Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • LegBeforeWicket
    • By LegBeforeWicket 14th Mar 18, 7:14 PM
    • 29Posts
    • 80Thanks
    LegBeforeWicket
    Life on a sticky wicket in 5XL underpants
    • #1
    • 14th Mar 18, 7:14 PM
    Life on a sticky wicket in 5XL underpants 14th Mar 18 at 7:14 PM
    Hi MSE!
    Iím a mid to late 30s chap who has a bundle of debt, little income, a not so straightforward work history, a few ailments, and a rather wobbly backside. I appreciate that this is DFW and some of the things I wish to address fall beyond the debt category, but all these things are linked in some way and I feel like this is the right place for me to empty my little head of various thoughts.

    How have I got where I am today? Well, bad choices and laziness, mainly. Itís true that life has thrown me a couple of curveballs along the way, be they health issues or life events, and it would be uncharitable to fail to acknowledge that they have taken their toll, but I really must stand up and say that I, LegBeforeWicket, am entirely responsible for being in debt to the tune of £9448.71 This is the highest itís ever been and Iím determined to ensure that this is the highest it will ever be. Currently these are spread across six credit cards, all of which are on 0% deals; a couple end in 2019 and the rest in 2020.

    What about an SOA? Well, I canít provide one at the minute. Not helpful I know, but being in a position to post one is one of my goals. My main source of income at the moment is Matched Betting (there is a board about it on MSE if you arenít familiar with it) and a few other scraps elsewhere. Some health issues have made it difficult to work full time in recent years and MB has kept me going (plus piling up debt on CCs) but I canít, and donít want to, do it forever; I want to work again. Full time. Addressing these health issues properly is the only way I will be able to work again, one of which is the fact that I am approximately 110lbs above the upper limit of a Ďnormalí BMI. I know BMI isnít a perfect tool but I canít argue with the general message itís giving meÖas well as the fact that I bought 5XL pants this week. Iím more a 4.5XL but they donít exist!

    Anyway, this is just an introductory post so Iíve tried to keep it short, but Iíll be posting up more.

    Thanks to anyone who reads
Page 1
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 14th Mar 18, 10:20 PM
    • 54,069 Posts
    • 214,357 Thanks
    beanielou
    • #2
    • 14th Mar 18, 10:20 PM
    • #2
    • 14th Mar 18, 10:20 PM
    Wishing you well on your MSE journey.
    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.
    • ramblehan
    • By ramblehan 15th Mar 18, 5:09 AM
    • 592 Posts
    • 1,222 Thanks
    ramblehan
    • #3
    • 15th Mar 18, 5:09 AM
    • #3
    • 15th Mar 18, 5:09 AM
    Welcome and good luck!
    01/03/18: £21,270 DFD: Dec 2035
    2018 challenge - 148.64/£3,670 (4.2%) as of 25.04.18
    Sign up for YNAB via my link if you fancy it - thank you!
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 15th Mar 18, 8:04 AM
    • 1,682 Posts
    • 10,108 Thanks
    redofromstart
    • #4
    • 15th Mar 18, 8:04 AM
    • #4
    • 15th Mar 18, 8:04 AM
    hello LBW and good luck with your journey
    • onedaysomeday
    • By onedaysomeday 15th Mar 18, 8:37 AM
    • 418 Posts
    • 619 Thanks
    onedaysomeday
    • #5
    • 15th Mar 18, 8:37 AM
    • #5
    • 15th Mar 18, 8:37 AM
    Good luck!
    Debt paid £1780.76 / £7180.59 (24%)
    CAR SERVICE CHALLENGE: £21/£154 BY 5/6/18 (13.5 %)
    EMERGENCY FUND: £0 SAVINGS POTS: £0
    • fatrab
    • By fatrab 15th Mar 18, 9:09 AM
    • 844 Posts
    • 1,982 Thanks
    fatrab
    • #6
    • 15th Mar 18, 9:09 AM
    • #6
    • 15th Mar 18, 9:09 AM
    Hi and welcome along from another DFW who is loosing weight in the process!


    A lot of my surplus each month was being spent on snacks, fast food and alcohol. At my worst £125 in a single weekend on takeaway food alone.


