Back to Budgeting Basics

Feels like ages since I’ve talked about budgeting, and for a reason… with excess spend on frivolities, a loan to pay off two credit cards one of which I didn’t close and am steadily filling back up, an expensive honeymoon (which I barely contributed towards) back in October 2016 and the increased cost of US-based services since the Brexit vote, it’s obvious I’ve had my head firmly planted in the sand. Or up my arse, if you like.

But I have a problem. And not just the problem of big scary debt which I promised myself I’d never get hooked into: the problem of a mortgage deal that ends in just over 12 months time and only self-employment income to prove my ability to buy or re-negotiate. If I have extra debt when it comes to sorting out a new deal, nobody is going to touch me. All of my mortgage over-payments will have been for nothing.

So I have a year. A year to do all the things I’ve blogged about doing a million times: reducing outgoings, making my projects successful (or closing them down) and putting any ‘side’ income straight into debt reduction.

And as that won’t be enough on its own, I have no choice but to go back to full scale frugality as per maternity leave income levels: meal planning, £20 a week shops, turning the heating down to 19 degrees and putting on an extra jumper… the kind of money saving stuff I used to do as par for the course.

I know I can do this, I’ve done it before. So why does it seem the most daunting of all my plans and goals for the year?


  1. Good luck getting back on track with budgeting! I’m still trying to save for a mortgage deposit, but somehow ended up dipping into my savings quite a bit over Christmas.

    I can’t imagine doing a £20 a week food shop. There’s only two of us and we spend over £40 a week (all my friends are shocked whenever I tell them this, so I’m clearly doing something wrong).

    Hope you manage to do it!

    • Jem

      04 Jan at 4:44 pm

      I’ve been spending upwards of £60 a week at Tesco for a good while now – that’s to feed four of us and doesn’t include pets. Shopped at Aldi for the first time in ages this week and spent £23. Made a massive lasagne yesterday which fed us, and with half left over should do for my lunches this week. Got a chicken carcass (not from Aldi) from Sunday simmering to make stock for soup which should do a couple rounds of meals this week and sausages for tomorrow evening to break up the boredom factor. All in, this should last us til Monday when I go again.

  2. You can do this, Jem. In terms of food shopping, we’re Lidl fans and we also get a lot of stuff on reduction which really helps to keep our bills down.

  3. Kris Turner

    08 Feb at 8:15 am

    Turning the heating down to 19 ey? Check out big spender over here.