Tuesday, 22 April 2008

7 Random Things

I've been tagged by Ugly Debty to share 7 random things about myself.

  • My favourite colour is 'granny smith apple' green
  • While my public persona is blunt and forthright, I'm really a huge softy at heart. This attracts the crazies. I think it's because I give odd people the time of day and most people just ignore them. I unconsciously recognise and acknowledge the interesting things about people that others often miss.
  • I find ‘Goodies’ boring (not The Goodies, they're awesome). ‘Baddies’ are far more interesting. Why couldn't the coyote just have caught the roadrunner? Stupid roadrunner. Same with poor Snidely Whiplash.
  • People think I'm much younger (as in 10 years) than I am. It's probably due to my incredible immaturity.
  • I've been single for almost 14 years now, as in not even a boyfriend in that time. *sigh*
  • I’m a voracious reader, and have extensive general knowledge on a wide range of topics.
  • I only got my drivers licence a little over 2 years ago. I’m still on my green P’s for the Aussies.

I tag you all, as I don’t know who else has had this meme come to them already!

The Rules:

  • Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog.
  • Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog. Some random, some weird.
  • Tag up to 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.

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Wednesday, 16 April 2008

Don’t Pay Too Much For Your Greenslip

It’s that time of year again. Car registration.

I don’t know what I was thinking buying a car so close to my birthday, but I did and now I have to live with that.

Greenslips or Compulsory Third Party (CTP) insurance is a form of car insurance that protects vehicle owners and drivers from legal liability for personal injury to any other party in the event of a personal injury claim. CTP Greenslip insurance does not cover damage to property or other vehicles. It is compulsory and is a condition of motor vehicle registration in NSW, Australia.

CTP insurance is provided by a 7 insurers (AAMI, Allianz, CIC Allianz, GIO, NRMA, QBE, and Zurich) who set their prices in a competitive market.

They take factors into account such as:

  • Your driving record
  • The age of all regular drivers of your car
  • The age of your car
  • The type of car you have
  • What other kinds of insurance you have (comprehensive or third party property insurance for example)
  • How you use your car (private, business or a combination of both eg: pizza delivery on weekends)
  • Whether or not it’s a renewal or a new green slip

How this weighs out for each insurer is a reflection of the risk profile associated with those factors for each company.

I received a renewal offer from the NRMA this week with a quote of $614.43. Now I know I can do better than that.

The NSW Motor Accident Authority provides a free Green Slip price comparison service on its website which will quote the price from all 7 insurers in less than 5 minutes based on your details.

So I entered all my details and received a quote from QBE for exactly the same coverage for only $337.85! That a saving of $276.58 for only a few minutes filling out an online form!

Not too shabby.

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Friday, 4 April 2008

Washer + My Personal MacGyver = Car Fixed

My car is all fixed! Car Guy came over the other night, took one look at it and said he would be able to fix it himself.

We were in need of a washer to bolt the bumper bar back onto the front of the car, and of course being a girl/renter I didn't have one in the garage. If only you could fix a car with cases of red wine, I'd be all set!

He then spied an ingenious and frugal solution. I had an old lamp with a broken shade stored in the back of the garage. Its shade was glass and had smashed during my move in January, and I wasn't able to get a replacement one. It happened to have a washer type bit on the bottom near the cord. To get to it we had to cut the power cord though so the lamp itself is toast.

I also thought the bulb had gone on the Speedometer, but he suspected I'd just turned the dimmer down accidentally (my car has a dimmer, who knew?) and sure enough that was the problem.

So rather than my expected smash repair expenses, I have a fully functional car again and it only cost me a tall cold glass of Coke Zero and a nice catch up chat with my personal MacGyver afterwards. Bargain!

I don't know what I'd do without my very own MacGyver, spend hundreds of dollars unnecessarily no doubt…

Note: wine was purchased before my debt diet commenced.

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Thursday, 3 April 2008

Work Perks – Volunteer Leave

I'm really excited about this one. My company has recently implemented a policy that allows all permanent full time and part time employees a day of paid volunteer leave in each calendar year.

The purpose of the volunteer leave is to encourage us to provide assistance and support to a charity or not-for-profit organisation with their charitable and/or community activities.

I'm particularly excited as this will allow me to get involved in something I'm really passionate about, children's literacy. I really believe that helping a child to not only learn to but enjoy reading, opens up a wealth of opportunities and possibilities for them.

I get paired up (with another volunteer) and matched with a year five or six student to provide one-on-one reading mentoring and support. Every week, we will alternate visiting the school and reading with the student for an hour. So I’ll visit the school once a fortnight for the whole school term.

My police check (required when working with children of course) is all through, so I'm now just waiting for the training to kick off and we start in May with the kids.

I'm so excited! This something I've wanted to get involved with for years, but due to school hours being shorter than my working hours I've never been able to find a way to do it, and now I can with my companies endorsement! Even better is that due to my living so close to work, it's one of my local schools so I'm really helping my local community.

Does your company offer or get involved in anything similar as part of their corporate responsibility programs?

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Wednesday, 2 April 2008

KFC Made Me Crash My Car

I worked back really late last night to get through some work I'd been pushing aside for too long, and then downloaded some Uni work.

I was really tired and decided to splurge on some KFC on my way home for dinner. So I popped home and got in the car and headed off to KFC. After picking up my food, I hopped back into the car to back out of the spot and head home.

I was absolutely convinced I was in reverse, I distinctly remember looking at the gear changer and everything, but my brain saw D and thought R. I was of course n drive and ran into a wooden retaining wall and rose bush.

I’m fine and the car itself is fine, but I’ll need to spend money getting the front bumper bar fixed, as it’s currently hanging off the front. Classy.

Serves me right buying take away food after a long day at work, I should have gone straight home and made something out of the pantry like a good debt dieter.

Home cooked meals would not have let this happen!

Car Guy is coming over this week to survey the damage, so I’ll know what to do next, but I’m not keen to drive it anywhere until it’s fixed.

I wonder how much that’s going to set me back, at least I have the cash available to pay for it, but man, just once I’d like to be able to leave it in the account for more than a month at a time!

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Tuesday, 1 April 2008

The Ugly Truth - Day 214

The Ugly Truth

  • Personal Loan: -$23,560
  • Credit Card 1: -$7,421
  • Credit Card 2: -$7,842
  • Credit Card 3: -$6,311
  • Credit Card 4: -$11,310
  • Credit Card 5: (paid in full)
  • Credit Card 6: -$4,068
  • Credit Card 7: (paid in full)
  • Emergency Fund: +$1,006
  • Car Fund (Maintenance & Registration): +$300

Total: -$59,206
Debt reduced from last month: +$798
Debt reduced from Sep 2007: -$2,434

March was a bit of an up and down month. No big cheques to speed things along unfortunately, but downward progress is still being made. At least I'm now back under $60,000 which I'm really happy about.

Now to get my debts back under my starting debt figure of $56,772. I expect to have it back to that amount no later than June 2008.

I've got my Emergency Fund back up to $1,000 after using it for car repairs earlier this year, which is great news. I'm going to continue building it to $2,000 as I feel more comfortable with that amount set aside.

I've even got another $300 set aside for registration and my pink slip that are coming up in May.

I've increased my pre-tax personal superannuation (retirement) contributions to 3% and increased the ongoing monthly payment on my loan to $700, as it’s now the highest interest debt I have, and the interest rate increased yet again last week, unbelievable!

Roll on payday.

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