Some thoughts…

…on the current situation which is subject to the Micawber principle.

1) Sell the van. It’s expensive to run and maintain. Probably get a grand or so for it. Its main uses are supermarket shopping – there’s a bus; visiting my father – there’s a train; camping holidays – no money for holidays. My heart will no doubt survive the damage.
2) Sell the camping equipment. Wouldn’t raise much but takes up space. See above.
3) Re-home one or both of the pets. They are expensive to maintain. Food and insurance and vet bills. However the human cost would be very high indeed. Pretty sure they could not be fed any more cheaply. Could get treatment at the PDSA. Could stop insuring them and hope they don’t get ill. The boys could live without Maizy but not without Cat. Maybe I should re-home Maizy, but I’m not sure whether my heart would survive the damage.
4) Get pay-as-you-go mobile. Can’t be without one because of childcare etc but really don’t need monthly contract. The annoyance of having a new number and all the admin that would entail would be temporary.

Everything else is either already cancelled or cut to the bone. Apart from the internet. That will go only at the same time as we have to stop eating.

16 Replies to “Some thoughts…”

  1. I have a pay-as-you-go mobile which I only really use when travelling. You need it and use it far more, but sounds like a fairly easy solution?

    As for the animals, only you can judge. My heart sank when my boss came in yesterday saying people in Southern California fires were being advised to let their cats go since they manage fairly well on their own but keep their dogs with them. Horses are galloping in herds down streets. Sounds like something out of an Olivia Butler novel…

    Anyway, (o).

  2. Don’t get rid of the pets! Maybe a Donate button in your sidebar to help with their upkeep, accompanied by winning photos?

  3. Um, yeah, thanks Pete 🙂

    Just been doing some really grown-up sums. Van definitely has to go. Mobile contract definitely has to go. Pets should but can’t go. All of which will still leave us £50 a week overspent.

    Hmmm. How could I make £50 a week during school hours? Answers on a postcard please to the usual address.

  4. I don’t know why, but my earlier lengthy comment never showed 😦

    You can almost certainly make more savings elsewhere. Have you been to the website?

    Some ideas:
    – menu planning, value products and cooking from scratch in bulk to keep costs down. Make the most of bargains and shopping places such as Lidl/Aldi etc.
    – checking that mortgage, gas, electric, phone etc are with the cheapest suppliers.
    – finding ways to make extra money, via selling old stuff or using previously untapped skills.

  5. Ideas for earning money in school hours:

    – dog walking for neighbours?
    – local council? (often have jobs with term-time only contracts/part time hours)
    – avon? (have tried kleeneze myself, that was crap, but have a friend doing avon and she consistently earns £50 per catalogue drop, and you get set areas)
    – searching charity shops for books, etc in good condition then ebaying them for profit?

  6. extra earning potential (okay, this won’t add up to £50 a week but can help with some extra pin money for luxuries):

    – google ads on the blog
    – shopping and daily free clicks on cashback sites such as quidco and pigsback
    – write for other blogs who pay.
    – paid for online surveys.

  7. Personally, I’d keep camping equipment, because it’s a VERY cheap holiday. But maybe go for a tent (or a trailer tent if you have storage space) rather than the van.

  8. Wow! Pewari, you should set yourself up as an adviser!

    I’ve basically got the money saving tips covered already.

    The money-making suggestions are all most useful and thought-provoking. Google ads on the blog? but it’s soooo low traffic… and it would look nasty 🙂 But I suppose, as Pete said, desperate times… etc.

    The van is our car so we wouldn’t have any transport for a trailer – it’s a venerable VW campervan that I love (hence the heart damage). But just think how environmentally friendly we’ll be 🙂

  9. Some ideas for making £50 a week:

    – register with a temp agency if you’re handy with answering phones, filing and typing; should be able to pick your area/s and hours
    – register with an extras agency
    – make flyers for a little ironing business: £10 a basket? [it’s how I made extra pocket money during uni]
    – sell your pictures to online journals, image agencies

    Maybe there’s some way to keep the van that would lessen the carbon footprint — maybe carpool with people? Use it in a co-op situation?

    I have a couple of books I can lend you when I come and see you next — they’re good for advice on frugality. 🙂 Oh, and surf around for frugality blogs for more ideas, too.


  10. Seriously, check out the – the forums there in particular are fab. I bet there’s at least one money saving idea there that you hadn’t considered.

    Oh, have you also checked that you’re getting everything you could do (tax credits, etc?)

  11. Oh … extra cheap holiday ideas for next year – save up tescos points (if you shop in tesco) as the vouchers can be redeemed for 4 times their value (you send off for a days out voucher instead) that can be redeemed off places like Haven or Legoland. Can easily get a free short holiday a year out of the points.

    I don’t even do my main shop there, and we’re still getting enough points to take the boys to Legoland next year (and we’ll camp nearby to get the cheap accommodation cost).

  12. Google ads don’t have to be garish – you can customise the colours to blend in… or what about Text Link ads? They’re just a link, although I’m not sure if you have to have a certain level of traffic for them.

    You won’t get loads off google ads with small traffic, but as I say it’s pin money and it’s nice to have the extra payout even if it’s only yearly.

  13. Thrift is only a good revenue to a very limited point, after that you have to generate some more. In mind of what you said earlier, you can’t really afford to work either, as it would cancel out benefits, cost in childcare etc. It’s got to be something on the black, or greyish anyway.
    I’d love your blog just as much if it were plastered with ads, and anyone ought to be prepared to pay for your pictures.
    Dog-walking and even ironing don’t sound too humiliating, could you knit for money?
    Good luck and don’t think of getting rid of the animals, I’ll click on a ‘Feed Maizy’ button and I’m sure I’m not alone. The saving can’t be worth the heartache.

  14. I actually spent much of today sorting out getting some proper financial advice, which I shall get on Monday. So that’s good. Maizy and cat are definitely not going. Yes, extras have to be on the black. Unfortunately nobody’s prepared to pay for photographs these days but apparently the world is full of rich dilettantish knitters who start something, fail to complete it and then *pay* someone else (eg ME! possibly) to finish it. So yes, indeed, I could presumably make some money from knitting. And there’s also the craft website Etsy (eBay for the handmade). There are options, possibilities, openings, gleamings. Etc.

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