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Homeowners forced into letting out rooms to cover costs

Homeowners forced into letting out rooms to cover costs | Consumer Finance | Scoop.it
New research from LV= suggests homeowners are letting out spare rooms to cover costs, but they should be aware of the risks of doing so
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Research shows why careful consideration is needed for joint loans

Research shows why careful consideration is needed for joint loans | Consumer Finance | Scoop.it
New research has highlighted some of the difficulties than can be faced by those with joint loans, showcasing why careful thought is needed when using one
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Teaching Kids About Money: 15 Resources For Financial ...

Teaching Kids About Money: 15 Resources For Financial ... | Consumer Finance | Scoop.it

Any choice involving money is the perfect teaching moment. Sometimes that means a thoughtful conversation about the value of things, other times it's making something that would feel like a chore into an educational game.


Via Tony Kuc
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Tony Kuc's curator insight, April 30, 2014 9:00 AM

About parents educating their children but several useful references to educational  resources of use in schools

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Homage to the house proud: how to make your property perfect

The UK seems to be home to two camps of people: those that are house proud and those that aren’t all that bothered. According to a poll by Saga Home Insurance, you’re more likely to be in the former camp if you’re over 50 years old. The survey found that eight in 10 people over 50 put a lot of effort into keeping their front garden tidy, with a quarter of them mowing the lawn every week so that means it is younger people who are potentially to blame for peeling paint, broken fences, untidy gardens and a stack of bin bags on the front lawn. When it comes to cutting the grass, just 8% of the under 50s manage to dig out the lawnmower every week. If you are fed up of your home looking in a sorry state and want to become a little more house proud, take a look at these top tips on how to make your property perfect. You can also apply for long term home improvement loans if you need help managing the initial costs. Doing the dishes After slaving away over the stove for hours and consum
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Five things to consider before accepting a house share

Regardless of whether you’re married or not, buying a house together is a big decision and one that requires a great deal of planning and consideration. Why buy a house with another? Asides from cutting the costs in half, buying a house with your loved one, a friend or a relative is a great way to climb the property ladder in this day and age. If done with care, a house share certainly has its perks. One such perk includes being able to invest in a house you never thought you’d be able to afford. Tenants in common and joint tenants On purchasing a house, you’ll be presented with a piece of paper entitled a ‘deed’. This particular document informs the new owners of their right of ownership. When buying a house with another, you can either own the property as joint tenants with the right of survivorship, or as tenants in common. Tenants in common means that each investor owns their own share of the property, whilst joint tenants with survivorship means that if one owner is to
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How many times can someone stand as guarantor?

A guarantor is someone willing to take responsibility for the loan of another if they are no longer able to fund the agreed repayments. More often than not, mothers and fathers will act as guarantors for their daughters and sons – this is usually due to a lack of credit history or assets on the child’s part. If the loan is paid on time, the guarantor won’t have to do anything other than be involved in the application process. Guarantor guidelines If you’re planning on acting as a guarantor for a friend or family member then it’s important to weigh up the consequences. You should ask yourself a few simple questions prior to signing on the dotted line. One being ‘is the friend or family member reliable, do they have a steady job and can they afford to make the repayments? Another being ‘can you afford for them to slip up?’ Can a guarantor act on more than one person’s behalf? Generally, a guarantor can only act on the behalf of one loan at a time. This is certainly wor
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Household budgets are still under pressure, despite economic recovery

According to leading supermarket retailer Sainsbury’s, British households are still feeling a financial strain – despite the UK economy showing clear signs of continued recovery. Their data revealed that many shoppers were still cautious when it came to splashing the cash – especially when buying food and groceries. According to their annual figures, group sales (exclusive of tax but including fuel) rose by 2.8% in the year until March 15 – equivalent to £23.9 billion – but food sales trends resulted in own-brand food outperforming branded goods considerably. Overall, sales and volumes of own-brand food grew at twice the rate of branded items. The sales of clothes and other general merchandise outstripped food sales by a similar amount, growing at the twice the rate. Competition breeds caution Speaking about the results, Sainsbury’s chief executive Justin King explained that a competitive market led to cautious spending amongst consumers. He explained that the company had
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How to improve your credit score fast

