I'm another newcomer to this forum, having lurked for a couple of weeks. My DMP starts this month so hopefully I'm on the road to recovery. It's been a relief just to stop the downward spiral and look forward to not ending the month with an even bigger overdraft and credit card bill! Making ends meet has always been a problem, but what finally pushed me under was having my tax credits stopped (about £160 month). I work for a large organisation and changed departments last year to better my chances of promotion. The new post is much further away but the organisation generously pays for extra travel costs for 2 years, and then decreases this by a 3rd each year for 3 years when it stops. I stupidly didn't realise that the fuel payment counts as additional income and I was therefore overpaid on the tax credits last year so now they've been stopped completely. My basic pay is the same as before the move, because the extra money goes on the extra fuel, but I'm now £160 down. Does that all make sense - it's been a long day and I really ought to sleep!
I contacted CCCS and worked out a monthly balance of £240 to pay to my creditors. (I was paying about £550 a month, mostly by VISA and overdraft). In total I owe £43k, excluding mortgage which is interest only as the endowment was cashed in some time ago. I owe American Express, the co-operative bank and Northern Rock. The only one giving me any grief is Northern Rock. They don't appear to have read any of my letters and are questioning my budget figure for fuel. I'd sent them a letter detailing my daily commute mileage, weekly shopping trip, etc, my car's mpg, the cost of fuel, to calculate the monthly figure but they want me to send them my fuel receipts. I'm now ignoring their calls and letters. The other creditors have accepted the payment offer with no problems.
My big concern now is that my income will decrease by about £300 pounds per month over the next 3 years as my fuel payments stop. This will be slightly offset by an annual payrise, historically about £40 per month per year, so in 2009 my pay will be down about £180. Again, sorry if that's confusing, I really ought to sleep but I need to talk to someone! So in 2009 I'll only have about £60 to offer the creditors. I know I need to take each year as it comes, but I worry about what will happen eventually. Do you think I'll eventually need to go bankrupt?
Sorry for the long post. If you made it to this point then thanks for sticking with me