I can’t believe it is April already! The first few months of 2017 have certainly been interesting and my plan to reduce debts as well as have a ‘free’ Christmas could have totally gone to pot. Luckily, it is starting to work out again and I can get back to saving, clearing debts and blogging.
I am saving well. So far I have:
£130 Love2Shop vouchers
£120 Asda vouchers
£19 Morrisons vouchers
I also have money saved on my Nectar card and Advantage card but I’m not going to count those at the minute as they are minimal.
I am really happy with these figures but I definitely need to work on the Morrisons vouchers, last year I had over £70.
I’m still paying off my debts. I am currently working on one that started at £269 and it is now down to £160. I’m really happy with this as I am paying it off with money that I make on eBay. All I need to do now is work hard on selling things on eBay as I have become a bit slow about it since my job changed. My target to get it paid by 28th May is still very much on track.
The plan for April
It’s simple. Get everything on eBay. Make money. Pay debts. And blog!
Oh my days. It has been a fortnight and a half! From being ridiculously happy I had paid another chunk of my debt off, to then being told my job no longer exists, to starting a new role (albeit in the same company) it has been a bit of a rollercoaster of emotions!
Work wise – the new job could be amazing, I miss my spreadsheets already but maybe it was the push I needed to do something new.
Debt wise – I paid off another £47 since my last post. Money made from using TopCashBack and eBay.
This brings the next debt down to £125 when due on 28th May. I’ve got a nice little countdown app on my phone that shows how long left until my deadline for the next three debts and also how much it was when I started it in January.
Having a quick peek at it keeps me motivated. The past events page is the best though!
eBay sales were rather rubbish this weekend, it seems suit jackets are quite hard to sell! But onwards and upwards for next week. Even if I only pay off another £5 from my debt I’ll be happy.
I will be debt free regardless of what life throws at me!!!
I mentioned a few posts ago that my main aim this year is to get rid of my debts. I’ve been sitting on these debts for years, slowly plodding along and paying the minimum each month. It’s easy that way and I don’t really have to think about them. But one day I want my own house (the biggest debt I will ever have!) and to get that I have to get rid of my debts.
At the beginning of the year I found out how much I owe in total. It was scary! Over £5000 in debts! And nothing really to show for them.
I know people say get rid of the biggest debt first but that would mean I wouldn’t see any movement for at least six months. So I looked at the debt with the least left. £86. That’s achievable. So I set out to have it paid off by February 28th.
To make the money I need I used TopCashBack; I enjoy shopping online but I enjoy getting cashback more! £25 of savings and eBay. I made enough money even after postage and fees to pay this first debt by 13th February. Two weeks early! I was so happy and it confirmed that I could do this.
My next debt is due to be paid on 28th May and by then it will be £179. I have started collecting sales from eBay again and I have some more cashback I can use. As this is more money than the last one I have decided to pay it off little and often to make sure that I don’t spend the money elsewhere and stay motivated. Today I paid £10 so now it will be £169 by 28th May. Another £14 should be paid in the next few days too when it reaches my account.
The overall plan is to reduce my debt by 50% this year without having to compromise.
Online shopping is a huge business and with most of us, the ability to spend money is simply a few clicks away on the phone or pad. Most of my shopping (except groceries because I love food shopping) is done on the Internet and mainly via apps on my phone.
Here are my top tips to saving money when you shop online.
Know what you are looking for? Google it and click the shopping tab. This will bring up loads of sites and prices where you can buy.
Check eBay and Amazon. These don’t always show up in a search.
Found the perfect site with the perfect price? Sign up to their newsletter – chances are you will receive an email with a code for money off your first order.
Check cashback websites. Might as well earn some cashback on that purchase. I use TopCashBack and love it!
Search for voucher/discount codes that you can use. There are loads of sites that can help you with this such as VoucherCodes and PromotionalCodes.