If your credit score is low, then obtaining the likes of a credit card, a bank loan or a phone contract can prove extremely difficult– just one of the reasons it s vital to build up a good credit rating. Lenders are less willing to lend to those without proof of credit management and also, to those without healthy payment records. Without either of these, it’s impossible for a lender to establish whether you re a reliable candidate or not. Until you re able to show your trustworthiness, you may be turned down or charged a higher interest rate. Thankfully there are a number of ways to improve your credit score fast: 1. Make payments on time  Waiting until the last minute to pay off interest fees on bank loans, mortgage repayments, store cards and credit card repayments is often the worst thing you can do. Paying upfront and on time will show lenders that you’re reliable and also means you ll dodge any hefty late fees. By opting for this exact payment approach, you ll quickly b
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Top tips for long-term savers

Budget It’s important to only save what you can afford to though. In order to do this, begin by evaluating your monthly outgoings and incomings. After you ve deducted the likes of rent, living costs and everyday expenditures from your salary, only then should you begin to calculate a savings plan. Look into different bank options Using your everyday account to store savings can be dangerous. Having easy access to this money will only make it more tempting to spend it. From luxuries such as new items of clothing to extravagant meals, there are always temptations there. Opening up a new account solely for your savings is a much better option. Certain options, such as ISAs, come in the shape of a tax-free form of savings, allowing individuals to save a certain sum prior to the tax year. A fixed ISA is a great option for those who are extremely serious about their funds, as the account holder is often unable to access their funds for anything between a year and three years, thus grantin
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What does FCA credit card review mean for you?

Due to this massive figure – around half of the total population – the FCA are now beginning to explore the competitiveness of this market and whether such competition is working effectively for its consumers. 9 million in debt As recent research has revealed a massive total of nine million Britons to be in debt, one of the questions being raised is how the industry is working with individuals in difficult financial situations. Such individuals could turn to a debt consolidation loan for people with bad credit as a possible solution. Alternatively, they’ll use a credit card to pay off certain bills. In fact, certain households hold multiple cards due to this reason alone, whilst the UK market has 56 million credit cards in use at present. However, with a credit card comes a certain commitment and those in vulnerable circumstances will often find it difficult to manage their incomings and outgoings, whilst also paying off heavy credit card bills. A duty of care As part of this re
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How can your parents help you with money?

With age, comes responsibility. As the years begin to whizz by and your teenage years make way for your twenties, you realise that finances are no longer just a topic of conversation for your parents; it is now an important topic for you too. From studying expenses, to travel and renting, the reasons for you to borrow are plentiful – as are the places in which you can get the financial help you need. Even your parents can help you with money – and here we consider how. Direct Lending Perhaps the easiest option for all involved would be the simple ‘ask and receive’ method. Asking for a sum of money from your parents needn’t be a logistical mess. They can simply transfer a set amount to your bank account to help you fulfil your requirements. However, you must be careful to avoid taking such requests for granted as this may cause personal relationships with your family to suffer. Guarantor loans For a young person, picking up a loan is not always a simple task as you may lack t
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Brits could save cash by doing their chores

Doing the household chores is often at the bottom of the list of things to do. If there is even a glimmer of hope for something more fun, we’ll gladly take it. With little time available because of long hours at work, playing taxi for the kids or just life in general, it’s no surprise that many people are calling for help with the chores. Research suggests that one in 10 people have a cleaner, making it the second most popular household service. Rather than spending the weekend scrubbing the skirting and bleaching the bathroom, people would rather be out enjoying themselves. While many people will appreciate not having to do the dishes or clean the windows, you could improve money matters by mucking in and doing it yourself. Here are a few tips to help you save a few pennies, without being lumbered with all the chores. House and pet-sitting Instead of paying for your pets to stay in kennels or a cattery while you’re away on holiday, why not see if you combine pet-sitting with ho
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Quarter of women doubt home improvement skills of their partners

