have always overthought in the 'do I love it?' sense, but it would be fair to say that the 'can I afford it?' part of that internal conversation has been a fairly recent addition .

    Thank you for your get well wishes, much appreciated.

    All seems to be running smoothly in your world TOPM , can not believe you have been hear nearly a year , so much has changed in your way of thinking.

    I do hope you get some ideas for making your bedrooms bigger , my DD has just divided her master bedroom into 2 for the DGC . They now have 3 bedrooms 2 doubles and a single. They did this as they could not afford a 3 bedroomed house in the area they live so was easier to divide. It looks good and has been done properly. Can you divide your master easily or is it to small or not the right shape ?
    Originally posted by Cumbria lass
    I know, almost exactly a year! It's gone so fast in some ways and so slow in others.

    The big plans is that master will be divided into two - DH and I will have the bigger portion, one of the DCs the small bit - but also that we will gain a room with the dormer, as there is a bit of eaves space that just couldn't become a room without the dormer.

    Oh how I wish I was a bit more like this. Both my husband and I are/ were impulsive shoppers/ spenders and that's a dangerous combination! We combat that now by just NOT GOING shopping...and my 2 and 4 year old boys are delighted with that!
    Originally posted by JoJoC
    My husband is an impulsive spender too. I've never been one, I just stay in denial for longer so I have well considered expensive purchases that I can't afford! My DC actually hugged DH on the weekend when he said they didn't have to go food shopping with him - they hate going shopping too!
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: 58,608.13/Dec 2026
    debt on 6th Apr 2018: 34,168.99/Feb 2026

    Mortgage = c.192,200
    • PositiveBalance
    • By PositiveBalance 7th Feb 18, 10:10 AM
    • 701 Posts
    • 3,548 Thanks
    PositiveBalance
    Well done, ToPM - you've clearly had a mindset shift about (clothes) shopping. It's a revelation once you realised it has happened, isn't it?

    I think I also appreciate the things I do buy more, now, than I did before, too.

    And I think the less going to a landfill site will appeal to your hippyish side, too!
    Original debt to source: 11,640.02; debt repaid: 6201.01 (53%); remaining debt: 5439.01
    0% CC balance: 4999.67 now 3997.54
    Emergency Fund (#187): 0/1000
    Terrimundi: 30.00ish
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 7th Feb 18, 8:15 PM
    • 1,506 Posts
    • 14,665 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    DH is away tonight and tomorrow. I've got much better at being gentle with my expectations of myself while he's away. DC are all in bed and I'm just drinking a cup of tea before heading up for a ridiculously early night with my kindle. I used to try to achieve just as much while he was away as while he was here, and actually it's pointless - one of the DCs always needs me for something, or plans somehow go awry, so there's no point aiming for the stars while he's not here to help out.

    I do have to say I'm really enjoying this slow and quiet week. The house is so much nicer to be in since I've spent a bit of time each day cleaning, I've been able to get a bit ahead with my contract work, and I'm slooowwwly picking up the social media again for my new website.

    I really need to make the effort to be consciously slow as often as I can, it make so much difference to my parenting, my tolerance of poor DH and my attitude to life, the universe and the debt. Sometimes I feel like I can't risk slowing down mentally in case I stop earning and the whole house of cards collapses, but I also feel like I can't afford to keep up with that 'fast' mentality and I need to be slower even if it means the debt situation goes all wrong. The reality is somewhere in the middle I suppose - sometimes my headspace and life needs to be fast, sometimes slow. The key for me is to make sure the slow bit happens regularly enough, so I don't get too frazzled and overwhelmed and lose all the benefits of the lifestyle we have chosen and have sacrificed so much (financial security!) to achieve.

    Made budget bean burgers for dinner. I didn't think it looked like a lot of mixture initially, but ended up having to bulk it out with porridge oats as it was quite wet, and now have four small burgers leftover for the DCs dinner another night, so I'm calling that a win. The burgers were pretty good, especially for the price (essentially a tin of beans, a carrot and an onion). I added a little smoked paprika to give them extra flavour as well as the cumin the recipe called for. Was planning frozen french fries, but did hm potato wedges to go with them, using up some sad potatoes from the bottom of the fridge that weren't going to last much longer instead, which felt pleasingly MS.

    Ooh, and I found the two big reusable growbags today, which I'm pleased about. So need to start planning and planting the edibles for this year.

