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  • FIRST POST
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 2nd Jan 18, 3:38 PM
    • 31,073Posts
    • 182,555Thanks
    Karmacat
    Travelling On
    • #1
    • 2nd Jan 18, 3:38 PM
    Travelling On 2nd Jan 18 at 3:38 PM
    2018 really is a “travelling on” year for me: the final push, as far as finances and organisation are concerned. But I still need to look after the rest of me, so here it all is, adapted from the review I did on the last few pages of my previous diary:

    Make good memories.
    Building on last year. Carrying on reconnecting with old friends and new.
    Make new friends, especially locally.
    Our little board games group - we're all retired now!
    Rejoin the local writing group?

    Plus holidays and creative work, see below.

    Holidays
    A UK holiday for all three of us, probably to Hadrian's Wall.
    A cruise: current thinking is a 14 day-er with Tui to Norway; you could really do Norway in that time.

    Creativity
    I wanted to do lots of writing around one blog, and lots of design work around another, and I haven't done either of those things. I've missed it. A second edition of my original kindle book is needed, a new kindle is nearly ready, I can do a novel. There are a couple of options for another factual one.

    And if I'm ever going to design any cat cards or geometric patterns, this is the year.

    Jobs around the house
    The house is definitely my house now, not a work-live space. Replaster the hall, repair the hardstanding and the patio, some electrical work on the ground floor. Lots of other bits that are really little.

    Garden
    Weeding, getting compost, topsoil and bark chippings down, so I can plant edible perennials.
    Frences need weatherproofing. Prunings from hedging plants need burning to add to the soil.

    Health
    I'm carrying on
    getting better – need to get enough sleep. And I need stamina and strength – just enough to have a day out in London for instance.
    Healthy walks run by the local council. Dance classes, by the end of the year?

    Finances.
    MSE wins
    Swagbucks and You Gov right now, but I'll be going for Pinecone Research and Prolific Academic. Anything of that type that I can do from my armchair!
    Pensions
    I haven't done anything – luckily, the Stock Market hasn't collapsed, but I really do need to safeguard it, simply because I don't earn money any more.
    Online Sales
    I've kept some items back from the charity shop, things that will probably net £5 or more. Spread throughout the year, do it or donate it.
    Change current account
    HSBC have irritated me with their crazy fraud software for the last time. When my Regular Saver terminates, I'm moving.
    Insurance
    I just renewed last year, for ease, it was less than a month after the funeral. But I want a cheaper alternative, and I need to get quotes for insurance of all this jewellery I now have.

    Accounts
    2016/17 in the UK, and 2017 in France. I don't know if I'll need to do UK accounts after this year – I might have to, even though I've no UK earnings, because of the French apartment.
    French accountant
    I have the possibility of shifting accountant, people have got a computer programme going for leaseback properties like mine. Do I take the risk of moving? I'll have to decide really soon. Probably not worth it if I'm selling.
    Tackle French mortgage.
    The mortgage ends in September next year! About 630 euros a month goes to capital repayment, and the interest rate is 0.95% p.a.
    Ability to sell the French apartment?
    If I could sell it without penalty (huge VAT payment) I'd love to get rid of it now. I don't care too much what I'd get for it, even.
    My mother's house
    We'll be putting it up for sale in the summer; it was recently rewired, which is good, but it's still a fixer-upper, there's no doubt. Quite a bit of work in it.

    Counting Blessings”,says greent.
    I used to do that all the time. Last year felt short on blessings, to be honest, but even so my brother and sister and I have come together very strongly, we've met up with the Norfolk rellies, a new baby was born, I went catsitting twice, and that's just the big stuff.
    Next year will be more settled in the basics, so that everyday events feel more fun, and there'll be lots more opportunity for fun one-offs: I'm off to London this week and the next for days out. Another baby will be born in summer 2018!