With the bank holiday weekends nearly upon us, men up and down the country will be gearing up to carry out DIY projects around the home. Unfortunately, despite this clear enthusiasm for the job it seems almost 50% of women actually feel nervous when their other halves embark on a home improvement task. Probably not what their partners wanted to hear! DIY mishaps costing time and money A study carried out by Command Brand from 3M found that the main problem seems to be that men are over-confident when it comes to their own DIY abilities. In fixing the original problem, some 20% of women claim the DIY ‘skills’ of their partners often lead to further challenges, expense and time that could be avoided by calling in the professionals. For instance, 25% of men have drilled holes in the wrong places and a stomach churning 20% are guilty of spilling paint on the carpet. Other common mishaps include putting up wonky shelves, attaching things upside down and failing to follow manufacturer i
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Energy bills top list of European household concerns

Energy bills top list of European household concerns | Consumer Finance | Scoop.it
Energy bills are causing more concerns among European households than any other payments according to new research.
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Saving for your retirement: what do couples need to consider

When it comes to creating a good retirement plan, it’s important to do so in advance. Quite simply waiting until your later years prior to even considering your pension could mean working for a lot longer than you initially intended too. Yet despite this, according to Scottish Widows, 60% of women versus 51% of men are failing to prepare for retirement. Addressing gender bias There seems to be somewhat of a divide between men and women when it comes to saving for retirement. Figures show that over a 40-year period, men will often end up between £33,000 and £89,000 better off. According to Scottish Widows, the leading pension provider in the UK, ‘addressing the systematic gender bias of the long-term savings market should be a core pillar of on-going industry reforms’. Consider your goals and define your lifestyle When it comes to saving adequately for your pension, it’s important to address your future goals. If after many years of hard work you wish to finally pursue your d
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Improving Financial Literacy for Kids with Games

Improving Financial Literacy for Kids with Games | Consumer Finance | Scoop.it
These 10 games and interactive lessons will help your kids and teens learn about money and improve critical skills in financial literacy, a topic most school do not emphasize in the classroom.

Via Tony Kuc
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Dispelling the myths behind couples’ finances

A financial myth comes in the shape of a financial strategy that fails to achieve the desired result time and time again. In fact, when arguments arise between couples, money is one of the most common topics. Myth 1: You can live in financial ignorance and everything will work out somehow Living in ignorance may seem like an easy option at the time, yet doing so can lead to late bills and overdue repayments, which in the end could lead to major debt. Loans for couples are available for people in such situations but both parties should be aware of their responsibilities. It’s important to sit down with your partner on a regular basis and discuss your finances. Such discussions may include evaluating and abandoning any failing investment strategies, determining where to invest and investing in the likes of joint accounts. This puts any debts you may already have in the one basket while another option involves reviewing and understanding your existing employer benefits and retirement p
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Are joint loans only for couples?

A joint loan comes in the shape of a loan that is made up of two or more borrowers. More often than not, this particular type of loan offers a greater payout. It’s also a good way for an individual with poor credit to acquire a loan if their partner has a healthy credit score. Is it easier to acquire a joint loan? Banks often feel more at ease when it comes to lending to a couple. This is mainly down to the fact that there is another to fall back on when it comes to repayments. Relationship matters When it comes to applying for a joint loan, the relationship between the borrowers is of extreme importance. Certain lenders will only lend to those who are related to one another by either blood or marriage ties. If you’re not married or related to your loan co-worker, it’s still possible to obtain a joint loan, you may however have to hunt a little harder for a willing lender. Prior to beginning your search, it’s wise to put down any agreements on paper. Such agreements will benef
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With age comes wisdom: elderly benefit from boosted income and savings levels

Elderly savers are performing well as the economy recovers with higher income and savings levels, recent data has revealed. According to research, those aged over 55 years are experiencing falling levels of unsecured debt and improved spending and saving power as the British economy continues to go through a period of recovery. Overall, saving power has increased by £198 a month to reach its best rate in three years while spending levels are at a high too – currently equating to £816 per month. On top of this, two thirds (66%) of over 55s also own their homes outright; giving them greater financial security in their later years. Financial considerations for later life These figures demonstrate how numerous financial considerations are needed later in life if individuals are to enjoy a happy and stress-free retirement. Unfortunately, despite the positive figures reported above, retirement finance still remains something of a taboo subject with few people discussing their plans with
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Pensioners offered state pension top-ups!

