Money Wise Talks 28/10/2021

The Money Wise Mum blog

was 1 year old on Saturday!

I set up The Money Wise Mum blog following it’s Instagram page to document the ups and downs of my debt pay off journey.

On Instagram I was welcomed with open arms to the finance community. They gave me so much support with my own journey, a blog was the natural thing to do.

I find that writing away my ups and downs helps me compartmentalise my fears and I really enjoy sharing the great parts of my journey as well. I have learnt so much over the past year and want to share that with others in the hope it helps them to.

Being a single parent is hard and sometimes if feels there are so many things against you, it’s 2 steps forwards and 5 back. It’s a real struggle to see the other side.

But I started with debts over £35k and with perseverance I have managed to get them down to £16k.

And you can do it to.

Start where I started and just face your debts and well just start. See where you get in 12 months from now and you may be surprised how far you come.

12 months on, what do the figures look like on my blog?

I now have 96 of you lovely people following my journey and the ups of downs of paying off debt

A total of 262 Likes across my posts

2,415 Visitors to The Money Wise Mum site

6,813 Views on my blog

Money my blog has made … 0.86 😊

That my friends is my first amount of passive income, along with my dividends of 0.19.

My daughter laughed her head off when I told what I made £1.05. I told her to ‘watch this space, madam, the only way is up!’😊

This week I have been focusing on my overall financial position and have been ringing and emailing all the companies I’ve previously worked for to see if I had a pension with them. Some pensions I knew about as I remember signing up to them, but as I’ve also had a couple of part time jobs alongside full time jobs, I didn’t want to risk missing one so just called them all.

I was pleasantly surprised and found to have a positive net worth for the first time ever! Although, this is the first time I have ever really looked at my net worth, I still need to make that big house purchase, so I doubt it will still be positive in the next 12-18 months.

I did check in with where my figures stood by comparing October 2020 to October 2021 and this was a nice boost which I’d recommend anyone to do as it can show how far you’ve come

October 2020 V October 2021

Debt £20,524.49 V Debt £16,000.54

Investments £0 V Investments £102.34

Savings £500 V Savings £1468

Child Investments £0 V Child Investments £202.15

Child Savings £500 V Child Savings £500

I’ve paid £4523.95 off debt, increased my savings by £968 and started investing for me and my daughter totalling £304.49.

I know people usually advise not to start investing whilst on a debt pay off journey but the reasons why I’ve started it early is

1) I want to get into the habit of saving long term sooner rather than later

2) I want to make the most of compound interest

3) I’m treating the payments to each ISA as a bill and have no intention of touching/cancelling them and

4) I have been involving my daughter in the process (she’s 9) so she can start her investment education early on. Nothing too heavy of course, but she likes to see it moving and I’m encouraging her to develop patience, which I believe is a key life skill to learn.

Those aren’t massive numbers I know and I see people with a lot more, but I try to not compare myself with others as they are different people, have different lives, earnings and are at different stages in their financial journey. The only things that matter are my numbers are going in the right direction.

What I’ve spent this week?

£22.00 on my daughter’s holiday club for a day in the half term

£31.00 hair (covered by sinking fund)

£10.27 Macdonalds

£24.70 Just Eat Pizza

£6.50 Security light bulb from B & Q

£20.00 Petrol

£47.26 Food and bits – Slightly over the £30 budget but this did include a bottle of wine and some treats for my daughter as it’s half term week

In hindsight looking at this, I shouldn’t have spent money on the takeaways and gone over budget, but you can’t be perfect all the time and this is me NOT BEING PERFECT LOL. I am in fact reigning it in a little as I have a few nights out planned and don’t want to overspend as well as go out.

I’ve made a few more sales on Vinted taking my total in the Vinted account to £14.00. I still need to upload some more but it’s gone really busy right now with Halloween parties, anyone else feel like this? It’s like since covid everyone makes a huge deal of all these types of events. I mean it’s nice and everything, but I just feel really busy all the time!

