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  • FIRST POST
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 2nd Jan 18, 3:38 PM
    • 29,189Posts
    • 166,635Thanks
    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!

    Retired August 2016
Page 26
    • michelle09
    • By michelle09 12th Mar 18, 5:53 PM
    • 777 Posts
    • 4,277 Thanks
    michelle09
    Eek, that sounds wet. It's still healthy if you go out by yourself.
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 12th Mar 18, 8:31 PM
    • 29,189 Posts
    • 166,635 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Good evening

    earthgirl - 45 minutes in the rain is absolutely not okay, but otherwise all right, if thats all I'm doing. I went for about half an hour - round the block twice because it really looked like the skies were about to open Then they did!

    michelle I did a healthy, balanced pace, but its also about meeting up with people. It will be okay this week anyway though - sister on Thursday, hopefully a U3A coffee morning on Friday, and then on Sunday I've just heard my Norfolk rellies are staying locally as they're off on their travels the next day so I should be able to get to see them at some stage.

    Today, I did my walk, and I did really well on organising and scanning the photos. Connected with a neighbour too: thats the thing about local links again, trying to build up from a base of absolute zero

    Just a few minutes wandering about on here, and got to shut the lappie down now. Hope everyone has a good evening.
    Retired August 2016
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 14th Mar 18, 11:51 AM
    • 29,189 Posts
    • 166,635 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Morning all (just ) I'm still not finishing up the tasks I set myself recently, apart from cutting back leylandii a bit, so I didn't post yesterday - but still got totally diverted by the scanning but last night I also took an OTC sleep aid, and it was blissful




    So, today:
    - I've got SB running in the background.
    - also got my "spare" scanner (long story, my brother didn't want it) set up in the kitchen, so thats running in the background too if I'm faffing about in there.
    - I **have** to do one particular email today. Must, must must ...
    - need to clean up a bit, just sweeping the bedroom will be a start.
    - Tidy! Tidy, tidy, tidy. Did I mention tidy?

    It's lovely sunshine, and I may use that excuse to finish off the leylandii I was working on yesterday. At least it would then be able to leave the property on Friday
    Retired August 2016
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 14th Mar 18, 12:11 PM
    • 1,678 Posts
    • 10,073 Thanks
    redofromstart
    Envious of your sunshine, I'm trying to convince myself that its warm enough to do a bit of snowdrop reloacting in the front garden but its rather over cast.
    • Abby_W
    • By Abby_W 14th Mar 18, 12:17 PM
    • 5 Posts
    • 8 Thanks
    Abby_W

    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.
    Originally posted by Karmacat
    Is it still possible to get (approximately) such a great interest rate? And if yes, where do you get it?
    This makes me think if my dreams can become reality.
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 14th Mar 18, 4:17 PM
    • 29,189 Posts
    • 166,635 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Envious of your sunshine, I'm trying to convince myself that its warm enough to do a bit of snowdrop reloacting in the front garden but its rather over cast.
    Originally posted by redofromstart
    I went out just after I posted taht, redofromstart, and I'm glad I did, because right now its cloudy and cold. Quite bright, but not a patch on what it was this morning ... I'm pleased with my work on that leylandii hedge though - its right by my front window, so it has a big effect on me. And now that I've discovered the border to my property is actually further inside the strip of earth containing the leylandii, I'm encouraged to keep on snipping it back, letting more light in to my living room. Also snipping away at the ivy, which was clogging a drain for the drainpipe, and is on the house wall. Legally, I can't do anything about it on their property (though I'm sure they wouldn't care) but I *will* take care of it on my side of the boundary, as well as keep the drain clear.
    Retired August 2016
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 14th Mar 18, 4:33 PM
    • 29,189 Posts
    • 166,635 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Is it still possible to get (approximately) such a great interest rate? And if yes, where do you get it?
    This makes me think if my dreams can become reality.
    Originally posted by Abby_W
    Abby, I know that the interest rate is great - it started out at 6 - 7% or so, its a variable rate that potentially changes every 3 months. And it used to change a lot too, but in the last few years its gone down to this low point, and stayed there. My mortgage is paid off in September this year, so that will be that. I don't know what deals are available, its a euro mortgage in France, and to be honest, I just took what I was offered The bank is now called Credit Foncier.

