Hi guys, thought I would write a post for those starting out on their IVA journey or thinking about starting one.
Me and my husband took out IVA’s in February 2018. We had been robbing Peter to pay Paul for a couple of years and realised we couldn’t carry on anymore. After paying the household bills the excess money to live off we were paying on minimum payments on credit cards. It was spiralling out of control.
We rang stepchange for advice. They were brilliant from day one. Until we called them we didn’t realise how much debt we actually had! Around 40k which is a huge amount for us having just our husbands wage coming in and 3 small children.
We opened up a new bank account with Halifax and got all our direct debits set up there. We managed to save a little pot of money for emergencies in the month before the IVA was official by not paying our credit cards (advise from step change).
The IVA was sorted quite quickly and our initial payment was very low, just under £100 a month. This went up a bit over the next couple of years as husband got pay rises and as he did a lot of over time and got bonuses, we did pay in quite a bit extra each year.
At the beginning of this year so 3 years in to the IVA we decided we would try and get a loan from sprout loans to secure a early settlement on the IVA. We decided to do this as husband was earning a lot of overtime that we would like to keep and we desperately need a bigger house so wanted to try and save up for a deposit for that. It was very straight forward with sprout loans, we have a loan we pay of £145 for the next 5 years. Step change were great sorting out our early settlement. Only one company voted against it, so it went ahead.
Since coming out of the IVA we have learnt to keep managing our money brilliantly. We have no debt except the sprout loan. We have opened up a aqua credit card which we are using for fuel for the cars and have a direct debit set up to pay this off in full each month. This is to help try and build our credit score up (although I know it’s shot till the IVA drops off). We have managed to save up and pay for a couple of holidays this year and even managed to pay for private health care for our middle son he has been waiting years for on the NHS, all without any debt! I honestly am so proud of ourselves and I wish we had started the IVA journey sooner!