    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
Page 106
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 12th Jan 19, 4:53 PM
    • 61,744 Posts
    • 264,561 Thanks
    beanielou
    Kitchen one step nearer
    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.***
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 12th Jan 19, 7:41 PM
    • 8,609 Posts
    • 43,777 Thanks
    Cheery Daff
    Ooh, exciting progress KC!
    Mortgage overpayments £1200 in 2018, £139 in 2019
    • earthgirl
    • By earthgirl 13th Jan 19, 8:12 AM
    • 2,424 Posts
    • 25,900 Thanks
    earthgirl
    That's great progress KC. I didn't think they cost that much? Ours was £30k but that was a triple sized extention, new drainage and OH really going to town on EVERYTHING.
    15/5/12 Paid off Mortgage 1 (£220k) Bought Dream House Dec 13 - Mortage 2 -£116,508. 15/7/18 Mortgage Free Again

    36 Ways to Up Your Income: https://youtu.be/rgV4PbF9tgo

    My Debt Free /Mortgage Free Journey: https://youtu.be/aZOWzPfh1g8
    • carbootcrazy
    • By carbootcrazy 13th Jan 19, 8:37 AM
    • 6,007 Posts
    • 37,282 Thanks
    carbootcrazy
    When you mentioned about going to Wickes I meant to say that they have kitchen planners and estimators that will visit free of charge to give you advice. Happily, you've already got that sorted now anyway. I expect all the kitchen fitting companies do that. I didn't manage to get back online much as I was a bit tied up yesterday racing to get my 10 items all described and listed to take advantage of the free final valuation fee offer that eBay sent me. Listings have to be 'live' by tonight though. Fortunately, I took the photos of the items a few weeks ago so I'd be ready when a too-good-to-refuse listing offer came in. Taking photos that might entice people to want to buy my tat is the worst part of the whole eBaying process IMO and is why I put things off. Well, apart from having a procrastination gene of course


    earthgirl, I had to smile when I saw that your OH went to town on everything and your total spend was £30k. We need a major amount of work done in our kitchen, not just want but really need, including a lot of structural work, moving windows and doors, knocking down an interior wall, adding a small extension, totally new wiring (although that's needed for the whole house), plus the cost of the new kitchen units. OH expects to get the lot done for about £8K. He needs a general anaesthetic to make him part with his money. We have improvements done so seldom, decades apart really, that he's lost all sense of how much things might cost nowadays. I'm green with envy at your kitchen even though I haven't even seen it
    Last edited by carbootcrazy; 13-01-2019 at 8:42 AM.
    Original Debt: £56804 (@02/13). Now: £1862.. Just one creditor to go

    Make £2019 in 2019 (#68) £452.71/£2019

    Treats Fund 2019: £411.78
    • greent
    • By greent 13th Jan 19, 8:37 AM
    • 7,898 Posts
    • 80,440 Thanks
    greent
    Whoop! Full steam ahead!

    That's not a bad price (am assuming it includes fitting?) I don't think I've ever confessed how much our kitchen cost last year - extremely un-mse!
    xx
    I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul
    Repaid mtge early (orig 11/25) 01/09 £124616 01/10 £104927 01/11 £89873 01/12 £76317 01/13 £52546 01/14 £35356 01/15 £12133 07/15 £NIL
    BTL Mtge 12/16 £69786 12/18 £54829 2019 OPs (#18) £1100/£5K
    Net sales 2019 £54.70/£500
    • Busy Mee1
    • By Busy Mee1 13th Jan 19, 8:58 AM
    • 849 Posts
    • 4,290 Thanks
    Busy Mee1
    Hi KC
    My parents had their kitchen fitted by Wickes last year. They were really impressed with both the kitchen and the kitchen fitter who did the work and it was reasonably priced. Wickes also offered them 0% finance, which they took and left their savings in the bank.

    They are now talking about getting them back to do the bathroom.
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 13th Jan 19, 9:36 AM
    • 2,596 Posts
    • 25,401 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    I know you have someone coming round but if you have time and inclination, you could have a play with one of the on-line planning tools - Wren (Homebase) has a link to one and so do Ikea - the Ikea link is the 3D planner here. It could make the discussion with your Wickes man more manageable - they can be very skilled at persuasion and you don't want to get too tired so you commit without being sure.

    My DH was trained by Kitchens Direct (part of the Moben Kitchens, Dolphin Bathrooms and Sharps Bedrooms group) and he was sent on an NLP (neuro-linguistic-programming) training course as part of that - all part of the sales techniques they use.

