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  • FIRST POST
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 28th Oct 18, 10:45 AM
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    Thick n Thin
    Taking back the control
    • #1
    • 28th Oct 18, 10:45 AM
    Taking back the control 28th Oct 18 at 10:45 AM
    So here goes ...... Iíve been a member of Mse for a number of years under a different user name, not always active and just tended to dip in and out, reading peoples diaryís for tips etc but have decided to take the leap and start a diary of my own, Iíve spent the last couple of days reading some diaryís from start to finish and I have been very inspired by some of the achievements!
    So a bit of my back story, we have been in debt for a number of years at its worst it was almost 30k and the monthly repayments where killing us, we where robbing Peter to pay Paul and a lot of the credit was at high interest and I was finding it difficult to swap to lower rates, basically my credit rating was shot. After burying my head in the sand for a number of years years I decided that the only way to tackle this was to remortgage and clear the debt completely, thankfully I found a financial advisor and we stopped our mortgage that was interest only to a repayment and borrowed enough to not only ensure that the mortgage would be paid at the end of the term but also to pay off the bulk of the debt, we now have 1 credit card that we couldnít quite pay off with the surplus which has 2k outstanding. So fast forward 18 months and I canít belive the difference that having all my debt consolidated into one place has made to me mentally however I do need to shift this final 2k as I am just making the minimum payments so itís not really reducing, once this has gone Iíd like to start overpaying the mortgage and start thinking about retirement planning. A bit of a long 1st post but Iím looking forward to getting started now.
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    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 3rd Jan 20, 7:53 PM
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    Thick n Thin
    Another added incentive for clearing my overdraft, I have just added up my charges for Dec and it’s over £14! Because it is charged daily and because the charge is normally less than £1 per day I wasn’t thinking it was such a big amount, obviously over a month it adds up which I’m ashamed to say I hadn’t even given it much thought especially in the run up to Christmas!
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 4th Jan 20, 8:27 AM
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    Thick n Thin
    Day off today... I was hoping for a long lie in after a busy few days but was wide awake at 6am, finally gave up trying to fall back asleep and got up at 7am, I’m currently sitting with my blanket and my book watching BBC breakfast whilst OH is still snoozing!
    Plan for today...
    Wait until a more reasonable hour to wake OH and then will make breakfast, I’m thinking mushrooms ( need using up) with wilted spinach (also needs using up) eggs for OH ( I don’t eat eggs) and avocado for me with some toast, and several cups of coffee. I then need to take my tree down.. I hate hate hate this task, I then need to get OH to put it straight in the loft otherwise it will linger in the spare room for weeks. I will need a few things from Ald& so will do a bit of an inventory of the fridge/freezer and cupboards and need a bit of a meal plan for the next week as my weekly food budget until the end of January is £40!! Can this be done? This needs to cover everything including toiletries ( only toothpaste really as we got loads of stuff over Christmas, maybe loo rolls) all cleaning stuff ( maybe only washing up liquid as I have loads of stuff) no packed lunch items will be required this week as we are both off work so if I plan and don’t stray from my list!
    I need to change my bed linen today but I will need to use the dryer, I have been pretty good over the winter with minimising the usage on this but I can’t bear having wet towels or sheets hanging around on airers for days!
    My gas and electricity bill is due soon which I am dreading, last January it was around the £350 mark so I am bracing myself for this. Both cars also need servicing as well at the end of the month and MOT is due on mine. I think February will also be very tight!
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 4th Jan 20, 6:07 PM
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    Thick n Thin
    So tree is down now and I have given everywhere a good clean, house feels less cluttered and I have stripped the bed put fresh sheets on. I haven’t done a food shop as I think I will carry on with my quest to run down bits and pieces from the fridge and freezer, I’m becoming a bit obsessed with using bits and pieces up.
    Tonight’s meals will be...
    OH - meat pie from freezer, the remainder of some roast potatoes again from the freezer, mixed veg, stuffing and gravy.
    Me - their is a small aubergine that needs using up so I’m going to roast this with some other veggies and then I have some frozen cous cous which I will use up. So I have managed to delay the weekly shop by another day, I’ll definitely need to go out tomorrow though!
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 5th Jan 20, 9:18 AM
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    Thick n Thin
    So plans for today
    Going to an exercise class today, I need to restart a sensible eating plan and exercise routine, I have let things slide over the last 12 months resulting in around a 2 stone weight gain. My eating habits are very disorded and I need to sort this out this year as it makes me depressed and then I am more likely to overspend,
    So 3 things to do today that I am classing as self care
    1, go to class
    2, eat sensibility, fruit and veg, no chocolate or crisps
    3, no alcohol ( going to start dry January today)
    4, drink 2 litres of water
    5, file and shape nails ( no money in budget this month for pampering)

    Need to do the food shop today, I have a £40 budget for the week so I will definitely need a list this week.
    One of my goals for 2020 is to read 12 books this year so 1 per month, I am half way through one atm so I would like to do some reading today to make some progress!
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 5th Jan 20, 5:16 PM
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    Thick n Thin
    So I have done my exercise class, and I feel a new sense of motivation and enthusiasm to restart my health regime, I’m going to do another 2 classes this week and commit to 3 classes a week for the foreseeable future, when I feel a little fitter and the nights are a bit lighter I’ll start right running again. Determined not to have any alcohol today.
    Did my weekly shop earlier and had a £40 budget, it came to £53. I was tempted by a pinch of nom cookbook which was £5 that will obviously be paid back out of my personal spends, then £5 was for some bits and bobs for my mum, I won’t take the money of her for this as she is always buying me bits and bobs, so I feel like a £3 overspend isn’t too bad. I did put a few unnecessary items in the trolly but half way round I decided that I didn’t really need them so put them back, this probably saved me another £5.
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 6th Jan 20, 10:55 AM
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    Thick n Thin
    So current financial situation as follows,
    Next pay day 24/1/19

    Money in current account - £111 enough to cover my final direct debit of the month. After that I will fall into overdraft, so my aim is not to use my debit card at all now.