I’ve paid a total of £326.19 off my debt in October. It’s a good amount but unfortunately those are just minimum payments. I can’t seem to find enough money to make overpayments, even though I work two jobs. I do feel hugely impacted by the loss of my maintenance from the ex and having no pay for August. I’m hoping things right themselves soon when I can pick up more parcels in the busy delivery period of Christmas.

Christmas Tracker is in course and will be uploaded soon!

Net Worth and Why I’m Not Focusing On Mine Right Now

What is a Net worth?

A net worth is how much a person is worth in monetary terms after taking away everything they still owe money for. It’s a snapshot of a person’s financial position in that moment of time. The value of assets can go up and down day to day, sometimes minute to minute whereas liabilities are designed to reduce over time (it’s not always the case) but these factors can alter your net worth day to day.

The calculation to work out your net worth is:

Assets – Liabilities = Net worth

What’s an Asset?

An asset is something owned by a person or a company that has an economic value, basically its worth some money. It could be sold for a profit either now or in the future.

Assets are; cash in bank accounts, savings, retirement savings (pensions), bonds, vehicles, plant and machinery, shares, property, dividends, artwork and jewellery.

What are Liabilities?

A liability is something that a person or a company owes money for. For example, a loan taken to buy a car would be classed as a liability. Credit cards, personal loans, pay day loans, student loans (although in the UK, these are generally not included), overdrafts and mortgages are all examples of liabilities.

You can include whatever assets and liabilities you like, but the most common ones I have already listed.

How to work out your Net Worth

I make two separate columns, one for assets and one for liabilities and list each one. Add each column up and then take the liabilities away from the assets. This will leave you with your own personal net worth.

A positive (+) net worth is one that is in credit, so you have more assets than liabilities (the position we all want to be in!). A negative (-) net worth shows that you have more liabilities than assets.

Most people that have a mortgage would have a negative net worth. I always thought it was seen as the ‘norm’ to have this debt as an adult who wanted to own their own home. Although over the years I’m seeing a shift in peoples’ attitudes towards debt including mortgages and find it’s becoming more popular to try and pay mortgages off earlier than the previous 25-year term.

Remember if you put your outstanding mortgage amount in as a liability to include the value of the house as an asset. If you only put the mortgage amount in your liability column it won’t accurately reflect your net worth and will show a negative. You can get an approximate value for your house through Zoopla https://www.zoopla.co.uk/home-values/. Also do this for any loans taken to buy assets, for example car loans and loans for plant and machinery.

Is knowing your net worth important?

In the whole scheme of things, it all comes down to personal preference, but it may be something you want to look at if you are looking to focus on your overall financial position. Whether you want to increase your wealth or to use it as motivation to pay off debt. I think it can be an important tool to access your assets v liability ratios and to make sure you’re not over committing yourself with debt.

Also, you can use it to check the diversity of your financial position. Diversification is a way to make sure you are spreading your risk and not putting all your eggs in one basket. So not putting all your money into one asset, like all your money being held only in cash products, or conversely putting all your money into shares or property.

There are many tools out there which will tell you to keep X amount in cash, X amount in shares. But it’s important to realise that there’s not one size fits all because it all depends on how much risk you want to take. It also depends on what age you are, what your immediate, medium and long-term plans are too. For example, there’s no point in putting all your money into long term investments if you want to buy a house in 12 months-time.

Up until this week, I’d never looked at my net worth. But when I started reviewing my pension and see what pensions I had frozen from companies I’d previously worked for, I was pleasantly surprised.

The reason why is because for a first time I have a positive net worth.

I couldn’t believe it. Even with my debt, I have a net worth of + £18,983.80.

