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Outgoings exceed income

(21 Posts)
Theincidental Sat 25-Jan-14 20:48:37

I've been going through my finances again today so I can try and dig out of my overdraft a little but it feels hopeless.

My basic outgoings for bills exceed my earnings and I can't see a single thing to cut down any further.

I have two jobs, adding up to 32 hours per week, am a single parent and can't access more income or increase work hours or wage. I took on the second job mid tax year and reported the changes to TC, but my monthly figure didn't change and I lost my HB in the same month because of the rise in income.

I am absolutely sure I'm not getting enough tax credits for my income and childcare costs and have run the entitled to and turn to us calculators which give results varying between £200-350 more than I currently get. I've called TC three times and they are just as adamant their figures are right.

I feel like I'm stuck in a loop with them and my finances.

Can anyone tell me when TC will actually run their figures for the end of the year? I'm guessing April with a change in payments from may. Also, if they have got it wrong, will I get a back payment?

Feeling royally shafted. How can I be worse off working more hours and paying more childcare for not a great deal more income?

Any other advice welcome.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 25-Jan-14 23:02:04

Sorry you're in this situation. If servicing your overdraft (or other debts) is taking up too big a proportion of your income then you might benefit from talking to CAB or one of the other free debt advisory services as a first step. Anything you can do to get debts either frozen or reduced is going to help. HMRC base their awards normally on the previous year's income unless things have changed significantly. So you might see an adjustment the next time you make a claim which will be April 2014.

Theincidental Sun 26-Jan-14 00:01:15

Thanks. Debt service may be an idea as a chunk of my outgoings is an old loan, but if I could get the tax credits sorted I wouldn't need to damage my credit history so badly.

It's just so very frustrating.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 26-Jan-14 06:43:56

Credit history can be recovered over time and being more in control of your debts is a good feeling. Constantly spending over your income OTOH is stressful and will be sending your credit worthiness down a slippery slope. If HMRC are saying you have the right TC award it will be very difficult to get them to shift from that short-term.

VivienStanshall Sun 26-Jan-14 07:10:00

Second vote for (free) debt advisory services. I know two people who have done this and for both it has transformed their lives. They are so much happier and in both cases they saved actual cash - accumulated interest written off.

Previously they didn't want to think about their finances (though it was constant worry) now they don't need to.

Also when through that process Credit Unions are the way to go for responsible borrowing.

Theincidental Sun 26-Jan-14 08:57:36

Any idea how long my credit history would be rubbish?

My current situation may change over the year and I'm trying to consolidate hours/pay with my jobs.

In a few months I may well be more solvent.

It feels like defeat. I'm not shit with money, but find myself in an impossible situation. I also feel bad that I can't honour my loan whilst TC are so screwed.

Thank you both for the advice. A call to the debt service certainly wouldn't hurt. I wonder if they may have other suggestions too.

RandomMess Sun 26-Jan-14 09:00:19

Do you have any family you could borrow money from interest free for 4 months until the TC thing is sorted out?

RandomMess Sun 26-Jan-14 09:01:54

Also when you reported your changes in income did you get sent a new CTC statement, you should have been - check that carefully to ensure it has the correct annual income and childcare amounts on. If you didn't get one then phone up and say you never got one and ask demand one?

RedHelenB Sun 26-Jan-14 11:13:38

Hae you been credited with the payment for working 30+ hours with your tax credits?

Theincidental Sun 26-Jan-14 11:19:32

Sadly no family loans available and I've had all the TC paperwork checked.

This is my third year of TC and they never get right. I've been audited every year too. My income has varied because of employment changes and I think I'm stuck until they get an actual p 60.

I'll phone the debt service as loan and overdraft is a few thousand. Is there any hope if I call my loan provider and beg them do you think?

RandomMess Sun 26-Jan-14 12:34:24

Are they still giving you your TC based on last years circumstances rather than this year? I think that is what they often do and you have to ask demad to have based on your current year circumstances?