    Money in food shopping envelope - £ 80
    We have enough food to last until the end of this week in. This means I then have £40 per week until I get paid again. This will be my biggest challenge for the rest of the month.

    Dental treatment cost £28 initial check up and x ray however I have been told I need some further treatment which will cost aprox £275 on the nhs or £650 if I go private. I have a few days to decide but it’s a bit of a no brainier to go on the nhs however the dentist has said it’s a lower success rate on the nhs!

    It has really bought it home to me how close we live pay packet to pay packet and don’t have any provisions in place for emergencies. We are lucky enough to have £2.6k in emergancy savings but I really see that as savings for unemployment or illness that we would need to pay essential bills, even that isn’t enough to cover us for a month. I really need a separate pot for medical emergencies such as opticians/dental ect but every time I set my pots up they seem to get wiped out for something or another.
    In January I have the following due,
    Car tax and mot
    Gas and electricity bill
    Dental treatment ( if I don’t raid savings)
    So anything that I wanted to save into my pots will be wiped out straight away!
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 7th Jan 20, 9:05 AM
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    Thick n Thin
    Yesterday I spent the afternoon sorting out my file that holds all my financial paperwork. I got rid of loads of old statements, some went back as far as 2005!
    I have found all my paperwork relating to my ISA, I have decided to wait until I get my March statement to see how it has performed over the last 12 months and then make a decision, my gut is telling me to close it and re-invest the money elsewhere, possibly into premium bonds but I will make that desision nearer the time.
    My car pcp has another 12 months, I thought it was due to end in 2020 but I am glad the desision has been made for me as I didn’t really want to give my car up just yet, I have another 12 months to mull this one over.
    My pension statements have all been shredded as it’s now all available online, I rang them and reset my password so I now have access to this, just need to get OH sorted out now.
    Couldn’t find any info relating to our life insurance policy’s but I think this may all be on line, I need to look at this as a matter of urgency as I do think I’m paying over the odds for this now.
    My car insurance is due at the start of Feb , I ran the info through a comparison site yesterday and I think I can easily shave £10 per month of the monthly premiums.
    I have set myself a little mini challenge for the next month to try and shave £50 of our monthly outgoings ( not including food shopping) but from direct debits so my 1st points of call are the life insurance and the car insurance!
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 8th Jan 20, 10:18 AM
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    Thick n Thin
    Money saving plans for today...

    Wrap and post eBay package for item sold at weekend. Only a couple of pounds but will let all the little sales add up. Not doing much with eBay at the moment, I’ve run out of steam but need to get back into this soon.
    Small wash on quickest cycle, I have a 14 minute cycle that I need to get used to using instead of the 30 min one.
    I need to buy a loaf but apart from that should be a nsd. All meals will come from what we have in.
    I have managed to find my log in details for my life insurance so I should give them a call to discuss the policy and either see if it could be ammended or look at cancelling it all together and setting up a new policy.
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 9th Jan 20, 7:35 PM
    • 170 Posts
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    Thick n Thin
    Not much happening at the moment, current account is empty and I have no spare cash, providing I don’t use my debit card for anything I will stay out of my overdraft this month which actually means I will of paid off £850 in one month which I am pretty pleased with ....
    However I need petrol and I have £80 in the shopping budget to last me until the 24th.. can I do this?
    Trying to stay focused on good habits that stop me spending money and little ways that save money every day, getting inventive with fridge bits and bobs now to try and avoid the mid week top up shops that always blow my budget. Tonight we had grilled vegetables, pasta pesto with sausage, it was pretty nice as well, usually I would of just nipped to Tesco which would of resulted in a £20 spend easily!
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 10th Jan 20, 11:21 AM
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    Thick n Thin
    Operation stay out of overdraft continues... no unplanned spends for today, will need petrol at some point today but I’m hoping if I put £20 in and drive mindfully over the next 2 weeks it should last, I don’t do many miles and we use OH car more so should be ok, I will need a loaf and some eggs but can put if the main shop until tomorrow, I will continue with my freezer rummaging for tonight’s evening meal!
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 13th Jan 20, 6:38 PM
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    Thick n Thin
    Car insurance renewal quote has arrived £460 which is the same as last year however I believe I can shave £100 or £10 per month of this if I shop around so that’s the next task on my list.
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 15th Jan 20, 10:57 AM
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    Thick n Thin
    I’ve ran a few quotes through Quidco but can’t seem to find the cover that I need for a cheaper price, I may just go through a normal price comparison site for a like for like quote as I don’t want to compromise my level of cover for the sake of £50 cash back. My goal is to try and reduce my monthly premium by £10. Long term I want to be able to pay big annual expenses up front so it’s one less thing to pay monthly. My OH car insurance is due around June and so is the house insurance so I would love to be able to pay these in full. I can’t wait to start saving into my pots for these each month. Today I am going to work on my February budget as I have some more big expenditure this month, my car mot and service has just been booked in which is £239 and my gas and electricity bill is £385 so I will have to trim the budget yet again for February. I am holding onto my big win from this month of almost completely clearing my overdraft. Pay day is 10 days and counting.
    • Thick n Thin
    • By Thick n Thin 20th Jan 20, 7:24 PM
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    Thick n Thin
    3 days until pay day. This has been the longest month ever. Sadly due to unforeseen expenses I have had to dip into my overdraft but I haven’t gone over £100 which I am still happy with considering it was £800 before Xmas. February will still be tight but I am going to get stuck into eBay again to try and get the last £100 gone by end of February.
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