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  • FIRST POST
    • Mydmp
    • By Mydmp 3rd Mar 18, 1:05 PM
    • 28Posts
    • 103Thanks
    Mydmp
    Need to stop procrastinating and just do it!
    • #1
    • 3rd Mar 18, 1:05 PM
    Need to stop procrastinating and just do it! 3rd Mar 18 at 1:05 PM
    Hi everyone
    Been a long, long time lurker on this site and have learned a lot along the way. Trouble is we’ve not put into practice what we’ve learned and we’re now back to being in a lot of debt.
    In fairness to ourselves it has been a very difficult year with unexpected family problems which has meant a temporary reduction in income and a lot of additional expense. This shouldn’t have been a problem if we had looked after our finances in the past. Unfortunately we hadn’t and as a result our credit history is appalling and we had no savings. This has resulted in us having to take on a lot of further debt at really high interest rates.
    Thankfully from the end of this month our income will return to normal so we are determined to never get in this position again.
    We do both earn good salaries so we know we should be able to do it. Lots of people on here are in a far worse position than us and we feel ashamed that despite a good income we’ve allowed ourselves to get into such a dire position.

    Determined this time to stop procrastinating and to just get on with it!!

    Hoping starting this diary and being active on this forum will help keep us on track
Page 2
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 6th Mar 18, 8:16 AM
    • 4,023 Posts
    • 20,699 Thanks
    foxgloves
    It's amazing what reductions you can find, isn't it? My best ones have been in the evening in Waitrose yellow-sticker fridge. I don't buy all the posh snacks & ready meals & mafe-up salads & stuff. I look out for white bags, as that's the stuff which has been bagged up at the end of the day from the butcher's counter. I've had some great slow cooker meats that way......lamb shanks, a beef shank, shin beef, ox cheek.....all tough cuts but meltingly gorgeous after 8 hrs in a slow cooker. Also struck lucky one night when they had reduced a load of pork tenderloin joints & I got 3 of those for between £1.22 & 2.30 each. These white bags seem rarer at the moment, but I still always look if I'm passing the shop at that time. Who doesn't love a bargain....esp when debt-busting?!
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • Mydmp
    • By Mydmp 6th Mar 18, 4:04 PM
    • 28 Posts
    • 103 Thanks
    Mydmp
    It's amazing what reductions you can find, isn't it? My best ones have been in the evening in Waitrose yellow-sticker fridge. I don't buy all the posh snacks & ready meals & mafe-up salads & stuff. I look out for white bags, as that's the stuff which has been bagged up at the end of the day from the butcher's counter. I've had some great slow cooker meats that way......lamb shanks, a beef shank, shin beef, ox cheek.....all tough cuts but meltingly gorgeous after 8 hrs in a slow cooker. Also struck lucky one night when they had reduced a load of pork tenderloin joints & I got 3 of those for between £1.22 & 2.30 each. These white bags seem rarer at the moment, but I still always look if I'm passing the shop at that time. Who doesn't love a bargain....esp when debt-busting?!
    Originally posted by foxgloves
    Absolutely We generally don't buy the ready meals, salads etc either unless they are reduced to a few pence and are suitable for packed lunches or quick meals for our son when he needs to cook for himself. He can cook but often chooses not to so orders a takeaway instead (he pays for it himself but we would rather him save his money). He will throw a ready meal in the microwave though so if we see something suitable then we do pick them up.
    We used to actively seek out reduced items but over the last year haven't had the time or motivation due to difficult circumstances. Now things have settled down and we're back to our debtfreewanabe ways we will be looking out for the bargains that we can find. Our success over past few days has really inspired us.
    Sadly we don't have a Waitrose locally so it's not easy for us to pop in there regularly. Sounds like you've had some amazing bargains too
    • Mydmp
    • By Mydmp 7th Mar 18, 2:57 PM
    • 28 Posts
    • 103 Thanks
    Mydmp
    We've been so busy working and debt busting over last few days that I haven't had time to post a list of actions on here. I'm off work now for a few days so it's time for a catch up. I'm hoping that listing our actions on a regular basis will motivate us (and others) in the future when the 'novelty' of debt busting starts to wear off.