This is what my figures look like at 25/10/2021

Assets Liabilities 
Cash Savings£1,468.00Credit cards£16,000.54
Investments£102.34
Pension£32,464.00
Car£950.00
Assets Total£34,984.34Liabilities Total£16,000.54
Assets – Liabilities = Net Worth£34,984.34 – £16,000.54 = £18,983.80 +
 

That’s because when I started work at 21, I paid into a pension with my employer straightaway. I was lucky that I started working for a bank and started my financial journey early.

As happy as I am having a positive net worth, I have decided to ignore it, for now anyway.

I know what your thinking, why would I want to ignore something that is so positive (pun intended lol) and I guess it’s because I don’t want to become complacent and lose my focus that I have to off my debt as quickly as possible.

But I will keep tabs on it every now and then as it definitely gives me a boost when I see the figures going in the right direction.

What net worth should we be aiming for?

I suppose this depends on what we want to do with the money, our retirement plans and how much we want to live off each year. Again, everyone will be different and even I haven’t got the magic number in mind right now.

According to the ONS, (Dec 2020) – the last reported figures in 2020 show the UK having an estimated net worth of £10 trillion, resulting in an average net worth of £150,000 per person. That doesn’t really seem that much at all when you consider how expensive everything is to buy and the problem with this average, it doesn’t consider the huge divide between rich and poor. The poorest people will have nowhere near as much as this and richer will probably have substantially more.

How to Increase your Net Worth?

The magic question, but the answer to this isn’t fancy or hard to do. I think it’s just a combination of:

  • Paying off consumer debt (the bad stuff that doesn’t help buy you assets)
  • Investing as much as you can whilst still enjoying your life
  • Budgeting and being frugal helping you keep your finances in check and stop the overspending
  • Increasing your earning potential by going for promotions
  • Furthering your education if it helps you to get into the higher salary bracket
  • Looking at passive income options; property, making products, books etc…
  • Taking on extra jobs or side hustles
  • Use tax efficient saving accounts
  • Contribute to a pension either through your work or a personal pension

As I’m on my own journey of paying of debt and increasing my net worth, I can only give my perspective but believe success will happen when your consistent and you start getting excited about the numbers. If you’re not a numbers person like me, this can be boring. For you I’d recommend looking at the bigger picture of what those numbers mean to you.

With your numbers going in the right direction, will that give you the dream home, the car or financial security you want for yourself and your family?

Does it mean that you are changing your financial future and giving your children and their children the future you’ve always wanted?

Whatever it looks like for me and you, it’s all different for us all, but going for a positive net worth is definitely one to inspire for.

Reference:

ONS (2020) https://www.ons.gov.uk/economy/nationalaccounts/uksectoraccounts/bulletins/nationalbalancesheet/2020

Money Wise Talks 21/10/2021

Life this week has been a rollercoaster!

From car costs to rekindling a very old love for exercise, I’ve had it all.

Last Thursday my lovely car decided to die again. I’ve had it for ten years and it owes me nothing, but it has cost me some serious money in repairs this year – £1484.58 to be exact!

With my limited knowledge on cars, I thought the clutch had gone. I asked Ford garage for a quote as my usual garage was super busy and the quote came back as £850. I laughed so hard, but only to stop the tears.

I ended up taking it to a garage my mum uses and was super pleased that 1 – it wasn’t the clutch, but a wire had snapped to the hand break and  2) it was going to be £269.68.

Still expensive, but not as ridiculous as £850.

Unfortunately, the car was out of action all weekend and I didn’t get it back till Tuesday, so I was unable to do my courier work on Sunday. I felt awful letting them down but had no other car to use. And I missed earning the money. I really love that little job.

Bad news followed unfortunately, the light on the kettle broke (still boils though) and then the official letter I’d been dreading came through the post ‘unable to collect payments’ for the child maintenance I usually receive. I’m not sure when this payment will start again, so that’s me down £200 a month, right in time for Christmas. Thank goodness for the Christmas sinking fund.

So those are all the downs, let me tell you all the highs.