    It worked for me and might work for you depending on your circumstances if you start a spending diary. Write down every penny you spend and what you spend it on. It wasn't the amount of money I was spending that shocked me, I already knew I was haemorrhaging money, it was the amount I was snacking. Just knowing I had to write it down (I now have a spending tracker app) was enough to make me stop and think before I bought things. I still have the odd time that I have a wobble, and find myself stuffing a jam donut into my gob, but they're few and far between. They used to be 2 or 3 times a day events.


    I've set myself a goal to lose on average one pound per week. Small changes in diet and slight increases in exercise, but the biggest change for me was cutting out the booze. I was 17st 8lbs in December, I'm around or just under 16st today with another 2 stone to go.


    Good luck on your journey and I'll pop in and see how you're getting on as time goes by!


    Best wishes, Rab
    You can have results or excuses, but not both.
    May's targets - Lose 1 stone - 6lbs off, 25/31 AFDs, 15/18 lunches.
    37 x £2 coins (#32) - Wannabe debt free by Dec 2022
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 15th Mar 18, 9:57 AM
    • 6,403 Posts
    • 13,180 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    • #7
    • 15th Mar 18, 9:57 AM
    • #7
    • 15th Mar 18, 9:57 AM
    Welcome to DFW Diaries. You will get a lot of support here.

    I agree with fatrab that a spending diary is a good place to start in recording all your spends. If you are trying to lose weight as well there are a few diary members who are also doing the same so reading other diaries may give you some hints.

    I am not familiar with matched betting but I know a few people bring in some extra income with this and surveys etc. Are you claiming all the benefits you are entitled to?

    A big plus is that all the debt is on 0%. Are you just paying minimums at the moment?
    Debt free and mortgage free and early retiree. Living the dream

    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Mortgages and Endowments, Banking and Budgeting boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com. Pease remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com
    • LegBeforeWicket
    • By LegBeforeWicket 15th Mar 18, 6:46 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 80 Thanks
    LegBeforeWicket
    • #8
    • 15th Mar 18, 6:46 PM
    • #8
    • 15th Mar 18, 6:46 PM
    Hello beanielou, ramblehan, redofromstart, onedaysomeday, fatrab, and enthusiasticsaver. Thank you so much for taking the time to say hello and offer some advice, itís very kind of you.

    The spending record is an excellent suggestion. How do I know this? Because Iíve been completing one since mid 2011 You see, Iíve popped in and out of this website for some years and Iíve taken on board a couple of things, yet this is the first time I have signed up and posted; Iíve been burying my head. I could tell you how many haircuts Iíve had in these past 7 years, how many takeaways etc etc and I can tell you the average price Iíve paid. Iíve got the data, just not the disciplineÖuntil now, I hope.

    Iíve been in debt almost all of my adult life. About 3 or 4 years ago I did manage to pay off the £3000 or so that I owed and had a positive net worth for perhaps the first time ever, but I went backwards again. Spending too much on food, wasting money on nonsense items as a means of distracting myself from being unhappy, and spending about a third of my current debt on something health related have put me in my current position. So has not working very much.

    Matched Betting provides me with most of my income, for those of you arenít familiar with it I must impress that itís not gambling. In addition, Iíve done a few things like ebay selling etc and Iíve done this properly, registered with HMRC etc. Quite a lot of the past decade has been like this because of my health Ė not my weight, that doesnít stop me working Ė but a neurological issue, an arthritic one, a digestive one, and some good old depression made it such that any work I did really needed to be home based.
    I donít claim any benefits and I donít think Iím entitled to any, and to be honest I donít feel I should be entitled to any. Improving my health to the point where I can work full time is possible Ė my main neurological issue seems to have subsided Ė if I make the right choices. Quite what I want to do for the rest of my work life is something I need to address, but simply getting fit for work is my current goal.

    Even though my debt is £9448.71 (which I will break down in a minute) I do have cash of about £4500, which is my working capital for Matched Betting. My income varies so I run a month-to-month spreadsheet for my budget (which I now need to stick to). Using this and some reasonable assumptions about MB income, my current DFD is looking like the end of 2019. I pay more than the total minimums for my CC debts but right now Iím paying the minimums on five cards and everything I can on the one with the nearest 0% end date.

