This morning Facebook reminded me that I received my formal notice of redundancy a year ago today.
Although I had known about my impending redundancy for some time (I was made redundant due to an office closure which is a fairly long winded process) the receipt of formal notice was the thing that made it all real. So I thought it was worth marking this important anniversary.
Of course, I’m very lucky to have received a generous redundancy payment that has provided a cushion and an incentive for our travelling. We are not the brave souls who sell everything and go on their adventures without a backwards glance. We are the conservative types who prefer to know that we have the backup of money in the bank and assets to fall back on. Part of me wishes I was the impulsive and risk taking type, but there is very little of that in my personality and I tend to use it all up on outdoor activities.
Even before my redundancy our desire for financial security had started to set the foundation for this type of adventure. All unknowing of what the future would hold we started to save and invest in order to pay off our biggest debt – the mortgage. After watching a TV programme – How to Pay Your Mortgage Off in Two Years – we decided that we would try a similar exercise through the simple steps of earning as much as possible and spending as little as possible. We started with a five year plan, but ended up paying our mortgage off in just under three years.
At this point you might be thinking what a couple of smug b**stards. It makes me feel apologetic and almost embarrassed to be in this situation. We know we are fortunate, but we also know that it would have been really easy to have fallen into a lifestyle that would have tied us to working until we were in our 60’s. Buying ever bigger houses, spending money on ‘stuff’, going on expensive holidays. And we will have to go back to work eventually. We aren’t quite at the stage where we can consider ourselves to be retired.
Not everyone will be able to do what we have done, but many people can make savings and every little saving makes a difference. One of my favourite resources for making savings on a day to day basis is http://moneysavingexpert.com, started by Martin Lewis who you have probably seen on ITV. We used the information on this fab site to cut our costs and there are some really inspiring stories of people who have turned their financial lives around. I’d recommend taking a look and seeing where you could save.