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  • FIRST POST
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 12th Feb 17, 9:56 AM
    • 1,492Posts
    • 14,493Thanks
    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 127
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 14th Feb 18, 1:20 PM
    • 1,911 Posts
    • 20,213 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    WGAC - But it is nearly a pound a roll! That's like wiping with velvet from your scraps basket! I pay no more than 33p a roll from the supermarket and buy them when they are on offer, making sure they are biodegrade. The trees they are from are fast growing sustainable commercial crops that contribute to our environment while they are growing fast and promote the wealth of our community where they are managed. Two sides to ecology, these trees fall down once they are over twelve years old if not harvested and stop contributing to the management of carbon dioxide

    I agree with the idea of a stores budget. Mine is slightly more than 13th of my annual budget and so far in 2018 I have spent £52.40 on dry goods, toiletries, loo roll, kitchen paper, laundry detergent, cleaning materials and washing up store cupboard things (liquid when 2 for £1 e.g.). I buy my brands when they are on offer and currently have no deodorant but 6 shower gels. I will only buy one deodorant unless they go on offer before I need it and will add shower gel to my "if it's on offer" list when I get down to two

    Re teaspoons - I acquire plastic throw-away spoons from coffee shops or service stations and keep them, wash them and take them to and from work until they get manky, then recycle them. I like the old M&S ones, the Pret ones and our deli at work has bigger cutlery, that lasts ages - they all come in their branded colours so a different one for each child maybe?

    On washing up bowls knitting patterns, could you take a photo on your phone and upload it on to your PC and then sell the pattern on?
    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
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 14th Feb 18, 1:42 PM
    • 1,492 Posts
    • 14,493 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    It's 75p per roll, but they are longer rolls - the relevant calculation is the price per 100 sheets (can you tell I've spent too long researching this?). The brands we buy (proper brands when on offer or 'nicer' supermarket version rather than standard, as explained in possibly too much depth) vary from 16p to 20p per 100 sheets, and the WGAC is 18.8p per 100 sheets, so bang in the middle. And hopefully will be sufficiently good quality compared to other recycled toilet roll that we will only use as much as of the 'nice' toilet roll we currently use. But as you point out, each solution has its benefits - we can all only make the choice that seems best for us. <ponders velvet toilet roll>

    I love the sound of the way you manage your stores Suffolk Lass, that's kind of where I want to get to. At the minute we have three shower gels purely because I didn't realise we already had one, twice. So better management of what we do have is definitely part of it too! I don't even use shower gel, that's just for DH.
    £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 14th Feb 18, 1:50 PM
    • 1,492 Posts
    • 14,493 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Ooh, another little bit of (possibly) good news today. DH might be getting a 3% pay rise (just waiting for confirmation, but reading the t's and c's of those getting it in the company-wide email, there seems no reason he shouldn't). Not much, but another few quid a month makes a difference. And it's backdated to Jan, so maybe a whole £30 extra this month . Fingers crossed it gets confirmed soon.
    £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
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 14th Feb 18, 2:18 PM
    • 1,911 Posts
    • 20,213 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    It's 75p per roll, but they are longer rolls - the relevant calculation is the price per 100 sheets (can you tell I've spent too long researching this?). The brands we buy (proper brands when on offer or 'nicer' supermarket version rather than standard, as explained in possibly too much depth) vary from 16p to 20p per 100 sheets, and the WGAC is 18.8p per 100 sheets, so bang in the middle. And hopefully will be sufficiently good quality compared to other recycled toilet roll that we will only use as much as of the 'nice' toilet roll we currently use. But as you point out, each solution has its benefits - we can all only make the choice that seems best for us. <ponders velvet toilet roll>

    I love the sound of the way you manage your stores Suffolk Lass, that's kind of where I want to get to. At the minute we have three shower gels purely because I didn't realise we already had one, twice. So better management of what we do have is definitely part of it too! I don't even use shower gel, that's just for DH.
    Originally posted by Treadingonplaymobil
    Aha! I see. Yes just checked what I have at the moment and it is a 9 pack of 160 sheet rolls of Morries even softer (quilted, premium brand) that I bought when it was on offer 2 pack for £5.50 so 19p per hundred sheets. All FSC fully biodegradable, and recyclable plastic cover and cardboard tubes.

    Re stores, I have not paid full price for any of those commodities for years. It took about six months to get it going so don't expect instant results.