    Before I list all of our actions for the last few days I need to update on the amazing bargains that I once again found in the supermarkets on my way home last night. I pass most of the major supermarkets on my way home so it takes me very little time to pop in to see what's been reduced. Again it was really worth while.
    At MrT's I picked up 6 bags of Yorkshire Ham that had been carved off the bone for £4.26. Bought at full price this would have cost £17.04 so a saving of 75%. One pack used for lunches today (with some left over), rest stored in freezer.
    Spurred on by this 'find' I decided to call at MrS as well. Couldn't believe it when I found two beautiful trout fillets reduced from £5.20 to £1.39 and four large smoked haddock fillets reduced from £10.39 to just £2.96. Two of the haddock fillets will be used for dinner tonight, rest stored in freezer.

    Anyway back to list of actions over last few days.
    On Monday :-
    1. Received £45 as a 'gift' in recognition of a lot of ongoing work that we're doing to help a family member. Used to reduce overdraft
    2. Resurrected Prolific Academic (PA) account and discovered a balance of £2.90
    3. Completed 2 surveys on PA earning £1.70
    4. Shopped for reduced food items. Spent £16.33 to buy £53.88 worth of food, saving £37.55 (70%)
    5. Updated YNAB
    6. Posted on here

    Yesterday (Tuesday) :-
    1. Offered parking ticket by someone leaving car park as it still had an 45mins to run. Wasn't sure if that would be enough time for what I needed to do but decided to 'chance it' and return to put on new ticket if needed. Was done in time so saved £1.70
    2. Logged on to PA regularly and earned £9.09 in surveys
    3. Retrieved old YouGov (YG) account. Need £50 to cash out. Balance was £35.75
    4. Completed 2 surveys on YG earning £1
    5. Created a Swagbucks account
    6. Retrieved old OnePoll (OP) account. Need £40 to cash out. Balance was £19.75
    7. Completed 6 surveys on OP earning £1.20
    8. Bought reduced items from MrT saving £12.78 (75%) on Yorkshire Ham
    9. Bought reduced items from MrS saving £7.43 (71%) on fresh fish
    10. Updated YNAB

    Have now set ourselves a challenge of doing at least 5 debt busting actions each day. Doesn't matter how small they are as every little helps.

    Our new mantra is to 'stop procrastinating and just do it'

    On that note I'm off now to continue with today's actions.

    Have a great day everyone
    Last edited by Mydmp; 07-03-2018 at 3:00 PM.
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 7th Mar 18, 5:22 PM
    • 1,674 Posts
    • 10,000 Thanks
    redofromstart
    Sounds like real progress, all these little things add up.

    I live out in the sticks so shop at the wrong time for bargains sadly. 10% off in MrT at 2pm!
    • Mydmp
    • By Mydmp 8th Mar 18, 7:20 PM
    • 28 Posts
    • 103 Thanks
    Mydmp
    Didn't visit the supermarkets yesterday after all. My freezer and fridge are so full that I decided I needed to slow down on the bargain hunting. I also felt that it was time to have a no spend day.
    Spent today at home cooking and catching up on other jobs.

