Skint and so very very very fed up!

(20 Posts)
skintandfedup Tue 21-May-13 14:15:05

We have just had a huge and very unexpected expense to pay out. £700 for car repairs to be precise. Am starting to think we should have scrapped it but we live in small village in the middle of nowhere so need a car. It's ten years old but is very economical on fuel.

It looks as though we can no longer go on a camping trip this summer. We will have to live off £40 per week for groceries & any other necessities. £30-40 for fuel. Will have to try my best to organise 'free days out' for the summer. DC1 will need a coat and boots for the winter. DC2 will needs a few vests. DH & I will need to go without. Have bought a pair of Clarks shoes for DC2 from the charity shop for £1. Will have to go secondhand for Christmas gifts.

Am thinking of ways to bring in extra income and to cut back even further ??? So far am drawing on a blank.

Excuse me for feeling so sorry for us. I'm so utterly sick of being skint. It's so so very very absolutely shit!!!

I don't expect anyone to reply, I just needed to get this off my chest.

OP’s posts: |
StealthOfficialCrispTester Tue 21-May-13 14:16:22

Do both of you work? Any chance of upping hours or getting additional work?

HappyJoyful Tue 21-May-13 14:25:01

Ouch, sorry couldn't read and run.. I thought my £220 was a painful hit on Friday for a new exhaust but that's harsh.

Such a shame you can't have your camping trip though - assume it's not already booked and paid ?

I did a bit of ebaying last year that helped us a wee bit - a pop up cot, walker, couple of other largish kids items. Did cash on collection to make sure that I was going to have the cash in hand, have you anything lurking you could try ?

Did a few car boot sales too - again, raided entire (very small house) and got bits of friends / family.. who were more than happy to help.

Finally, did a couple of big clear out's of really old crap clothes, bedding etc and took to cash for clothes places (not ethical, but sod it few bin bags got me £15 and all helped)

I totally, totally feel the pain of forever being skint. There was a great thread on here last year that brought out amazing spirits and kindness from people and think of it fondly where people were able to pass on things like unwanted gifts and kids clothes and books - it was totally wonderful.. perhaps that will resurface and you could get the kids winter coats (try to put them out of your mind for now)

skintandfedup Tue 21-May-13 15:12:38

Stealth DH works silly hours and normally works week ends but has them off for the summer. I've been a sahm since having DC1 3 years ago. I'm currently looking for a week end job to bring in some extra cash and to avoid childcar costs. We'll have zilch family time but needs must I guess. I really can't expect DH to do anymore hours than he's already doing. Going to study further this year or the next. I've been told by my bank I may be eligible for a student loan. Really can't decidewhether to start this year or next as DC1 is only 12 months who is still bf. I can't go on being a sahm for ever. I want to better my family's and my prospects. I feel so crappy as it is that I'm not financially providing for my dcs.

HappyJoyful We have decided to do a car boot in June. Never done one before. I have sold (and bought) on Facebook but I CBA to sell on Ebay, with the postage, etc.
Our camping trip is not yet booked but could cash (if any) made from the car boot towards it.
I think I will go loco if one more thing goes wrong with our damn car. It needed a new clutch, flywheel mast and battery. We had other huge expenses leading up to this but that's a whole other story!

OP’s posts: |
skintandfedup Tue 21-May-13 15:14:05

Please excuse the typos blush

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LadyKooKoo Tue 21-May-13 15:57:50

List your income and all of your outgoings (direct debits/standing orders) and I will see how you can reduce it. I am pretty good at things like this. Please PM me if you prefer. Are DC boys or girls? I ask as DD is almost two so if your 12 month old is also a DD I would happily send you stuff.

HappyJoyful Wed 22-May-13 09:21:47

Sorry to hear about the car.. it's so frustrating when it all goes wrong at once.
Good luck with the car boot sale - try and take as much stuff as you possibly can and sell cheap (start with higher prices as people will really, really want to haggle and get things for nothing!)
Interesting to hear about ebay, I'm now a bit like that about it and CBA..
Have you got a local NCT group ? They might do table sales you could do to get rid of some of kids stuff ? I'm not sure if you still have to be a member.. I keep meaning to find another sort of similar thing to go to and sell at.
I had small charity subscriptions and cancelled them (felt a bit mean) but needs must!
As Lady says, if your youngest is a girl I have a 2yr old so could send somethings ?