    There will be lots more to come from me, Iím sure, but please ask any questions you want to. Or just read. In fact, even if nobody reads this then itís still helping me by getting things off my chest. I know this is a great community and I want to thank in advance anyone who helps me, but first I must say thanks to fatrab for something. I mentioned that Iíve lurked around on and off for some time, but it was reading your diary last weekend that made me sign up and make a first post; you have a great energy and your diary is a great read, so thanks.

    LBW
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 15th Mar 18, 7:28 PM
    • 4,036 Posts
    • 20,783 Thanks
    foxgloves
    • #9
    • 15th Mar 18, 7:28 PM
    • #9
    • 15th Mar 18, 7:28 PM
    Hi LegbeforeWicket,
    Your post title made me smile when you mentioned big pants, & I wanted to tell you this. Before the anti-debt lightbulb pinged on, I'd been in debt all my adult life, from age 19 to my 40s, my partner too. We were also very big. Once we'd made huge inroads into paying off our debts, we started a serious weight loss campaign & you know what? The skills we'd learned regarding budgeting, making good decisions that supported our overall goal & impulse control all turned out to be exactly the same skills & discipline needed to lose weight. Between 2011 & 2013, I lost 6 stones & shrank from a size 26 to a size 16. My partner (big bloke, loves his food) also dropped 4 stones. I have yo-yo'd this last couple of years & am currently just over 1.5 stones heavier than the lightest I got down to, but I'm now applying the same discipline to get it off. The bulk of the weight I lost has stayed off.
    So I want to encourage you, really. Debt can be tackled & destructive eating habits can be changed. I think you too will find that a very similar skillset will address both issues.
    Good luck with your goals.
    P.S......I've still got a massive problem with walnut whips though........
    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 = £800-01
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 15th Mar 18, 7:29 PM
    • 6,403 Posts
    • 13,180 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    So you know where you have been going wrong which is good. Finding ways to stay disciplined would be a great start and posting regularly helps that according to many people. Having to admit to spending money on something outside budget on the forum sometimes is enough to dissuade them from spending. We know that because often when a poster disappears it is because they have fallen off the wagon.

    I am not sure I agree with you not being entitled to benefits if your health is not good enough to work at the present time. The benefit system is a safety net so it would seem that you should be able to claim but that is totally your choice.

    You seem to have the knowledge to know which debt to target first and aiming for a DFD of the end of next year sounds promising.

    You are still in your 30s so have time to sort this but I would suggest that you get out of the habit of using cards and start to develop a system of saving.
    Debt free and mortgage free and early retiree. Living the dream

    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Mortgages and Endowments, Banking and Budgeting boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com. Pease remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com
    • fatrab
    • By fatrab 16th Mar 18, 9:10 AM
    • 844 Posts
    • 1,982 Thanks
    fatrab
    Wow. Didn't expect my random ramblings to have that effect on anyone!

    It took a lot for me to actually post in the first instance. I've always been the kind of person to keep my problems to myself, "their my problems and I'll deal with them" sort of attitude. So opening up on here was quite (I want to say difficult but that's not the right word) "strange(?)", but I quickly realised that there were plenty of people with similar experiences and wonderful advice, who are willing to give up their time to listen and help. Being honest in my SOA was one of the hardest things, actually admitting the true state of affairs.

    You know what you need to do to get your debt's cleared, and you're tackling them in the correct order. I'm looking forward to hearing about your progress

    Cheers! Rab
    Last edited by fatrab; 16-03-2018 at 9:15 AM.
    You can have results or excuses, but not both.
    May's targets - Lose 1 stone - 6lbs off, 25/31 AFDs, 15/18 lunches.
    37 x £2 coins (#32) - Wannabe debt free by Dec 2022
    • LiveLifeFull
    • By LiveLifeFull 16th Mar 18, 10:14 AM
    • 83 Posts
    • 227 Thanks
    LiveLifeFull
    I would just like to say that I too, wanted to lose weight and get rid of debt at the same time. There is so much correlation between the too.


