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  • FIRST POST
    • poppytattoo
    • By poppytattoo 26th Jan 18, 10:40 AM
    • 41Posts
    • 109Thanks
    poppytattoo
    About time I sorted myself out
    • #1
    • 26th Jan 18, 10:40 AM
    About time I sorted myself out 26th Jan 18 at 10:40 AM
    Hello everyone!

    I have been lurking on the MSE forums for a few years now, knowing I should get stuck in but not ever getting round to doing it.

    I've decided that 2018 is the year I get on top of my debts - which have been spiralling out of control for the past few years. I've always been terrible with money - I took out my first payday loan at the age of 17, dreadful I know - although managed to pay that all back.

    A few years ago a health problem escalated and meant I needed to go part-time at work(I was studying at uni at the time) and a need to get out of a relationship where my money was being spent for me by a not very nice person. After a few months sofa-surfing, I got my first credit card to allow me to get a shared flat with some friends of friends and start again. I then got into the habit of using it, and slipping into my overdraft, which at the time was 0% interest.

    I always knew I should sort it out and stop spending but firmly believed I was in control of it all, I took out consolidation loans to get back on track and then managed to get back into my old bad habits of spending on credit.

    Now, I've finally PROPERLY taken stock of where I'm up to (prompted by a surprise proposal from my now-finance in November!) and realised I'm more in debt than ever (about 21K).

    I've never missed a payment but am worried that if I don't drastically get my s*** together now, the interest will eat me up and I will go beyond treading water to actually drowning.

    I'm currently in a full-time job. Me and my fianc! managed to scrape enough together to buy our little house a couple of years ago, on a fixed rate mortgage that is very cheap monthly (in comparison to what we were renting for!). He knew that I was in thousands of debt but not by how much, but I don't want to start married life with any secrets so we had a big heart to heart last night where I told him exactly how much I owe and what my plans are. It was such a relief and he was very supportive.

    We have set a wedding date for just under two years away, and I may not be debt free by then but I certainly want to be almost there. My fella is incredibly good with his money and he's going to help me keep on track by helping me with budgeting etc.

    Sorry for the incredibly long life story!

    So far in January I have:
    - Sold car (210)
    - Cancelled car insurance and got a rebate (1,127)
    - Started planning and budgeting our weekly meals at 20, which has worked so far
    - begun ebaying/shpocking/Facebook selling books and clothes (about 26 earned so far)
    - We also have a carboot booked for Sunday, which I'm looking forward to
    - Cancelled a trip to Cologne for February (we had booked cheap flights but not yet sorted accommodation etc. We decided to take the hit on the flights rather than spend more)
    - Cancelled a trip to Centre Parcs (took a hit on a small deposit, but worth it for the amount we will save)
    - I've made a pact not to buy any unnecessary toiletries as inspired by the challenges on here, so far in Jan not bought any
    - Also not buying any food, coffees, snacks etc which has drastically cut my weekly spend

    -I've also just got myself a pre-payment cash card, meaning I can put a small amount on each week and live off that, to avoid being tempted to use the cards or overdraft.


    I'm incredibly sorry for the long and rambling post, but I'm also very excited to keep on with this determination to sort myself out and get nearly debt free (whilst saving for our frugal wedding).

    Thanks for the inspiration to everyone on these forums, and I hope I can share some good news soon!
    Debt-free wannabe since January 2018.
    Car repayments: 12986.46/15895.40, Credit card:4519.65/5000, Dental fees:972/ 1558, HSBC dc loan:7936.42 /11767.81, HSBC overdraft:5000/5000
    Total debt: was 39220.58, now 31,414.53

    Make 5 a day in April challenge: 7.75/150
Page 2
    • Kitten868
    • By Kitten868 2nd Apr 19, 6:42 PM
    • 1,185 Posts
    • 2,979 Thanks
    Kitten868
    You never forget a baby you have lost. They are a part of you always and you never stop being sad, you just learn to live with the pain. Be kind to yourself. You will come through the worst days.