Being forced to walk the school run, there and back whilst I had my car in the garage made me realise and miss my love for exercise I had years ago. Wrapped up warm with the cold hitting our faces every morning and clocking up over 10,000 steps a day is exactly what I need.

They say getting out into nature is a way to destress, improve your health and mind and I’d definitely agree.

We all loved it!

Including the dog!

No deliveries completed on Sunday. I did however get stuck into finishing the decorating in the kitchen. Monies tight whilst on the debt pay off journey but I wanted to freshen up the inside of the house so decided to paint everywhere white – starting with the kitchen.

No ‘cutting in’ for me!

Everywhere will look so fresh and clean and as I have lots of colourful furniture and décor, I’m hoping it won’t look cold and clinical.

Cost for supplies: £88.90 for ceiling and wall paint, brushes and white satin wood for the radiators, doors and skirting boards.

I paid in to the ‘Clothes’ sinking jar this week with £30 and used it to buy uniform my daughter needed. I want to be more organised so brought it before the half term starts instead of at the end when everything is usually sold out. I’m definitely going to do this again. I’ve also started to buy uniform in bits instead of all at the same time and replace items as they wear out. I can use the money from the clothes sinking jar each month instead of having to save it up. £31.50 spent

Three items listed and sold this week on Vinted. Two pairs of girls’ winter ankle boots and my old lab coat. Total available in my Vinted account to take out £9.00. I think I am just going to allow this to increase until I get to £78.37 and when I reach this, I can transfer it to the MBNA credit card and colour in a line on my debt pay off tracker. I’ve still got lots to upload onto Vinted so watch this space! If you wanted to check out some of the clothes I sell, here is the link

We went to see the ‘umpkins’!

That’s my amazing photography right there lol! I quite like the word ‘umpkins’ though, think that’s a keeper!

I say ‘see’ instead of ‘pick’ as we didn’t actually pick any from the farm this year. At a cost of £4.00 a pumpkin, we didn’t have it in our budget to buy the pumpkin as well as pay £7.50 to play on the play area the farm has. So being mindful of our £10 a week fun budget, I brought a pumpkin from Morrisons for £1.00 and instead just paid for the play on the park. I still wanted my daughter to have the experience of the pumpkin patch though and we had a fantastic afternoon. £7.50 spent.

As I had no car to put petrol this week, I did spend slightly more on food at £34.89, but only £4.89 over the food budget. I used the rest of cash to grab some snacks and treat my daughter to a magazine and some football cards. Still stayed within the overall weekly budget of £50 (£30 food, £20 petrol).

Finally, after a long wait I have reduced my debt total down to

£16,000.54!

This is only from the usual minimum payments going out as I haven’t been able to overpay since starting my new job in September and getting used to being paid weekly again. I am trying to overpay but it’s like two steps forward and ten back with car repairs, missing courier shifts, no holiday pay, and the ongoing saga of no child maintenance. It’s all causing havoc with my finances.

I have a plan though. I have decided to remove the child maintenance payments from my budget, so I never expect them in again. If they come in great, but if they don’t it’s not going to mess me up. And I’m going to continue to leave my debits cards out of my phone case. Such a simple, yet effective thing to do and has really cut my impulse spending in the week.

If anyone is looking at cutting costs, I would definitely recommend this.

Last but not least, my little blog is ONE on Saturday. I can’t believe I have been documenting my journey on this blog for year and although I will do a special blog on Saturday, I want to thank every one of you, especially my followers for all your likes and comments.

Have a great week

H

Money Wise Talks 14/10/2021

This week I had one of those ‘light bulb moments’. As you know last Saturday I posted about what I’d learnt on my no spend month and I decided that I would take out my debit cards that I usually carry around in my phone case and guess what – IT WORKED!!

I’ve spent absolutely no money this week (as in Monday to Thursday) probably for the first time in a very long time! Actually, it’s been that long I can’t actually even remember, how embarrassing!