    I noticed that I would do a healthy food shop, and then spend extra money on a takeaway - which obviously isn't good for debt. As soon as I became extremely focused on getting rid of my debt - I stopped with the takeaways, only bought the 'healthy' foods I wanted to eat, and I've slowly been watching the debt disappear and the lbs disappear. As soon as I start eating unhealthy again.. I notice the progress on both slow down! They both go hand in hand!


    Good luck!
    My CC - Feb 18 £849.69 Mar 18 £839.95 Apr 18 £705.78
    My OD - Feb 18 £1250.00 Mar 18 £1250.00 Apr 18 £1250.00
    OH CC - Feb 18 £976.00 Mar 18 £901.00 Apr 18 £802.00
    OH OD - Feb 18 £500.00 Mar 18 £500.00 Apr 18 £500.00
    TOTAL OD/CC DEBT: Feb 18 £3575.69 Mar 18 £3490.95 Apr 18 £3257.78
    OD/CC DEBT FREE DATE: OCTOBER 2018
    • LegBeforeWicket
    • By LegBeforeWicket 16th Mar 18, 11:33 AM
    • 29 Posts
    • 80 Thanks
    LegBeforeWicket
    Morning everyone,

    First of all I have to say how much lighter my shoulders feel this morning. I know I've made very little action towards my debts in the couple of days I've been here (although it is the busiest week of the year for MBing) but the very act of confessing my situation in 'public' has lifted a weight. I don't really have anyone to tell my debts about; my parents are a no-go and while I have some friends, it's not something I could share with them. I also have a really lovely girlfriend but I don't want to tell her about the debt just yet, I will do because I think that's the right thing to do, but not until I am firmly tackling the situation. She lives in another part of the country and we aren't likely to be wanting to move in together for a while, even if I was solvent. She knows what I do to earn money, that I don't make much and why, and I have no doubt she would be supportive if I told her, but I want to be able to go to her and show her how it's being tackled.

    Anyway,

    Thankyou foxgloves for such a lovely, inspiring post. Congratulations on making such big changes in your lives, both with the debt and losing such an incredible amount of weight. Do you find it hard not to look back and ruminate on 'what if I hadn't spent/ate'? By my own admission, I find it quite easy to wallow in self-pity, it's just so uncomfortably comfortable in that headspace.

    Thankyou enthusiasticsaver for some kind and helpful words. Your last sentence is exactly the kind of straight talking I need. I don't wish this to sound like an excuse because I refuse to have any excuses now, but I have a habit of not dealing with things that affect just me and hearing some matter of fact words will jolt me out of the way of that default way of thinking. As a child I was bullied by my father (he still tries) and that made me afraid to stand up for myself at school, or push myself in things that would better me. My default response when the SHTF and it only affects me is to say 'meh, I don't care', although I wouldn't walk away if someone else needed help; it's a low self esteem thing. Like I say, I'm an adult and it's not an excuse, but I need to keep tackling this mindset as well as the debt.

    Fatrab, it was clear very quickly to me that your diary was something I wanted to follow (I'll make my way over to posting soon, I promise). It's hard to put into words what made my brain 'click' and sign-up, but you are motivated, have a plan, and really positive with your outlook.

    So, about the debts. I promised I'd list them so here they are, in order of nearest 0% expiry date:

    CC1 £452.79
    CC2 £2256.41
    CC3 £756.13
    CC4 £2034.18
    CC5 £2040.91
    CC6 £1908.29

    Total: £9448.71

    I'm about to make a £15 payment on CC3 but other than that all minimums are paid for March, but by the end of the month I intend to have paid all of CC1, leaving an end of month £8980.92.
    Last edited by LegBeforeWicket; 16-03-2018 at 11:38 AM.
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 16th Mar 18, 1:26 PM
    • 4,036 Posts
    • 20,783 Thanks
    foxgloves
    Hi Legbeforewicket,
    Hmmm, been thinking about your question. Re weightloss, yes I wish I'd done it earlier. I've always been chunky but didn't reach very big weights until I settled down with my partner. He had all my bad food habits & then some! I guess we enabled each other's behaviour re takeaways, endless going out for lunches, 9pm beer, crisp & chocolate runs, etc. I'd lost weight before but always regained it plus a bit more. True my weight is up a bit at the moment but I am still 4.5 stones less than I was. I think my head was just in the right space for getting healthier.
    Different story with the money side of things. Yes I REALLY wish I'd done it earlier. When I wss working, before my redundancy, mr f & I were earning around £56k a year (joint income) & we never had any spare money!! It was all either paying bills, servicing debts or being frittered away. When I think what we could have saved, if only the debt LBM had arrived 10 or 15 years earlier. So I try not to think about it really. At least the motivation to change our terrible money habits did come & we are truly reformed characters now. I think you said you are mid-30s? If so, you have the chance to tackle both issues a good few years earlier than we did, & I think you'll find your self-esteem will rocket.
    Good luck!
    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 = £800-01
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • LegBeforeWicket
    • By LegBeforeWicket 16th Mar 18, 6:26 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 80 Thanks
    LegBeforeWicket
    Afternoon everyone,

