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  • FIRST POST
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 28th Jun 18, 6:28 AM
    • 339Posts
    • 818Thanks
    glass_half_full
    The Piano Diary
    • #1
    • 28th Jun 18, 6:28 AM
    The Piano Diary 28th Jun 18 at 6:28 AM
    Good morning diary and all,

    I recently became debt free after 31 months of debtbusting over on Debt Free Wannabe, following the advice and diaries on this site. Here is my previous diary

    My debt free diary

    I have found keeping a diary really helpful in staying focused and also therapeutic being able to think things through and clarify my thoughts. I want to start a new diary here to signify the start of the next phase of the journey and a change in purpose and goals.
    My household consists of me, my OH, we have been married for 22 years and DS who is 20 and has just finished his first year at University and last but not least the cat who 8 years old, spoilt and pampered! I work at a University in a teaching role and for hobbies do mountain biking, reading and I am learning the piano. The title of the diary is about my goal to ultimately spend less time working and more time on hobbies and interests, including the piano!

    My overall goal is to reach financial freedom and be able to semi- retire/retire and pursue my own interests. I may continue to work, but it will be because I want to not because I have to. To achieve this I need to pay off the mortgage and save enough into pension and savings to allow this to happen.

    Financial Goals
    The mortgage currently stands at £80,000 and is up for renewal in October. My aim is to take out a mortgage with a term of 8 years (by which time I will be 60) but aim to repay it in 5 years with overpayments.
    In terms of the pension, I currently make contributions of 12% but I am increasing this to 18% in a month or so when a pay rise comes through. I have a small number of DB pensions from previous employers and £140,000 in two DC pensions. In terms of savings, we have nothing other than a small emergency fund but the aim is to build these up now we are debt free. I would like to have savings of £5,000 to £10,000 as a rainy day fund. I need to save up for a replacement car over the next 12 months as the current car is 14 years old and is getting to the end of its life.

    Personal Goals
    I have found during the last several months that the money goals are really just a means to an end. For me I want to reach the point in the next 5-8 years where I can step back from the day to day and spend more time on projects I want to pursue just because I want to do them. I would love to have the time for example to write a book, to travel, to do various sports and activities. I also want my OH to have the same options and be able to step back from the work side of things.

    SOA
    I have done an SOA below to help me take stock of where we are. The three adults are myself, OH and DS who is at Uni but lives with us when not there. There should be around £1500 per month available to achieve the financial goals listed above.
    Look forward to sharing the journey with you.

    Statement of Affairs and Personal Balance Sheet

    Household Information

    Number of adults in household........... 3
    Number of children in household.........
    Number of cars owned.................... 1

    Monthly Income Details

    Monthly income after tax................ 2585
    Partners monthly income after tax....... 1989
    Benefits................................ 0
    Other income............................ 0
    Total monthly income.................... 4574


    Monthly Expense Details

    Mortgage................................ 642
    Secured/HP loan repayments.............. 0
    Rent.................................... 0
    Management charge (leasehold property).. 0
    Council tax............................. 247
    Electricity............................. 112
    Gas..................................... 0
    Oil..................................... 0
    Water rates............................. 33
    Telephone (land line)................... 0
    Mobile phone............................ 27
    TV Licence.............................. 12
    Satellite/Cable TV...................... 0
    Internet Services....................... 112
    Groceries etc. ......................... 500
    Clothing................................ 100
    Petrol/diesel........................... 235
    Road tax................................ 27
    Car Insurance........................... 65
    Car maintenance (including MOT)......... 50
    Car parking............................. 0
    Other travel............................ 65
    Childcare/nursery....................... 0
    Other child related expenses............ 0
    Medical (prescriptions, dentist etc).... 38.15
    Pet insurance/vet bills................. 0
    Buildings insurance..................... 0
    Contents insurance...................... 0
    Life assurance ......................... 16
    Other insurance......................... 0
    Presents (birthday, christmas etc)...... 20
    Haircuts................................ 50
    Entertainment........................... 50
    Holiday................................. 100
    Emergency fund.......................... 0
    Newspaper............................... 9
    Hobbies................................. 82
    Spotify................................. 10
    Dry cleaning............................ 13
    Societies............................... 15
    Union................................... 42
    Allowance DS............................ 100
    Cash.................................... 200
    Cleaner................................. 100
    Total monthly expenses.................. 3072.15



    Assets

    Cash.................................... 500
    House value (Gross)..................... 350000
    Shares and bonds........................ 0
    Car(s).................................. 1500
    Other assets............................ 0
    Total Assets............................ 352000



    Secured & HP Debts

    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Mortgage...................... 80000....(642)......3
    Total secured & HP debts...... 80000.....-.........-