    You are a savvy girl KC and won't get duped but it is striking the balance between using their skills and making sure they are doing what you need, not their sales targets...
    MFIT T5 target to clear our mortgage completely (£59,998) - Mortgage Free Wannabes 2019 #37 £23,972.28 after Feb
    Save £12k in 2019 - #68 target is £7k £2543.59 after Feb
    OS Grocery Challenge 2019 target is £3k 20.66% so far, just one March shop left
    My DFD is here
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 13th Jan 19, 10:05 AM
    • 31,073 Posts
    • 182,555 Thanks
    Karmacat
    That's great progress KC. I didn't think they cost that much? Ours was £30k but that was a triple sized extention, new drainage and OH really going to town on EVERYTHING.
    Originally posted by earthgirl
    I agree, earthie, it seems a lot to me considering that that's none of the building work, just the kitchen and the electrics. There'll be the RSJ to put in, and lots of replastering. I *do* know that I'll insist on an itemised quote, and if they're not prepared to give me that, they don't get the work.


    When you mentioned about going to Wickes I meant to say that they have kitchen planners and estimators that will visit free of charge to give you advice. Happily, you've already got that sorted now anyway
    Originally posted by carbootcrazy
    Thanks CBC! I really need a planner, it's too much to measure and sort on my own. I understand your OH not having a sense of how much things cost nowadays, actually - I've bought so little beyond the absolute basics, I've very little idea of where prices are


    Whoop! Full steam ahead!

    That's not a bad price (am assuming it includes fitting?) I don't think I've ever confessed how much our kitchen cost last year - extremely un-mse!
    xx
    Originally posted by greent
    I had a feeling that might be the case, when you described the length of the run of granite, and two windows don't worry about it, I'm related to people, some by blood and some by marriage, who have kitchens on the scale you're (not) describing and they're lurvely. My kitchen will be a *lot* better than it is now, it will function well, but I'm afraid it will never be lurvely

    PS yes, the price does include installation. I had a play with the corner cupboards yesterday and the baskets that pull out have definitely got my attention
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 13th Jan 19, 10:11 AM
    • 31,073 Posts
    • 182,555 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Hi KC
    My parents had their kitchen fitted by Wickes last year. They were really impressed with both the kitchen and the kitchen fitter who did the work and it was reasonably priced. Wickes also offered them 0% finance, which they took and left their savings in the bank.

    They are now talking about getting them back to do the bathroom.
    Originally posted by Busy Mee1
    Thanks for that feedback, busymee - a lady in my walking group said the same thing, so I know they're not way out there. And if they introduce me to a local builder who'll do the work properly, which they say they will, I'll be in seventh heaven after the last two builders, both local, let me down badly.


    I know you have someone coming round but if you have time and inclination, you could have a play with one of the on-line planning tools - Wren (Homebase) has a link to one and so do Ikea - the Ikea link is the 3D planner here. It could make the discussion with your Wickes man more manageable - they can be very skilled at persuasion and you don't want to get too tired so you commit without being sure.
    Originally posted by Suffolk lass
    Thanks SL! I tried the Ikea one previously, over a period of 3 days, and it wouldn't let me do anything seemed very weird. I didn't try Wren/Homebase, so I'll do that before the guy turns up, thanks. The persuasion thing is an issue, isn't it, though with somebody like that, I'm more likely to call them out. I turned down the offer of a glossy magazine, for example, told him I just used the website, which is true. The prices happen to be on the website, of course


    My DH was trained by Kitchens Direct (part of the Moben Kitchens, Dolphin Bathrooms and Sharps Bedrooms group) and he was sent on an NLP (neuro-linguistic-programming) training course as part of that - all part of the sales techniques they use.

    You are a savvy girl KC and won't get duped but it is striking the balance between using their skills and making sure they are doing what you need, not their sales targets...
    I'll be on the lookout for NLP-stylee wording - once my professional hat comes back on, I *am* savvy about that. But as a consumer I can get blinded just like anybody else (witness my French apartment!) so its good to be reminded, thank you. Yes, this is about my needs, not theirs.
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    • carbootcrazy
    • By carbootcrazy 13th Jan 19, 10:56 AM
    • 6,007 Posts
    • 37,282 Thanks
    carbootcrazy

    I'll be on the lookout for NLP-stylee wording - once my professional hat comes back on, I *am* savvy about that. But as a consumer I can get blinded just like anybody else (witness my French apartment!) so its good to be reminded, thank you. Yes, this is about my needs, not theirs.
    Originally posted by Karmacat
    Wise words, as ever, KC