    Yesterday's debt busting actions (Weds) included :-
    1. Contacted energy supplier and reinstated direct debit. (put payments on hold during the difficulties that we experienced)
    2. Contacted car insurance to pay missed instalment and to renew direct debit.
    3. Contacted loan company about arrears. New payment plan agreed
    4. Checked YouGov (YG) account but no new surveys. Balance £36.75/£50 needed to cash out.
    5. Spent a lot of time on Swagbucks trying to get my head round it. Balance now 204 SB
    6. Checked for surveys on OnePoll but none available. Balance £20.95/£40 needed to cash out
    7. Retrieved old PureProfile account. Balance £2.15/£25 needed to cash out
    8. Resisted calling at supermarket in search of bargains as we already have more than enough food for now
    9. No spend day (NSD). First one this month. Aiming for 10. 1/10 achieved
    10. Updated YNAB
    11. Posted on here
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 8th Mar 18, 9:25 PM
    • 1,674 Posts
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    redofromstart
    I do Swagbucks, but just enough to keep it ticking over. I have an old phone, and I run the apps (search for 'prodedge' who are the developer, and then I just leave them running the short clips for the 10 SB each app per day. I do play (swag run) for 10 points a day, no need to actually jump so just press play and wait, and leave a minute or so between games. This nets between 50 and 60 a day, plus the odd search or if I am very lucky an 'instant' survey. I don't often bother with the longer surveys as the return is so poor. Hope this helps.
    • Mydmp
    • By Mydmp 8th Mar 18, 10:02 PM
    • 28 Posts
    • 103 Thanks
    Mydmp
    I do Swagbucks, but just enough to keep it ticking over. I have an old phone, and I run the apps (search for 'prodedge' who are the developer, and then I just leave them running the short clips for the 10 SB each app per day. I do play (swag run) for 10 points a day, no need to actually jump so just press play and wait, and leave a minute or so between games. This nets between 50 and 60 a day, plus the odd search or if I am very lucky an 'instant' survey. I don't often bother with the longer surveys as the return is so poor. Hope this helps.
    Originally posted by redofromstart
    Hi That's brilliant thank you. I have an old phone too which I could use. Never thought about having a seperate one for things like this but now you've mentioned it I can see how it's a really good idea. Can run it off WiFi so no extra cost.
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 13th Mar 18, 3:33 PM
    • 1,674 Posts
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    redofromstart
    How are you getting on mydmp?
    • Mydmp
    • By Mydmp 8th Apr 18, 3:33 PM
    • 28 Posts
    • 103 Thanks
    Mydmp
    Hello everyone. It's been nearly a month since our last post. Life over the past month has been very difficult again I'm afraid due to a sudden and unexpected bereavement. It has been a very, very sad time for all of us.
    Once again the unexpected expenses have hit us hard but to be honest the financial aspects have been the least of our worries during this very difficult time. It has once again however brought home to us how foolish we've been with money in the past and we're now more determined than ever to get our financial affairs in order.

    We're now on annual leave for a week. As we can't afford to go away anywhere at the moment we're going to spend the time sorting things at home, both in the house and the garden. To be honest it will be nice to just have some downtime to do 'normal' things like cooking and gardening.

    We've totally lost track of our budget on YNAB so I'm going to reset it and start again. We're now in arrears with some priority bills and owe money to a family member which needs repaying by the end of May. These need to be our priority over the next few weeks/months.

    On a more positive note we still have a freezer full of bargain goodies that I picked up last month and our cupboards are full to overflowing with dried, canned and jars of food. Cutting the grocery budget down to the bare minimum is therefore going to be our biggest goal.

    Whilst life is never going to be quite the same again we're determined that despite our financial difficulties that we are now going to make the most of every day. In the past we've focused too much on the 'negatives' but have now realised that life is far to precious and to short to waste.
    • Mydmp
    • By Mydmp 11th Apr 18, 3:02 PM
    • 28 Posts
    • 103 Thanks
    Mydmp
    Having a few days at home to have some 'downtime' has been really nice. Monday was a beautiful day so we spent it in the garden catching up on long overdue tasks. Determined this year to make the most of the greenhouse to grown veg. Already got lots of seeds so will cost next to nothing and will help reduce our grocery bills over the summer.
    Yesterday the weather was miserable so we spent the day decluttering cupboards and under the stairs (which we use as a pantry). Can't believe how much food we have hoarded. With the contents of the freezer and fridge we should be able to reduce our grocery bills down dramatically in the coming weeks and months.

