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View Poll Results: Has the current credit crunh/state of the economy made you plan on spending cutbacks?
I have already made spending cutbacks and will continue keep them at the same level 115 26.68%
I plan on making (more) cutbacks to my spending 162 37.59%
No, I will continue spending the same or possibly increase my spending 154 35.73%
Voters: 431. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04-04-2008, 12:06   #61
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Have started cutting back now, not that I have much spare income at the moment. Now looking at the other half going back to work full time, it will be more childcare but hopefully we'll have a bit more to play with. Just done the whole Gas/Electric thing, but getting her to stop spending so much on people's birthdays etc is a struggle (apparently I'm trying to control her, no sweetheart I'm trying to keep a roof over our heads)
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Old 04-04-2008, 12:13   #62
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I am... but that's only becasue I blew £1,000 while drunk at the new Hustler strip club in Croydon last week!

I wish I was joking!

Me + Drunk + Strippers + Bank Card = Bad Idea!

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For that kinda money, I would have expected a good lot of charlie too.
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Old 04-04-2008, 12:18   #63
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ive gone onto PAYG since contract ended so saves quite a bit as wasnt using it enough.

sold lots on Amazon UK in the last year and generally cut back on dvd's and games, buying fewer renting dvd's instead of buying films i watch once and waiting for sales.

also keeping better eye on my tube journeys to claim for any delays as pay too much for travel and starting to annoy me! not many so far but looking back over the past few years i reakon i could of had up to £50 at least which i just didnt bother about.
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Old 04-04-2008, 12:23   #64
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We've tightened our belts big time, mainly because I took a permanent job close to home which halved my income (I was contracting before). Wife is also moving from locumming to salaried so it will be very tight for a while.

Gas bill has been getting ridiculous but I'm in the process of "u-switching" which will apparently save us £880 per year.

Mortgage is pretty big (big house in fairness) but thankfully at 4.83% fixed for another 3 years. That's interest only mind - paying it off will have to wait.

Then there are school fees, council tax etc. and to top it all I find out in the budget that my car tax will be increasing by £90p.a. in 2010.

So, it's sandwiches to work and generally spending as little as possible - especially on those wastefull things that can add up over a month.

It's surprising how much you can save when you try and if you go to the supermarket in the right frame of mind. For example, you can easily spend £1 on a single packet of posh hand-fried crisps (as I've done in the past) but I managed to get 48 packets of Walkers crisps (2 x 24 multipacks) in Tesco for £3.08! No pain there as they're not cheapie/horrible crisps and they'll last for weeks. I'll even admit to buying a 2ltr bottle of cider in Tesco for £1.67 and it wasn't too bad - again you can easily spend more than that one one small bottle of real ale.

I guess the worry is that there are a number of things that we need to do to the house which will cost a few grand - new heating system etc - but we haven't got a lot of spare cash about to get them done. It's a bit of a catch 22 in some ways as if we did put in a more efficient heating system then the monthly gas bills would be a lot lower.

I don't know - I reckon I may have to go back to contracting at some point if we want to get the hefty mortgage paid off.
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Old 04-04-2008, 12:39   #65
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Hmm, 3 months seems way too low to me in the current climate, I was thinking more 6-9 months minimum, and I know that is where I aim as an absolute minimum!
I have no savings what so ever. My wife and I both earn a reasonble amount each month, but by the time we've paid the mortgage and bills etc, there is nothing left at all. Luckily, we don't have any loans or massive CC bills (our limits are set at £400), but we don't follow fashion or go out a lot, but my wife is doing baby sitting to give us extra cash for when we go away to Devon next week (only a caravan,not a hotel). If the brown stuff hit the fan, I could cut down on pension payments (currently have one work one and one personal one), various insurances etc, but I don't know how other people manage to put so much away in savings.

We have just switched our gas/elec to save some money, but it only wiorks out at about £180 for the year. Was looking at one of the First Direct mortgages, but prevaricated for too long and missed out :-(
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Last edited by JimLin; 04-04-2008 at 12:51. Reason: Add stuff
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Old 04-04-2008, 12:52   #66
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I've just fixed my mortgage for 5 years at a lower rate than previously paying

Have enough savings to keep me going for a good few months (incl mortgage payments) and my Missus brings in a few grand per year from her business.

