Just slightly late in posting Monday Money today. I have spent much of today writing two pieces for my favourite client Pensionbee. And it was a lovely sunny day so have spent some of today reading a review book on the hammock. Yes the summer garden furniture is out. We have set up the hammock and the garden office. I have my place of quiet and calm to work from when at home.
Afternoon tea at Debenhams
I found this amazing deal by accident at the weekend. Josh had a birthday party and I was instructed to leave. My pleasure. I headed to Debenhams in Stevenage to see if they had a couple of dresses in my size to try on. I tried them on and of course asked the internet world for their views and went for a coffee whilst I people voted yes or no! There was an offer for cream tea, including tea or coffee, two scones with cream and jam, plus a macaroon, chocolate mousse, custard tart and mille feuille all for £9.95. This is a bargain. And it was lovely. Too much for me to eat so they popped it in a box for me to take home. Highly recommended.
I bought one of the dresses and a new colourful summer skirt. Both set me back £14 as I had a gift voucher and there was a buy one get one half price offer on. I am still deciding on this dress. Basically I saw Lorraine wearing it, and I love her. And green is my colour. But it is £89.
Emotional Spending -The Spending Diary
I wrote about my emotional spending last week in this popular post. Written in good timing for mental health awareness week from 13th May to 20th May. I have such an issue with emotional spending and at certain times of the year and in certain financial times I spent without thinking about it. And often spend too much.
I have restarted my spending diary, writing down everything I spend £200 last week, this is a good week. Particularly as it included a night in London where I spent £54 on an Uber home from London. And I did invest £60 in a new bluetooth speaker as our five-year old Bose has finally died. Its a Wonderboom, Josh had seen it on YouTube!
Headline Money Awards
On Wednesday night I headed into London for the biggest financial journalism awards show of the year. Its a wonderfully glamourous black tie do. I wore my new H&M pleated satin dress, bought with a 25% birthday discount. Thanks H&M club. I teamed this up with very old Ted Baker stiletto heels, that kill, but are beautiful.
And the most amazing part was popping to Debenhams ( I am loving them at the moment and am doing my bit to share their amazing services as I want them to survive, totally unpaid!) and the girls at Kat Von D made me awards ready. The make up was stunning. So so beautiful. It was the best make-up I have ever had done! It cost £35 which was fully redeemable against any products that you then buy. I did invest in the primer and concealer that Josie my MUA used as a base. Highly recommend this. Kat Von D brand is exclusive to Debenhams in the UK.
And the awards. They were amazing. I had a lot of drinks and a lovely dinner sat with the teams from Drewberry Insurance and Carr Consulting. It was lots of fun and I got to catch up with lots of friends and clients.
A shocker of a tax bill
My year three company accounts are due at the end of May (nine months after the year end). My accountant sent me the completed accounts early last week and my tax bill was £3k higher than I was expecting. Oh @@@@. Big learnings are that you must always rely on trusted people to do things like accounts. I might have thought I could calculate it correctly, no I made a rookie mistake. And its a good lesson in having a business emergency fund, which fortunately I have.
Just one month after paying off my £16k debt I have to pay a big tax bill. Such is life. From now on I will be putting 20% aside of all of my turnover into a tax reserves account that I cannot touch!
Big shout out to Christian Elmes my accountant, who is incredible. He is totally worth his fee for getting things right and saving me tax. And spending time with me on the phone patiently explaining how I got my tax calculations wrong. He gets my freelance/influencer world and knows exactly what expenses can be claimed for. He is good. You can contact him via e-mail on firstname.lastname@example.org.
National Numeracy Day
And finally I want to shout out National Numeracy Day Wed 15th May. 49% of the working-age population of England have the same numeracy levels as a primary school aged child. National Numeracy Day, aims to challenge “I can’t do maths” attitudes and empower people to take positive steps to improve their numeracy.
I love maths. It made me happy at school and I studied it all the way through to university where I got a maths, stats and management degree. I dont use any of that complex stuff now. But I do use every day maths. Working out %’s discounts in shops, working out the tip on bills, adding up the cost of multiples items I am buying, money maths, my accounts, negotiating prices of work on my blog. It all comes back to maths.
The campaign is supported by Rachel Riley and Martin Lewis, who (like National Numeracy) passionately believe in the wellbeing, financial and career benefits of good numeracy. I had the pleasure of interviewing Rachel last year and we chatted about our mutual love of maths and the importance of numeracy skills in every day life.
To help people improve their numeracy skills, National Numeracy have developed a free online Challenge where people can find out if they have the ‘essentials of numeracy’ needed for everyday life, and if not, use the learning pages to improve.
Deals Deals Deals
Every week I am going to share my favourite deals for you, of products and services that I use and rate.
- Top Cash Back – I am just about to transfer £130 cash back from Top Cash Back. I booked Las Vegas by searching for Expedia on the site, clicked through to Expedia booked the holiday and got £130 sent to my cashback account. Easy. It is free money. Use this link to sign up and get a FREE £5 prepaid mastercard.
- Octopus Energy – They really are the best value and amazing for renewable energy. 70% of the UK population are sat on an energy tariff at home that is too expensive. You can switch and save a fortune..£300 a year, £500 a year. DO a comparison and see what you can save. Plus we both get a £50 credit to our bills if you do decide to switch.
- Pensionbee are my Pension company where I am investing for my future. I have some great new content coming soon focussed on self-employment and pension. Watch this space. In the meantime they are 100% worth considering if you need to consolidate your pensions into one easy place. Like I did. If you sign up we both get £50 added to our pension pots.
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