We made it to the beach! (Lancing if you were wondering where). 2 hours later it was p!ssing it down! 🙂


Another month done! Another high expense month! Waaah (etc)!

Of course those who paid any attention recently will know that this is mainly because we spent ~£1200 on our garden project. I’m starting to wonder how many one of expenses I can actually come up with before I just admit our budget should be about £2000 higher than predicted every year though even though this year I already baked in a lot of breathing room.

Anyway let’s get on with it, and apologies for the lateness of this update… been very busy, blah blah the usual excuses… 🙂


Remember the figures below are in the format: £Current Month (£2017 Monthly Average / £Monthly Average Target)

  • Total £4448 (£3727 / £3210) – Game over on hitting the average budget here. I guess I could take out what we spent on the garden and aim to hit budget then but even then I doubt we’d do it (as I already know what we’ve spent in September and it doesn’t look good – *insert grimacing emoji*!).
  • Mortgage £848 (£848 / £848)
  • Household £786 (£681 / £599) – Groceries the main culprit again here.
  • Going out/Holiday £560 (£1057 / £750) – Mrs T had a hen do (weekend) to go on which was the main expense here, but all in all not a bad month for us, in month spend was under average target by £190.
  • Transport £199 (£172 / £172) – Hah! We are now bang on target for the year. We spent a lot on Petrol this month, I guess we ended up having one of those months where you fill up right at the start and right at the end, and we also had a short break to the IOW towards the end of the month which sups up the old dinosaur juice a fair bit. I got the train and the catamaran down a bit later as was still doing the garden which was great fun, and cost under £30. Considering if I get a daily ticket train to work and that costs £24 that seems like great VFM 🙂

Couldn’t get a snap of the catamaran itself but here is a nice view of leaving Portsmouth harbour

You dock into the end of the Pier and then catch an old London Underground tube train on the actual pier to continue your journey! Cool! 🙂

  • Personal Care £64 (£85 / £90) – Slightly under budget here. I am guessing Mrs T needs a new hairdo pretty soon though?!? 😉
  • Home/Garden £1152 (£213 / £85) – Actually very happy with this. Despite the “unforeseen” expense of the garden we’re still only £128 over the monthly target for the year. Also the garden did end up costing us a lot less than I originally thought when we actually decided to do it (guessed it would be around £2K)
  • Lifestyle £318 (£214 / £165) – Trended back down last month, trended back up again this month 🙂 – Clothes the main culprit here, as well as Mrs T smashed her phone screen and I didn’t have time to DIY the repair so got ripped off at a high street fixer-upper instead.
  • Gifts/Charity £346 (£156 / £215) – Finally catching up with our charitable giving! Sadly my Auntie passed away in June and she had two nominated charities if people wanted to contribute in her memory, Ellenor Hospices and Cancer Research UK, so we gave a fair chunk to both of them. We currently still have £235 left to give at this point in time (further matched betting profits notwithstanding).
  • Hobbies/Sport £126 (£160 / £150) – Played a bit of golf this month but not much else to report here. The season is all but over (I’ve turned into a bit of a fair weather golfer in recent years) so I can see this easily coming back to under budget by the time the year is out.
  • Admin £4 (£2 / £10)
  • Financial £5 (£67 / £57) – The average is now very close to target!
  • Children £39 (£73 / £70) – Yet another great month for TFS Jr. She continues to need very little even in her second year of existence. Not that I’m complaining about the budget in any way here but I still feel we probably overspend on her. The current favourite toys are a stick and a puddle to stamp in, last time I checked the Argos catalogue these can be had for exactly diddly squat 🙂


Figures in the same format as expenses…

  • Total £3430 +£395 Pension (£4419 / £3907) – Not a great month here mainly due to not having much time for Matched Betting (see below) I’ve started to add in the +£395 Pension on this figure so people can actually see the savings rate below makes sense, as I kept getting questions about that.
  • TFS Income £2514 +£395 Pension (£2561 / £2390) – Slightly bigger than usual because of the tax rebalancing after the big July bonus cheque, plus no commuting to work as I was off for most of the month 🙂 – I take my travel straight off of my pay cheque and don’t count it as an expense just in case anyone was wondering (because that is an expense I know I won’t have if I quit my job so it’s silly to include it as a budgeted cost, for purposes of early retirement at least).
  • Mrs T Income £667 (£700 / £600) – Looks like I’ve underestimated Mrs T’s annual income, which is nice.
  • The House Crowd £4 (£30 / NA) – I’ve written a bit about The House Crowd a fair bit so check out some of the articles in that link if you don’t know what it’s about.
  • Ratesetter £108 (£25 / £0) – Wow, has it really been a year since I wrote about this?! I logged in this month to find an extra £100 sitting there from the offer. Unfortunately they’ve dropped the offer to just £50 now but if you want to avail of this “free money” then click on this link here(<– obviously it’s a referral link!) or again read my post on it for more info.
  • Child benefit £82 (£82 / £82)
  • Quidco/Topcashback £13 (£19 / £10) – I decided to open a Quidco account which is similar to Topcashback in that they give you cash back when you buy things through their links. There was an offer for an easy £13 so I went for it. It’s not going to put TFS Jr through University, but every little helps and all that. I can’t see me using this account too much going forward as I’m sure the retailers/services are much the same as on Topcashback and that is where I’ve gotten used to doing my online purchases through, but if that changes at all I will let you know!

Matched Betting / Gambling Hustles £0 (£913 / £750) – Reverting dangerously to the mean here as I keep being too busy with other things to get up a real head of steam with this. In truth, I have continued my golf system and have got a few winners (and many losers) via that so I am probably a bit “up” but not worth tallying it up for the month, I will do this at the end of September and see where I’m at though. I know I keep saying this but I am definitely keen on getting back into this big time to top up the income side of the equation!

If anyone is interested I have been using Odds Monkey matched betting software (<–affiliate link) for this, which having tried a few different ones out there, I found to be a far superior product in pretty much every way to everything else I tried. Check it out if you are new to matched betting, there are loads of great tutorials to get you going and you can try it for free. One of the best things about it is the Forum/Community aspect as you can learn loads of new and interesting ways to profit from gambling that aren’t just your standard “Do offer, lay off, get free bet, lay off, win £3.50” type of, let’s face, quite boring, time consuming and laborious matched betting methods. Some of these methods are what helped me to have a bumper Cheltenham 2017! Now, back to the update!


savings rate, net worth and all of that poppycock


Now to the part of the updates I’ve not enjoyed as much this year as others 🙂

Yes it’s another negative savings rate 1 month and we clocked in at -16.26%, which takes our average back down to 22.57% for the year. We’re aiming for 30% so still some work needed!

Not surprising the liquid freedom (which includes cash in the bank) went down this month fairly considerably which was less than ideal…

Excluding house equity: £146,650 / –£273 / -0.19%

Including house equity: £227,307 / +£187 / +0.08%

Liquid Freedom: £67,145 / -£1,890 / -2.74%

There is a slight rainbow on the horizon for next month although I won’t spoil that too much as it’s only a few days away.


I honestly haven’t been up to that much else other than what’s already been discussed so will just leave it at that!


Hope everyone had a nice summer and is ready for the Autumn now the nights are drawing in! 🙂


  1. That’s 3 out of the last 4 months now