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An income based AIBU

(44 Posts)
cakeybakeymakey Sun 24-May-15 08:05:54

I have dithered over whether to post this thread or not. I just didn't really know how to get all the salient points down without outing myself.

Basically, OH was made redundant last summer, he picked up some short term contract work whilst he was looking for a new job. He then applied for something on such a low salary that he was the only applicant. It means our household income has dropped over 30k per year. It has completed killed us up financially.

So, short term idea whilst he was doing the contract work the idea was that I would return to work.. I did not have an issue with returning to work. Unfortunately where we live 30k jobs for mums returning to work do just not exist. I am currently working in retail part time whilst applying for positions and not even getting interviews.. I am doing all the hours I can but I am still not earning anywhere near the shortfall I need to.

We have a mortgage and other commitments that simply are not covered by this lower salary and my part-time earnings. To be blunt, we can not even afford to live, function and repair the house that we are currently in.

So, here it is. In light of the fact that we are in debt, have absolutely no savings and we have four DCs hoping to attend university I have basically said that he needs to find another job that is better paid. He works in London, there are jobs going using his transferrable skills for at least double what he is earning.


cakeybakeymakey Sun 24-May-15 08:07:39

Completely not completed.

Crikey, I sound really entitled. Huge back story but that will out me.

BagsyThisName Sun 24-May-15 08:09:35

Why did he apply for a job with such a large drop in salary? Was it the only thing available, was it less stressful, is he lacking confidence?

MrsHathaway Sun 24-May-15 08:11:32

DC university is irrelevant. They will be adults.

The very real risk that you could lose your home, on the other hand... That's terrifying.

Why doesn't he have a better paying job? I can't tell whether it's because there aren't any or because he doesn't want to. I get the impression that you can't make up the shortfall.

Does he think you earn enough between you even though the roof is leaking and it's beans on toast every night? Or is he similarly frustrated by lack of money?

Maybe he thinks it's your turn to take on the bread winner role. If that's impossible (because of past career break etc) then he may need that spelling out.

ahbollocks Sun 24-May-15 08:12:56

Can you release equity in the house or downsize/go back to renting?

AuntieStella Sun 24-May-15 08:14:12

Why does he want his current post? Was it taken simply because 'low income is better than no income' and it's often better to job hunt from one job to another? Or are there other factors (eg fairly specific pathway to something else)?

Yes, you both need to be looking to increase ithe family income (from main job, second jobs, lodger etc).

And/or set a deadline at which point you plan drastic change to bring lifestyle back to income level. You cannot sustain the sort of deficit you are running for much longer. And any debt that deficit leads to will be quite a drain on already straightened circumstances.

meditrina Sun 24-May-15 08:15:41

As London is commutable, have you started job hunting there too?

Sirzy Sun 24-May-15 08:18:11

You should BOTH be looking to improve the situation.

Can you not move house to something more within your budget?

Figster Sun 24-May-15 08:19:28

I'm having the same debate with my dh in some ways he wants out of the industry he's always worked in good mid £30k salary to work in an industry linked to his hobby and interests if he even managed to convince them to give him a job it would be starting from the bottom on near enough minimum wage we just can't do it!!

In an ideal world we'd all be able to work how we like but life and kids are expensive And your dh has many responsibilities to you and your kids if he has the ability to be higher earning he needs to man up and do it ........not to the detriment of his health if It's particularly stressful but find a middle ground from where he is now.

Anomaly Sun 24-May-15 08:19:33

I don't think you sound entitled. You have children and they need housing, feeding and clothing as basics and he's not bringing in enough. Is his confidence completely shot by the redundancy because he needs to get over it and get out there. Who is worrying about the bills? You? or both of you? Clearly you need to talk.

NerrSnerr Sun 24-May-15 08:21:21

Can you move somewhere cheaper? You can't worry about university, you see people on here paying thousands a year per child but in real life lots of people do not do this as they simply cannot afford it.

Why is your husband in the poorly paid job? Is it what he wants to do or is finding another job hard?

Superexcited Sun 24-May-15 08:22:41

How low is his salary? Are you entitled to tax credits?
University isn't that relevant becUse if your income is very low your children will qualify for additional financial help (means tested grants etc) which will reduce the amount that you need to contribute.
I don't know if YABU but I suspect there is a reason why your DH has taken a much lower paid job. Could it be that he couldn't cope with the stress in his old job and wanted something easier and less stressful? If it is to do with stress then I think it would be unfair to expect him to return to the old job as his health will suffer. Could you possibly look into moving somewhere cheaper and reducing the mortgage therefore making your new income level more doable?

cakeybakeymakey Sun 24-May-15 08:23:26

I am looking everywhere that I can possibly commute to, including London. I registered with agencies to go temping but no work has come through for me. It is very hard to get to work in London if you are my age (late forties). That is not an excuse on my part.