    Savings/Spends:
    - 16.48/28 February 'rounding down' overpayment pot
    - 1,046.80/5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.
    - 30.93 on bulk cleaning supplies - vinegar, bicarb, and a couple of aesthetically pleasing spray bottles (of course!). I'm going back to natural cleaners in an effort to ditch the pricey natural cleaners like Method (most chemically brands cause me an allergic reaction). Hopefully this batch of supplies should last freaking months, more or less until the end of the year.
    - 17.04 on new charger and battery for camera (from my business account).

    To do today
    1. Continue to get ahead on contract work. Done.
    2. See if I can get the digital camera my sister gave me to work. Have ordered a new battery and charger, as I think the problem is the battery not charging rather than a fault with the camera.
    3. Social media for work. A tiny bit done. Would like to spend a bit more time on this tomorrow and actually get ahead.
    4. Give the dining room a proper clean - I tidied it yesterday so just cleaning to do. Done. So much nicer to be in now!
    5. Make veggie burgers for dinner. Done.
    6. Make flapjacks for snacks. Done.

    To do this week
    1. More decluttering - particularly the lego! DONE DONE DONE.
    2. Finish planning any handmade gifts for birthdays/Christmas 2018 so I can ensure they are done well in advance. Done.
    3. Arrange a refund for a cancelled swimming lesson of DC2's. Done!

    To do in February
    1. Restart social media for my website, which has really been on the back burner so far this year. Making a start.
    2. Eat the contents of the freezer and defrost it. Ongoing, doesn't feel like we've made much of a dent yet!
    3. Play around with designs to discuss with the architect in early March.
    4. Have a laid back half term with the DC, doing activities at home, walks and crafts. Too many busy weeks recently.
    5. SLOW DOWN. This started well at the beginning of the year, but has fallen by the wayside. I have a couple of fractionally less busy weeks coming up, must make a real effort not to fill them with All The Things. This is going really well.
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: 58,608.13/Dec 2026
    debt on 6th Apr 2018: 34,168.99/Feb 2026

    Mortgage = c.192,200
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 8th Feb 18, 5:17 AM
    • 1,506 Posts
    • 14,665 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 52: Day 5


    Morning! Another day of flying solo with the DCs, hope I can end it feeling as zen as I did yesterday. <awaits imminent A&E visit or similar>

    Last day of childcare of the week, and I also need to start thinking about packing to go to my dad's tomorrow, so can't take it too slow today, but I'm hoping to find time to make a bit of a start on some of this year's handmade gifts - going through all my crafty supplies on the weekend really reminded me that I have a lot that I can use up to make some 'free' gifts for people (ie I bought the yarn or fabric so long ago I've forgotten!).

    Have to lug all three DC to DC1's swim club tonight, which is tedious, but at least I'll have the car as DH has a hire car through work for his trip this week.

    Savings/Spends:
    - 17.17/28 February 'rounding down' overpayment pot
    - 1,046.80/5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.

    To do today
    1. Finish tidying and cleaning DCs' room.
    2. Drop of donated fabric to friend for local children's centre.
    3. Make a start on some knitting/sewing for handmade gifts this year.
    4. Make pasta sauce for dinner tonight (and check we have pasta! I have no recollection of seeing any in the cupboard). Check for any frozen leftover bits of tomato sauce, olives etc that can be chucked in.

    To do this week
    1. More decluttering - particularly the lego! DONE DONE DONE.
    2. Finish planning any handmade gifts for birthdays/Christmas 2018 so I can ensure they are done well in advance. Done.
    3. Arrange a refund for a cancelled swimming lesson of DC2's. Done!

    To do in February
    1. Restart social media for my website, which has really been on the back burner so far this year. Making a start.
    2. Eat the contents of the freezer and defrost it. Ongoing, doesn't feel like we've made much of a dent yet!
    3. Play around with designs to discuss with the architect in early March.
    4. Have a laid back half term with the DC, doing activities at home, walks and crafts. Too many busy weeks recently.
    5. SLOW DOWN. This started well at the beginning of the year, but has fallen by the wayside. I have a couple of fractionally less busy weeks coming up, must make a real effort not to fill them with All The Things. This is going really well.
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: 58,608.13/Dec 2026
    debt on 6th Apr 2018: 34,168.99/Feb 2026

    Mortgage = c.192,200
    • Cherryfudge
    • By Cherryfudge 8th Feb 18, 1:16 PM
    • 1,625 Posts
    • 8,626 Thanks
    Cherryfudge
    Your savings/spends slot is looking very healthy! Well done

    I think there must be some bug going round that makes everyone want to eat all the stuff in their freezer. Did I see you on XSpender's thread about it? I think I might have to chuck out a few items to get through mine.
    • Honeybug
    • By Honeybug 8th Feb 18, 6:16 PM
    • 19 Posts
    • 180 Thanks
    Honeybug
    Hope the day went well.

