April Showers

Click on the picture to read why April is the most feared month of the year in our house!

We’re afraid of April in our house.

It’s a bit illogical, really, because we don’t actually end up destitute at the end of each April, but we’ve got into the habit of expecting to. This is mainly because of three things:

1. Our income fluctuates monthly because of Lord Balders’ self employment, so we calculate our income and outgoings each month and aim to never spend more than our disposable income for that month, despite the fact that we have savings.

2. A few years ago, we had to spend quite a bit of money on a family law solicitor when Little Balders’ father decided that he wanted to have custody of him. This happened in April and combined with Lord Balders working fewer hours because of the situation, it put us into the red. By £113.

3. Our car insurance is due for renewal in April, and as we always pay up front, that’s one of our biggest single annual outgoings.

Despite the fact that the solicitor cost isn’t going to recur, and we needn’t really worry anyway as we actually do have enough money to pay for big, planned expenses as well as emergencies, we’ve come to think of April as our Crap Month.
The truth is, the first Crap Month only felt as crap as it did because of the stressful family situation, combined with my then-new obsession with saving for a deposit on a house. Fast forward to now, we’ve bought the house and have started to build up the rainy day fund again, and this month shouldn’t be any worse than the others.

Apart from the fact that we crashed our car last year, and as a result, our insurance has gone through the roof.

You want how much for our car insurance renewal?

The crash is another very long post in itself, as is the fact that we now practice Bangernomics as a result of it (another long post). Added to this is the fact that my impressive 9 years’ No Claims Bonus on my old policy is now over 2 years old, and most UK insurers consider it gone forever. So that stinks.

There hasn’t been much weeping and wailing over the astronomical quotes we’ve been coming up with, just stunned silence and wide eyed looks at each other… like, this can’t be real, can it? Of course, we tried individual insurers as well as the biggie, Confused.com. At least searching through them takes away a little bit of the pain of having to enter the same details over and over again.

Finally, today, I found one insurer who accepts NCBs up to 3 years old – the Co-operative. It’s still almost twice as much as we paid last year though, but hey. We knew it was coming, and this kind of rainy month is what savings are for.

I managed to claw back one small victory (in my mind) – since we’re stoozing again and have no intention of letting hundreds of pounds fly out of our current accounts, I came up with a plan to make the best of it. I applied for a 0% balance transfer credit card with 0% fee offer through Halifax. I’ll pay for the car insurance with my Tesco Clubcard credit card, nab a dumpload of clubcard points, and transfer the balance on to my new Halifax card for free. I won’t have to think about paying for this insurance until next year! By then, though, I’m hoping to find another enticing balance transfer offer and keep shifting it around.

After this year, though, April isn’t losing its nickname any time soon.

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