Only thing we have yet to decide on is the holiday this year. We may not go anywhere exotic and spend the dosh on new furniture/doing up the house.
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Old 04-04-2008, 12:57   #67
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Am cutting back on getting a mortgage, no point throwing the money down the drain. Renting instead (rent costs less compared to the interest I'd pay) as the growth in asset value is decreasing it seems sensible.

Have cut down on the amount of food I buy for the house. Instead my employer provides fruit in the morning (brekkie) and GBP6 for lunch, so I can get a massive salad that keeps me going all day for that. Only buy a few essentials for weekends.

Been buying jeans etc on eBay. Generally not boozing as much. Have more money in the bank, but that's going to get stolen off me by Gordon at some point I shouldn't wonder. We'll join the Euro so they can devalue the pound.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mattie
Mortgage is pretty big (big house in fairness) but thankfully at 4.83% fixed for another 3 years. That's interest only mind - paying it off will have to wait.
This is the madness we are seeing thanks to Labour and Gordon Brown. (Not an dig at Mattie - sounds like lots of spinning plates, understandable. When do you foresee being in a position to pay the capital?)

Last edited by stillill; 04-04-2008 at 13:00.
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Old 04-04-2008, 13:12   #68
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For that kinda money, I would have expected a good lot of charlie too.
He wasn't dancing that night...

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Old 04-04-2008, 13:26   #69
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I'm cutting back in a major way as come October I'm going to be "unemployed" for 5 years. My degree makes it practically impossible to get a part-time job during term time and holidays are filled with mandatory non-paying work placements. The lovely (!) government will throw some money my way in a mix of grants and loans as I'm classed as independent and bloody poor! Going to be working like crazy this summer to build up savings.

I think even if I was working I'd be cutting back and getting rid of non-essentials, all looks a bit shaky out there at the moment. Perhaps now is the best time to be going back to university! Either way I plan on learning from the experience, money wise, and learning to manage funds better. When there isn't much, it really makes you think.
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Old 04-04-2008, 14:31   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimLin View Post
I have no savings what so ever. My wife and I both earn a reasonble amount each month, but by the time we've paid the mortgage and bills etc, there is nothing left at all.

Was looking at one of the First Direct mortgages, but prevaricated for too long and missed out :-(
Could not cope with that level ouf outgoings to income personally, I'd be too worried about what would happen if lost a job or had an emergency need for something for house/car etc.

As for those FD mortgages, I was all set for applying for one too, really ****** off that they removed them!
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Old 04-04-2008, 14:34   #71
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This is the madness we are seeing thanks to Labour and Gordon Brown. (Not an dig at Mattie - sounds like lots of spinning plates, understandable. When do you foresee being in a position to pay the capital?)
Well the plan was to pay off some big chunks whilst I was contracting but then the offer of a good permanent role at a place 10 minutes from home came up and I decided to give it a go.

It’s that balance between having more time with the family and earning 50% less – most contracts would mean spending 2+ hours a day commuting instead of the 20 mins I spend now.

Also, although contracting brings in a lot more money you can end up out of contract for periods (in 2006 I went 10 weeks without a contract over the summer). At least with the permanent role the mortgage interest always gets paid.

The other factor in repaying the mortgage is my wife’s job. She was hoping to get a (GP) partnership but they are becoming thin on the ground as existing partners are tending to not take on a new partner when one retires these days as they’d rather share the extra cash out between themselves! However, she’s at a nice little village practice at the moment and the one partner (guess that makes him a sole trader) is due to retire in 5 or 6 years time and, from what I can gather, he’ll happily hand the reigns over to her (she practically runs the place anyway) so at that point we should see her income go up substantially.

To be honest I have a bit of a blasé approach to mortgages. We owned our last place for 8 years and I only did that on an interest only basis, simply paying back the original loan out of the profits when we moved. I do appreciate, however, that there is an element of risk in that approach and that the loan has to be repaid at some point if you are going to stay in that house after you stop working.

One things for sure, if we are unable to secure a similar or lower mortgage deal at the end of the fixed rate term then I’ll probably be forced back down the contracting route, if I haven’t taken that route already due to the lure of the extra money, the absence of office politics and the avoidance of the performance management palaver.
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Old 04-04-2008, 14:35   #72
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Here's a question - I will have the ability to get an interest only mortgage (lovely First Direct), which will be cheaper on monthly outgoings than renting. Would you take the plunge and buy now or wait another 12 months to see what happens with the market?