    Cheltenham is over for another year. I made my target and it was enjoyable to watch, but itís also quite a busy time so Iím not unhappy itís over.

    Thankyou LiveLifeFull for stopping by, itís very kind of you to share your experience. Iím sorry I didnít reply n my previous post but I didnít notice yours, I think Iíd started to reply and you maybe hadnít posted at the time I made my post. I most definitely recognise the buy healthy food then buy a takeaway scenario, sadly. I think Iíve spent a lot of time waiting for that Ďsparkí to appear and make me focused on everything with a huge amount of energy, but then I know that realistically debt and weight will be a battle with lots of hard work.

    Thanks again foxgloves for the helpful and kind words. It would be lovely if we could switch off bad memories or times that we are less proud of, but I suppose the thing to remember is that these moments are what builds character and teaches us lessons. My only issue is remembering this and not dwelling on the past too much. Just hearing that other people have been through similar experiences is so inspiring and motivating; I wish people hadnít had to have difficult times, of course, but Iím grateful that people are sharing them.

    So what have I done today apart from looking at horse odds? Well, Iíve registered my complaint about some PPI I had on a store card many years ago. Even if itís successful I doubt it will amount to much, but anything would be useful right now. Iíve also cancelled Sky Ė I didnít have the most expensive package but I canít justify it and Iíve always known that, so itís gone.
    Iíve also been thinking about food and how much I spend. Iíve looked over my records and my average monthly spend for the past 6/7 years has been just under £250. Yes, almost £250 for one person. Iím not someone who drinks alcohol very often so this total is almost all food, and mostly of the kind lacking in nutrition. My budget has always been for less than this, but Iíve always fiddled it so that I could fill my bellyÖand this has to STOP!
    My plan for this weekend is to work out some kind of weekly menu, one that is budget-friendly and health-friendly. It will be tricky because I need to take into account migraine triggers, my digestive issues as well one of my arthritis issues Ė gout. I know full well that this means a fairly boring food list and that some cheap staples I wonít be able to have, but it will still be far cheaper than £250 a month of beige, deep fried crap.
    • MeenaM
    • By MeenaM 16th Mar 18, 7:41 PM
    • 249 Posts
    • 456 Thanks
    MeenaM
    Hello and welcome! good luck with your journey , you can do this! get on a written budget and stick to it is my advice

    i don't understand matched betting otherwise i would be doing it too probably

    have a look online for some of the free hairy biker diet recipes they are so easy to make , healthy , tasty and you can do on a budget !
    Sealed Pot 11. #199Next£1170Barclays Credit Card £4891.20/687.95- 0% ends April 2019 virgin 0% ends july 2020 £4138 3929.89AA Credit Card £860 0- 0% ends Dec 2017 Sainsburys Credit Card £521.27-0 0% ends Feb 2018 STARTED Nov 17AIM TO BE DEBT FREE JULY 2019Emergency Fund £614/£1000
    • LegBeforeWicket
    • By LegBeforeWicket 19th Mar 18, 4:20 PM
    • 29 Posts
    • 80 Thanks
    LegBeforeWicket
    Afternoon everyone!

    Thanks MeenaM for stopping by and giving me some encouragement and advice, I genuinely appreciate that.

