Austerity in October - *blows the budgeteering bugle*

(481 Posts)
claretandamberforever Tue 01-Oct-13 08:19:39

In here please.....

Pinch punch, first of the month.

jonbonjovismissus Tue 01-Oct-13 09:34:40

Morning claret, thanks for the new thread! If you do change energy suppliers go through top cash back............I got £130 for changing my tv & energy through them in the summer.

ArtemisatBrauron Tue 01-Oct-13 10:27:42

claret what a nightmare! I had similar issues with EDF (in credit all year then at review suddenly I owed them money AND they wanted to put our DD up). I left them and went with a really small eco energy company who seem great so far, very straightforward tariffs, you pay for what you use rather than a fixed DD which lands you in "debt" all of a sudden.

We are really careful with gas and elec as DH is a bit of an eco warrior, so goes around turning everything off all the time. We'll be double-lining our curtains and fitting a curtain over the front door during the Oct half term, so that should help too.

I have a goal of saving £1000 per month as a couple from Nov onwards, it'll be really tough and require serious frugal living, but we''ll never be able to buy a house unless we save like crazy for a deposit. We're lucky that for the present we live in a house provided by my employer (I have to live in work as part of my job) for a peanut rent so I am determined to save the rest of what we'd pay for this accommodation on the private market.

CremeEggThief Tue 01-Oct-13 10:44:42

Hi All. Thanks for starting the new thread, Claret smile.

Should be an NSD today, apart from £10 for staff birthday fund, which I've got ready.

petalsandstars Tue 01-Oct-13 11:02:48

I'm determined to be frugal this month, it didn't work last month so will put even more effort in this time.

Does anyone else have a DH who doesn't 'get it' with regards to the fact that the money has to last the whole month and just looks at the current balance without taking direct debits into account either?

Feel like it makes it so much harder having to explain and say no all the time.

petalsandstars Tue 01-Oct-13 11:03:17

NSD today though

Can I join? I'm outside the UK, so a lot of the money saving by changing energy provider type tips don't really apply and I can't offer suggestions, but I really want to get back on track this month and next, after a September that has been more expensive than Christmas - 2 of my kids kids birthdays and parties (doing them separately is important to me, not their fault they have such close birthdays, they have totally different friends and interests and each deserve a special day - but the parties end up more expensive than the presents) plus DH's birthday and the Sept back to school expenses...

I am mostly looking at keeping the supermarket and "little" odds and ends expenses under control, as well as trying to say no to the kids more - whether its cinema/bowling trips or going to a cafe rather than home for lunch, or "something little" at the shops... It really has to stop as there isn't any slack this month, or slightly less than no slack, to get back on track!

My DH is incredibly good with the pennies but then prone to go and blow €€€€ on something unexpected once in a blue moon Petal shock but he has been worried about money recently and stopped doing it mostly - I am the one who has a tendency to "fritter" money a few € here or there, 99% of the time on the kids, away so really have to have a word with myself!

confusedofengland Tue 01-Oct-13 11:43:49

Hi everybody! Welcome to MrTumble smile

I finished off September reasonably well spending-wise (just £4 for DS1's football & just over £2 at Co-op on sausages, mushrooms & milk).

October has started off well too. I will go & spend £20 at Sainsbury's later as I have a voucher for money off diesel if I do that, but that should be all for today. Have spent most of the morning driving around trying to find the correct Children's Centre & talk to somebody about 2-year nursery funding for DS2 (recommended to me by SALT, nursery & HV, so I don't think I'm being unduly demanding). The words 'arse' & 'elbow' seem to spring to mind grin

roguepixie Tue 01-Oct-13 11:48:30

Thanks for the new thread claret.

roguepixie Tue 01-Oct-13 11:49:28

Btw, hello to MrTumble.

AdoraBell Tue 01-Oct-13 12:34:00

Thanks for the new thread Claret

Hello MrTumble and welcome. September is clearly a problem for you, I can see that, I reckon your DH needs to move his birthday to make it easier for you. As you say it's not the DC's fault. I'm thinking maybe sometime in May? Just tell him it's to save money, I'm sure he'll understandwink

Good luck with your quest for information Confused

TheOnlyPink Tue 01-Oct-13 13:22:08

MrTumble, I'm not in the UK either and use € so we are in the same boat!

Claret, thanks for the new thread!

spent €2 on playgroup with ds2 this morning, and need to go get some mousetraps after I collect ds1, so hoping to avoid the yellow labels in Tesco!

umiaisha Tue 01-Oct-13 13:28:22

Can I join in please?!

I am normally quite frugal and love a bargain, but have fallen off the wagon over the last couple of months. Seem to be haemorraging money in this house at the moment.

Think my downfall is not meal planning and topping up in M&S every couple of days, so did my first ever Tesco online shop on Friday which should see me through the week. Had a voucher for £12 off and claimed the £30 pizza express voucher for new customers. Made carbonara last night which went down a storm and still some leftover for OH tonight.

Have also just bought a kitten who seems to be costing me even more than the kids - £400 to the breeder, £80 in pets at home and £55 at the vets today. Seem to be getting through copious amounts of litter and the vet has advised that we change her food which means the super sized bag of ££££ of Royal Canin I bought last week is surplus to requirements. She is worth it though!! Also dropped my phone this morning and smashed the screen so will need £50 to sort that out.

Am also trying to plan an organised and frugal half term. OH's niece has just got a job at the cinema so that should be one outing covered ;-) and need to make full use of our merlin passes. Think I will take the kids to Tussauds and then use the PE voucher afterwards.