After the recent announcement of a new ‘state pension top-up’ scheme, many are in a predicament when it comes to taking part or not. It is now possible for pensioners to top up their state pension, which could mean receiving an extra £25 per week. This particular offer will be available to anyone who reaches the state pension age by April 2016.
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Best venues for a spring wedding

For those in the midst of planning a wedding, choosing the correct season is often as important as the dress. Spring is a popular choice for many; the nights are beginning to get lighter and the temperatures higher. However, when it comes to planning so far in advance, it’s impossible to predict the weather on the actual day. This is where a good choice of venue comes in handy. A country manor house A country manor house is a great spring wedding venue choice as it’s an extremely versatile option. Many will check the weather the week running up to the big day. If it appears to be fine, both bride and groom may choose the hold the ceremony outside, followed by an evening dinner and dance inside the building. A hotel A hotel is another popular choice for a wedding venue, especially if your guests are travelling some distance for the big day. Instead of having to rush to catch cars, trains and planes home directly after the service, guests can quite simply book a room in the hotel. T
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Kids give parents’ wallets a hefty blow

When it comes to supporting our children, such support can prove extremely expensive. From childcare costs to education fees and general day-to-day living expenses, there are a number of costly factors to consider. High childcare costs A recent study from life insurer Aviva has revealed that a number of parents with dependent children are choosing to give up work due to high childcare costs alone. In total, 23% of families are opting for this route as such costs are proving to be detrimental when it comes to wages. A typical full-time nursery for a child under the age of five can cost anything up to £977 per month, whilst schools fees will often cost up to £152 per month. Such costs can prove hugely expensive, especially for those with more than the one child. On top of these costs, the average individual will spend £334 on monthly work-related expenses such as travel costs, clothing and food. Further research has revealed that a full-time working mother with two children could be
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Used cars sales reach their highest point since 2008

With more and more people choosing to be careful with their money, used car sales have reached an all time high. Instead of spending a great deal on a brand new car, direct from the showroom, drivers are now choosing to invest in ones used previously. Every little helps When it comes to saving, every little helps. From combining service providers to taking your own lunch to work to buying second hand goods, there are a number of ways to save today. Those who need to invest in a new car are now also following this route by purchasing a used vehicle. In fact, 2013 saw a 0.9% increase in used car sales, with an astounding total of 6,806,198 cars changing hands. Experian figures have revealed that the biggest growth in used car sales has come from larger models, including four-by-fours and multi-purpose-vehicles. Facts and figures Cars aged nine years and older had a very good year in 2013, with annual sales raising the bar by 6%, with the Ford Focus standing as the best selling car in th
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Osborne calls for watchful eye on household debt

The Chancellor, George Osbourne, has warned authorities in London that they should be careful about the rising household debt levels. Families in London have added one trillion pounds of debt in the last decade to 2007 and this means that the levels of mortgage debt have risen over time. Osbourne revealed this after questioning by the parliament s Treasury Select Committee. The Chancellor suggested more enforcement of the regulations that vet mortgage applicants to ensure that they can pay. There were concerns by Member of Parliament Mark Garnier that the UK economy was becoming too dependent on people spending borrowed money. How about the asset values? The Chancellor responded to the MP s concerns by saying that household assets were increasing in value faster than households were generating debt. However, the Chancellor warned that the prices of houses need to be monitored more carefully. This is so as to assist loan applicants to get the right type of loan. This is the responsibil
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Best advice for people in debt

To reduce the burden of debt, an individual must take account of all their financial liabilities and make sure they pay off whatever they can, whenever they can – while sticking within any pre-agreed debt repayment schedules. If you’re unlucky enough to be struggling against high levels of debt then it’s important you understand all the options for dealing with it. Here we outline some of the best advice for people in debt. Consolidate your debts If you’re struggling to stay on top of all of your repayments then it may be beneficial to consolidate your debts into one payment. This is much easier to take care of and helps keep all of your creditors happy. You can use an unsecured personal loan to help you with debt consolidation plans but must choose the product carefully. Look at the interest rates and the terms and conditions and ensure it is right for you. Make your repayments on time Failing to repay your debts on time can leave you in a vulnerable financial position. Keep
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