    So what has LBW got to report? Well, not a huge amount, sadly. I spent almost all of the weekend suffering with migraines - I get these a lot, an awful lot, and managing them has always been a tricky business, and this past weekend has seen me have an unusually high number of attacks. I'm not unduly worried, but the effect is that I spent a lot of time lying down and trying not to look at screens. The plus point is that I had two NSDs and it looks like I'll have one today, hopefully.

    I haven't managed to finish my 'diet' plan fully but it's getting close' once it's finished I'll price it up online and at the local ALDI so I know where I stand budget wise. Having been used to spending that £250 a month I'll miss the 'freedom' of not thinking before I buy food (food is a comfort to me so I have a strong bond with it), but then I know that the real freedom is in getting debt free. My aim is to bring it in at half of what I was spending.

    I've also updated my ongoing repayment planner/budget because I'd used an estimated monthly repayment figure for one of the debts instead of calculating the actual amount the minimum will be. This leads me onto a quick question. I read in passing somewhere that it's better to pay above the minimum even if it's just a pound above so as to avoid a minimum payment marker. Do people agree with this? I'm paying minimums everywhere except for the debt with the shortest 0% deal length left, should I reduce this slightly and increase payments by a £1 on the others, or is that unnecessary?

    Right, time to finish the housework and then catch up on some inspirational diaries.

    LBW
    • WannabeFree
    • By WannabeFree 19th Mar 18, 4:47 PM
    • 1,536 Posts
    • 13,282 Thanks
    WannabeFree
    Hello and welcome

    I'm the other end of the scale weightwise BUT I have yo yo'd constantly. I have a long ongoing battle with food. I find comfort eating my go to but then feel guilty and well then.. I'm sure you know the cycle I'll get to the point. I can't afford to join slimming world however I spent days reading online about it. I now follow it pretty 'strict' but the food is amazing. I can't believe I have so much choice and yet still lose/not gain weight. I follow the recipes on Pinch of nom or there's a good few blogs too. I make it fit my budget and even my small ones are willing to try the food.

    Anyway I'll stop about food now

    Look forward to following your journey

    x
    ďOnce you hit rock bottom, that's where you perfectly stand; That's your chance of restarting, but restarting the right way.Ē
    • fatrab
    • By fatrab 21st Mar 18, 5:50 AM
    • 844 Posts
    • 1,982 Thanks
    fatrab
    This leads me onto a quick question. I read in passing somewhere that it's better to pay above the minimum even if it's just a pound above so as to avoid a minimum payment marker. Do people agree with this?
    Originally posted by LegBeforeWicket
    I'm not sure I do, I think you'd be better throwing everything at the 0% card ending soonest then moving onto the next one and doing the same. I made minimum payments on several cards and it has never affected my ability to obtain further credit. However what worked for me might not work for you.


    Hope everything is going well and the migraines have subsided
    You can have results or excuses, but not both.
    May's targets - Lose 1 stone - 6lbs off, 25/31 AFDs, 15/18 lunches.
    37 x £2 coins (#32) - Wannabe debt free by Dec 2022
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 21st Mar 18, 8:50 AM
    • 6,403 Posts
    • 13,180 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver

    So what have I done today apart from looking at horse odds? Well, Iíve registered my complaint about some PPI I had on a store card many years ago. Even if itís successful I doubt it will amount to much, but anything would be useful right now. Iíve also cancelled Sky Ė I didnít have the most expensive package but I canít justify it and Iíve always known that, so itís gone.
    Iíve also been thinking about food and how much I spend. Iíve looked over my records and my average monthly spend for the past 6/7 years has been just under £250. Yes, almost £250 for one person. Iím not someone who drinks alcohol very often so this total is almost all food, and mostly of the kind lacking in nutrition. My budget has always been for less than this, but Iíve always fiddled it so that I could fill my bellyÖand this has to STOP!
    My plan for this weekend is to work out some kind of weekly menu, one that is budget-friendly and health-friendly. It will be tricky because I need to take into account migraine triggers, my digestive issues as well one of my arthritis issues Ė gout. I know full well that this means a fairly boring food list and that some cheap staples I wonít be able to have, but it will still be far cheaper than £250 a month of beige, deep fried crap.
    Originally posted by LegBeforeWicket
    This is a great plan to work out your menu and reduce your food bill. We pay £250 for 2 of us and if we wanted we could get it much lower so £250 for just you unless you are buying organic veg and meat and eco friendly cleaning products which are expensive is way over the top. Do you cook? Batch cooking things like spaghetti bolognese or chicken casserole is great if you are on a budget.. stir fry vegetables in some soy sauce and honey and serve it with rice. I thought the triggers for migraine included sugar so I wonder if these are as a result of your poor diet. Try eliminating the high sugar, high fat stuff and educating your palate with colourful fruit and veg with high protein like meat, fish, pulses, small amount of cheese (unless this also triggers migraines) and eggs.


