March was Mega in more ways than one. It was mega busy, mega fun, and we had mega expenses (boo!) but also mega income (yay!) to offset that somewhat. Let’s get stuck in!



Don’t hold your breath as we could be here for a while…

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

  • Total £3920 (£3677 / £3120) – Ouuuuch! A lot was spent this month. Some of it was planned but some of it was a bit of a splurge, it has to be admitted. Find out what was what below.
  • Mortgage £848 (£848 / £848)
  • Household £687 (£617 / £599) – No council tax again in March saved our proverbial bacon again here as it was another high Groceries month – we did 2 “big monthly shops” in March so in theory April should bring the average back down again – but still trending near to target here so no dramas just yet.
  • Going out/Holiday £1587 (£1304 / £750) – Holiday spending comes in lumps and bumps so no real worries that we’re way over the average target here. We managed to pay for the whole of our 16 day driving holiday to France for the frugal sum of around £600 – that’s accommodation and travel, sans petrol, spending money etc when we actually go, of course. I think that’s pretty good and it will work out cheaper than I budgeted for in the overall yearly budget so a small win there. However, knowing that our income was high this month by the time Cheltenham had finished, I also electively paid up early for a stag do to Ibiza and part of another stag do that seems to have crept up out of nowhere so that bumped this figure up. Now most of this is out of the way it should lead to a few months of reverting back to the mean.
  • Transport £62 (£56 / £172) – Below average here again but we do have a few minor repairs that need doing on the car this month (April).
  • Personal Care £69 (£107 / £90) – Not much to say here really.
  • Home/Garden £0 (£13 / £85) – Will be spending a bit on the garden in April so good to get a bit of green in the bank for this category!
  • Lifestyle £295 (£228 / £165) – This was my splurge category this month. After smashing it at Cheltenham on the Matched Betting front, I decided to treat myself to a new golf gadget called Game Golf Live* 1 which tracks all your shots, works out the distances you’ve hit per club, where you missed and where you hit good shots etc. It’s amazing and was well worth the £100 I spent on it so far, if anyone else out there plays golf I would thoroughly recommend it* – and this is coming from someone who snubs pretty much all golf gear and gadgets nowadays, having learnt the hard way years ago that most of them are totally pointless and the only reliable way to get better is to just practice, practice, practice! Anyway you can pick one up on Amazon for about £150 but I tried to be at least a bit frugal and got a refurbished one imported from America for about £100. Either price is worth it IMO but if you can find one cheaper on eBay then go for it!
  • Gifts/Charity £170 (£156 / £215) – Lot’s in the “Gifts – other” category this month for some reason! But not much in Charity. I’m starting to run a fairly large deficit in the charity section now according to my plan here, so need to pull my finger out and start giving.
  • Hobbies/Sport £161 (£137 / £150) – The big expense here was we finally decided to get some nice canvas prints. We got a lovely collage of TFS Jr (Can’t remember from where, sorry!) and a couple of single prints and a few panoramic photos printed up from a company called Picanova – no affiliation to this company but I’d recommend them for single prints as the quality seems decent enough and they always have ridiculous 70% off coupons flying around (never pay the full price!). For example the 80 x 20 panoramic photos were only £10 after the discount. Fun fact: These panoramic photos were from when we went travelling in 2008, and I originally received the money to buy them as a Christmas present in around 2010 I believe. Just the 7 years it’s taken me to get around to ordering them then! How time flies… haha!
  • Admin £0 (£0 / £10)
  • Financial £5 (£161 / £57) – The average is slowly coming back down to normal now after that horrendous tax bill in January!
  • Children £38 (£51 / £70) – Back to her frugal self 🙂

So there you go, another expensive month for the TFS household! As mentioned some of this stuff we deliberately decided to pay up and get out the way as we knew income would be high.

Which brings us nicely onto…


Figures in the same format as expenses…

  • Total £7856 (£5045 / £3657) – Well hello there Mr Income! How did you get so big!? Find out below.
  • TFS Income £1921 (£2128 / £2140) – Big commuting costs push my take home pay a bit lower this month, April should be much better as I’m off for 2 weeks, hooray!
  • Mrs T Income £2193 (£731 / £600) – Whoop! Go Mrs T! A bumper payout for holiday accrued while on maternity leave plus a full months pay cheque from her new job ensured Mrs T smashed it on the income front this month and is riding above the average already, so a great start to the year after a barren start.
  • Solar Panels £0 (£26 / £45)
  • Ratesetter £56 (£22 / £0) – Another referral bonus. Thanks to whoever that was! If you want to sign up and take advantage of the £50 2 sign up bonus which is still ongoing, use this link here (<– obviously it’s a referral link!) or read my post on it for more info.
  • Child benefit £82 (£82 / £82)

I’m going to give Matched Betting/Gambling it’s own section this month as there was ALOT going on… hah

Matched Betting / Gambling Hustles £3592 (£2013 / £750)

If anyone is interested I use 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 such a bumper Cheltenham! Now, back to the update!