I'm not concerned about only having an interest only mortgage, as compared to renting it's the same(i.e. rent you not paying off any capital!) - but there's the chance of having *some* equity at the end of it all. If I was to buy my long term goal would be to keep it at the end of 5 years and then rent it out.
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Old 04-04-2008, 14:40   #73
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Hmm, not sure I would do that at the moment because of possible negative equilty, but as you must already have a decent deposit to get a mortgage at the moment you may avoid that. You should always have a plan to pay off the capital though!

If you buy near the uni and can get a good deal you may be able to rent out rooms (get a lodger) that may help too?
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Old 04-04-2008, 15:23   #74
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errr I'm intending to buy a new (2nd hand) car and a new plasma TV in the next couple of months. Single and have a large mortgage but work (IT contracting) is good with a long term contract at the moment.....but obviously thats never certain.

For the last few months I've been overpaying my mortgage so together with the payment holidays and savings I could probably go without work for about 4 months. I probably will hold off getting the garden landscaped this year though.
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Old 04-04-2008, 15:28   #75
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I have no savings what so ever. My wife and I both earn a reasonble amount each month, but by the time we've paid the mortgage and bills etc, there is nothing left at all.
Yup, us too. In fact pretty much everyone i know. I'm always surprised when threads like this come up just how much some people manage to put away each month - i guess they just earn a lot more than us (and maybe don't have 2 kids which cost a fortune!)

*If* we didn't have the kids we'd be a lot better off - childcare alone is 450 quid a month. I reckon my kids easily cost me £600 a month. Worth it though
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Old 04-04-2008, 15:35   #76
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I'm the same as hookbeak and JimLin - I work full time, the wife part-time but we're lucky as Mrs Flibs mum takes care of my 18 month old lad whilst she is at work, childcare costs an absolute bomb.

A company car helps as well, we do have savings, but not to the extent of people on here, and we don't live flash lifestyles either to be honest, we go on holiday rarely, and at weekends don't go out either - a saturday night tends to consist of staying in to watch a DVD or telly, and cooking at home rather than going out to restaurants etc. I'm happy enough though, but wonder how some people, especially first time buyers, ever get on the ladder - we were lucky and bought before the housing boom.
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Old 04-04-2008, 15:47   #77
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no, I've realised how hard it must be to have dependents and own a house etc. but as a single renter in a shared house on an above income I still end up with plenty of play money, though I am trying to save more rather than waste it on my CD addiction.

I do feel sorry for those with families and responsibilities who are going to be hit when the **** hits the fan as it surely will but it's clear that so many people spend above their needs and have a NOW NOW NOW mentality.

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Old 04-04-2008, 15:53   #78
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but it's clear that so many people spend above their needs and have a NOW NOW NOW mentality.
I used to do that and I'm thankful at the time I could scrape enough together to buy my first house. I remortgaged it after 6 months and paid off every other debt and since then (about 6-7 years now) have not had credit for anything and don't intend to.

It still doesn't deter me from being buried with all my worldly goods and dozens of slaves when I die though
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Old 04-04-2008, 15:56   #79
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I very much have a 'do I need it or do I want it' mentallity these days though! The days of getting stuff on impulse from the bargain forum have long gone!!
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Old 04-04-2008, 16:59   #80
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Hmm, not sure I would do that at the moment because of possible negative equilty, but as you must already have a decent deposit to get a mortgage at the moment you may avoid that. You should always have a plan to pay off the capital though!

If you buy near the uni and can get a good deal you may be able to rent out rooms (get a lodger) that may help too?
Unfortunately I'm an unsociable git when it comes to renting out rooms - done it in the past and I hate it.

Plus the only thing I could afford would be a 1 bedroom flat, so that knocks renting out the window anyway!

I plan to sit down with a financial adviser type chappy when I get home and go over all my options. Certainly negative equity is something I'm wary of, but my thinking right now is that I know 100% I would be owning the property for at least 5 years so even if there's a crash, it should start to turn back around within that time frame. Maybe...
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