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Finding things very tight....

(20 Posts)
MrsGiraffe12 Sat 24-Jan-15 23:02:45

Am literally having to choose between eating well (fresh fruit & veg & meat vs cheap junk) or heating the house!

Aparently according to benefits/grants etc we shouldn't struggle due to DH wage but we are massively. Have cut back in every conceivable way (no sky, no home phone, no internet etc).

Any tips on making money go further would be appriciated!

Thank you x

chanie44 Sun 25-Jan-15 21:39:02

Try moneysavingexpert there are loads of tips on there.

chanie44 Sun 25-Jan-15 21:39:06

Try moneysavingexpert there are loads of tips on there.

confusedofengland Sun 25-Jan-15 22:29:06

We are in a similar situation, albeit temporarily (DH is a contract worker & has been out of work since just before Christmas & the money has run out now sad).

I am doing as much as I can to ease things. You may or may not have thought of these, but here are a few ideas.

- Try selling things on Gumtree/Facebook/Preloved or Ebay for collectibles. You'd be amazed what sells! I've made £35 this week on bits & pieces
- For groceries, especially fresh food (fruit & veg, meat & fish, bakery goods) visit the supermarket when they reduce food if possible (my nearest supermarket is 8pm for 75% off, ask yours when they reduce)
- If you can't afford to heat your home, spend as much time as you can out of it - we like the library & toddler groups, which are cheap to go to & great for the DC
- Do surveys online to earn some cash/vouchers

Mum4Fergus Mon 26-Jan-15 17:33:40

Can you give an idea of where your money is going? Can maybe help see some cuts/savings you could make?

cozietoesie Mon 26-Jan-15 20:09:26

What sort of energy tariff are you on with roughly how big bills? And where do you shop?

MrsGiraffe12 Tue 27-Jan-15 14:56:58

I work in a supermarket and do my food shopping there as I get staff discount on it, even the reduced items which is good. Our energy tarriff is with SSE and it's seperate gas and electric, we've gone paperless and direct debit as each carries a yearly discount.

we've cancelled sky, home phone and internet and have basic tarriff on mobile phones.

I just don't understand how we have so little money, a family of 4 on 20k a year seems reasonable to me as when we had our eldest 7 years ago we were only on 12k!

Mortgage is 550 a month x

MrsGiraffe12 Tue 27-Jan-15 14:57:58

Wages are before tax and national insurance x

Mum4Fergus Tue 27-Jan-15 16:32:44

Have you drawn up a proper budget detailing all income and outgoings? Try keeping a spending diary?

Dropdeadfred2 Tue 27-Jan-15 16:45:11

obviously it depends where you live and what your housing costs are...20k before tax would not pay our mortgagesad

Dropdeadfred2 Tue 27-Jan-15 16:56:51

have any of your bills increased recently? children eating more etc?

annielostit Tue 27-Jan-15 17:45:53

Write a full list of out goings.
Your 20k after tax etc isn't that much.
Most household bills with utilities,phones etc down to the basics are £400 - 500 a month plus mortgage of £550. Its not going to give you much left only about £600.
Check if you can get tax credits etc if your not already then you might see where your going.

Iamnotanugget Tue 27-Jan-15 18:30:12

Look on entitled to website. As a rough rule a family of 2 adults and 2 children earning less than 32k will get some benefits.

MrsGiraffe12 Tue 27-Jan-15 18:53:09

Thanks everyone. I phoned tax credits today and they had made an error on our application when youngest was born. We're owed a fair chunk of money, thank goodness! Sat in a warm house as I've put the heat on :-)

cozietoesie Tue 27-Jan-15 20:50:09

Oh that's good news - and you should have a little more every month to be going on with now. smile

Artandco Tue 27-Jan-15 20:52:16

20k would not pay our rent ( 1 bed flat, London)

wobblebobblehat Tue 27-Jan-15 23:55:15

20k for a family of four is not a lot.

I've just got Jack Monroe's book out of the library. Seems quite good and might be worth a look?

Agree with selling things. It's surprising what things go for sometimes.

I rarely buy anything new now. Tend to stick to charity shops, Gumtree, Freecycle and eBay. If you sort by distance on eBay, you can very often find items locally which negates the postage cost.

CurlyhairedAssassin Wed 28-Jan-15 00:03:39

20 grand for 4 people is going to be really really tight. It's quite a way below the average wage of ONE person, not household income in total. If the tax credits don't help much could you get a part time job? Or does Childcare cost rule that out

CurlyhairedAssassin Wed 28-Jan-15 00:08:38

Sorry, didn't read properly. I think you shoudk double check benefit entitlement. That is not a lot of household income at all for 2 working people. Who is the main earner? You or Dh? I'm assuming DH as you mention his income being too much for benefits. What does he earn? Can't be much if between you it's 20k.

starfish4 Wed 28-Jan-15 14:32:58

Do look into the question of whether you could get your energy elsewhere. We moved house last year and initially had to use the energy supplier the previous occupants used. Anyway, we've stuck with them. Previously we were paying £71 a month for a two bed house. We've built up a reasonable amount of credit (paying £71 a month to them still) and they've just reduced our monthly dd to £59 a month.

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