    I tend to veer on the side of 'good enough is good enough' now, a total mind-change from when I had money to spend and strove for perfection in all things. I was never a designer names or labels type of person in any area of life and thank goodness for that or I'd have been in even more debt than I eventually was. What I did have then though needed to be the best quality and look absolutely right which was usually the priciest option. Now, if it's functional and works for me it's fine. If it looks reasonably nice as well, so much the better but being right for me in the important areas of convenience and durability overrides everything else. I know we'll never have a showroom standard kitchen but one that makes the work I do in there, more labour saving, comfortable and frustration-free will tick the boxes for me. The planners might want to sell us a dream but will be wasting their time
    Last edited by carbootcrazy; 13-01-2019 at 11:05 AM.
    Original Debt: £56804 (@02/13). Now: £1862.. Just one creditor to go

    Make £2019 in 2019 (#68) £452.71/£2019

    Treats Fund 2019: £411.78
    • teapot2
    • By teapot2 13th Jan 19, 11:16 AM
    • 1,937 Posts
    • 6,917 Thanks
    teapot2
    I'll be following your kitchen adventures with interest KC. A new kitchen is one of the things I need to tackle at some point and the thought feels daunting as I've never embarked on a project like that before.
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 13th Jan 19, 11:56 AM
    • 31,073 Posts
    • 182,555 Thanks
    Karmacat
    I tend to veer on the side of 'good enough is good enough' now, a total mind-change from when I had money to spend and strove for perfection in all things.
    Originally posted by carbootcrazy
    I've always had the "good enough" attitude - but my standard was set so low, it *wasn't* actually good enough, which is why my last house was "needing work" when I moved in, and was sold as a complete "doer-upper"

    I know we'll never have a showroom standard kitchen but one that makes the work I do in there, more labour saving, comfortable and frustration-free will tick the boxes for me. The planners might want to sell us a dream but will be wasting their time
    Yeah, I think this guy might already have got the message I'm not going to be fooled by glitz but I need to be strong!

    I'll be following your kitchen adventures with interest KC. A new kitchen is one of the things I need to tackle at some point and the thought feels daunting as I've never embarked on a project like that before.
    Originally posted by teapot2
    Thanks teapot! Thats exactly why I'm going on about it so much, I feel so daunted, I've absolutely never done it before, or spent this much money on one room

    One of the Sun holidays is sorted (my sister did the donkey work, I just read it over like she asked me to), and I've been clearing the kitchen - want the guy to be able to measure everything he needs to, and I also want him to see a clear space and not be thinking "she's a loon I can take for everything she's got". More of that is on its way!
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    • John Blaze
    • By John Blaze 13th Jan 19, 12:24 PM
    • 23 Posts
    • 24 Thanks
    John Blaze
    Would like to go to japan
    • Goldiegirl
    • By Goldiegirl 13th Jan 19, 3:56 PM
    • 8,469 Posts
    • 49,984 Thanks
    Goldiegirl
    How exciting that you are getting on with your plans for the kitchen.

    As a perspective, I had my kitchen done in 2002, and it cost around £10000 then. It's not a huge kitchen, but included fridge, hob, oven, microwave, flooring, tiling and fitting.

    In retrospect, I don't think we shopped around very much, and we could have probably got it done a bit cheaper. But they were different times, we were time poor, and just wanted to get on with it and get it done.

    On the other hand, we were delighted with it, and I'm still happy with it today. The only thing I slightly regret is having a couple of glass doors on the wall units. We keep our nicest plates, glasswear and some decorative items in there. I've mentioned before that we hope to replace the doors within the next couple of years. I would get rid of the glass doors next time, as the cupboards could be better utilised with tins and packets which don't look so good on display.

    We have light wood veneer doors. I fancy cream coloured doors next time.
    Early retired - 18th December 2014
    If your dreams don't scare you, they're not big enough
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 13th Jan 19, 4:06 PM
    • 31,073 Posts
    • 182,555 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Thanks Goldie! Yep, its got to be done, it really doesn't work the way it is. That brings some perspective, that you paid that amount of money back then, ta muchly.

