‘My mum’s recommendation saved me from lockdown nervousness’

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Lexy Oliver

My Money is a sequence taking a look at how individuals spend their cash – and the generally powerful selections they must make. Here, Lexy Oliver from Cheshire takes us by way of every week in her life in the course of the coronavirus pandemic.

Lexy is 27 and lives in Cuddington, Cheshire, along with her husband Jonny, additionally 27, and their cat Bobby. She is the fifth era to work in her household enterprise, a delicatessen owned by her father. Jonny works as an information scientist for a vacation lettings company. Lexy says there aren’t any higher employees reductions than good meals and holidays!

The Covid-19 scenario has actually had an affect on their funds over the previous couple of months. Lexy was furloughed for 10 weeks, and Jonny has simply returned to work having been on furlough since April. During lockdown, when neither of them had been in work, they had been down over £1,000 a month in take-home pay.

Lexy says from the age of 16 when she first began work, her mum at all times advised her to place cash away for a wet day, and fortunately they’d finished simply that. Making positive they’ve a six-month buffer is a rule they reside by, and saved them lots of nervousness throughout lockdown.

Lexy and Jonny at the moment are each again at work. Jonny is working from house, saving about £100 a month in comparison with when he was commuting to the workplace. Lexy works very carefully along with her father who has bronchial asthma, and he lives along with her mum who has a blood situation referred to as ITP, so she is doing her greatest to keep away from going anyplace with plenty of individuals.

Over to Lexy…

It’s an early begin on Mondays as I’ve to be in work on the deli for 07:30. I eat breakfast and lunch at work – high quality meals is a perk of the job! I begin my day with a freshly floor espresso and a few fruit earlier than settling in to my typical Monday morning admin. We’re on short-term hours in the meanwhile because of the pandemic, closing at both 14:00 or 15:00 relying on the day, so the shifts actually fly. After work I pop to the native card store and decide up two playing cards, one for an upcoming birthday, and one for a buddy who simply bought married (£2.09).

Before I do know it, I’m house once more, the place Jonny and I’ve our afternoon tea break and a fast day by day catch-up, which has turn out to be a stunning custom for us because the lockdown.

Dinner is home made fish and chips earlier than the rain clouds disappear and the solar comes out. We throw on our trainers and head off for a bit wander around the village. This turns right into a one-hour discover down a beforehand undiscovered footpath. We thought we had discovered all of them throughout lockdown however we preserve discovering extra!

Total spend: £2.09

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Lexy Oliver

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It’s an early begin once more at present with an analogous routine to yesterday. I eat some eggs and fruit washed down with a cappuccino after I get to work. I’m having a little bit of a kind out this week and doing all of the odd jobs I’ve been pushing aside. I additionally ring one in every of our fundamental ambient meals suppliers and place our Christmas order. I do know it appears early however in meals retail the deadlines are early! It makes me really feel heat and fuzzy understanding that every one the scrumptious candies, stollen and festive treats can be on their strategy to us in a number of months.

After work Jonny and I atone for our days once more over a pleasant cuppa earlier than heading out for a fast stroll between the rain showers.

In the night we head over to my mother and father’ home for dinner. They solely reside a number of miles down the highway and it is nice to meet up with them, notably my mum and youthful sister who I do not see daily like my dad.

I can do some pleased dance at present as I have never spent something!

Total spend: £0

I decide up a number of meals bits in work at present together with some cheese for tonight’s fajitas, and a few sausages and eggs, which involves £6.95 with my low cost. After work I head to the grocery store not far away and decide up the lacking bits for dinner, some snacks for Jonny, and a few strawberries and bananas for home made smoothies (£11.15). I usually do an enormous grocery store store out of city each two weeks or so, after which prime it up with recent bits from the deli and native retailers all through the week.

In the night we get pleasure from our home made fajitas earlier than enjoying on-line video video games with our outdated housemates from college.

Total spend: £18.10

Similar to the remainder of the week, I rise up early for work and are available house simply after 4. After he is completed work, Jonny and I’ve our cup of tea within the backyard and do a little bit of clearing up and weeding spherical our terrace.

For dinner now we have pasta bake, which is one in every of my favorite meals for utilizing up all of the odd ends of veg within the fridge earlier than our subsequent grocery store store. In the night we head out for a two-hour stroll within the countryside throughout sundown.

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Lexy Oliver

Today can also be the massive payments day!