I was very tempted on Tuesday to order in a cheeky dessert. My daughter and I decided we fancied something sweet so whilst sitting on the sofa I did my usual trick of grabbing my phone and looking through the menus on the Just Eat app. We found the biggest, sweetest waffle to share and I went into my phone case to get my card details and they weren’t there!

I mean they were only upstairs but I really couldn’t be bothered to move from my comfy spot so I cancelled the order and we went without. To be honest, I don’t think either of us were that bothered about it anyway.

It’s such a simple idea to not carry cards around with you, but it works! That and drawing out the cash you need really helps as it stops impulsive spending.

I’m curious now, if I was do another no spend month in November, would it be more successful this time? I think I would have to not count buying for Christmas though as I want to start the shopping next month.

In fact, this year is the first year I have successfully saved for Christmas. I have transferred a fixed amount every month for the whole year! It will be the first time I have a pot of money to use and not use the credit card. I want to make sure I don’t go over budget this year so next week I’ll be looking at doing an expense tracker for all the presents I want to buy and my budget for each person. With the funds I’ve saved for Christmas, I want them to be used for EVERYTHING Christmas related so I don’t go CRAZY like I did last year. If you missed the craziness of last year, this is the post you need to read. It’s not something I’m proud of but putting it out there to be transparent… you’ve been warned though!

My spending this week has been AMAZING. I have stuck to my £50 a week budget for food and petrol and used our weekly fun budget of £20. This is the first time I have given us a budget for fun and I think it will stay. It allows us a little freedom whilst still trying to pay down as much debt as possible. It’s also a making me think a lot more about what I’m buying. For example, we went to a pumpkin patch on Sunday for the whole experience and it was great – but we didn’t buy the £5.00 pumpkins that are the exactly the same size for the £1.00 at Morrisons (or other supermarkets). I’m sorry, I just don’t have that kind of money in my budget. But the experience was still the same so my daughter didn’t lose out. And we still supported the farm we went too as I paid an entrance fee into the park they have there. So I’m not a complete scrooge.

I have also managed to colour in the first line on my Mini debt (pay off) challenge tracker as I made a payment today of £78.37. Only 19 payments left until this is cleared and I have until the end of the year to do it.

You can download a free tracker on the Mini Debt Challenge post.

I was feeling pretty confident I could do this mini challenge, but about 30 minutes ago my clutch decided to go on the car (hence the reason this normal 20:00 blog post is late). I think I’m in denial about it, as I’ve come home after driving it in second gear (the only bloody gear it would go in) and am sat writing this. I’m not ready to deal with the car tonight so will be leaving that one until tomorrow. For those that don’t follow me on Instagram, my car at the moment is costing me £££’s and only last month I forked out about £600 for repairs. I’m also not sure at this point how I can do my courier job on Sunday. But like I said I’ll worry about it tomorrow.

At least I will finally be doing the school run by foot. Something I have been promising to do since the kids started back in September.

All in all – ignoring the car, I’ve definitely had a better week this week. Just another reminder that bad feelings and times will pass (still ignoring the car grrrrrrr.)

My next post is going to be on net worth. What it is, how to work it out for yourself and why I’m ignoring mine right now! So be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss it!

H

Mini Debt (Pay Off) Challenge!

As you may have read from my recent Money Wise Talks 07/10/2021, I have decided to do a Mini Debt (Pay Off) Challenge between now and Christmas.

I want to clear the rest of the balance of £1567.25 from the MBNA card as the 0% interest free period ends 31/12/2021. The finer details around how this amount came about can be found in the Money Wise Talks 07/10/2021 blog post.

If I don’t clear that amount by that day, the interest will default to 29.93 %. I could transfer the balance again but really want a new challenge to refocus me in paying the debt off. I have been on this debt journey so long now that I’m starting to get fed up of it. Can anyone else relate?

To get me in the mood, I made myself a funky new Pig Savings Tracker which you can also download for FREE below. Cute isn’t it!