    You don't see it but you are actually nailing this. Could you change up your tactics to feel more successful? Could you snowball and focus on one debt? Say prioritise the credit card? Its difficult as loan repayments are high I know but there will be some way of reframing things so you feel more successful. Maybe its colouring off squares as your debt reduces? You're getting there.xxx
    Loan 1 4900/8000
    Loan 2 2900/5800
    Total 7800/13800 43% PAID

    And CC 1250/1900
    • poppytattoo
    • By poppytattoo 3rd Apr 19, 9:10 AM
    • 41 Posts
    • 109 Thanks
    poppytattoo
    Thank you Kitten868 - your kind words mean a lot. I was very young at the time and never really told many people about what had happened. I'm at the age now where most of my friends are pregnant with their second and sometimes the debt feels like the only thing getting in the way of me trying again - I often manage to conflate the two in my head! I am much, much better these days at coping with the sadness though and my fiance is very good at being there for me.

    And thank you for saying I'm nailing it! I suppose I don't really trust myself after loads of poor financial decisions in the past where I really thought I was doing the best thing! I suppose every month I get a bit closer...

    I will have to take a look at the snowballing thing. I suppose I am not 100% sure how to go about it because I have set payments for each debt. if that makes sense?

    OH made a spreadsheet for me to track my finances and it is nice seeing some of the figures go down, but I think you're right about reframing it, I obviously wasn't 100% sure how much debt I was even in. Maybe I need a chart or something that I can LOOK at and feel satisfied when I colour a square in, like you suggested. I'm going to have a play on excel and see if I can create something that would help.
    • poppytattoo
    • By poppytattoo 5th Apr 19, 11:43 AM
    • 41 Posts
    • 109 Thanks
    poppytattoo
    I have just signed up to a "survey" company that monitors what apps you use on your phone. 20 in Amazon or M&S vouchers for the first month, and 10 after. Read the T&Cs and it does seem very intrusive to be honest, but I will see how I get on and feel after the first voucher...


    Can't tell if I'm mad or desperate or both.

    Annoyed at myself today because I broke my finger at netball earlier this week, drop in centre instructed me to buy bandages, medical tape to strap it up and then ibuprofen gel to help with the pain and swelling, which was pretty bad to be fair. I wasn't planning on spending any money Monday-Friday this week, but that has set me back by about 8, despite me buying the own-brand cheapest versions of everything.

    Then I missed the bus this morning and have had to drive into work to make it in on time. Extra 8.50. Grrrrrr.
    Debt-free wannabe since January 2018.
    Car repayments: 12986.46/15895.40, Credit card:4519.65/5000, Dental fees:972/ 1558, HSBC dc loan:7936.42 /11767.81, HSBC overdraft:5000/5000
    Total debt: was 39220.58, now 31,414.53

    Make 5 a day in April challenge: 7.75/150
    • poppytattoo
    • By poppytattoo 8th Apr 19, 8:36 AM
    • 41 Posts
    • 109 Thanks
    poppytattoo
    Right I've freaked out and pulled out of the data collection thing mentioned above.

    Twenty quid in vouchers sounds good and would be a big help - but I realised over the weekend it isn't just recording what apps I use - it's listening to me through a microphone, watching what I type into Google, tracking me via GPS! I feel like I need to have more respect for my own privacy. That doesn't make me feel comfortable and I also worry about work, and the people around me, who haven't consented to being watched.

    I may be stressed and desperate but I'm worth more than that.
    Debt-free wannabe since January 2018.
    Car repayments: 12986.46/15895.40, Credit card:4519.65/5000, Dental fees:972/ 1558, HSBC dc loan:7936.42 /11767.81, HSBC overdraft:5000/5000
    Total debt: was 39220.58, now 31,414.53

    Make 5 a day in April challenge: 7.75/150
    • Scott-Weiland
    • By Scott-Weiland 9th Apr 19, 5:26 AM
    • 446 Posts
    • 1,037 Thanks
    Scott-Weiland
    Any survey company that monitors apps you use or which tracks websites you use avoid like this plague. I have done surveys online for a few years now and topped up my income nicely.