I’m continuously haggling and searching for higher offers on all our payments so I’m proud of how low now we have bought a few of our month-to-month funds:

  • £556.36 for the mortgage on our three-bed semi
  • £38.84 for water
  • £123 for council tax
  • £33 for fuel and electrical energy, though we have simply had a letter saying this can be going as much as £38 a month. We have photo voltaic panels which deal with the majority of our electrical energy utilization, however being in the home extra has pushed our fuel utilization up barely over the previous couple of months.
  • £11.70 for all times insurance coverage
  • £29.70 for web (£20), and each our cellphone payments (£6.70 for mine and £3 for Jonny’s)

After all of the necessities are paid, now we have £500 routinely transfer into our funding account, which is successfully my pension, and I’ve a direct debit to maneuver £100 a month into my premium bonds, which I take advantage of as a financial savings account for my subsequent automotive.

Normally the fee for my audiobook subscription comes out at present. I get pleasure from listening to them on my commute to work however since I used to be off work and therefore did not drive for 3 months, I’ve racked up a stash of credit. Therefore I’ve paused my subscription whereas I catch up, which saves me £7.99 a month.

Total spend: £1,392.60

Fridays are by far the busiest days of the week at work for me, and matched with the hotter climate it is as busy as we imagined it might be!

After work it is time for the fortnightly grocery store journey. I’m large on meal planning so we at all times go together with a listing and I’ve discovered it is massively decreased our meals waste and our meals invoice during the last 12 months or so. I refill on all the things we want, plus another necessities like cat meals for Bobby. We additionally get a few luxuries together with smoked salmon and bagels for a flowery Sunday brunch. The complete involves £57.30.

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Lexy Oliver

As all our fundamental payments for the month have now been paid, we usually take a while round now to have a look at our spending during the last month and determine if now we have any spare that we are able to put in direction of an overpayment on the mortgage. We’ve held off making overpayments whereas we had been on furlough, however with us each again in work now we conform to make a £650 overpayment. We are fairly dedicated to creating mortgage overpayments the place we are able to because the rate of interest on our mortgage is larger than any financial savings charge the banks are providing in the meanwhile, plus we sort of see it as saving for the deposit on our subsequent house.

This night now we have three of our buddies spherical for some socially distanced beers within the backyard. Two of them reside with their mother and father who’ve been shielding due to underlying well being situations. Tonight is among the first occasions they’ve been exterior their very own house since March, so it is so nice to meet up with them.

Total spend: £707.30

This weekend it is my flip to work on Saturday. Six-day working weeks are a bit gruelling however lots of my summer season and weekend plans have been disrupted by Covid-19, so I’m pleased to make hay whereas the solar shines. I spend £10.80 at work on some good bits for tonight’s dinner, in addition to another meals for the weekend.

After work, Jonny and I head to our native backyard centre. We did a great deal of work on the backyard throughout lockdown – remodelling flower beds and borders, and planting new garden. The laborious work is usually finished and now it is time to do the “good bit” and add the color. We’re additionally searching for some good pots for our terrace. I’m extraordinarily pleased to search out the pots I had seen on the web at the moment are half worth! We purchase a great deal of pretty crops and flowers to fill our flower mattress, in addition to another ins and outs and the whole involves £186.91. However, we join their membership membership which saves us £5, and we use £80 of vouchers we had been given as birthday presents earlier within the 12 months, so we solely pay £101.96 money.

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Lexy Oliver

To rejoice it lastly being the weekend we deal with ourselves to a deli cheese and nibbles board and a bottle of good crimson wine for dinner, earlier than snuggling on the couch with Bobby and a movie.

Total spend: £112.76

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Lexy Oliver

Image copyright
Lexy Oliver

Sunday is spent virtually totally within the backyard. We undoubtedly have our mother and father to thank for our inexperienced thumbs! My mum is a florist, and each our units of fogeys have immaculately stored, stunning gardens.

We set to work filling the flower beds and new pots with yesterday’s backyard centre haul. We actually spend seven hours gardening with a short interlude for lunch. I’m fully shattered by the top of the day however the backyard is lastly finished, and now we are able to sit again and revel in it for the remainder of summer season!

Today is one other day the place we did not spend a factor.

Total spend: £0

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Lexy Oliver.

Total spent this week: £2,232.85

How does Lexy really feel about her week?

This week’s spending appears very excessive however it’s comparatively regular for this week of the month because it’s when all our payments come out, plus we made a mortgage overpayment.

£600 was additionally moved to different accounts relatively than “spent”. Most of our non-bill spending was meals and plant pots. We’ll seemingly spend solely a few hundred kilos over the remainder of the month!

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Lexy Oliver

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