    Cutting our grocery bills is going to be needed as we have now increased our debt significantly due to unexpected funeral expenses and further unpaid time off work. I'm ashamed to say that we had to resort to a short term loan at extortionate interest rates in addition to borrowing money off a family member. We are also now back in arrears with our mortgage. Over the next few months our priority has to be paying these new debts back before we restart tackling our longer term debts. We are determined to do it as neither of us ever want to be back in the position that we've found ourselves in recent weeks.
    Our short term goal now is to have these additional debts repaid by the end of July. The debts are :-

    Short term loan £1459.99 (includes the interest which we will be able to reduce if we pay it off quicker)
    Loan from relative £1300 (interest free but needs to be paid back by end of May for their house move)
    Mortgage arrears £801.42 (agreed to pay back over 3 months)

    Total £3561.41 or

    This is a massive amount so we are going to have to cut back on absolutely everything to stand a chance of reaching our goal. Thankfully we both have overtime available to us for the next few months so we will pick up as much as we can.

    As I love cooking I'm going to focus on making healthy meals from hoarded supplies. We will only buy what groceries we need when we need them and will cut our spending down to a minimum.
    We did need milk, apples and cat food today so we went to Mr M as we had a £5 voucher. We came back with :-
    4 pints short dated skimmed milk reduced to 35p (will use to make rice pudding today)
    4 pints skimmed milk £1.09
    8 apples £1.27
    Box cat food (weeks supply) £2
    Pack of basics tortilla chips 45p (to use rest of voucher - will make nachos one evening for dinner)

    Total cost £5.17 (£5 of which was paid by voucher)

    We are going to record how much actual cash we spend on groceries over the next few months on here.

    Total grocery spend to date = 17p

    We also going to try and keep up with surveys to earn a few extra pounds where we can. Since Sunday we have earned £8.06 on PA. Again we are going to record what we earn on here.

    Total earned via surveys = £8.06

    Going to be a long haul but we will get there
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 11th Apr 18, 3:43 PM
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    redofromstart
    oh that sound challenging. Don't forget you can freeze the short dated milk if you dont use it all - leave some room for expansion.
    • Mydmp
    • By Mydmp 11th Apr 18, 5:49 PM
    • 28 Posts
    • 103 Thanks
    Mydmp
    oh that sound challenging. Don't forget you can freeze the short dated milk if you dont use it all - leave some room for expansion.
    Originally posted by redofromstart
    It certainly will be a huge challenge but we're both ready for it now.
    No room in my freezer for milk I'm afraid. Big batch of rice pudding now in oven and used rest to make chocolate pudding. Should keep us going in treats for a few days!
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 12th Apr 18, 8:00 AM
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    redofromstart
    Sounds good to me. Glad to see you are still feeding the cat!

    Rumour has it that we are going to be back on famine shortly, so like you I need to get the garden up and productive. Old seed should be fine, time to get the leaves and radishes in at least for me.

    If you did a big list of what you have you could do a use it up challenge?
    • Mydmp
    • By Mydmp 13th Apr 18, 11:55 PM
    • 28 Posts
    • 103 Thanks
    Mydmp
    Sounds good to me. Glad to see you are still feeding the cat!

    Rumour has it that we are going to be back on famine shortly, so like you I need to get the garden up and productive. Old seed should be fine, time to get the leaves and radishes in at least for me.

    If you did a big list of what you have you could do a use it up challenge?
    Originally posted by redofromstart
    Hi. Really good to hear from you
    Can't not feed the cats ...... they demand food all the time and drive us mad!! Lol

    I'm definitely going to get leaves going soon. So easy to grow and taste so much better fresh.

    Have tried to do a list lots of times but have so much stuff it's always proved impossible. Might start by listing 20 items and use that as our first challenge.

    Sorry to hear you're about to hit another famine. Hope it won't last to long.
    Going to go and catch up on your diary now.
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 14th Apr 18, 8:59 AM
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    redofromstart
    I know what you mean about a huge list but the freezer being full sounds promising. I usually start with a freezer list. My dry goods list tends to be a focus on something I have accidentally stockpiled '18 tins of tomatoes' so lets eat lots of tomato based things.
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