    One thing that you might think of doing is the second purse system. You put your stores budget in your purse and use that to buy them when they are on offer. When you take one from your stores to start using, you "pay" your stores purse full price from your normal grocery budget, pay back your stores purse and put the "profit" in your second purse. You can use this for whatever you like, but lots of people reinvest it in things they need, want or covet, while others save for holidays, Christmas or luxury purchases (one bought her artisan mixer after several years saving!)

    You just have to be careful about hoarding and make sure it is stuff you will use. I did a month using everything up a few years ago and was left with a tin of condensed milk on the windowsill for several months before I threw it away (it was my unnecessary purchase "guilt-trip" reminder) - like your washing up bowl
    Last edited by Suffolk lass; 14-02-2018 at 8:44 PM. Reason: it did not make sense!
    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
    • Onebrokelady
    • By Onebrokelady 14th Feb 18, 2:27 PM
    • 341 Posts
    • 933 Thanks
    Onebrokelady
    Just thought I would say hi,I joined the site back in January and Iím just starting my journey to be debt free,I saw your diary and thought I would give it a read and wow itís really inspiring how you cope with lifeís ups and downs,Iím currently on page 35 but just thought I would pop in and say hi and well done so far,reading your diary is saving me money on books and magazines too so you are indirectly helping me not to spend anything
    Iím subscribing
    Just keep swimming
    Original Debt Owed Jan 18 = £17,630 Paid To Date = £502 Debt Now = £17,128
    • nonnie44
    • By nonnie44 14th Feb 18, 3:56 PM
    • 437 Posts
    • 772 Thanks
    nonnie44
    Creeps in.....just to mention Nicky toilet roll, I buy an 18 pack in Farmfoods for £4, (think it might have gone up to £4.50, need to check) I wouldnít use anything else now. Here is a link to Amazon just for a description of it, it has really good reviews......creeps back into the shadows now

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Nicky-Elite-Luxury-Toilet-Rolls/dp/B00FBEBWP2

    Ps Love reading your diary, think your doing amazingly well xx
    • *snow*white*
    • By *snow*white* 14th Feb 18, 4:11 PM
    • 113 Posts
    • 815 Thanks
    *snow*white*
    Hi there just emerging from lurkdom re wgac. We are on a zerowaste eco drive at the moment and I really thought hard about wgac.

    The big deal breaker for me is it is shipped from China so there's the carbon footprint to consider. Also the posts on fb I have seen is that it takes up a lot of storage space, which may already be an issue for you, as it arrives in bulk.

    I commend you on trying to make ethical shopping choices and feel your pain

    I decided for us one of the main things was trying to buy local where possible.

    Happy 1 yr MSE anniversary.

    Slinks away to lurkdom
    GCC £152.20/£250
    "Little by little one travels far"
    • DawnW
    • By DawnW 14th Feb 18, 5:33 PM
    • 4,960 Posts
    • 39,101 Thanks
    DawnW
    Creeps in.....just to mention Nicky toilet roll, I buy an 18 pack in Farmfoods for £4, (think it might have gone up to £4.50, need to check) I wouldnít use anything else now. Here is a link to Amazon just for a description of it, it has really good reviews......creeps back into the shadows now

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Nicky-Elite-Luxury-Toilet-Rolls/dp/B00FBEBWP2

    Ps Love reading your diary, think your doing amazingly well xx
    Originally posted by nonnie44
    Another vote for Nicky toilet rolls. They have them in our local pound-ish shop for about a pound for 4 rolls.
    NSDs for April: 9 / 15

    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 14th Feb 18, 8:49 PM
    • 1,911 Posts
    • 20,213 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    Creeps in.....just to mention Nicky toilet roll, I buy an 18 pack in Farmfoods for £4, (think it might have gone up to £4.50, need to check) I wouldnít use anything else now. Here is a link to Amazon just for a description of it, it has really good reviews......creeps back into the shadows now

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Nicky-Elite-Luxury-Toilet-Rolls/dp/B00FBEBWP2

    Ps Love reading your diary, think your doing amazingly well xx
    Originally posted by nonnie44
    How many sheets per roll? does it say on the packaging? Just looked on the link, but could not see that. Good grief, 72 rolls, reminds me of the MSE'er on grocery challenge who had basically insulated her loft with toilet rolls as she always went for the Bog-offs (pun intended ) and had over a thousand... hence my hoarding reference. I will always remember that.
    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
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 14th Feb 18, 8:52 PM
    • 1,492 Posts
    • 14,493 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    More (hopefully) good financial news today - got a text message saying the Virgin transfer had gone through, so hopefully no more problems there. Will be good to have it on a 0%.