    Stick with the ones i have listed below i have put a brief overview of how they work, there sadly is alot of market research survey companies that are junk.

    OpinionOutpost.co.uk (surveys are paid in points 5-25 points a survey you can draw down at 50 points 2.50 pay payout or amazon

    Prolific Academic- surveys vary in price can draw down at 5pounds

    Power of opinions- surveys are usually 15-50points, once you hit 1080 points you can draw into payment or bank

    Qmee- surveys range from 5p too 1.50. Money can instantly be dropped into paypal.

    Opinium Research surveys are usually 25p to 75p can drawdown into bank or paypal at 25pounds.

    One poll surveys vary usually 10-30p can drop at 25quid.

    Mingle respondi surveys vary in points can drop at 2000points

    and swagbucks. Surveys are 10-100 points can drawdown at 800 points.

    Yougov, 5000 points needed surveys are usually 50 points, but its a 50quid payout.


    Some people use others but i really dont rate others out there. I earn depending on work etc etc on average about an extra 50-125 pm month on surveys. First one i would say too try is Qmee its quite steady.
    • poppytattoo
    • By poppytattoo 9th Apr 19, 10:57 AM
    • 41 Posts
    • 109 Thanks
    poppytattoo
    That is incredibly helpful, thank you so much! I feel like I have spent so much time doing "surveys" in the past year or two and literally have seen NO benefit. But this list is amazing - I am going to save this down somewhere on my computer and then I have a record of what to go for - I'd much rather earn a couple of quid and actually get to access it than do surveys for the chance of winning a ridiculous price and just ending up spammed to death!
    Debt-free wannabe since January 2018.
    Car repayments: 12986.46/15895.40, Credit card:4519.65/5000, Dental fees:972/ 1558, HSBC dc loan:7936.42 /11767.81, HSBC overdraft:5000/5000
    Total debt: was 39220.58, now 31,414.53

    Make 5 a day in April challenge: 7.75/150
    • Scott-Weiland
    • By Scott-Weiland 9th Apr 19, 11:03 AM
    • 446 Posts
    • 1,037 Thanks
    Scott-Weiland
    That is incredibly helpful, thank you so much! I feel like I have spent so much time doing "surveys" in the past year or two and literally have seen NO benefit. But this list is amazing - I am going to save this down somewhere on my computer and then I have a record of what to go for - I'd much rather earn a couple of quid and actually get to access it than do surveys for the chance of winning a ridiculous price and just ending up spammed to death!
    Originally posted by poppytattoo
    Qmee is your best bet too start with Poppy please let me know how you get on. On some good days if i am off work and just relaxing in front of the tv i can easy make 3-4 quid a day on qmee. Qmee also has a benefit like swagbucks as well on some surveys if you get say 30-40 percent through and they screen you out you still get points. Its tiny amounts but i have lost count of the times i have had the odd 5-10p here and there. I know it is not loads but every little helps even if your just building up an Emergency Fund.

    I know what you mean re getting screen outs. I used too be on global test market and valued opinions and getting 2 3rds of the way through a survey was annoying.

    Any survey questions pm me or look at my diary i did earn i think it was the year before last earn around 1300-1500 off surveys and cashback. So what Martin Lewis says on here is possible

    https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/family/make-money-surveys/
    Last edited by Scott-Weiland; 09-04-2019 at 11:14 AM.
    • poppytattoo
    • By poppytattoo 11th Apr 19, 8:48 AM
    • 41 Posts
    • 109 Thanks
    poppytattoo
    Morning all!
    Lovely sunny day today but of course I'm at work so can't really enjoy it.

    I had a good day yesterday - fiance had some really good news at work.

