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    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 24th Sep 17, 12:22 PM
    • 8,858Posts
    • 68,917Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    • #1
    • 24th Sep 17, 12:22 PM
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally 24th Sep 17 at 12:22 PM
    My DH and I have been in debt for 34 Years, apart from brief periods, ever since I was offered my first credit card at the tender age of19.

    Our debts were caused by us being impulsive spenders and not being very skilled at budgeting or managing our money, so we know it is our own fault. We always believed that one day we would have more money, mysteriously, and that this would bail us out .

    Our full light bulb moment came when we realised, "What if we never have any more money than we do right now?"

    A couple of years ago we were coping with the minimum payments, but didn't have enough to overpay on any of them. We were forking out £1300 a month in minimum payments, and the interest alone was £1000 a month .

    But then in 2015 our small business started to bring in less, and a family bereavement, and illness affected our ability to work. We could no longer afford the minimum repayments and we were scared we would lose our home. We were stricken with stress and depression .

    Step Change shone a light in the darkness for us and they arranged for us to make token payments of £1 a month to our creditors. This saved our sanity and we were reassured that our home was unlikely to be taken from us.

    My DH recently turned 55 and drew out his pension so that we could make full and final offers to our creditors. All but one accepted an offer of 50% of what we owed (which is all we had to offer). We are continuing negotiations with the final creditor and hope to be debt free by Christmas .

    Being so close to being debt free has made me realise what a heavy burden the debts have been all these years, like living our lives wearing lead boots.

    Once we are debt free we will still need to live very frugally because we have no emergency fund or savings, and our income can be irregular. I hope that starting a diary will help to focus me on frugal living, avoid impulsive spends, and keep my spirits up. Because frugal living can be a lonely and isolating experience.

    This site and Step Change has helped me so much, and I hope that my diary will help to inspire others that it's never too late to change your life .
    Last edited by HairyHandofDartmoor; 18-11-2017 at 8:49 AM.
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
Page 434
    • in need of direction
    • By in need of direction 16th Apr 19, 12:27 PM
    • 5,686 Posts
    • 34,762 Thanks
    in need of direction
    have you ever used music magpie or ziffit? it might kick start those premium bonds
    Mortgage at 01.01.14 £119,481.83 today £69,283.91 target £65,000 by 05/04/19 Offset fund today £566.16 target £5,500 by 05/04/19
    Emergency fund £5,500/5.5k & £200/200 cash.
    Weight 24/02/19 14st 7lb now 13st 1lb
    determined to stop defining myself by my mistakes.
    Progress not perfection.
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 16th Apr 19, 12:32 PM
    • 8,858 Posts
    • 68,917 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    I did a bit of frittering today .

    I went into town and bought DS3 a bath mat for his flat at uni as he's been using one of his towels. They had 20% off homewares in MnS so the bath mat cost £7.65 instead of £9.50. So far so good.

    But then the frittering started . I went into D3benhams and they were also doing 20% off homewares, so I bought a Jasper Conran kitchen roll holder. It was £20 originally but the 20% off made it cheaper, and it had a mark on it so I asked them to give me a discount and they knocked another 20% off. So it cost £12 instead of £20. We did need one because our kitchen roll sits on the counter, but I still feel a bit guilty . Then I bought two mugs which I definitely didn't need but liked. I got 20% off those so they were £5.60 each instead of £7 each.

    So I spent a total of £7.65 in MnS and £24 in D3benahms . After that I came home quickly before I could buy anything else. I'm probably indulging in retail therapy after my emotional weekend, but I don't want to keep frittering. The kitchen roll holder and mugs are lovely though .
    Last edited by HairyHandofDartmoor; 16-04-2019 at 2:05 PM.
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 16th Apr 19, 12:33 PM
    • 8,858 Posts
    • 68,917 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    have you ever used music magpie or ziffit? it might kick start those premium bonds
    Originally posted by in need of direction
    No I've never used those INOD. Are they survey sites? I'm nearly at £10 on PA.
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 16th Apr 19, 12:36 PM
    • 8,858 Posts
    • 68,917 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    This afternoon I'm going to look for more books to de-clutter and then re-organise the ones I want to keep. I've got eight bags and two rucksacks full in the hall already as I sorted out another two bag fulls this morning! I wonder how many more I'll find that I don't want to keep .