TapselteerieO Wed 22-May-13 10:05:22

Try and do more than one car boot, have a really good clear out, my dc are older so I sold some lovely children's books and because they were in good condition they sold for £1-2 each, which soon adds up. We had an old trike and two violins to sell as well as various odds and sods (cables, kitchen stuff, vases, toys for children to rummage through), made £180, which was very surprising. Paperbacks can sell well sometimes - I had a selection of Paulo Coelho books which sold quickly, maybe because they are not that common. If you have any seedlings to sell they can go down very well too. Children's clothes didn't sell well, neither did things like our travel cot (still have it) - so they might do better at nct sale, gumtree or on eBay. Any excess furniture, you could sand it down/give it a lick of paint, if you have any. Ask family and friends if they have stuff they want rid of, they might be quite happy to have a clear out. Make sure you take a flask of tea and food to the boot sale too.

We are having to be pretty frugal now, and we have started making our own pizza and bread (bbc good food website for very easy/quick recipes), we are amazed how simple, satisfying and much cheaper this is, we don't have/need a bread machine, the dc love it. We have less frequent trips to the shops bread is something I usually buy every couple of days (£1.85 for a large plain bakery loaf, pizza 2 for £5+ once a week). Being at the shops less really cuts my spending! Dh takes lunch to work and his own coffee, he also started commuting by train, which has saved on petrol.

We have a very knackered car, older than yours, it would probably not be worth repairing but like you it is too expensive to contemplate trying to replace it.

MSE website worth a look to make sure you are getting the best deals on energy suppliers etc.

If you live in Scotland you could look into wild camping - free and legal, but obviously it means you have to enjoy really roughing it! You can shower at a local pool?

I know being skint is rubbish, but as long as you are not starving, keep an eye on your long term goal of studying, if you can do the studying sooner rather than later go for it. My dc both bf'd until 14 months but by that age they only tended to bf morning and evening, or maybe a little more if they were ill, so I wouldn't let it be a barrier to your education. Good luck.

skintandfedup Thu 23-May-13 13:05:17

ladykookoo I have looked at all our utility bills and have managed to get our dd for Eon reduced, although I think they are still expensive and am considering swapping to Edf come Sept/Oct. We pay all our bills via dd. Rent is £595 which is a bit of a killer but it's (a roof over or heads) our main priority along with energy, water & food. Our incomings and outgoings are roughly the same now (thanks to car repairs). So no savings, therefore no way of saving for unexpected costs and other essentials. Our cc is maxed out and we are now living in o/d til payday. I never use the o/d. We live within our means usually and never let a debt get out of hand. As soon as this debt is clear, I'm going to start a 'rainy day fund' for us.

Thank you for the offer for DCs stuff Happy too. I have two DS's, so at least the bulk of their clothes are hand-me-downs. I simply couldn't accept it anyhow, although very kind, I feel we should really ''row my own boat'' which is why I feel crap because we are struggling with keeping afloat at the moment. I feel as though I have failed my dcs to an extent. sad DS1 gets mainly new stuff bought for him & DS2 is obviously happy with getting 2nd hand. I realise though as they get older they will probably want their own NEW stuff. Another deterrent to having more dc. Am definitely not having anymore dc.

Tap thank you for all your helpful tips. We went to Scotland last year (to visit dh's family) & probably won't again this year as we live in southern England. Mil CBA with dcs really sad. We will probably camp somewhere on the coast which is only 30 miles from us. At least DH will get so well deserved time out.
I gave away tons of stuff to charity shops recently but still have a lot in storage which I will put in the car boot plus I will have another rummage around the house.
It's not so much the bfing that I see as a block to studying, it's more the level of commitment needed to complete coursework and having two young dc to attend to at the same time. Dsis reckons I should wait another year to enrol when ds2 is that much older. I'm told I may qualify for some funding as our total household income is under a certain amount. If I wait another year, the funding may be cut. Am not sure what to do?! WWYD? Thank you for your replies.

OP’s posts: |
TapselteerieO Thu 23-May-13 14:51:52

I really would start the studying now, especially with the threat of further funding cuts. You will prioritise what needs to be done for your dc and surprise yourself with what you can achieve- but maybe talking to someone on the student type board on mn will get you some really useful advice on that?

Do you have any close family that can help you out, to help you clear your overdraft and maybe arrange a long term loan from them? I would also consider joining a local credit union for saving, they offer way better interest than the high street banks and after a certain length of time with them you get good loan rates too - well worth a look in case of future money issues, though I understand the wish to avoid debt.