There are 20 lines on the pig tracker, so each line is worth 1/20th of the total. To work out how much each line is worth just divide the total by 20.

My total on the MBNA card is £1567.25, so each line is worth £78.37 (1567.25/20) .

Every time I make some extra cash, I will put it in a spare online savings account I have attached to my current account and when I get £78.37 I will transfer it to the credit card and colour a line of my pig in. If you have paid off all your debt and have savings goals, you can use it for that instead!

As I mentioned before, I have been a little deflated recently whilst on this ‘paying off debt journey’ so wanted or maybe needed to spice it up a bit by focusing on a lesser number than the massive amount of £16,363.74 and adding a little fun of course. There is also a little bit of pressure and urgency as the deadline is the end of the year.

I just want to be debt free. I just want to start the next chapter.

In all honestly, I think it will be tough to do. I’ve just had some bad news (again) about the maintenance I receive so it looks like that money won’t be coming in, so I’ve decided not to rely on it anymore. If it comes in, bonus. And if it doesn’t, it doesn’t.

Sad news is, I’m now effectively down £200 a month.

The timing is awful being so close to Christmas but thank goodness I saved money every month since last December. At least Christmas won’t be ruined.

Anyhow, yes it will be tough. Going to try my usual tricks of selling, match betting, possible more delivering and being more frugal.

After my last no spend month, I realised I was a little spendy on Monday and Tuesday’s even though I do our weekly shop at the weekend so I’ve now taken my debit cards out of my phone case. I will only use them now on the one day I need to draw out cash for shopping and petrol.

Hoping this will be enough to clear it.

Why not do something similar with me and download the Pig Tracker for FREE. Tag me on Instagram so I can support you and you can support me and GOOD LUCK!

What I Learnt From My No Spend Month

I started strong.

I had my No Spend Challenge Sheet, my budget for food and petrol was set and I’d planned no other expenses for the month.

I was ready for it.

Each Friday, I took out what I needed for the week – a total of £50 (£30 food shopping, £20 petrol)

It went ok, but I didn’t do as well as I did in January this year.

However, I will take what I’ve learnt and look for areas where I can improve.

The No Spend Month ended with:

12 – No spend days (17 days in January)

7   – In budget spends

11 – Out of Budget Spends (6 days in January)

No spend days

Looking at the No Spend Challenge Sheet, I had at least 2 no spend days a week and these were mostly on Wednesdays and Saturdays.  

In Budget Spends

My in budget spends were mostly done on a Friday when I do our usual food and petrol shop. My daughter is out at a club so I can do it in peace. I always spend more when she’s with me! It also leaves us Saturday as a fun day. I do try and get both the food shop and petrol on the same day.

Out of Budget Spends

My out of budget spends consisted of hospital car parking fees, last minute drinks and snacks when delivering parcels and a last minute trip to the fair – fairs are my thing!

My out of budgets spends fell mostly on a Monday and Tuesday. This will either be me popping to the shops because I’ve forgotten something on the weekly shop I did at the weekend or going for treats.

8/11 of my out of budget spends were done on weekdays.

I think it’s important to understand your behaviour when it comes to spending. When you buy, what you buy and why you spend the way you do.

My Plan Going Forward

Remove my debit cards from my phone case – this should stop me from the last minute spends at the shop. I only need my debit card on a Friday when I’m drawing out the money I need for the week. Having it in my phone case is asking for it to be used!

I have added to our budget a small pot of money of £20 a week for fun. This means if the fair comes to town, we have a little to spend!!

Be more organised and take snacks we want to eat when I’m delivering parcels. I do make us food every week for when we are out delivering but when it comes to eating it, we never fancy it! We always fancy a Greggs though! And a vegan sausage roll and bottle of pop every Sunday doesn’t cost a lot, so I am going to continue to buy this but what I will start doing it making sure I leave enough room in the normal weekly budget for it.