    EDIT: I now have fifteen bags and two rucksacks full of books so I estimate it to be another 204 books . Unfortunately DH is too busy to drop them at the charity shop today so they're cluttering up the hall floor at the moment.

    I feel like I need to keep going while I'm in the right frame of mind, plus I know I'll never get time once term begins again. So I'm going to fight through the tiredness and keep going!
    Last edited by HairyHandofDartmoor; 16-04-2019 at 3:15 PM.
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 16th Apr 19, 12:40 PM
    • 8,858 Posts
    • 68,917 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    I've googled Music Magpie and Ziffit INOD. To be honest I just want to get the books out of the house as quickly as possible for the sake of my mental health. I feel very weighed down by physical possesions at the moment and getting rid of things quickly is very therapeutic. But thanks for the suggestion .
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
    • teafor2
    • By teafor2 16th Apr 19, 1:07 PM
    • 1,321 Posts
    • 9,685 Thanks
    teafor2

    Also, with the minimum purchase having gone down from a ridiculous £100 to a very sensible £25, they are much more accessible to those with only small amounts to invest. I would say - go for it !!
    Originally posted by elizabethhull
    Yes, the last time I looked into PB's for a christening gift I was shocked you had to spend £100. Didn't realise they'd gone down to £25. Definitely much more do-able. Think I'll be looking into this in the future as well. xx
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 16th Apr 19, 1:55 PM
    • 8,858 Posts
    • 68,917 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    I agree that £25 would be more doable. I would be unlikely to feel I could invest £100 in one go.
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 16th Apr 19, 3:21 PM
    • 8,858 Posts
    • 68,917 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    I think I've finally finished de-cluttering my books collection .

    216 dropped off yesterday and another 204 bagged up and ready to go . I still have plenty of books left believe it or not (I dread to think how much they all cost but they were all from the charity shop). I feel like my book collection is more manageable now and when I can get time, hopefully later this week, I'll re-arrange my remaining books in a more organised way to maximise space in the house.

    What a marathon effort. I feel completely shattered now, but it's a job well done and space is appearing all over the house .
    Last edited by HairyHandofDartmoor; 16-04-2019 at 4:05 PM.
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 16th Apr 19, 3:28 PM
    • 8,858 Posts
    • 68,917 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    I think that every time I'm tempted to buy an item of clothing or anything that isn't essential, I should buy a £25 premium bond instead. That way I would still be buying something and it might feed my urge to spend money, but I'd be buying something that could win me money and which I could sell and get the money back if I wanted to .

    That way the more money I spent, the more money I would have. The more I think about it the smarter it seems .
    Last edited by HairyHandofDartmoor; 16-04-2019 at 4:22 PM.
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 16th Apr 19, 3:29 PM
    • 62,617 Posts
    • 271,025 Thanks
    beanielou
    Well done on all the books
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~** **Weight loss 2 stone 12 lbs **

    "A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of" Jane Austen in Mansfield Park.
    ***Fall down seven times,stand up eight*** ~~Japanese proverb.
    It starts with you, it starts from now. *** It is ok to be me.***
    ***Keep plodding***
    Out of debt, out of danger. ***Be the difference.***
    • mummytogirls
    • By mummytogirls 16th Apr 19, 3:31 PM
    • 6,399 Posts
    • 24,585 Thanks
    mummytogirls
    So glad youve enjoyed a little splurge today HHOD... you deserve it after what youve been through xx
    Mummytogirls x

    £23164.32 - 12/12/10
    £5419.83 - 08/04/18 - 76.61% paid off
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 16th Apr 19, 4:04 PM
    • 8,858 Posts
    • 68,917 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    Well done on all the books
    Originally posted by beanielou
    Thanks Beanie .

    So glad youve enjoyed a little splurge today HHOD... you deserve it after what youve been through xx
    Originally posted by mummytogirls
    Thanks MTG . I do feel guilty though .
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
    • Verbatim
    • By Verbatim 16th Apr 19, 4:05 PM
    • 4,674 Posts
    • 14,352 Thanks
    Verbatim
    Morning HHD I think the premium bond idea is a good one. Saving with a chance of winning some money seems a good bet to me. I was given a £1 one when I was christened. No idea if it's still entered into the draw or not but I've kept it for posterity.