Well obviously I was very happy with this and it now makes the £750/month target a bit of a joke, so I may well up this to something more lofty, or I could just take a month or two off or at least chill out on it a bit. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Winning nearly £3000 during Chelthenham week. Admittedly, I got really lucky here, but if you want to find out how though check out my Cheltenham diaries here: Part I, Part II and Part III
  • Winning a ridiculous amount from the 888 Casino offer, see screen shot below! If you don’t have an account yet I highly recommend you sign up and follow my advice here on how to make the most of it – it is generally easy money. (Please note, I’m not sure if there is a decent “reload” offer on at the moment so you may have to just do the sign up offer and then sit tight for a while before a decent offer comes about). There is one catch here in that they are being right gits about letting me withdraw the money, and I’m having to jump through a lot of hoops with sending in ID etc… This is actually the reason I have held fire on posting this monthly update as I thought they may end up being total arseholes and just withhold the winnings entirely, so I wanted to see how it would play out! Although the money has not hit my bank account yet, I am now fairly confident they are not going to withhold the winnings and just want to see some rock solid ID to prove my account is genuine, which is nearly complete now. If it turns out by the end of next month I still haven’t received the money, I’ll obviously let you know you may well see a loss in the MB column to readjust the figures for this 🙁 (fingers crossed that won’t happen!). Anyway just something I thought was worth mentioning – This is another major pitfall to look out for when Matched Betting, bookies and casinos can be very awkward when it comes to payout time. Be patient and persistent and you should eventually get your money back though!

As you can see I’m doing £103 spins here just to churn through the play through requirements after having already won a decent amount on a previous meerkat bonus and have hit another one! This was crazy and spun in £1121.30 win. Unfortunately when playing through offers any normal turn can only win £500 so the win was capped at that and the other £621.30 was lost into the ether forever. Bit of a swindle but I’m not complaining 🙂 (and something to remember next time, is it worth doing such high spin amounts? Not sure). I think total profit from this attempt at the offer was about £900.

  • Winning about £500 on a golf bet, thank you Mr SSP Chawrasia for winning the Hero Indian Open at 100/1 for the second year running for me. What were the bookies thinking!? 😉
  • If you are wondering why ~£3000 + £500 + ~£900 = ~£4400 which is far more than the total profit of £3592 for the month, this is because I also lost a few fairly chunky bets during the month, also I am investing in some long term as I go and so am writing that money off as a loss straight up. One other thing is one of the offers I do (sometimes) takes a month to pay out so am waiting on that “profit” to be paid. This last factor eventually balances out and means that profits will occasionally look a lot larger than they should do compared to my activity in a given month, when the offer pay out all kick in during that month.

One final note, for full disclosure: I am starting to make a small amount from my OddsMonkey sign up links (thanks to all who’ve clicked through and signed up via this blog!). Just to be clear this money is not included in my profits above and all of the figures I give above are straight up from my betting and match betting activities and related bookie/casino accounts. Further, as you have probably noticed, I have also not even included the OddsMonkey affiliate income at all in my income report just yet. The reason for this is because that money is being funnelled into the Ltd Company I set up, and I have yet to submit an accounting period where I’ve earned any money through this Ltd company. Only once I do that and pay the appropriate corp tax on the earnings, and then withdraw the money (via dividends I guess?) to myself will I consider that earnings, and so for now I am not going to include it in the report. If people would rather see me include the figure just shout and I can add this in, if you are interested in it? (If I publish the amount I will still not include it as income for my own figures and savings rate calculations, but just literally print it on the page for you to have a gander at).


savings rate, net worth and all of that balderdash

Finally we hit a half decent savings rate of 52.49%! Because of the corresponding high expenses this is actually (kind of) even better because it brings our average up very nicely now to 32.45% from a lowly 11% average at the end of February. Hopefully this will be a kick start to get that higher and higher up throughout the rest of the year now!

Net worth did some of this:

Excluding house equity: £140,870 / +£3,843 / +2.80%

Including house equity: £219,227 / +£4,294 / +2.00%

Liquid Freedom: £65,205 / £3,513 / +5.69%

A lovely bump to the liquid freedom is most welcome, as always, although it seems the markets did stutter after a good rise last month.


other updates

I honestly can’t tell you much of what else I did in March as it now seems so long ago and I held fire on writing this post due to reasons stated above. I think I worked for most of it and Cheltenham happened, and I was doing my final training for the London Marathon (which I’ve now completed, but will save writing about that in another post!) so was very busy nonetheless!

Alcohol consumption was 9.98 units/week

Ah also I ran into the wall while playing squash and cut my head open (it wasn’t that bad) but take a look here:

That’s the second injury I’ve received while playing squash, the first of which was a bit more serious and I wrote about it here. Of course there is no way I’m going to stop playing as it’s so much fun and a great way to keep fit! I’ve even found a few decent training videos on YouTube and have been doing a few single sessions which totally knackers you out after about 20 minutes. If anyone wants to stay fit and have fun whether ER’d or not, I’d definitely recommend taking squash up!


Competition time

Last month I ran a competition to win a book called The Millionaire Teacher by Andrew Hallam, and a whole 4 of you entered it 😀

I put the names in a hat 3 and the official, verified by The Queen herself, winner was….


I will contact him/her for their address and send the book out as soon as I can!


That’s it! The April update will be published in a more timely fashion, in a few more days once I’ve totted up all the figures and then it’s back to a normal posting schedule… 🙂

Apologies for the lack of posts in April, my time and focus was consumed with the Marathon, I’ll write about that soon as well 🙂



  1. Links with * next to them are Affiliate Links
  2. Please note this was £100 originally but they’ve cut it to £50 now!
  3. Actually I used googles random number generator but same difference, right?