    Unsecured Debts
    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Total unsecured debts..........0.........0.........-



    Monthly Budget Summary

    Total monthly income.................... 4,574
    Expenses (including HP & secured debts). 3,072.15
    Available for debt repayments........... 1,501.85
    Monthly UNsecured debt repayments....... 0
    Amount left after debt repayments....... 1,501.85


    Personal Balance Sheet Summary
    Total assets (things you own)........... 352,000
    Total HP & Secured debt................. -80,000
    Total Unsecured debt.................... -0
    Net Assets.............................. 272,000


    Created using the SOA calculator at www.stoozing.com.
    Reproduced on Moneysavingexpert with permission, using other browser.
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
Page 2
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 21st Jul 18, 11:15 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Good morning diary and all,
    We had a lovely few days on the coast, enjoyed the weather, did some walking, ate nice food etc. I have one more week at work and then we are both off for a couple of weeks. The car repairs cost £350 but hopefully that will get us a few more months of motoring without having to spend too much.

    On the mortgage front, the application to reduce the term from 13 years to 7 years has been approved, and we have signed the forms and sent them off so that should go through in the next few days. The payment has gone up by about the amount we were making in debt repayments each month, so I feel really good that the money is going to a good cause as it were. Once that is done, I am going to switch to a 5 year fixed deal. Weird thinking that might be the last ever mortgage deal we have if all goes to plan! I am tweaking the budget to take account of this change and to manage various summer expenses. I have loosened the purse strings since becoming debt free and I need to ensure that we stay within our earnings!

    Going out this afternoon with DS on a mountain bike ride at a nearby set of hills so looking forward to that.
    Had a good piano lesson yesterday, steady progress is being made. May think about starting on Grade 3 pieces soon.

    Have a great day all.
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 8th Aug 18, 8:27 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Good morning diary and all,

    We are just back yesterday from a few days away camping in South Wales with DS. We went there because of the mountain biking and had a great time. Must admit we were glad to get home in the end, we all needed to get back to sleeping in a real bed again!
    On our return I found a letter from our mortgage provider confirming the new term of the mortgage is now 7 years and 0 months (reduced from 13 years). I cant believe I am so happy about paying more every month for the mortgage, possibly this is something only MFWannabes would understand. Iím sure this is the right decision as it will make sure that the additional savings from being debt free go to the right place rather than leaking away as additional spending. As this has now been confirmed I was able to also apply to switch yesterday to a five year fixed rate at the same provider. This is a slightly lower interest rate so will reduce the payment slightly. The plan will be to overpay so that although the new term is 7 years, we will pay off in 5 years. I like knowing that the payment is fixed and I know what it is for possibly the remainder of the whole mortgage.

    I am still fiddling with the budget since the mortgage will increase by about £400 per month starting this month. Everything is ok but we have had a few extra expenses in the last few weeks so we just need to keep everything on track. Today I have to take the car in for a job that needs doing, hoping for around £125 for this. Tomorrow our cat is having a scan at the vet to make sure he is ok.

    So the journey has just taken a big step forward.
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 9th Aug 18, 10:08 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Good morning diary and all,

    We have a couple more days off on holiday before going back to work on Monday. We planned to come home a bit early to have a few days off but at home, which to be honest I am really enjoying because I can get on top of everything before going back to work.
    The car repair cost £105 in the end so slightly less than expected. I am hoping that is it for a while since we have spent quite a lot on it recently. There is also the inconvenience of losing it for the day since we are a one car family. Yesterday I managed by using the bike, I was out three times on it in the end.
    DSs girlfriend arrived last night and is staying for a couple of nights.
    I am in this morning since we are having a smart meter fitted. Should help to manage our energy spend a bit better. OH has taken our cat to the vet as he is having a scan this morning, hopefully he is ok. I am taking the opportunity to take stock and think about the plans I have going forward.

    On the financial front, the mortgage has been sorted and that is a big step forward. My other goals for the next 12 months are:
    1. Rebuild emergency fund to £1000 (by October)
    2. Increase pension contributions (in January)
    3. Build savings up to £10,000 (by December 2019), possibly for replacement car or maybe a big mortgage overpayment, depends on the state of the car by then!
    These are all doable and are in my budget which runs to the end of 2019 at the moment. However, they do rely on us maintaining a degree of financial discipline. We have overspent a bit in the last month on summer camping and biking. I donít regret it too much since we need some downtime to recharge our batteries. I am expecting a pay rise due to a promotion at work but not sure how much this will be. hopefully this will become clear in the coming days which will of course help with planning.
    I found the debt free diary really helped me with staying on track, so intend to post on here to record progress towards these goals.
    Looking forward to listening to the test match on the radio later on today.