    Are you having a quiet day today or are you going under the bed to tackle some more books? xx
    Originally posted by teafor2
    Me too. Not when I was christened perhaps but as a child. I could't find it so wrote off and they responded with the details.
    CCs @0% £24k Dec 05 £19,621.41 Au £13400 S 12600 Oct £11,981 £9481 £7500 Nov £7250 D £7100 Jan 6950 F £5800 Mar£5400 May £4830 June £4660 July £4460 Aug £3200, S £900, £0 18/9/07 DFW Nerd 042
    • abba1772
    • By abba1772 16th Apr 19, 4:38 PM
    • 5,927 Posts
    • 23,480 Thanks
    abba1772
    Oh my that's some amount of books you have decluttered well done xx
    NEXT TARGET BARCLAYCARD WAS Jan 19 £4299 NOW £0
    POAMAYC 2011 £6382.66 POAMAYC 2012 £5000.78
    POAMAYC 2013 £3480.04 POAMAYC 2014 £4085.14
    POAMAYC 2015 £7565.24 POAMAYC 2016 £8000.90
    POAMAYC 2017 £7278.80 POAMAYC 2018 £13039.59
    POAMAYC 2019 £6479.39
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 16th Apr 19, 6:19 PM
    • 8,858 Posts
    • 68,917 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    Thanks Abba . It's just embarrassing having so many in the first place . It's going to be a lot easier to dust and hoover .
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 16th Apr 19, 6:25 PM
    • 8,858 Posts
    • 68,917 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    Our shed is going to be delivered tomorrow but the hall is full of books . So we're going to put them in the car tonight and then maybe after the shed is delivered we can drop them at the charity shop.

    My friend has cancelled our walk tomorrow as she's not well, but I'm quite pleased because I'm so tired and achey after all my book sorting . That will teach me to buy so many books . I'm going to take it easy tonigh after I've cooked dinner. Maybe I can persuade DS1 or DS3 to help DH put all the books in the car.
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 16th Apr 19, 6:27 PM
    • 62,617 Posts
    • 271,025 Thanks
    beanielou
    No help , no tea
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~** **Weight loss 2 stone 12 lbs **

    "A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of" Jane Austen in Mansfield Park.
    ***Fall down seven times,stand up eight*** ~~Japanese proverb.
    It starts with you, it starts from now. *** It is ok to be me.***
    ***Keep plodding***
    Out of debt, out of danger. ***Be the difference.***
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 16th Apr 19, 6:35 PM
    • 8,858 Posts
    • 68,917 Thanks
    HairyHandofDartmoor
    No help , no tea
    Originally posted by beanielou
    Worth a try . Although I've just remembered that DS3 went to bed at 4pm. He's having trouble with his bodyclock at the moment .
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = £58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    EMERGENCY FUND 1 = £4,005. EMERGENCY FUND 2 = £1,505.
    Goal - buy £50 worth of Premium Bonds per month = £0
    • teafor2
    • By teafor2 16th Apr 19, 6:42 PM
    • 1,321 Posts
    • 9,685 Thanks
    teafor2
    Ooh exciting that your shed will be with you so soon. Have you finished the book sorting now and do you have another project to get your teeth into?

    Maybe I can persuade DS1 or DS3 to help DH put all the books in the car.
    Originally posted by HairyHandofDartmoor
    Surely no persuasion needed if it's to help out Mum and Dad. xx
    • please-let-me-be-lucky
    • By please-let-me-be-lucky 16th Apr 19, 7:19 PM
    • 9,645 Posts
    • 60,234 Thanks
    please-let-me-be-lucky
    Mammoth catch up after my jollies!!

    Glad you got through the interment ok. Sorry it went wrong afterwards for your Sis et al .

    Well done on all the decluttering of books . I was going to suggest you did a bootsale with them, but understand your reasoning for wanting rid asap.

    Happy new shed .
    Debts @ LBM £23,729.31. Debts @ 08/04/2016 £0

    Best win so far - holiday to Florida
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