    Interesting chat re the toilet roll (clearly my diary has it all going on. Debt busting, washing up bowls and toilet roll. What more could you want?). Having researched virgin pulp (like Nicky) vs recycled and locally produced vs slow-shipped from China, I'm happy with WGAC, but everyone has different priorities. So hard to know which is the best choice when there are so many 'this is the best option' options out there, especially when there's the additional constraint of a super tight budget. I'm excited about trying to get our household goods onto more of a level footing though, with regular savings and infrequent bulk buying to save money.

    I'm really enjoying the challenge of trying to figure out how to incorporate a few of our green principles into a budget lifestyle. I'm sure that our big money savers of not going anywhere abroad on holiday, not running a tumble dryer, only running one car, having smallish wardrobes etc all contribute much more, environmentally speaking, than saving the odd tree's worth of toilet roll, but it's nice to feel we're doing our bit.

    Had a much better day with the DC today, they were all much cheerier. We didn't even leave the house in the end, the weather was so utterly miserable. I think a good home-day was what we all needed though. I got on top of some cleaning, the DC built lego and played games, it was all really nice.

    Dinner was surprisingly ok. I made chana dal (current favourite dal among the children, having firmly usurped tarka dal), but threw in the last of a jar of mung beans to use them up too. Was worried it would be a gross brown colour - mung beans are sludgy green, chana dal is yellow and tinned tomatoes are, obviously, red - but it came out looking moderately appetising, and everyone ate plenty. Always feels like a good nourishing meal. Threw some fresh parsley on top, bought by mistake instead of coriander, whoops! Waste not want not. Also made naans. A different recipe to my usual one and they came out like chapatis, which seemed like a bit of a waste of effort after spending so long on them. This is close to the recipe I usually use, which is much better. Loads of dal and a few naans leftover, might just have them again tomorrow night since DH is away and it's an easy dinner.

    Three things to do today
    1. Pack and post orders for smaller business. Done.
    2. Arrange playdate for Friday. Done.
    3. Focus properly on the DC when I can today, rather than being half hearted, in an attempt to kill-with-kindness any nascent tantrums! Not perfect, but a lot better than yesterday, and I think it paid off.

    Savings/Spends:
    - £37.68/£28 February 'rounding down' overpayment pot (moved across the rounding down pot from my business account).
    - £1,046.80/£5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.
    £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
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 14th Feb 18, 9:12 PM
    • 1,604 Posts
    • 9,556 Thanks
    redofromstart
    I remember the toilet roll hoarding too suffolk lass.

    Best tip on toilet roll was on an OS money saving tips thread years ago which was to always squeeze the roll out of shape before you hang it up. It makes it harder to take more sheets off and helps reduce usage that way. I have done it ever since, and it does help.
    • DawnW
    • By DawnW 14th Feb 18, 10:47 PM
    • 4,960 Posts
    • 39,101 Thanks
    DawnW
    Interesting that you say you don't have a tumble dryer TOPM. I don't have one either, never have had, even when my children were small. I couldn't have afforded one then, and now, when I could, I haven't bothered. I don't need a bigger electricity bill, thanks very much! Most people think it is a bit odd if I mention I don't have one so it is nice to hear that I am not the only one
    NSDs for April: 9 / 15

    • Eager_Elephant
    • By Eager_Elephant 15th Feb 18, 5:19 AM
    • 4,336 Posts
    • 24,424 Thanks
    Eager_Elephant
    Me 3!!

    I don't have a tumble dryer either, I rehomed mine about 4 or 5 years ago. Prior to that it was just a nuisance as my house was too small for it and at times it was in an outside shed which was no good when it rained as I got wet and at others in the utility room with loads of stuff in front of it.

    It's amazing how hot my landing is, I hang all tops from hangers and then hang from door frames - it looks somewhat like a Chinese laundry but it dries them quickly. I also have 2 airers in my bedroom for the rest. I find washing little and often is the key and also pegging out at weekends if the weather looks promising (I pegged out towels last weekend and they dried but then there was near on gale force winds!!!)
    Ninja Saving Turtle No. 34 for April
    NSD - 0/15
    (up to 2/4/18)
    My Diary is here - http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=2175629 (Eager Elephants Effective Everyday Excursion)
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 15th Feb 18, 5:22 AM
    • 1,492 Posts
    • 14,493 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 53: Day 4

    Well I'm still at 1,000 toilet rolls!