No discount from the newsletter? Add the item to your basket and leave it there. Some sites will then email you offering an incentive to complete the purchase.
Don’t forget to earn any points – check to see if they offer Nectar points on purchases. eBay does!
Take advantage of free delivery. If your item isn’t urgent then take the free or cheaper shipping that takes a few days rather than the expensive next day delivery.
A lot of items on eBay and Amazon are from China. Check Ali Express, the same item from the same seller may be on there at a lower price.
If a site has a ‘chat now’ function, use it and see if they will offer you a discount. This often works on sites that sell electrical goods.
And none of these points even starts to go down the route of ‘do I actually need it?’
Just a few ways to save when you shop online! Let me know if you have any other ways!
This Wednesday, in the pouring rain, the children and I went and donated three bags of clothes and toys to our local charity shop. We have all been having a good clear out and as well as selling lots on eBay it’s really nice to be able to give to a charity knowing the money they raise will help their cause.
Once we had passed our bags to the lovely lady who volunteers at the shop, I let the children have a quick look around whilst I checked there were no Val McDermid books that I haven’t already read (there wasn’t).
My son, however, did find a Star Wars Speeder Bike straight from the 1980’s that he was ‘desperate’ to own. When I saw it was only £2 I couldn’t say no.
Which, of course, meant that my daughter really wanted something too. She loves reading as much as me and was looking at their children’s books when she noticed a Diary of a Wimpy Kid book that she doesn’t own. I didn’t think it was possible as I thought she had all of them possible! I then noticed that they were having an amazing sale on children’s books – 8 for £1!!
So, we gave three bags of toys and clothes and came out with one new toy and eight books! And I only spent £3 so I think it was a bargain!
I love shopping in charity shops, you never know what you are going to find!
Debt one has been paid! And it was 14 days earlier than my target date!
I have spent so much time literally staring at a spreadsheet that shows all of my debts and how they decrease over the year wondering if I can actually hit my targets when, on Sunday, my eBay items sold well enough that I had made enough money to pay my first debt.
Now this debt was £80. Most people will think that’s not a lot of money and would be easy to pay but for me it’s a figure I just didn’t have spare. I generally budget well each month but there is always something that pops up that I wasn’t expecting, this month it was a gymnastics competition entry fee, so there is never really anything spare to put towards my debts. Obviously, I’m paying them off slowly with monthly repayments but I really want them gone quicker than that.
To pay this first debt I used £11 that I made from TopCashBack, £20 savings and the rest was from selling things on eBay. I’m really enjoying this at the moment and it is also encouraging me to have a good clear out. For every one item that ends up on eBay another 5 items are donated to our local charity shop too!
I’m going to keep on top of the clearing and selling as I still have another three debts I would like to get rid of this year. This next one is £179 and I am giving myself until 28th May to earn and save to pay it off. I have confidence that I’ll be able to do it too!
Now it’s just waiting for the letter to arrive that tells me that the debt is settled. That’s a fantastic letter to receive!
Have you found an easier/better way of earning money to save or pay debts? Let me know, I would love to hear your ideas!
This week has been a pretty good one for money saving, earning and blog posting.
I have added another £20 in Love2Shop vouchers this week. I spent two evenings for about 1 hour each time testing the smells of surface cleaner and hand soap. It’s a really easy way of earning vouchers but it’s not guaranteed. I can go months with no invite to test anything then a load turn up at once!
I’ve also added another £3 to my Morrisons savings.
I’m using eBay as the main source of earning money. The money that I make is going towards some debts that I want and need to pay off. This evening I have hit my target to pay my first debt! I’m so happy because I’ve achieved this two weeks earlier than I had planned. I can’t wait to call Barclays in the morning and get rid of that debt once and for all! Now onto the next one. I have 104 days to hit that target which is hopefully more time than I need. I just need to keep on top of the eBay-ing!
I’m really enjoying blogging again and have had loads of views this week so thank you to everyone who has read my blog!!