    However, while the mortgage rate is great, the deal is terrible. Absolutely terrible. If I hadn't done it, and just kept the money I've got in a savings account, I'd probably have retired with maybe 40% more money at my disposal, I'm absolutely serious. A coalition of owners fleeced by this scheme had a friendly European Parliament member ready to ask questions about it (though I doubt that will happen because of Brexit, most of the victims of the scheme, like me, are British). I won't go into the details of *how* its terrible, thats a dozen posts

    I can't caution you enough about buying property abroad as a first venture. Don't do it, please don't.

    For you, though, if you want to make your fortune ... these are the steps I'd recommend:
    - save money **ferociously**. Whatever you choose to do, you'll need seed money, startup money.
    - for most people, the best way of getting more income is to do more of their main job. I don't know if thats true for you, but thats the general truth.
    - as many mse hacks as you can cope with!
    - if I was starting right now, and was healthy, I'd make a small business out of selling card designs (there's lots of sellers, but its a huge market) and maybe cards themselves; card designs can be used for other stuff too, like T shirts, mouse mats, all sorts.
    - also, I'd push at being a writer on self employment sites.
    - dogwalking. The money people pay for dogwalking is mad. Its a great sideline, and I bet it could grow into a broader business if you're good with your animals.

    So when you've got the dosh together, a property. Watch the tv programme Homes Under The Hammer religiously. But the legal situation is changing all the time - DYOR, which is Do Your Own Research. I've noticed that people who buy a rental property in a cheap area get a better return on their money. But truly, read library books about this stuff.

    I've no idea if I'm teaching you to suck eggs, and if I am, I apologise unreservedly I get frustrated at my own low energy levels, that I couldn't contemplate doing stuff like this any more ... thats why its turned into an essay
    Retired August 2016
    • pinkypig
    • By pinkypig 14th Mar 18, 8:54 PM
    • 1,204 Posts
    • 9,912 Thanks
    pinkypig
    Very sound and wise advice Karma

    Leylandii is a blooming pain isnt it? Best of luck...

    PP xx
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 15th Mar 18, 8:23 AM
    • 29,189 Posts
    • 166,635 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Thank you PP!

    Things weren't too bad yesterday. I did the email I needed to do, I swept the bedroom, had another chunk of time clearing leylandii. Lots of scanning, though I was picking and choosing because a lot were just views.

    Very little is going to get done today - I'm off out on the first National Trust visit of the year

    Hope everyone has a good day
    Retired August 2016
    • themadvix
    • By themadvix 15th Mar 18, 9:31 AM
    • 1,652 Posts
    • 9,646 Thanks
    themadvix
    Enjoy your day out!
    OPs 2017 = £3103
    S&S ISA 2017 = £626
    OPs 2016 = £6142.12
    Starting balance 2012: £132000; balance Dec 2017: £96,822
    MFW2017 no. 38
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 15th Mar 18, 10:37 AM
    • 53,979 Posts
    • 213,896 Thanks
    beanielou
    Happy day out
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~** **Weight loss 2 stone 11 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.
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 15th Mar 18, 7:33 PM
    • 29,189 Posts
    • 166,635 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Thank you both! Twas lovely, its a great place anyway, but an extremely knowledgeable volunteer guide made it amazing.

