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This is very much my blog, so don't be surprised if this doesn't follow accepted patterns and norms. It is a place where I can be anonymous and honest, and I appreciate that.

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Tuesday, 30 July 2013


Oh look, I am still useless.

That thing with the house? It was worse than I thought. I rang the mortgage lenders and asked the right questions. And... I'm screwed. We have a hole in my finances and sums that is approximately £8,000 large and growing as I look further into things. I have no deposit, no way of paying off the negative equity of selling the house and no way of paying for a structural survey of the new property. Basically, paying extra on the mortgage was... largely pointless? Mind you, saving instead would have netted nothing either.

This just confirms what everyone who knows me thought in the first place, I checked with both parents, and leaves me in a situation that I hate.

Obviously, on discovering my massive error I had to ask my parents if they could, as they had offered previously, loan us some money. I had originally hoped to avoid this - I hate being in debt at the best of times but to my parents... well - but needs must. Ringing my father and his wife, something now had to do, was always going to be bruising. My Dad already thinks I'm a bit useless and bombastic, discussed on this blog ad nauseam, and so this just confirmed that I am useless with figures and, well, life. His wife confirmed this to me over the phone: "Well, we know that you're a bit useless with figures and that's why we said not to rush into anything". My mother was the same. Both stressed the lie of all of this: "It's a new start."

It's not.

When I bought the current property I knew I was making a mistake, I knew it, but it was like a crash happening in slow motion - there didn't seem to be anything I could do to stop it. Everyone said to get a foot on the ladder, it was 2006, and to pay as much as I could as interest rates were as high as they would likely go. I paid more than I felt comfortable with and promptly spent until 2008 paying nothing off my loan amount despite my best efforts and saw my monthly payments rocket from £475 to £679. Indeed, in 2009 I owed £109,000 of the £108,000 I'd originally borrowed. This all sucked. In 2010 interest rates finally fell for me too, did I mention how shit I am at figures and such having locked into a fixed rate deal as interest rates soared only to see them collapse at the end of the month I'd renegotiated in. So, maintaining the payments of £679 actually allowed me to start paying off huge chunks of my mortgage over the next three years, to now.

Then there was the job moving. I left my job in 2007 at Tilly's insistence, because I was verging on total depression. She may have had the right idea. However, in my haste (spotting a trend?) I took a job that was rather more than I could do and be the father I wanted to our eldest who arrived, despite Tilly being on the pill, in the middle of that first year. By the end of the academic year it was clear I could not do the job and be a father and support Tilly, who was heading downwards herself. I started looking. I failed around 10 interviews and ended up back where I left in 2007. By 2010 I was in a precarious position there because I am a slack bastard and in depression. At the same time I netted an extra job with the hope of keeping the extra cash. Oh, and we had another child.

Of course we didn't get any extra. I crashed the car, which obliterated savings, and the new car kept requiring, keeps requiring, work to keep it on the road and legal. Upshot: the extra work for exam boards (about £2,600 a year) was needed to stop us going into debt. Net savings from 2009 to 2010 amounted to, get this, 11p. No, really. Even so, I felt that we had something going for us by overpaying my mortgage. So, that property was now paid down to £91,000. I figured we could sell.

I put in for a few jobs, about four interviews, and failed them all. At the time they were punts and I'd convinced myself that it was normal not to succeed. I spoke to a colleague and he revealed that he thought less of me as he'd never failed an interview. He was right, of course, I'm the only person I know of who has not gained a job at every interview - that is, the only person I know of in teaching. There's a lesson there, I think.

Error compounded error.

I pulled out of depression, ish, and we put the house on for £100,000. I accepted the one job offer I've had since 2009 in Derbyshire. We accepted that we needed to lower the asking price of the house - no one was coming that wanted to buy. We lowered to £94,000. We got a buyer. They offered £83,000, we said that wouldn't work, so they offered £89,000 and everyone said we should accept. We accepted. We owed £2,000 back on the mortgage even with the extra paying off.

Then I made an error with the maths and offered £121,000 on a house. Due to my enormous error we assumed we'd have an upward limit of £125,000 to buy a house. I was wrong. Our upward limit was, actually, uh... £40,000. If we raided the money we'd given to our children we could up that to the dizzying height of, uh, £80,000. To put that in perspective, we couldn't afford to buy back the house we live in currently. Except that I didn't work that out until last night.

So, yeah, when my father rang to offer help he also wants me to bring all my sums so he can check them and suggests that we might want to look for a smaller property. This is not a 'fresh start'.

My mother will lend us the money. But this means paying her back. Okay, it's interest free and I thank her for her offer, but I will be in debt to my mother. Yes, that's right, the University educated father of two will be in debt to his single mother on a wage that is approximately a third of what I get for what I do. You see, I think, why I'm not terribly keen on that idea.

Oh, and then there's the structural survey and the legals and the moving costs which we thought we could cover with the £3,600 we have in Tilly's savings (remember I raided them and paid it back tortuously over the last two years or so). Thing is, we might not. That was fine when I thought we had the money for a deposit - we could easily ask for a couple of hundred from my parents to cover stuff like that. Ha.

Ha ha.

I... uh... don't have an end to this post.

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