On the plus side we save each month for christ,as so have that covered, although would be nice to have some leftover to see us through the long month of January.

umiaisha Tue 01-Oct-13 13:32:16

Forgot to add - desperately need my hair done so am having it done for free by being a model for one of the juniors next week.

ashti Tue 01-Oct-13 14:50:46

Hi there, can I please join in? I've been following some of last month's posts. Am outside UK, really need to build up a better discipline around spending, things are tight now and I find some of the tips on here very useful. Thank you!

FreckledLeopard Tue 01-Oct-13 14:54:43

Please can I join? I'm awful with money, terrible at not spending and forever in debt. It's stressful and I want to stop.

I've never learned to stick to a budget. Probably not helped by the fact my mother never had to worry about money, did a daily shop for whatever she fancied, and imparted the same 'wisdom' to me.

In a nutshell, how on earth does one get out of the habit of spending confused?

Helenagrace Tue 01-Oct-13 15:04:45

Hi freckled and all the other newbies!

Freckled do you have a budget? We started with food shopping. I did a month of meal planning, booked but didn't check out an online shop to give me an idea of price and then started with that. I use ireconcile on my phone to keep tabs.

Other than that just thinking "do I need it? Why do I want it?" All the time.

Also try to spot where you fritter cash. In my case it was buying coffees so I bought a £3 insulated cup and every time I didn't buy a coffee I put £2 in a pot. I've been doing it since January and I've just paid for 2 pairs of winter boots from my potgrin

Had my hair done today so not an NSD but should get my first one tomorrow!

Glad September is over - way too much spending on the children's activities!!

Fluffycloudland77 Tue 01-Oct-13 15:46:17

Welcome to all the newbies.

leopard leave the purse at home, as long as you have petrol in the car/travel pass and a packed lunch that's all you need.

umiaisha Chick crumb makes brilliant litter, I pay £9 for 20kg but its quite fine and absorbent so it lasts well. If you google black farm gate they will have a list of stockists near you. Postage costs are high so I drive past an animal feeds place on my way to work and buy it then.

ArtemisatBrauron I've heard you can buy cheap curtains in charity shops to use as lining, I used asda fleece blankets last year.

£1.50 in aldi on things that were out of stock on Sunday angry.

I've had a spendy few days but its all stuff I needed, no frittering. One of my suppliers hasn't paid me yet & they usually would have done so I am £300 down..such is life.

FreckledLeopard Tue 01-Oct-13 16:25:18

I definitely need to meal plan. Normally we just get to supper time and either go and buy something we fancy, or end up eating out blush.

I will go and check out the meal planning thread.

Fluffycloudland77 Tue 01-Oct-13 17:26:52

There's a meal planning thread??

Mse forum do loads, and I do mean loads, of recipes.

Sometimes you just need to change how you do something, eg creamed coconut in a block lasts ages as a substitute for coconut milk. Keep it in a plastic box in the fridge though because its the greasiest thing ever. Delicious, but greasy. Or use curry pastes as opposed to curry sauce. The pastes make multiple curries, a jar of sauce makes only one meal.

claretandamberforever Tue 01-Oct-13 18:33:19

YESSS!!!! I phoned EDF and MADE THEM BEND TO MY WILL begged them to reduce my DD. The meter reading I had submitted at the weekend had gone through leaving me an amount owing of £67.17 so because it's now a small amount I no longer have to be on a payment plan (woo) so they've reduced my payments to £140 a month, from £166. This is it though, apparently, the reckon this is the least I can get away with paying based on my usage. I've learnt my lesson anyway, identified and remedied why we were using so much fuel, read my meter and submit the readings every month, and can work out at a glance how much it's costing me, so I wont get into the position of owing them hundreds of pounds again.

Buzzing now :-)

Had a leftover lasagna for lunch at work - now cannot remember the last time I had a shop bought lunch.

Having Corned Beef Hash for tea which has got to be one of my cheapest evening meals, done in the slow cooker and using value everything. Might even try and eke some out for tomorrows lunch.

I've been doing my budget for this month and it's really, really tight as there will be 5 weekends til the next payday, and DS1 has 5 driving lessons this month, so I'm afraid I'm going to have to use some of DH's wage rise to fallback on (that's what I am calling it actually, fallback money).

Fluffycloudland77 Tue 01-Oct-13 18:38:03

Well done you <waves Pom-Poms>

looseleaf Tue 01-Oct-13 18:50:38

This is such a companionable thread! I have only just joined but getting more organised and worked out a proper budget for food for the first time. I'm trying to stick to £80/ week for food which sounds a lot but I'm really noticing how much higher prices are and DH and i and our 2 DC seem to eat huuuge amounts of food!
Also there isn't an Aldi anywhere near us in London though we do have PoundWorld and Pound Land smile.

I've worked out to add chickpeas or veg / beans to all our stews etc...
Our energy bills are with Utility Warehouse which has saved a bit and easy to keep an eye on as we can submit our readings online anytime.

We also have the challenge of 2 of us being gluten free (£3 a Genius loaf in Tesco) so trying to cut down on ready made bread etc but haven't successfully made one DD liked!

NK5BM3 Tue 01-Oct-13 19:12:27

Hello to everyone and all the newbies!

Was a NSD then dh asked me to go to the shops to get some custard (because he made some blackberry crumble with fruit from that garden). And so two ice lollies and crumble later I'm £4.37 down. Argh!

ilovepicnmix Tue 01-Oct-13 19:14:10

Well done claret!!

I spent £2 something today. £1 of this was on ready packed ciabbata from Jack Fulton. It was slight out of date but freezeable and 6 packs for the price. So I am now the proud owner of 24 ciabbata rolls. Nevermind the fact it's just me and DS who won't eat them. Even as I was buying them I was thinking this is mental but I can't resist a bargain.

Tomorrow would have been an NSD but I think im going to have to keep DS off nursery as he's been sick again today.

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