    £9 transport costs, well worth it. Absolutely nothing of an mse nature done today
    Retired August 2016
    • elantan
    • By elantan 15th Mar 18, 8:17 PM
    • 19,652 Posts
    • 52,988 Thanks
    elantan
    ach mse days are overrated

    just glad you had fun, I've found many volunteer guides to be the best part about the place I'm visiting, there was a cracker in Rosslyn chapel I spent ages talking to, their passion for their subject was amazing to watch
    march 2011-july2019 8 years and 4 months ... or 100 months and counting
    "what would you do if you knew you couldn't fail.... enjoy the adventure" " to my own self be true"
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 15th Mar 18, 8:22 PM
    • 53,979 Posts
    • 213,896 Thanks
    beanielou
    Glad the guide was awosome
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~** **Weight loss 2 stone 11 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.
    • pinkypig
    • By pinkypig 15th Mar 18, 8:50 PM
    • 1,204 Posts
    • 9,912 Thanks
    pinkypig
    Love a Natty Trust day out . Glad you had a lovely time xx
    • carbootcrazy
    • By carbootcrazy 16th Mar 18, 6:35 AM
    • 4,717 Posts
    • 26,761 Thanks
    carbootcrazy
    I'm back now from my brother's funeral on Wednesday. It was pretty gruelling but all things considered it couldn't have gone better. I feel very humbled that everyone was so kind to me, they went out of their way to include me in everything.


    The non-religious service was lovely, just the perfect mix of poems, short readings, anecdotes and music, full of love and good humour even on such a sad day. It was a strange feeling though 'seeing' him through other people's eyes. The turnout was amazing, the crematorium chapel was packed and SIL had received 67 condolence cards!. My brother was the type of person to make lifelong friends, some of the attendees were friends from his Primary school days, and some people had travelled from all 4 corners of UK to be there. Even the sun shone albeit weakly and there was only the slightest cool breeze. I can't believe how fortuitous it was that all the gales, torrential rain and snow of days before were avoided. It even started teeming down again during my train journey home.


    I suppose it's relatively usual after all that's happened to feel the need to completely rethink my life (what's left of it) and perhaps do a lot of thinks differently from now on. I'm unbelievably lucky in always having been in excellent health and I ought to make the most of every opportunity that life sends my way. Well, the slight problem of lack of money is a bit of a hindrance still but I'm working on that and am determined to be debt free by the end of this year. I think it's high time I stopped sleepwalking through life and actually made things happen rather than just taking what comes along. That sounds like fighting talk but watch this space
    Make £10 A Day Challenge 2018: Jan-Apr: £757.05+. May: £1209.25


    Original Debt: £56804 (@02/13). Now: £9998
    . Under £10K at long last.
    • elantan
    • By elantan 16th Mar 18, 7:35 AM
    • 19,652 Posts
    • 52,988 Thanks
    elantan
    that sounds like it's been an important time for you car boot .... good luck working through it, a very worthwhile life lies ahead for you xxxx
    march 2011-july2019 8 years and 4 months ... or 100 months and counting
    "what would you do if you knew you couldn't fail.... enjoy the adventure" " to my own self be true"
    • daisy 1571
    • By daisy 1571 16th Mar 18, 8:39 AM
    • 273 Posts
    • 3,374 Thanks
    daisy 1571
    Glad it went as good as it did, yup it's these times that can be a good kick up the proverbial so good luck to you in your future new plans

    Daisy xx
    "Never save something for a special occasion. Every day in your life is a special occasion" Take hold of every moment by anon

    The difference between what you were yesterday and what you will be tomorrow is what you do today
    • themadvix
    • By themadvix 16th Mar 18, 8:50 AM
    • 1,652 Posts
    • 9,646 Thanks
    themadvix
    Will be watching this space CBC! Sounds like plans are afoot. Good for you. Glad the funeral went as well as could be expected and the weather held.

    PP, I couldn't agree more - NT days are good for the soul!

    And KC, the whole point of being MSE most of the time is so that you can thoroughly enjoy and afford those quality non-MSE times
    OPs 2017 = £3103
    S&S ISA 2017 = £626
    OPs 2016 = £6142.12
    Starting balance 2012: £132000; balance Dec 2017: £96,822
    MFW2017 no. 38
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 16th Mar 18, 9:02 AM
    • 53,979 Posts
    • 213,896 Thanks
    beanielou
    Glad all went as it could do cbc.
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~** **Weight loss 2 stone 11 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.
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