    I found out that I got 78% on my last uni assignment - not bad for a part timer, I've been doing this master's degree in my lunch breaks so to get another distinction (the highest grade) is really gratifying.

    Also bandages are now off for broken finger and much less bruised and swollen, so looks like I'm on the mend.

    I also enjoyed a quick 20 minute trip to cafe Nero for my free hot chocolate with 02 - it was a welcome break as I've been doing nearly 10 hour days in the office this week, absolutely snowed under - wish I had overtime in my job!

    Doing a carboot sale this weekend and I cannot wait. Haven't really got any high-ticket items to sell on, but I do have a pile of clothes etc and if I can get rid of them and make a bit of cash I'll be happy.
    Debt-free wannabe since January 2018.
    Car repayments: 12986.46/15895.40, Credit card:4519.65/5000, Dental fees:972/ 1558, HSBC dc loan:7936.42 /11767.81, HSBC overdraft:5000/5000
    Total debt: was 39220.58, now 31,414.53

    Make 5 a day in April challenge: 7.75/150
    • poppytattoo
    • By poppytattoo 12th Apr 19, 7:54 AM
    • 41 Posts
    • 109 Thanks
    poppytattoo
    Morning all! The sun is shining, it's a Friday... and I feel rubbish. 12th April always has me feeling "meh" because of personal reasons. I've got a splitting headache but cant tell if it's purely emotional or if I've actually got something wrong with me.

    However, I am doing my best to think positive. Takeaway tonight (cash pack up to 15 deal, so a chinese should only cost us about 3 after that) and binging Game of Thrones as we've been rewatching but need to finish season seven! I'll get there.

    Hope everyone has a lovely end to the working week...
    Debt-free wannabe since January 2018.
    Car repayments: 12986.46/15895.40, Credit card:4519.65/5000, Dental fees:972/ 1558, HSBC dc loan:7936.42 /11767.81, HSBC overdraft:5000/5000
    Total debt: was 39220.58, now 31,414.53

    Make 5 a day in April challenge: 7.75/150
    • Spendy Spenderson
    • By Spendy Spenderson 15th Apr 19, 5:15 PM
    • 30 Posts
    • 180 Thanks
    Spendy Spenderson
    Hi Poppy,


    Didn't want to just read and run, especially without saying well done on posting so regularly again! I think you're doing really well (and slightly in awe of you managing to squeeze in a Masters while working) and will subscribe to cheer you on. I agree with a previous poster though that perhaps it's good to have a visual recognition of how you're doing, something tangible to colour in when a chunk of debt is paid off - ie each 1%. Have you created that chart for yourself?


    Also is the c/c on 0% so that the payments are directly reducing the balance or is there interest? Which one are you focusing one as the priority debt to pay off first?


    Keep going, you're doing great!
    P.s - I have also been binge watching GOT and was finishing series 7 over the weekend ;-)
    • Scott-Weiland
    • By Scott-Weiland 15th Apr 19, 10:01 PM
    • 446 Posts
    • 1,037 Thanks
    Scott-Weiland
    Morning all! The sun is shining, it's a Friday... and I feel rubbish. 12th April always has me feeling "meh" because of personal reasons. I've got a splitting headache but cant tell if it's purely emotional or if I've actually got something wrong with me.

    However, I am doing my best to think positive. Takeaway tonight (cash pack up to 15 deal, so a chinese should only cost us about 3 after that) and binging Game of Thrones as we've been rewatching but need to finish season seven! I'll get there.

    Hope everyone has a lovely end to the working week...
    Originally posted by poppytattoo
    Cashback on a takeaway seems so wrong but so good lol i can remember spending a fortune when the world cup was 10percent offer on Just Eat lol
    • poppytattoo
    • By poppytattoo 16th Apr 19, 11:14 AM
    • 41 Posts
    • 109 Thanks
    poppytattoo
    Hi Poppy,


    Didn't want to just read and run, especially without saying well done on posting so regularly again! I think you're doing really well (and slightly in awe of you managing to squeeze in a Masters while working) and will subscribe to cheer you on. I agree with a previous poster though that perhaps it's good to have a visual recognition of how you're doing, something tangible to colour in when a chunk of debt is paid off - ie each 1%. Have you created that chart for yourself?