I don’t believe this small treat a week will hinder our long term goals. But the continuous deprivation might.

A few more Tips

You need an emergency fund before you try a no spend month or year because if something breaks and needs to be repaired urgently, you’ll end up breaking your no spend to fix it!

Analyse your No Spend Month! Look for spending patterns, worse (spendy days) and triggers. This will all help you understand why you buy!

How did you get on? Let me know in the comments below.

Money Wise Talks 07/10/2021

What. A. Week!

Anyone else had a week of mostly meh’s?

Mine has been very up and down and a little bit spendy.

I’m struggling to keep myself motivated at the moment and to be honest I’m getting fed up of doing this debt free journey.

It’s just taking so long.

I have been doing it for a few years now and as strange as this may seem, seeing the debt numbers decrease just aren’t doing it for me like they used to. I used to get really excited about paying bits off here and there and making money through selling or match betting but I just feel so over it.

And I can feel how this shift is slowing changing my mindset little by little. It’s been eating away at me for a few months now, but I’ve been fighting it. A secret, constant battle inside my mind. Me V Me.

My mind telling me that it’s taking so long anyway you might as well have a little spend. Then the new credit card hits the door mat just at the wrong time and boom! I’m in the shops buying school shoes, a new hoover, tickets to festivals with my friends, clothes for my daughter and I even brought myself a new coat and winter boots.

Hundreds of pounds spent later and I wonder why I’m giving up. Why am I sabotaging myself. Do I not believe I’m worth a debt free life? Why do I believe I’m not good enough when I’ve come so far?

It’s so annoying. Sometimes you have be stronger than your own damn mind! You’d think you and your mind would be working seamlessly together. Clearly bloody not!

Well, sometimes they do I guess. I do eventually talk myself round.

Even with my huge mess up I’ve still paid off £19,543.30. That is still amazing. And I need to remember that.

I need to constantly remember that.

My new debt total is £16,363.74.

This is me acknowledging I’ve made a mistake and saying to myself now I’m going to stop.

Even though the spendy period has stopped, I am still not massively motivated to see those numbers decreasing so I’ve been racking my brains for something else I can do, which I will share with you shortly but first let me explain a little where the idea came from.

This week, one of my credit cards was soon to be coming to the end of its 0 % interest free period so I used another credit card that had zero balance on it and transferred the balance across (or most of it anyway). Here are the figures below;

Barclaycard

£8926.06 most of this balance is 0% but from the statements I can’t tell how much and when it will end. Guess I’ll have to call them tomorrow. I know my interest last month was about £11.00

MBNA was £7267.75 all 0% and this was broken down as:

£3715.10 balance expiring 4/10/2021

£3552.15 balance expiring 31/12/2021

I used the Tesco credit card and paid £5700 to MBNA which left a balance of £1567.25 expiring 31/12/2021. The variable interest rate will be 29.93%

Tesco was at zero balance. Transferred £5700 to MBNA. Charged £170.43 for the transfer so balance is £5870.43.  This is 0 % interest free till April 2023

I could use the available balance on my Barclaycard to clear MBNA in full but then had a thought.

I could set myself a Mini Debt Challenge of paying the rest of the balance on MBNA in full by the time it comes out of its interest free period on 31/12/2021. The balance is £1567.25 which works out at £522.42 a month or £120.59 a week (13 weeks till 31/12/2021).

This will be as well as making my normal minimum payments. It will be a stretch but it should, I hope, make sure I don’t over-spend. I have my Christmas budget sorted with money I’ve saved all year so I really have no excuses not to smash this.

I’m hoping that this creates the buzz I need to pay this debt off and take me off the spiral of doom I started on when the spending started. If I have to break this debt up into smaller chunks to feel like I’m getting somewhere, this is what I will do.

As ever I’ll keep you updated, for my own accountability and with the hope it helps someone else out there to.

Share your stories in the comments below, let’s do it together

Take Care

H