StealthOfficialCrispTester Thu 23-May-13 16:01:46

Sorry op this has just come back up on my threads im on.i wasnt having a go at all just wondering if extra work was a possibility, it sounds not. Hope you get something sorted.

skintandfedup Thu 23-May-13 16:34:14

Tap that is what I think. Enrol now before funding is possibly cut. I know I can persevere and qualify - for me & for my family. I've been lurking on MN looking for tips re studying. DH has said he will support me fully - ie. look after dc, put up with long hours of reading, attending tutorials, etc - bless him.
I'll look into credit union re saving. Thanks for the tip. No option to ask for a loan from family. DP's have recently moved abroad. Besides, they have helped me a lot in the past (pre dh & dc) & Ideally I would like to be financially independent (which, right now, I am not).

Stealth Thanks. Didn't take your post that way at all. I think my best bet is to study, live on a shoestring in the meantime & it will all pay off in the end. Hopefully it will work out for us/me. DH said he will look for temp work every 2nd week end as he would ba able to earn more than me. True, however, I said no! He works hard as it is. Just need to clear this debt then we'll be able to 'breath' a bit.

OP’s posts: |
melrose Tue 04-Jun-13 13:07:11

Hi how old are your boys? I also have 2 and a few coats to get rid of, if that would help

goldenslumber Fri 07-Jun-13 00:03:45

Move to live near your work/ schools and you won't need a car? If you rent, is it an option?

goldenslumber Fri 07-Jun-13 00:04:26

melrose - how much do you want for the boys? ;)

Fluffycloudland77 Fri 07-Jun-13 07:44:33

Open an account with topcashback, when you change the electric suppliers etc you can go through energylinx via topcashback and get about £30 usually. I put ours onto the electric account when it came through.

Have you got an aldi or lidl nearby?

If you have sky etc phone up and threaten to cancel, they will try to reduce the cost so you stay.

skintandfedup Fri 07-Jun-13 19:09:49

melrose that's very kind of you. DS2 will take over DS1's coat and I might ask my Dsis if she wouldn't mind buying DS1 a coat as part of his birthday present.
Fluffy Thank you for the tips. I am going to give topcashback a try. We are currently with Eon & am thinking of swapping over to a cheaper supplier soon. Any cash back would definitely help. We do have an Aldi nearby which we shop at but there are a few bits we prefer to buy elsewhere such as meat, yogurt, frozen foods. We left Sky a few months back. We now watch freeview and lovefilm. We have also swapped over to Talk Talk for phone & broadband.
Hopefully doing a car boot at the end of the month.
We've managed to pay a large sum off the credit card and hopefully next month too. Can't wait to clear the debt. Onwards and upwards.

OP’s posts: |
serin Sat 08-Jun-13 23:54:13

What is it that you want to study? is it something vocational that will lead to a job? otherwise, given the job market at the moment I would look at employment opportunities as an alternative.

Could you maybe babysit or child mind/dog walk in the meantime? It would just give you a bit more towards the camping trip.

It's farm Sunday today smile free entry into loads of farms for a free day out.

Soditall Fri 14-Jun-13 11:44:47

You could do surveys from home and get paid for them.I know quite a few ladies that do and they make between £15 and £40 a month and it hasn't cost them anything apart from time spent on the computer.

Have a look and see if your getting the best deal for your energy bills,any insurances,credit cards,loans,tv packages,phone line,mobile contracts.If your not and you've been with the company for a while it's well worth contacting them and telling them that your thinking about leaving as you feel your not getting as good a deal as you would else where and lots of them we'll put you onto a different deal so it works out cheaper for you.

If they can't go with a different company and see what you can get for free by switching to them.Lots offer so many months free or at a reduced rate or offer an extra gift such as Marks and Spencers Vouchers.

Put some wanted ads on places like Freecycle,Preloved,Freeads,ect for the things you need for the LO's(coats ect)lots of people don't bother selling things on now so you could get some lovely bits for your LO's for free.

MerylStrop Fri 14-Jun-13 12:12:56

It's hard work being skint.

I second car boot sales, and I know what you mean about ebay but don't rule it out depending on what you've got.

Surveys might not get you loads of money but year before last before I started working again I did them ferociously and saved up around £85 in vouchers from April - November which sorted Christmas and Birthdays.

Were I you I would press on with the education, now, whilst the opportunity of funding is still there. Good luck

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