    Also is the c/c on 0% so that the payments are directly reducing the balance or is there interest? Which one are you focusing one as the priority debt to pay off first?


    Keep going, you're doing great!
    P.s - I have also been binge watching GOT and was finishing series 7 over the weekend ;-)
    Originally posted by Spendy Spenderson

    Hi Spendy! Thanks so much for your message, I'm definitely feeling good about posting on here. It's like a weight off my shoulders - I think we in the UK are so bad at talking about money - but here is a community of people cheering each other on and it's so heartening to see!

    I've created a couple of charts so far, just with a ruler and pen and pencil for each 1%, because I know that if I did one on my computer I would just save it down and forget about it. And we don't have a printer! I am so bad at maths that it took me a while but it's nice to see each square slowly being coloured in.

    The credit card is not 0% interest, I've tried to move to another credit card to get a 0% deal but unfortunately wasn't accepted for any, my credit rating is a bit rubbish at the moment mainly down to constant credit checks (my own fault, but I've never missed a payment on my mountain of debt so at least it's not because of defaults). Basically the monthly payment is a set amount, was set as a bit more than the interest payment, and each month as the balance reduces slightly the interest does too so a bit more gets paid off. If that makes sense?

    In terms of priority debt - all of my other debt (apart from the overdraft) are sort of "set amounts" - the loans, car payments etc and I'm not really sure how I could prioritise them because they are all monthly payments that I've agreed too, so I don't think I'd be able to start paying less on some and more on others. Would love to know if that's not the case though? I am a bit confused by that!!
    Debt-free wannabe since January 2018.
    Car repayments: 12986.46/15895.40, Credit card:4519.65/5000, Dental fees:972/ 1558, HSBC dc loan:7936.42 /11767.81, HSBC overdraft:5000/5000
    Total debt: was 39220.58, now 31,414.53

    Make 5 a day in April challenge: 7.75/150
    • poppytattoo
    • By poppytattoo 18th Apr 19, 8:47 AM
    • 41 Posts
    • 109 Thanks
    poppytattoo
    Cashback on a takeaway seems so wrong but so good lol i can remember spending a fortune when the world cup was 10percent offer on Just Eat lol
    Originally posted by Scott-Weiland
    Absolutely! It was delicious, really enjoyed it :P
    Debt-free wannabe since January 2018.
    Car repayments: 12986.46/15895.40, Credit card:4519.65/5000, Dental fees:972/ 1558, HSBC dc loan:7936.42 /11767.81, HSBC overdraft:5000/5000
    Total debt: was 39220.58, now 31,414.53

    Make 5 a day in April challenge: 7.75/150
    • poppytattoo
    • By poppytattoo 18th Apr 19, 9:07 AM
    • 41 Posts
    • 109 Thanks
    poppytattoo
    Morning all!

    Hope everyone has a relaxing day ahead of the bank holiday weekend.

    I've spent more than I hoped to this week - had a wardrobe malfunction on the way to an important work dinner so had to run into Boots for some tights, and then fiance packed a lunch for me that turned out to have an ingredient in I am allergic to, so he sent me a panicked text and I went out and bought lunch instead.

    It's been crazy busy and I am very tired but really looking forward to the weekend. Having a few friends round for a BBQ tomorrow but we basically all did a shopping list and have divvied it up so I'm not having to feed loads of people
    Debt-free wannabe since January 2018.
    Car repayments: 12986.46/15895.40, Credit card:4519.65/5000, Dental fees:972/ 1558, HSBC dc loan:7936.42 /11767.81, HSBC overdraft:5000/5000
    Total debt: was 39220.58, now 31,414.53

    Make 5 a day in April challenge: 7.75/150
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