The Angelicscalliwags Challenge: Week 8

I’m running a bit late with my posts at the moment.  We had our yearly family party on Saturday and it’s been all hands on deck!  We host the children for a garden party in our garden whilst my mum hosts the adults next door.  It is always great fun, and this year the children had the added benefit of Emma (our old baby sitter) coming and looking after them.  Thanks Emma, the children had a wonderful time with you!

I’ve been pondering the whole Angelicsscalliwag’s challenge with Gary over the past week, and as expected we have come to a compromise: we will be aiming to pay off our mortgage by December 2017, in just over four years time.  This is feasible without us having to save any extra each week because in January we had already doubled the payments we make each month.  Currently over 70% of our income goes on paying for our house.  As Gary says, anymore is unrealistic to maintain for any length of time.  So we will still be making the higher payments but without the addition of the £100 extra per week.  If you’d like to read about our challenge so far see here.

We still need to maintain the changes we have made and we will still be looking to save money here and there, but the situation will not be so desperate!  Apart from the coffee and snacking habit we were already fairly careful with our money before we started the challenge.  Gary and I have been in discussions about where we want to go next and Gary would like us to focus on our budget and we both decided that a change to cash-only would be our next move.  We have never owned a credit card in the entirety of our marriage but we do use a debit card.  We have decided to only use the debit card for emergencies and any internet purchases (I shop on Amazon for all our school supplies), everything else will be cash.  We already have a bills account whereby bills go out by direct debit each month, a savings account and a car account.  Money is transferred each month into these accounts, ensuring we are able to meet expenses as they occur.  Our grocery, petrol, play money (which we have decided to have a small amount of each week) and money we pay the children for extra jobs around the house will, from now on, be cash only.  Our grocery bill is the one bill we feel we could decrease, simply by better organisation, so for the next month we will be concentrating on this.  Also we want to focus on teaching the children to manage their money.

All this to say, I have decided to go to monthly postings as I don’t really feel I have enough useful things to write about for a weekly post.  It always takes me time to process changes and to become organised enough to carry the changes out efficiently.  I still want to make a note of how we are doing and what we did to pay off our mortgage early because I think it would be good for the children to look back on when they are older.  I will post an update on the last Saturday of the month and share anything we’ve done to help us become even more financially organised.

It has been so worth while overpaying each month.  We had our yearly statement through on Friday and the interest we pay each month has decreased by over £25.  That means an extra £25 each month is now going to pay off what we owe instead of to the bank, without any extra coming out of our pocket.  It is statements like that which will keep us going!

C10’s new post is up about making a pair of curtains, over at A Summer of Little House Living

8 comments

  1. Paying your mortgage off by December 2017 will be a real achievement. Glad that you have had the courage to go with what works for your family. We’ve just had a week away, and yes, the money could have gone to paying off the mortgage but for us, at this time, it was really important to have some time together.
    Have you looked at the Moneysaving Expert site? He has some ways of saving money that aren’t painful-doesn’t help too much if these have been done but otherwise can be useful.

    1. Thanks Sarah. It felt a little like defeat at first but then we got our statement through and saw in black and white what we were paying off each month and I realised it wouldn’t be sensible to try to put anymore towards it.

  2. That is amazing as usual youve given me hope again!! I need to do the se with my children! “Break A Leg” & we look forward to your next post!! Blessings to you all, jeanine canada

  3. I have been following you for a while now but never posted before. You have inspired me so much. I am going to start overpaying on my mortgage as I am a single mum who retires in 9 years with £65000 still to pay on my mortgage.

    1. Hi Brenda. Thanks so much for taking the trouble to leave a message, and such an encouraging one at that! I really hope your efforts to pay off your mortgage go well for you. Are you a home schooling mum as well?
      Please do let me know how it goes!

      1. Yes , I am a home schooling mum. I was gifted with my son very late as I was 44 and had been told 16 years earlier that I was infertile. My son is now 12 and had problems in school due being dyspraxic. We love home schooling. I get ideas and inspiration from you, yours is the only personal blog I follow, but no pressure, honestly 🙂

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