It sounds like you do need to negotiate your loan and overdraft, even if it's just a matter of freezing the interest.

Theincidental Sun 26-Jan-14 12:45:14

Random,

I think you're right about TC, but they are so immobile about changing it. Grr!

Right, pleading with the bank on Monday it is!

Thanks for your help. I hadn't really considered speaking to them until now. I have Ppi on my loan so maybe I'll see if I can negotiate a payment holiday for a few months til I get my TCs sorted.

It feels better to have a plan.

RandomMess Sun 26-Jan-14 13:00:02

I would speak to CTC again and ask outright if they are paying you on last year or this years circumstances. If it is last years explain to them that you are now in serious debt because of this and tell them you will escalate (write to your mp) if they do not change the payments.

working3jobs Sun 26-Jan-14 20:35:58

www.stoozing.com/calculator/soa.php

hiya. you could fill this out and see if anyone can come up with any other ideas?
stepchange and national debtline are highly recommended FREE advice services.

hope things get better soon, sounds like a really frustrating situation to be in, and you are doing your best smile

Theincidental Sun 26-Jan-14 21:25:19

I think I will try CTC again, even though at the last phone call they told me that there was nothing wrong.

They have added the 30hour element, but I think that's all and I only got it proportionally, so I think it added about £5 extra a month.

I like the calculator; thanks working3jobs! Two jobs seems headache enough for me!

I've stated listing out stuff for eBay and dug out some old mobiles and a bit of jewellery that I guess I might get a few quid for.

It's my Ds' birthday next month so timing couldn't be more crap. At least he will be treated by family.

I found another silver lining in that I don't think I have to pay council tax for the next two months as I only pay ten months a year so that adds some welcome cash.

I think it may also be time to eat the freezer!

ruthie48 Tue 28-Jan-14 21:59:48

I had 2 choices - pay the mortgage or go to debt mgt company. It was a no brainer- mortgage priority. Yes I know you have to default on loans etc and yes I know my credit score is now bad but they do all the leg work for you and I will be debt free in 3 yrs. I can still get new phone contracts, I don't want a new car anyway and I have a house! I use Kensington financial services and they are fab. Yes I pay a £50 per month fee but I don't have any hassle or stress sorting and negotiating payments. Plus I am very busy staff nurse!good luck.i am fortunate that I receive lump sum and pension(work) but I've certainly earned it despite nurse/ public sector pensions bashing. Xx

RandomMess Tue 28-Jan-14 22:06:53

Have you made any progress?

working3jobs Wed 29-Jan-14 13:53:27

there is nothng a fee-charging company can do that stepchange or national debtline can't.
how much quicker could you be debt free paying an additional £50 per month.

OP. have a gander at Martin Lewis' advice on www.moneysavingexpert.com

Theincidental Fri 31-Jan-14 18:14:48

Hi all, thanks for continuing support.

I've been juggling funds for the last few days and taking a hard look at my outgoings using MSE. I think I've found about £30 of savings per month so far.

Also found out I was in credit with utilities, so small refund on it's way.

Been cataloging things to sell etc and reckon I've found some good money there if I can sell items.

Tax credits is insane atm and so far I haven't got through. So fed up with being on hold!

Off to the bank next week for a chat too.

Still drowning but trying to keep pushing forward. My monthly shortfall is £75-150 depending on earnings, but obviously I need to get that down by more so I have enough to cover general bits and pieces e.g clothes, shoes, leisure travel.

DipMeInChocolate Tue 04-Feb-14 12:59:24

Could you get salary sacrifice on one of yours jobs for childcare vouchers? That can save something, its tax beneficial for you.

guinnessgirl Wed 05-Feb-14 09:34:44

Ruthie48 - you are being SHAFTED. As somebody else has said, there is nothing they do that a free service can't do better. In fact, your creditors would be happier if you used a free service as they know that way they'd get their share of the £50pm those chancers are taking from you. Step Change, CAB, National Debtline and Christians Against Poverty can all provide this service. I work for a debt charity so I can vouch for this first hand.

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