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Mum can't pay bills

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    Hello everyone, I don't know what to tell my mum.. It seems **** has just hit the fan for her.


    Her and my Dad where married for 20-odd years then got divorced... She got about 100k cash off him and bought a small house outright. However the 20-odd years she was married to my dad she was a housewife - and was therefore not getting work experience or anything so has zero job prospects and is now in her mid 50's.

    As she owns the home, the basic bills for council tax, water, electric etc come to 400 pounds'ish a month she tells me. That could be cut a bit if she was to get rid of non essential bills such as internet and sell her car therefore getting rid of car insurance (which she is just about to do).

    She has managed to get a cleaning job 14hrs a week at nmw which she will be starting soon but tbh is debateable if its worthwhile as its only going to bring in a few more quid than 60 pounds benifits she currently gets. And it still isn't going to cover the bills and alow her to eat.. The boiler has just broken meaning no hot water, and has no money to pay for it to be fixed.

    I don't really know what to do. I Think I may be able to help pay to sort out the boiler but I wan't to get her in a position where she can basically cover the bills and look after herself. Im have a job, but im not loaded enough to help her out much.

    Up until this point she was living out of the change she got from the house, but that has just about ran out, therfore she will soon be hitting debt and I'm guessing eventualy the electricity etc will be turned off when the bills continuously are higher than the income.

    Does anyone have any advise!?

    Its weird because she is much better off than alot of people in that she owns a home outright, but she is 50 odd and unsklled and I don't know if she can get a job that pays enough to cover the bills.
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    Get her to got to citizens advice to find out her options. She might be entitled to more benefits than she knows...

    one thing I can think of off the top of my head is that she could sell the house to rent or sell up and rent elsewhere with the money which would give her more time to sort herself out.
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    (Original post by MacLean)
    Hello everyone, I don't know what to tell my mum.. It seems **** has just hit the fan for her.


    Her and my Dad where married for 20-odd years then got divorced... She got about 100k cash off him and bought a small house outright. However the 20-odd years she was married to my dad she was a housewife - and was therefore not getting work experience or anything so has zero job prospects and is now in her mid 50's.

    As she owns the home, the basic bills for council tax, water, electric etc come to 400 pounds'ish a month she tells me. That could be cut a bit if she was to get rid of non essential bills such as internet and sell her car therefore getting rid of car insurance (which she is just about to do).

    She has managed to get a cleaning job 14hrs a week at nmw which she will be starting soon but tbh is debateable if its worthwhile as its only going to bring in a few more quid than 60 pounds benifits she currently gets. And it still isn't going to cover the bills and alow her to eat.. The boiler has just broken meaning no hot water, and has no money to pay for it to be fixed.

    I don't really know what to do. I Think I may be able to help pay to sort out the boiler but I wan't to get her in a position where she can basically cover the bills and look after herself. Im have a job, but im not loaded enough to help her out much.

    Up until this point she was living out of the change she got from the house, but that has just about ran out, therfore she will soon be hitting debt and I'm guessing eventualy the electricity etc will be turned off when the bills continuously are higher than the income.

    Does anyone have any advise!?

    Its weird because she is much better off than alot of people in that she owns a home outright, but she is 50 odd and unsklled and I don't know if she can get a job that pays enough to cover the bills.
    She should claim benefits.
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    How can anyone just be a housewife and not develop any useful skills over 30 years?
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    Suppose some minor catering could be appropriate. Or maybe ask friends if there is any work going. Also supermarkets don't require any experience, a fair amount of people in education work in them.
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    Sell the house and rent somewhere.

    Please don't take offence as it isn't meant specifically for your situation, but it gets on my nerves when people use the benefit system for convenience as opposed to it's purpose for existence - to help people who genuinely need it.

    Your mum may not want to move (though there could be a reason why she realistically can't) but I don't see why the taxpayer should have to pay for an unsustainable lifestyle.