    Paradoxically, I find when I slow down I actually seem to get more done. Certainly never less. One of life's many mysteries!
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 9th Feb 18, 5:09 AM
    • 1,506 Posts
    • 14,665 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 52: Day 6


    Whoops, forgot to come back and update my lists yesterday. I got everything done, anyway!

    Cherryfudge I'm not on XSpender's freezer thread, but I did see that several people are doing similar. Ours is mostly because the freezer needs defrosting, rather than anything else, but it's a good habit to be in I think, otherwise things end up lurking for years! I definitely have frozen fruit in there from last summer.

    Honeybug I am finding exactly the same - I am getting at least as much done when I slow down, certainly of the important stuff. It's really improving my life.

    Two bits of good news yesterday. First is that DH found a 10 cheque from Christmas for us that he paid in, so that's an extra tenner towards my dad's birthday meal (between that and top cashback, I am up to 20 already), and second is that he's getting a small bonus from work. This hasn't happened since the first year he worked there more than half a decade ago and everyone got 100 in Sainsburys vouchers. He doesn't know how much it will be yet, all the information he has from his boss is 'more than 100, less than 1,000', and the amount won't be confirmed until the end of March. Totally unhelpful, but I will be excited whatever it is - we can split it between a couple of pots, including making a debt overpayment.

    Ooh, and another good thing this morning - I made a good sale in my smaller business overnight, and am now only 30 away from having May's salary covered, which will mean I am three months ahead. I really want it covered in the first half of the month, and am waiting on payment from a client for work later in this month which will cover it, as I am aware that as soon as we hit March I need to start thinking about June, if I want to stay three months ahead! Would really love to start siphoning off some money into debt overpayment, but can't risk the no income for four months situation of last year so need to keep focusing on this buffer first.

    I have been reading a few diaries recently where the writers seem to manage regular significant overpayments from jiggling their budgets - 20 here, 10 there, most days - and am feeling a bit woeful that that isn't going to happen with out budget, as there just isn't that much flex in them.

    Busy day today - need to get dinner (sausage rolls) made and as much as possible packed before lunchtime so DH can load the car while I pop over to a friend's house this afternoon for a cup of tea and a catch up (the only time we could do for weeks). And I have DC3 to look after, so need to actually engage with her at some stage too.

    The DCs are all really pleased with their new tidy room, and even said thank you unprompted to me for tidying it! So much easier for them to play when it's like that, and I've set a calendar reminder in a few weeks to swap round some of the toys, as I've put some away in a cupboard (not many, as we don't have much cupboard space).

    Savings/Spends:
    - 18.97/28 February 'rounding down' overpayment pot
    - 1,046.80/5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.

    To do today
    1. Message a friend to plan a playdate in half term.
    2. Write packing list.
    3. Pack for my dad's.
    4. Make sausage rolls (must get the sausagemeat and pastry out of the freezer as soon as I post this!).

    To do this week
    1. More decluttering - particularly the lego! DONE DONE DONE.
    2. Finish planning any handmade gifts for birthdays/Christmas 2018 so I can ensure they are done well in advance. Done.
    3. Arrange a refund for a cancelled swimming lesson of DC2's. Done!

    To do in February
    1. Restart social media for my website, which has really been on the back burner so far this year. Making a start.
    2. Eat the contents of the freezer and defrost it. Ongoing, doesn't feel like we've made much of a dent yet!
    3. Play around with designs to discuss with the architect in early March.
    4. Have a laid back half term with the DC, doing activities at home, walks and crafts. Too many busy weeks recently.
    5. SLOW DOWN. This started well at the beginning of the year, but has fallen by the wayside. I have a couple of fractionally less busy weeks coming up, must make a real effort not to fill them with All The Things. This is going really well.
    67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: 58,608.13/Dec 2026
    debt on 6th Apr 2018: 34,168.99/Feb 2026

    Mortgage = c.192,200
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