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I'm in a mess. Please guide me!(8 Posts)
Firstly, apologies that this is going to be very long.
I'm 25, with a 6yo DD. We live in a 2 bed flat via Housing Association. I have a DP, not DD's father, who does not live with us, he stays over at weekends. I currently go to university, about to start my second year out of my three years.
I am struggling so badly with money. Through the student loan stuff, I get my tuition loan (given straight to the uni), maintenance loan, special support grant and childcare grant. So I get a fair chunk of money that has to last me 3-4 months. I get housing benefit (not full), child tax credit and child benefit. I am also exempt from council tax. My exp pays £10 a week for child maintenance. He works part time, and CSA have told me that if I had carried on via them, I would only get £5 a week, so we agreed a settlement between ourselves.
So on the surface, I suppose I should just manage. I put my money away and take out what I need, ie. when bills come out. However, over the summer holiday, I have just been struggling so much, and from middle of August to now (don't get my loan money til Sept 28th) I am just relying on benefits. But when I calculated my outgoings to my benefits, it appears I do not get enough incoming to cover all this as well as food etc. The last loan amount I got was in April, and that was suppose to last me all the way to the end of September. It was all gone by beginning of August. I am at the moment behind on my rent, I need to pay for DD's swimming lessons, and for her childcare when I start uni again, but I just don't have any money. I have £50 in my bank right now to last me til next Tues until I get CTC come through again.
I also have a lot of debt hanging over. Altogether it amounts to around £7000. I have a DMP with CCCS, but it doesn't really seem to be working. I have 6 creditors, and only 3 of them is receiving the money with no problems each month. 2 others keep telling me I have missed a payment though my payment to CCCS goes out on time every month and they keep throwing interest on it so I'm not getting anywhere with that. The last one hasn't accepted the payment plan CCCS have done for me, so I keep getting letters saying I'm not paying them anything. I keep contacting CCCS and they say they will sort it out but this is a vicious circle where nothing is happening. I feel really really upset over it.
I sometimes get help from DP. I try not to rely on him much as he has his own money problems. Though he's not as bad as me, he seems to be skint by the end of the month as well, and we wonder where all our money has gone. But he's been really down lately. He's worried about money, he hates where he's living and wants to move in, but we can't afford it. His great grandma has just died. It's all just going horribly wrong.
I feel really sick with worry, I can't stop crying. I just don't want this hanging over me. I am at a point where I want to quit uni, because I don't want to end up with a £20k extra to add to the amount I owe, which is what I will owe at the end of my course. I want to sort my money out, I keep thinking of the future, and how I want to one day have a mortgage for a house for security for my DD at least, but with the way things are, I know that's not going to happen.
My car is about ready to die. Everytime I get in it now, it takes 15-20 minutes to start, and I feel utterly useless that one day it might just die and then I will be stuck as DD's school is 4 miles away. I was sat outside DD's school for 20 minutes just trying to get the car started and I just wanted to break down and cry.
I have no family that could help me out. My dad has basically disappeared off the face of the planet. My mum is too busy paying off my sister's debts because she manipulates her.
I just don't know what to do anymore. Can anyone please point me in a direction to make this better?
Go back to CCCS and enquire about an Administration Order - you are much more likely to be able to live if you don't have that 7k to pay off.
Thank you Laurie. I haven't heard about that before. Shall ask them for more information.
It's like a mini-bankruptcy where your debts are managed/written off if you have less than £15k of debts and have no way of meeting them.
you could also review your dmp (just ignore the creditors and refer them to CCCS, they can really hassle you) and pay less if you can't afford it.
Have a look on the Debt Forum part of this site www.debtquestions.co.uk for more info about AO's.
Surely CCCS should have negotiated interest to be frozen on your debts - if they havenelt they need to do so . If neither you nor dp can account for your monthly outgoings I'd suggest you each sit down and work it out in detail . Also check with your Student Union that you are claiming all you are entitled to. Can you find pt work to supplement your income, maybe evenings so dp can do childcare.
Thanks Laurie. I shall do that.
Lizs, we are planning on doing that this weekend. We are both cutting back on costs, such as DP is cycling to work, and I'm looking into DD getting the school coach to school so it saves money on petrol. I have been looking for part time work. It's difficult though as I only have two days free during the week, although I have applied for some weekend work, and DP works night shifts so I am not able to do that.
I can't really add anything useful, but can I just say that whatever you do PLEASE don't give up on your university degree.
FO, I really don't want to. I've waited so long to do it, and I'm doing so well with it as well. I'm top of my year and it's been so great for me. I'm just so worried about what I can do.
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