    I've been wondering about the floor tiling, I think greent mentioned it, not sure - it's chipped in a couple of places, and definitely old fashioned, but it's still perfectly functional. This is where my "good enough" can lead me astray - is it good enough as a base of the kitchen for the next 20-30 years? Probably not, to be honest, but I just can't tell.

    I know what you mean about glass doors! I have one opaqued one - I'd never choose it myself, I put things away in cupboards so I can't see them!

    My cc was weighing on me a bit, so I struggled online (totally self inflicted this time) and paid it off. Used the new card reader. I'm there!

    I think I might just buy some premium bonds as an interim measure, and hope like crazy that the million pound one comes up just till I decide what to do with it.


    John Blaze I checked out your posts today, and it looks like you're not quite sure how to join in - you've got it right that travel is a thing on my diary, absolutely so well sussed. But have a think what you want out of being on MSE, and head to that part of the forum, have a look around. You don't even need to post straight away - see what you'd like to take part in. Good luck!
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    • carbootcrazy
    • By carbootcrazy 13th Jan 19, 4:11 PM
    • 6,007 Posts
    • 37,282 Thanks
    carbootcrazy
    How exciting that you are getting on with your plans for the kitchen.

    As a perspective, I had my kitchen done in 2002, and it cost around £10000 then. It's not a huge kitchen, but included fridge, hob, oven, microwave, flooring, tiling and fitting.

    In retrospect, I don't think we shopped around very much, and we could have probably got it done a bit cheaper. But they were different times, we were time poor, and just wanted to get on with it and get it done.

    On the other hand, we were delighted with it, and I'm still happy with it today. The only thing I slightly regret is having a couple of glass doors on the wall units. We keep our nicest plates, glasswear and some decorative items in there. I've mentioned before that we hope to replace the doors within the next couple of years. I would get rid of the glass doors next time, as the cupboards could be better utilised with tins and packets which don't look so good on display.

    We have light wood veneer doors. I fancy cream coloured doors next time.
    Originally posted by Goldiegirl
    I prefer a light coloured kitchen too. Our current one is predominantly white and I think I'd like cream next time too. OH visited friends who have recently had a grey one installed and he came back saying he'd like one the same colour. Grey doesn't appeal to me at all, even though I haven't even seen it.
    Original Debt: £56804 (@02/13). Now: £1862.. Just one creditor to go

    Make £2019 in 2019 (#68) £452.71/£2019

    Treats Fund 2019: £411.78
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 13th Jan 19, 4:30 PM
    • 61,744 Posts
    • 264,561 Thanks
    beanielou
    If I could choose colurs for a new kitchen I would go for grey or blue.
    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.***
    • carbootcrazy
    • By carbootcrazy 13th Jan 19, 4:39 PM
    • 6,007 Posts
    • 37,282 Thanks
    carbootcrazy
    If I could choose colurs for a new kitchen I would go for grey or blue.
    Originally posted by beanielou
    Maybe I need to have a re-think about grey then. It seems to be an 'in' colour.
    Original Debt: £56804 (@02/13). Now: £1862.. Just one creditor to go

    Make £2019 in 2019 (#68) £452.71/£2019

    Treats Fund 2019: £411.78
    • the cross rabbit
    • By the cross rabbit 13th Jan 19, 5:16 PM
    • 406 Posts
    • 2,465 Thanks
    the cross rabbit
    Prefer wooden kitchen units and light yellow walls.
    CRx
    Mortgage £82,000, due to end July 2036. 18/1/2019 Mortgage £79,150.55
    #67 mortgage free wannabe 2019 £157.48/£800
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 13th Jan 19, 5:23 PM
    • 31,073 Posts
    • 182,555 Thanks
    Karmacat
    The modern "grey" is very pale, just a magnolia version of grey, not deep at all, CBC, it would probably be fine.

    CR, I understand what you're saying, but I want the colour to be light (without being too bright!) and for reasons I don't understand I want white walls all the way through the house, after years of bright, bright colours.


    I've been tootling in the garden a bit - pulled a bit of couch grass, spread some bark chippings over the area. Not enough, but it looks better and more cutting back was involved - stacking dead stems of sweetpeas so they can go in my little bonfire next time.
    Last edited by Karmacat; 13-01-2019 at 5:27 PM.
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
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