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How to make ends meet?

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Not sure if this is the correct place for this query but Im at a loss as to how to make ends meet.


Other half works full time and brings home £257 a week. There is no chance of overtime. He has to pay child maintenance of £150 a month. Our rent is £500 a month. Council tax £120 a month. Plus he has a loan of £45 a month and 2 credit cards on which they are accepting lower payments.


Son works but is only on a 20 hour contract at minimum wage. After travel expenses and payment on a court order of £8 per week there isnt much left.


I was working part time as well as trying to run a business which has failed with debts. My part time job has ended because the work involved a lot of heavy lifting and I just couldnt manage it any longer. (Im female and late 50s!!!) My hours had also been cut to 5 per week so it was not much anyway.


We simply dont have enough coming in to live on. Ive been to see if we can get help with housing benefit and been told we qualify for £40 a week and also £7 per week council tax benefit. They dont take into account your outgoings when you are assessed, only the incoming and obviously the child maintenance takes a chunk but thats a necessary outgoing and will be for the next 6 years. However if son so much as works 2 hours overtime wont get it. So its catch 22. This month I have only been able to raise half the rent and while the rental agency have been ok they have said that its a one off situation and I must find the rest by next week. That means all next weeks wage is already spoken for unless the housing benefit is sorted by then.


I cant claim job seekers allowance and am having trouble finding a job (not for the want of trying either!)


So after the necessary bills, no luxuries, we have approx £50 a week to live on to cover food, petrol and insurance for the car which is needed for other halfs work. We have a panic at MOT or tax time.


If I can find work it will make things much easier but even though Im willing to do anything Retail/Office/Cleaning -Im not being choosy, there dosnt seem to be anything. The job centre suggested I register with agencies which I have done but all 3 told me that they arnt finding much work for those who are already on the books.


Im just at my wits end, cant have a night out or even buy a magazine. There has to be more to life than this!

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My only advice is to make a list of priority payments.

Priority Debts


Basically your priorities are as follows;



Utility Bills,

Council Tax,

Court fines,

Child Maintenance,


Your rent must be paid in full and on time, without exception, as the last thing you need now is to lose the roof over your heads.

Use one of the many Income and expenditure tables and look at where you can make savings, even if it means shopping at a different supermarket, or getting rid of the car, that will save you a whole years worth of road tax, insurance, petrol and running costs, MoT etc.

With that saving you could spend on public transport, you can order your shopping online and have it delivered to your door.

There are no easy solutions, but once you have trawled through your I&E you will be amazed at where your money goes! (mainly to this self elected corrupt government);)

Who ever heard of someone getting a job at the Jobcentre? The unemployed are sent there as penance for their sins, not to help them find work!



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Thanks Bazooka.


The thing is that we have done that. We have cut everything to the bare minimum. The car has to stay as other half uses it for work (not just to travel to)


The shopping on line isnt really a possibility as you have to have a minimum spend or you get charged for delivery and to be honest the delivery charge is 2 days food to us.

I know it looks as if Im finding a barrier to all your suggestions but thats not thew case. Ive done the income expenditure sheets and there still isnt enough to pay everything necessary without slipping further behind.

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The shopping on line isnt really a possibility as you have to have a minimum spend or you get charged for delivery and to be honest the delivery charge is 2 days food to us.


To be honest most supermarkets will charge you for delivery, the only one I know of which is free is Iceland, and you only have to spend over £25 for free delivery. But the caveat with that is that you have to go into the shop to buy the goods first, then they deliver the same day!


Tesco, is £3.99 to £5.99 depending on what day of the week you wish to have it delivered.


Asda prices are between £3.75 and £4.75


IMHO there are thousands of people in exactly the same boat, me included, I spent 18 years serving this country in its time of need, now that I am disabled and in my time of need do you think the government really cares how much I have to live on a week!:evil:


I have gone from earning 40k a year to now barely touching 10k, so I have had to make some tough choices as have others, and I have a list of priority payments, sometimes it can be the difference between only a few pounds a month that will have a big effect on your I&E.


I have just saved myself £120 a year by just changing membership from one organisation to another, it's those things which you need to look at, also if your energy bills are more than 10% of your income you can get a reduced rate, a social tariff I believe?


Again that is saving me 20% on my electricity.

Mobile phones, land lines Tv, all now do a package that if you take all three with one provider ie Virgin (but don't they have zero customer care) then you can get all three for £30 or even cheaper!


The first thing I had to do, was get rid of the car, and use public transport. That was an immediate saving of my Insurance £300, Road Tax £160, Servicing £100

Fuel, well into four figures!


Even now after three years of being disabled, once everything is paid for, including food which I have set a £25 a week budget for, I still only have £25 disposable income, this is to socialise with, any taxi fares I might need, a hair cut, ice cream on a sunny day like today,

seriously look long and hard at where your money is going, something will be bleeding it away,


You have to be prepared to make some extremely tough choices, if you still feel you can't squeeze your budget any harder then you should go and speak to your local CAB.;)

Who ever heard of someone getting a job at the Jobcentre? The unemployed are sent there as penance for their sins, not to help them find work!



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Guest wino

After we pay all our bills we have a very small amount left to run the car, buy food, toiletries and cleaning stuff. We don't go out for meals etc.

I always look for bargains in the supermarkets 2 for 1 or reduced price goods.

I remember a time when we would just load the trolly up and hand over the debit card without having any concern if there was enough money in the bank.

It is going to take a few years before some of the debts are paid off but it will ease the burden when they are. The rest will take a lot longer but one day, one day, one day......sorry slipped into dream world then ;)

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