    We've never really had a tumble dryer - one rental place had a washer dryer, but it could only manage to dry about two tshirts at a time, so we've never got used to it, and I would rather avoid the additional bill. I also strongly suspect that DH would 'helpfully' shove everything in the dryer, so (a) costing us a fortune and (b) shrinking half my clothes. Easier not to have one! I sometimes think we'll get one when we get the extension done and have a nicer utility room, but then I think we've survived this long without, why start now? I have recently started doing a daily wash even if we don't have a completely stuffed full load (it is never less than 2/3 full) and that is helping to stop it backing up and being tricky to dry. Our machine has settings for smaller washes to avoid wasting water when doing that. The only difficult time of year is early autumn and late spring, when it can frequently be too wet to hang stuff out, but there is no real need to have the heating on to dry it. I'd like to find somewhere to store the airers in our bedroom so I could regularly hang it out in there, as it gets in the way downstairs and I barely go in my bedroom during the day, but I can never be bothered to lug the airers upstairs and hang out up there!

    A day of flying solo today, as DH is away. Hoping to have a quiet-ish day, get cracking on the half term homework and pop to the post office later. Rock'n'roll. Also need to try to get the car looked at, as have just realised (how did I forget this?) I have a horrendous week next week doing hundreds of miles, so really could do without a car that might conk out at any moment.

    I actually have a much longer list than three things that I'd like to get done today, but I'm going to focus on three first, get them out the way and then move onto the next things. Slow and steady wins the race (and avoids an overwhelmed tantrum from me).

    Three things to do today
    1. Post office.
    2. Phone up and try to get the car looked at.
    3. Get homework done.

    Savings/Spends:
    - £37.68/£28 February 'rounding down' overpayment pot (moved across the rounding down pot from my business account).
    - £1,046.80/£5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.
    - £13.99 (entertainment kitty) buying Moana on iTunes. I didn't realise how expensive it would be when I promised to buy it for DC3 to watch this week! Has wiped out half of week 3's entertainment kitty and we're only one day into week three (I could from the 1st of the month).
    - £96.85 mobile phone bill (two phones). As previously discussed, my enormous bill is partly work use and is tax deductible, but I don't bother budgeting for it in my business account. DH's bill is also fairly big (I think mine is about £55, his is about £40, it all comes out in one hit), but he is thinking of going sim only once his contract is up in April, even if only for six months or so before upgrading.
    - £9.60 DH train fare so I could have the car on Tuesday with the DC.
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 15-02-2018 at 6:53 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
    • arsenalbarnie
    • By arsenalbarnie 15th Feb 18, 9:23 AM
    • 264 Posts
    • 1,629 Thanks
    arsenalbarnie
    I missed all this toilet roll conversation, but if it helps I am a WGAC convert but we buy the premium one. I did find it a bit thin at first but now used to it so will be subscribing. I bought 40 rolls in December and still have some left which is pretty good for my house of 7 people.

    As to the cleaning I use something called sal suds. Amazing stuff that lasts forever, diluted down in a spray bottle you only need a squirt. Combined with bicarb of soda sprinkled (I use a flour dredger thing) on sinks etc works a treat. Good luck with the env friendly cleaning I have been doing it for a few years now and wouldn't go back. Also white vinegar from Sainsbugs in a glass bottle ( we are plastic haters here) combined with half n half with water and a squirt of sal suds for loos and kitchen surfaces. My fam moan about the vinegar smell so tend to use it when they're not about.

    I think the extra money I spend on the loo rolls is evened out from not buying cleaning products. I use the sal suds in carpet shampooer and floor washing too. I have a lovely minimalist cleaning bucket!

    Good luck with the rest of half term and hope the car isn't too poorly.
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 15th Feb 18, 11:32 AM
    • 1,492 Posts
    • 14,493 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Oooh, I like the sound of sal suds - I use castille soap for a few things. Is it soapy (foamy)? Minimalist supplis sound great. This image, and this one, is pretty much my life goal when it comes to cleaning right now . Suffice to say that is not how my house actually looks.