    Have a great day all!
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 11th Aug 18, 10:23 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Good morning diary and all,

    Weather seems to have picked up again this morning following the stormy / rainy day yesterday.

    The smart energy meter is now installed so no more meter readings which is a good thing. We can also see our live energy usage so that should improve good habits regarding switching stuff off etc. This has got me thinking once again about how we can minimise our energy costs in the home. We have taken some actions previously such as increasing loft insulation. Resisting putting the heating on as long as is sensible and then when it goes on checking the on/off timings for heat and water, setting the thermostat at a reasonable level. That said I dont believe in being cold so we keep this in perspective. The boiler is quite old (10-15 years) and is a D rating. However, some investigation on line suggests that the saving from a new boiler would be around £150-200 so would take 10 years approx. to pay back. So while the current boiler works and is reliable I think we will hold off replacing it. Mostly I think we have done the structural stuff and changing suppliers etc, so now is mainly about good energy saving habits.

    The new five year fixed deal came through yesterday for us to sign electronically so that should be sorted in the next few days. This new mortgage figure is now baked into the budget going forward, increased from £640 to £1050.
    Found out yesterday from checking on line that my promotion has come through and salary increased effective 1st August. This is quite a big increase (approx. £350 take home per month) since I have moved up two grades, because I had been a bit remiss in not having applied for promotion earlier! In fact all the money saving focus over the past couple of years, and listening to Dave Ramsay podcasts was one of the reasons I finally pushed myself to apply for it. Definitely a lesson in there to not just focus on reducing spending and costs but also increasing earnings where possible and appropriate. This increase will help with achieving the financial goals, and I also intend to increase pension contributions from January. Holding off on that just for 4 months to help with recovering from the summer expenses that we have incurred.