    (Again, as I obviously don't know all the details, it's nothing personal).
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    She should be entitled to job seekers allowance. This would also entitle her to full council tax benefit.
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    (Original post by Fynch101)
    How can anyone just be a housewife and not develop any useful skills over 30 years?
    Looking after kids would take up a lot of time I guess, you could also say that it's a skill in itself. My Mum didn't work when me and my sister were younger.
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    Poor her.

    Try Citizens Advice Bureau.
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    http://www.turn2us.org.uk/benefits_search.aspx

    Tell your mum to use the calculator to see what help she is entitled to
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    (Original post by MacLean)
    Hello everyone, I don't know what to tell my mum.. It seems **** has just hit the fan for her.


    Her and my Dad where married for 20-odd years then got divorced... She got about 100k cash off him and bought a small house outright. However the 20-odd years she was married to my dad she was a housewife - and was therefore not getting work experience or anything so has zero job prospects and is now in her mid 50's.

    As she owns the home, the basic bills for council tax, water, electric etc come to 400 pounds'ish a month she tells me. That could be cut a bit if she was to get rid of non essential bills such as internet and sell her car therefore getting rid of car insurance (which she is just about to do).

    She has managed to get a cleaning job 14hrs a week at nmw which she will be starting soon but tbh is debateable if its worthwhile as its only going to bring in a few more quid than 60 pounds benifits she currently gets. And it still isn't going to cover the bills and alow her to eat.. The boiler has just broken meaning no hot water, and has no money to pay for it to be fixed.

    I don't really know what to do. I Think I may be able to help pay to sort out the boiler but I wan't to get her in a position where she can basically cover the bills and look after herself. Im have a job, but im not loaded enough to help her out much.

    Up until this point she was living out of the change she got from the house, but that has just about ran out, therfore she will soon be hitting debt and I'm guessing eventualy the electricity etc will be turned off when the bills continuously are higher than the income.

    Does anyone have any advise!?

    Its weird because she is much better off than alot of people in that she owns a home outright, but she is 50 odd and unsklled and I don't know if she can get a job that pays enough to cover the bills.
    I would suggest going to CAB first of all to see if there is anything else she is entitled to to tide her over. Benefits are for just this sort of situation when things take a turn for the worst unexpectedly.

    Has she got a spare room in the house she could let to a student or other individual. It may be worth checking out.

    Has she got anything she could sell on ebay? Is she good at making anything that could be sold online or to friends? Alternatively, she could train to be a childminder, I believe the courses aren't too long and many people are looking to hire childminders even just to pick the kids up from school.

    I hope her luck changes. Well done you for helping her out.
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    (Original post by MacLean)
    ...
    Ignore some of these callous *****.

    As a few have said, the Citizens Advice Bureau should be one of your mum's first port of call. They can advise her on possible credits she is entitled to, etc.

    You say she is unskilled yet her years as a housewife may have given her a good rapport with children. Temporary foster care for young kids could be an avenue to increased income coming into the house from government grants. If your mum would be willing to do it. Considering she is over 50 with no experience will most likely hinder her for most jobs I'm afraid but its worth a try speaking to the people at the job centre.

    Wish you and your mum all the best.
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    (Original post by Cll_ws)
    Looking after kids would take up a lot of time I guess, you could also say that it's a skill in itself. My Mum didn't work when me and my sister were younger.
    My mum didn't work either when she had children. She is now taking her degree at 50 years old. I am so proud of her. She said she wishes she did it sooner.
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    Is there a chance of downsizing? Maybe buying a flat instead? Also there's the open university she could do do gain some qualifications, and do that while having a job?
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    (Original post by Death.)
    She could be a cleaner, or dinner lady, since she has been one for 20 years.

    Or does she view such a job as below her?

    If so then no sympathy for her.
    Obviously you didn't bother to read the thread, she is already working as a cleaner part time.
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    (Original post by MacLean)
    As she owns the home, the basic bills for council tax, water, electric etc come to 400 pounds'ish a month she tells me. That could be cut a bit if she was to get rid of non essential bills such as internet and sell her car therefore getting rid of car insurance (which she is just about to do).
    £400 a month bills?! If she is out of work does she not get council tax benefit?