    Thankyou enthusiasticsaver for some kind and helpful words. Your last sentence is exactly the kind of straight talking I need. I don't wish this to sound like an excuse because I refuse to have any excuses now, but I have a habit of not dealing with things that affect just me and hearing some matter of fact words will jolt me out of the way of that default way of thinking. As a child I was bullied by my father (he still tries) and that made me afraid to stand up for myself at school, or push myself in things that would better me. My default response when the SHTF and it only affects me is to say 'meh, I don't care', although I wouldn't walk away if someone else needed help; it's a low self esteem thing. Like I say, I'm an adult and it's not an excuse, but I need to keep tackling this mindset as well as the debt.

    Fatrab, it was clear very quickly to me that your diary was something I wanted to follow (I'll make my way over to posting soon, I promise). It's hard to put into words what made my brain 'click' and sign-up, but you are motivated, have a plan, and really positive with your outlook.

    So, about the debts. I promised I'd list them so here they are, in order of nearest 0% expiry date:

    CC1 £452.79
    CC2 £2256.41
    CC3 £756.13
    CC4 £2034.18
    CC5 £2040.91
    CC6 £1908.29

    Total: £9448.71

    I'm about to make a £15 payment on CC3 but other than that all minimums are paid for March, but by the end of the month I intend to have paid all of CC1, leaving an end of month £8980.92.
    Originally posted by LegBeforeWicket
    That is a great start on reducing the debt and it would give you a boost to get rid of one of those cards by the end of the month. I will subscribe to cheer you on.

    Not dealing with things is a common reason for uncontrolled finances. Often people use spending to give them a psychological boost and temporary raise in self esteem but it is short lived when the guilt kicks in. Leading a more measured life (both in terms of food and money) where you allow yourself the odd treat within budget or diet plan in the case of food will bring success in the end. This is a marathon not a sprint and I strongly encourage you to also start an emergency savings account so you are not tempted to spend on cards in an emergency. It also gets you in the much healthier mindset of saving for things you want rather than stick the cost on a credit card because "you need it now". This is not meant harshly and we have all been there but it does not help when you are on a low income. Just tell yourself when the debt is gone all the monthly repayments you are currently making will be yours to spend or save as you wish.


    I read in passing somewhere that it's better to pay above the minimum even if it's just a pound above so as to avoid a minimum payment marker. Do people agree with this? I'm paying minimums everywhere except for the debt with the shortest 0% deal length left, should I reduce this slightly and increase payments by a £1 on the others, or is that unnecessary?

    LBW
    Originally posted by LegBeforeWicket
    Paying slightly more than minimums is sensible when you are paying interest. As yours is all at 0% I suggest you target the shortest deal and work from there.

    Also start that emergency savings account. The suggested amount is £1000 but on lower incomes I would suggest even a few hundred is a good start. It depends on when the deals finish and how close you are to clearning them before they expire.

    The Dave Ramsey videos are useful to some although he is American the principles are the same.

    Good luck.
    Debt free and mortgage free and early retiree. Living the dream

    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Mortgages and Endowments, Banking and Budgeting boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com. Pease remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

176Posts Today

1,850Users online

Martin's Twitter
  • It's the start of mini MSE's half term. In order to be the best daddy possible, Im stopping work and going off line? https://t.co/kwjvtd75YU

  • RT @shellsince1982: @MartinSLewis thanx to your email I have just saved myself £222 by taking a SIM only deal for £7.50 a month and keeping?

  • Today's Friday twitter poll: An important question, building on yesterday's important discussions: Which is the best bit of the pizza...

  • Follow Martin