To be honest, my preferred outcome in this is that we are both working in well paid jobs moving forward. I don't want to come across that I am looking to be a SAHM again, please don't think that.

We cannot sell this house, it is in a complete state. Think "before" on HUTH. We had been saving to do work on the house but these savings had to be used when OH was not working.

cakeybakeymakey Sun 24-May-15 08:29:46

We are finding Student Finance is looking at 2013/2014 salary and not current year. So we were asked to complete a salary form for the 2014/2015 tax year. Unfortunately this job started in March, so it only shows for the last two months that our salary has dropped.

The nasty twist is that although we have claimed tax credits but as he is a member of the reserve forces and those earnings are taxed at basic rate and push us onto a different salary bracket for tax credits and student finance.

We do have equity in the house, but cannot move as the house needs work but cannot remortgage as our salary will not cover anymore outgoings.

cakeybakeymakey Sun 24-May-15 08:35:06

He has not applied for any jobs in the last six months, in fact he stopped applying as soon as he applied for this job.

We had been looking to move which was only do-able on his old salary and me returning to work on a part-time basis. This is why I was so geared up to return to work. I have been waiting since 2006 to move house as logistically this area is a nightmare (think new builds in a semi-rural location).

Areas like this are perfect when your children are little, however when they are older and going to college, apprenticeships etc., they are a logistical nightmare. This is why I wanted to move before now. The whole thing has become a major stress point.

Do I feel he took this job to prevent us moving? Yes, that has crossed my mind but if so what he has achieved is way beyond that. We are not living, just functioning.

Euphemia Sun 24-May-15 08:43:53

What's his justification for stopping applying for jobs?

Superexcited Sun 24-May-15 08:46:17

Even if the house needs a lot of work you can still put it on the market. Obviously you get the price that you would if it was immaculate but it would cost you money to get it to that point anyway. Lots of people like to buy doer uppers as they can refurbish the property to their own taste and use the difference in purchase cost to fund the refurbishments.

I really don't see a long term solution other than downsizing or moving somewhere cheaper because you cannot force another adult to take a job they don't want to do or find stressful (although I do understand that you need him to earn more money).

Have you explained to student finance that's there has been a huge change in income? I can't remember how it works from my university days but I like to think that when there has been a huge change in circumstances they can use current year income instead of previous years income. What do they do if a single parent has become unemployed and is relying on benefits after earning £60k the year before? They must have a solution to these type of situations.

PotteringAlong Sun 24-May-15 08:47:40

If he is a member of the reserve forces would he consider a move into the regular forces?

wickedwaterwitch Sun 24-May-15 08:56:25

YANBU - he needs to apply for other jobs, go to London, do whatever it takes Imo.

Chchchchangeabout Sun 24-May-15 09:04:24

What are his reasons for not wanting a higher paid job?

mamadoc Sun 24-May-15 09:05:41

Do you look after the finances?
Do you think he realises how bad things are?

I suspect that it's the process of job hunting he wants to avoid. It is soul destroying applying for loads of jobs and getting knock backs. I guess he thought any job is better than none and at least I can say I am working. Being unemployed is more stigmatising for men still in this society.

My DH is self employed and he has a tendency to think that as long as he is putting in the hours then he is contributing as much as he can and the actual monetary output is irrelevant/ not his fault/ not his problem. He is fortunate that I have a stable, well paid job that picks up the slack.

I would like him to refuse poorly paid jobs sometimes as tbh it is basically working for nothing and costing us childcare but it is very important to his self esteem to work. His BIL is the same. He once had a job that was costing more in petrol money and parking than it brought in but his whole family were slapping him on the back for getting a job.

I guess what I'm saying is that you need to sit down together and go through the the incomings and outgoings and show him on paper that it doesn't add up. Offer him some support with the job hunt. Do you know anyone who could help him with his CV or interview practice?

IsabellaofFrance Sun 24-May-15 09:12:56

Is he aware how dire your situation is?

GloriousGoosebumps Sun 24-May-15 09:16:12

Your OH must realise that your joint income no longer covers your outgoings so what is his plan if it's not to get a better paying job and what's he saying to your DC about funding university?

StillFrankie Sun 24-May-15 09:23:08

I think your only solutions are to move house to another area, look for work in that area, downsize your house, get your kids to take on part time jobs and contribute, or your kids can move out and support themselves.

KoalaDownUnder Sun 24-May-15 09:28:50

He works in London, there are jobs going using his transferrable skills for at least double what he is earning.

So why is he not applying for them? Is he deliberately sabotaging the situation, for some reason? Because it sure sounds like it...

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