    With single person discount in a hundred grand house, I can't imagine council tax being more than £100 a month. Add £40 each for gas water and leccy and she must be pissing out money somewhere.
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    As she appears to have lots of spare time, it seems as though the obvious solution is to try and increase her income. Even with no apparent work skills, she could
    - take in a lodger - you can try advertising on gumtree but obviously she will need to think about who she rents to very carefully rather than renting to the first nutjob who can come up with a deposit (I know someone who unwittingly took in a hoarder and had to remove large numbers of full binbags from his room when he finally left) - take references from previous landlords
    - if you have a language school nearby, then take in English language students. They pay much better than lodgers and are more reliable in terms of being normal people, but often want meals cooking for them, conversation etc.
    - become a foster carer - obviously not a solution to the short term financial crisis, but it can pay quite well, and I believe that the only hard-and-fast rule is that the foster child needs their own room - being single wouldn't be a problem.
    - let colleagues know that if they need a shift covered, she will do it for them
    - advertise locally for cleaning work in private homes, dog walking, pet sitting, child minding, nannying, babysitting etc.
    - take on a second job - temping agencies can be a good way to get a foothold into certain industries.

    With regards to the boiler - the Job Centre can issue crisis loans for this sort of thing, although they do have to be paid back.

    Has she switched her utilities to a cheaper supplier?

    www.moneysavingexpert.com (especially the forums section) is very useful.
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    (Original post by MacLean)
    Hello everyone, I don't know what to tell my mum.. It seems **** has just hit the fan for her.


    Her and my Dad where married for 20-odd years then got divorced... She got about 100k cash off him and bought a small house outright. However the 20-odd years she was married to my dad she was a housewife - and was therefore not getting work experience or anything so has zero job prospects and is now in her mid 50's.

    As she owns the home, the basic bills for council tax, water, electric etc come to 400 pounds'ish a month she tells me. That could be cut a bit if she was to get rid of non essential bills such as internet and sell her car therefore getting rid of car insurance (which she is just about to do).

    She has managed to get a cleaning job 14hrs a week at nmw which she will be starting soon but tbh is debateable if its worthwhile as its only going to bring in a few more quid than 60 pounds benifits she currently gets. And it still isn't going to cover the bills and alow her to eat.. The boiler has just broken meaning no hot water, and has no money to pay for it to be fixed.

    I don't really know what to do. I Think I may be able to help pay to sort out the boiler but I wan't to get her in a position where she can basically cover the bills and look after herself. Im have a job, but im not loaded enough to help her out much.

    Up until this point she was living out of the change she got from the house, but that has just about ran out, therfore she will soon be hitting debt and I'm guessing eventualy the electricity etc will be turned off when the bills continuously are higher than the income.

    Does anyone have any advise!?

    Its weird because she is much better off than alot of people in that she owns a home outright, but she is 50 odd and unsklled and I don't know if she can get a job that pays enough to cover the bills.
    Take her to the job centre- maybe? Or why don't you try to get a part time job, it will surely benefit your mum as you can hopefully help her pay for the bills. Don't worry
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    In fairness, buying a house outright and living off the change before thinking about your future is a silly thing to do. My Auntie did the same after my Uncle died. Silly silly.

    Job wise, she's just going to have to keep looking. Retail, child minding or nursery work? She could try and get funding to study again (a friend of mine's mum got made redundant from her 70k job and ended up being a nurse.)

    I understand she hasn't got any savings, but I have seen a lot of parents in similar situations turn to nursing. However they've had husbands to support their study, which your mum doesn't. But perhaps releasing some equity in the house would give her enough to fund an adult education course or something that would then get her work.

    Stress again: nursery work. If she's a housewife for 20 years she can definitely get into nursery work and keep her cleaning job. Might be enough to make money until a better idea comes along.
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    (Original post by Fynch101)
    How can anyone just be a housewife and not develop any useful skills over 30 years?
    Dude, this is an offensive question. Of course she has learned skills, but on her CV there is just a blank and what do you think employers think of people who haven't worked. You think they care about housewives?

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