    Also pleased to hear how long the wgac toilet roll is lasting. I literally have no idea how quickly we go through a roll. I was vaguely guessing a roll every 36-48 hours (we have two toilets, but only one gets used regularly, the other one maybe once a day, because it's in the utility room and always cold in there!). Never has there been so much contemplation over toilet roll.

    Annoyingly can't get the car looked at until next week, but my mum is coming down on Sunday and I can use hers for my high mileage trips if ours is still acting up. Such a pain.
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 15-02-2018 at 11:47 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
    • arsenalbarnie
    • By arsenalbarnie 15th Feb 18, 4:08 PM
    • 264 Posts
    • 1,629 Thanks
    arsenalbarnie
    Oooh, I like the sound of sal suds - I use castille soap for a few things. Is it soapy (foamy)? Minimalist supplis sound great. This image, and this one, is pretty much my life goal when it comes to cleaning right now . Suffice to say that is not how my house actually looks.

    Also pleased to hear how long the wgac toilet roll is lasting. I literally have no idea how quickly we go through a roll. I was vaguely guessing a roll every 36-48 hours (we have two toilets, but only one gets used regularly, the other one maybe once a day, because it's in the utility room and always cold in there!). Never has there been so much contemplation over toilet roll.



    Annoyingly can't get the car looked at until next week, but my mum is coming down on Sunday and I can use hers for my high mileage trips if ours is still acting up. Such a pain.
    Originally posted by Treadingonplaymobil

    Sal Suds is made by Dr Bronners but is not for use on your body. Yes it foams. Quite dear, I buy it from Am@zon but I can't see me needing any for at least a year or longer. It's a little drying on your hands but I still don't need to use rubber gloves, I just slap a load of hand cream after. It's got a bit of a pine smell. It mixes very well with water and white vinegar, whereas the Castile soap doesn't.
    Hope that helps. Love the pics, take a look at Zerowastehome that is what I aspire to but have a long way to go!
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 15th Feb 18, 8:43 PM
    • 1,492 Posts
    • 14,493 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Well the children's homework has somehow turned into a craft project of epic proportions. House is a total mess and it seems like we have been cutting and sticking (happily, thankfully) all day. Nice to do something crafty with the children, I don't do so much with them since they started preschool/school, and we used to do loads.

    So pleased - the partnership/virgin card transfer is showing as a pending transaction, so presumably no problem with it going through. Once it's gone through I need to make a decision about which debt to focus overpayments on. I know that logically it should be the barclaycard as the 0% runs out sooner, but the balance is just over £12k, compared to the relatively low sub-£3k partnership/virgin balance. Can't decide whether the easy win of the virgin outweighs the logic of tackling the barclaycard or not.

    Arsenalbarnie I have had a browse on zerowastehome - life goals! Will definitely hunt down some of the sals suds to try.

    Haven't left the house today, so no spending, again. Pleased that we will limp on to the weekend without doing another food shop, and I have basically been feeding the children variations on the theme of leftovers plus frozen vegetables for the last two lunches and dinners, so we're a meal in hand on the menu plan too. We've actually only spent £122.03 on food so far this month, and still have enough to last until at least Saturday, so 17 days. If you'd told me I'd manage that this time 12 months ago, I would have laughed in your face!

    Off to clear the house and do the washing up before bed (come back DH, I hate doing the evening clear up!).

    Three things to do today
    1. Post office. Not done. Couldn't be bothered to drag the DC out. Total fail.
    2. Phone up and try to get the car looked at. Done, booked in for next Friday.
    3. Get homework done. Half done, needs to be finished tomorrow or on the weekend (probably the weekend, we have a playdate tomorrow).

    Savings/Spends:
    - £37.68/£28 February 'rounding down' overpayment pot (moved across the rounding down pot from my business account).
    - £1,046.80/£5,000 2018 debt repayment goal.
    £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 15th Feb 18, 11:02 PM
    • 6,258 Posts
    • 12,405 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    I would tackle the Barclaycard. Even if you are not going to get it repaid by the time the deal runs out the lower the balance the lower the transfer fee will be. When does the 0% expire?
    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
    • AdventureWanted
    • By AdventureWanted 16th Feb 18, 12:47 AM
    • 462 Posts
    • 1,409 Thanks
    AdventureWanted
    I'd definitely pay off the barclaycard next. I know it's daunting when the number is large, but set yourself a smaller target - get the balance to £11k or below £10k. If you break it down into smaller chunks it won't be so daunting.
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