    We have some friends coming over this evening so that will be nice.
    Have a great day all!
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • zcrat41
    • By zcrat41 12th Aug 18, 6:13 AM
    • 1,507 Posts
    • 4,150 Thanks
    zcrat41
    What a fab increase! Well done!
    Aim: To o/p the mortgage by £131 pm.
    07/18: £254. Smashed it!
    08/18: £219.31 Smashed it again!
    09/18: £131 Acheived challenge
    10/18 £Target £131 plus £50 into savings
    • greent
    • By greent 12th Aug 18, 8:51 PM
    • 7,606 Posts
    • 77,502 Thanks
    greent
    Congrats on the promotion - and what a lovely raise to go with it
    x
    I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul
    Repaid mtge early (orig 11/25) 01/09 £124616 01/10 £104927 01/11 £89873 01/12 £76317 01/13 £52546 01/14 £35356 01/15 £12133 07/15 £NIL
    BTL Mtge 12/16 £69786. 2018 OPs (#18) £8K/£7500
    Net sales 2018 £751.22/£1000 PAYDOX18 (#15) Done £18918.90
    • lindez
    • By lindez 13th Aug 18, 8:09 PM
    • 406 Posts
    • 1,632 Thanks
    lindez
    Congratulations on your debt free diary, and your promotion. Your plans to be mortgage free in hopefully 5 years are really good. I will be following you for inspiration I also plan on reducing my mortgage term from the current 10 years to five years. It will be hard but its a must as I am now 59 and do not want my mortgage to go on until I am almost 70 !!
    Payment A Day Chapter 18:
    MFWB#44
    • julicorn
    • By julicorn 13th Aug 18, 8:11 PM
    • 461 Posts
    • 1,713 Thanks
    julicorn
    Congratulations on your promotion and pay rise!
    Original mortgage: December 2017, £203,495
    MFW start: April 2018, £201,800
    Current: £183,900
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 15th Aug 18, 7:14 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    What a fab increase! Well done!
    Originally posted by zcrat41
    Hi Zcrat, thanks for this !
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 15th Aug 18, 7:15 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Congrats on the promotion - and what a lovely raise to go with it
    x
    Originally posted by greent
    Thanks Greent !
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 15th Aug 18, 7:19 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Congratulations on your debt free diary, and your promotion. Your plans to be mortgage free in hopefully 5 years are really good. I will be following you for inspiration I also plan on reducing my mortgage term from the current 10 years to five years. It will be hard but its a must as I am now 59 and do not want my mortgage to go on until I am almost 70 !!
    Originally posted by lindez
    Thanks Lindez !
    Good luck with your goal. Do you think you will reduce the term or overpay?
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 15th Aug 18, 7:20 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Congratulations on your promotion and pay rise!
    Originally posted by julicorn
    Thanks Julicorn!
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 15th Aug 18, 7:26 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Thanks Zcrat, greent, lindez and julicorn. I really appreciate your supportive comments. This is what I have always loved about MSE, the support of the community really keeps me going! I will catch up with your diaries and subscribe and follow you all on your respective journeys.
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • julicorn
    • By julicorn 15th Aug 18, 8:25 AM
    • 461 Posts
    • 1,713 Thanks
    julicorn
    Thank you! And I agree, the support in this forum makes all the difference
    Original mortgage: December 2017, £203,495
    MFW start: April 2018, £201,800
    Current: £183,900
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 21st Aug 18, 7:50 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Good morning diary and all,
    Today the first payment has gone out for the mortgage at the higher level which is £1060 plus a regular OP of £80 I have set up so a total of £1140. This is £500 above what it used to be. Its nice to see the mortgage go down by a decent amount! Trying to stay in budget as we approach pay day.
    Quite busy this week at work, luckily we have next week off so looking forward to that. Planning to visit my Mum in the early part of the week. At the end of the week we are off to the Lake District for the weekend to celebrate OHís 50th. Two nights in a nice hotel, we planned this back in January. Hoping to fit in a mountain biking day with DS one day during the week.
    Have a great day all!
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • greent
    • By greent 21st Aug 18, 4:16 PM
    • 7,606 Posts
    • 77,502 Thanks
    greent
    Oooh - Lake District sounds lovely! Hopefully the weather will be kind to you whilst you're there, but it's such a beautiful area anyway
    x
    I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul
    Repaid mtge early (orig 11/25) 01/09 £124616 01/10 £104927 01/11 £89873 01/12 £76317 01/13 £52546 01/14 £35356 01/15 £12133 07/15 £NIL
    BTL Mtge 12/16 £69786. 2018 OPs (#18) £8K/£7500
    Net sales 2018 £751.22/£1000 PAYDOX18 (#15) Done £18918.90
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 27th Aug 18, 5:44 PM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Oooh - Lake District sounds lovely! Hopefully the weather will be kind to you whilst you're there, but it's such a beautiful area anyway
    x
    Originally posted by greent
    Thanks Greent. Really looking forward to it!
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 27th Aug 18, 5:46 PM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Good afternoon diary and all,
    Had some friends over on Saturday night and shared a takeaway curry. Really enjoyed the evening and their company.
    I planned to do some jobs around the house this Bank Holiday and this week. So far the excitement has extended to replacing a toilet valve which was making a groaning noise, and painting a radiator. Living the dream here! I am not a fanatical DIYer but I will have a go at a job if I think it is feasible. Plumbing jobs I have learned to be respectful of, there have been a few occasions of plumbers sadly surveying the results of my efforts before sorting it all out for me. On this occasion it seems I have got the job done without any major mishaps. We are off work this week so I will probably do a few more bits and pieces around the house, always seems to be something that needs doing.
    Have a great evening all!
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 29th Aug 18, 10:26 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Good morning diary and all,
    I went down to visit my Mum yesterday, she is in a nursing home near my brother, its about 21/2 hours drive each way from here. It was great to see her. She unfortunately suffered from mental health problems nearly all her life and more recently has been suffering more from her illness. It was great to just sit with her for a while and chat. These days we talk more about things from many years ago. Ive decided to visit more often going forward.
    Today is a free day at home, so I plan to do a few more mini jobs around the house and maybe paint the garden fence.
    On the money front, I have decided to tweak my goals a little bit. I want to save an emergency fund of £10,000 and then save for a replacement car (approx. £10,000). Iím going to track these targets in my signature. I aim to get the emergency fund saved by about July 2019 and then probably the car fund will be achieved by about May 2020. This gives me a target to keep the car going for another couple of years if I can.
    Looks like a nice day outside.
    Have a great day all!
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
    • glass_half_full
    • By glass_half_full 31st Aug 18, 8:11 AM
    • 339 Posts
    • 818 Thanks
    glass_half_full
    Dear diary and all,
    Today we are off to the Lake District for a couple of days to celebrate DHís 50th. Staying in a nice hotel, looking forward to it. DS and his GF are cat sitting having had detailed instructions from OH on looking after him. On that subject I found out that the pet insurance has paid for his recent x-ray and treatment so that is good news. To be honest I budgeted on the assumption it wouldnít pay out as insurance never seems to.
    Yesterday I went out to paint the garden fence and whilst preparing it, scraping off moss etc I realised that it really is at the end of its life. Its about 20 years old which is the age of the house. I am going to investigate some options for replacing it. Its not too big, about 6-7 6 foot panels across the back of the garden is the section that needs replacing.
    Have a great day all!
    Mortgage June 2018 £79,600 I Mortgage now - £76,149 I MFW Target July 2023 I Emergency fund target £3,500 by Feb 2019 I now £1000 I Car loan £17,600 I
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