Win £100 for Your #ThriftyFamily Video

Written by Karen Bryan

£1 coin stack3 150x140 Win £100 for Your #ThriftyFamily VideoScottish Friendly are offering a £100 My Rewards card prize for the most creative and original money saving tip video in their #ThriftyFamily campaign.

All you have to do is upload your money saving tip video to your favourite video sharing website, e.g. YouTube, Vine or Instagram before 20 September 2014, and then share it using the #ThriftyFamily hashtag. The winner will be notified by 25 September 2014.

So get out your mobile phone and start filming. You can enter as many videos as you wish.

Below is my video about saving money by using cashback sites.

Read the rest of this entry »

share medium Win £100 for Your #ThriftyFamily Video

My Money Podcast #91

Written by Karen Bryan

The My Money Podcast #91 summarises the following recent articles.

Subscribe to the My Money Podcast from Help Me To Save in iTunes

Free Overseas Debit Card Use With N&P Gold Current Account – This N&P account offers free overseas debit card usage for transactions and cash withdrawals if you pay in at least £500 a month or maintain a minimum balance of £5,000. If you don’t meet one of these conditions, there’s a £5 a month account fee.

Would You Think of Buying a Phone at Homebase? – The lowest price I could find for a BT 6500 nuisance call blocker cordless phone twin pack was at Homebase.

Low Prices and Free Delivery from ao.com – We’ve recently bought two new kitchen appliances from ao.com which offered the lowest prices and free next day delivery.

Free Doors Open Days in Scotland in September 2014 – You can have some great free days out during the annual Free Doors Open Days held every weekend in various regions of Scotland.

share medium My Money Podcast #91

Free Doors Open Days in Scotland during September 2014

Written by Karen Bryan

open doors days Free Doors Open Days in Scotland during September 2014During every weekend in September there are free Doors Open Days in various regions in Scotland. Many of the venues aren’t always open to the public, so it’s a great opportunity to do something different.

I’d advise you to spend some time organising your day out as some venues are only open on one of the two days and/or require advance booking of a guided tour.

Below is a list of the participating Scottish regions by date.

Read the rest of this entry »

share medium Free Doors Open Days in Scotland during September 2014

Review of Paragon Bank 120 Day Notice Account

Written by Karen Bryan

paragon bank Review of Paragon Bank 120 Day Notice AccountNotice savings accounts are a half-way houses between instant access and fixed rate savings accounts. A notice account usually offers a higher rate of interest than an instant access account in exchange for a notice period to withdraw cash.  I think this can be a good product if you don’t want to tie up your cash to get a higher rate of interest offered by a fixed rate account.

My concern with some notice savings accounts was that if the rate of interest is reduced your cash could be tied into the account at the new lower rate. However, the Paragon Bank 120 Notice Account states that “If we want to reduce your rate, we’ll give you 120 days notice of any changes”. The account currently (26 August 2014) pays a variable rate of 1.9%. That rate is looking competitive, given that the highest rate of interest I could find on a one year fixed rate bond with the Yorkshire Building Society was 2%. However you have to factor in that the 2% paid on the Yorkshire account is guaranteed. The highest rates on open-to-all instant access accounts are currently around 1.4%.

Read the rest of this entry »

share medium Review of Paragon Bank 120 Day Notice Account

Club Lloyds Monthly Saver Pays a Fixed Rate of 4%

Written by Karen Bryan

 Club Lloyds Monthly Saver Pays a Fixed Rate of 4%Some of the highest rates of interest on savings are available on regular savings accounts. Last year I opened a Norwich and Peterborough E-Regular Savings account which paid a fixed rate of 4% with a maximum deposit of £250 per month. I liked the fact that this account was open to all, as frequently you need to hold a current account with the institution to access their enhanced rate regular savings accounts.

I thought I’d open a new regular savings account with the Norwich and Peterborough (N&P) when that account matured. However, I read that you now need to have a current account with the N&P to be eligible.

The Nationwide Monthly Saver pays a variable rate of 2.5% on monthly deposits of £500 – £1,000. The upper limit is much more generous, but the rate of interest is lower, than on many regular savings accounts.

The Club Lloyds Monthly Saver looked alluring, It pays a fixed rate of 4% for the first 12 months. You can make a monthly single deposit of between £25 – £400 by standing order. plus you have instant access to your cash. The catch is that you must hold a Club Lloyds Current Account to apply for this monthly saver account.

Read the rest of this entry »

share medium Club Lloyds Monthly Saver Pays a Fixed Rate of 4%

Review of Annuity Line

Written by Karen Bryan

logo annuityline Review of Annuity LineAs my husband had received the best quote from Annuity Line when buying an annuity, I decided that I’d definitely be contacting them when the time came for me to look at pension income options.

As I’d already consulted with an online independent financial adviser and done a lot of personal research, I was happy to use a non-advised broker such as Annuity Line.

There was an additional incentive to try Annuity Line, as my husband was told that if he recommended their services to a family member or friend who proceeded to purchase their annuity through Annuity Line, then both he and the referee would receive £75 worth of M&S vouchers.

You could earn £75 in M&S vouchers if you quote my client ref 138927 when you contact Annuity Line, either by phone 0800 652 1316 or by email info (at) annuityline.co.uk to get a free, no obligation quote and then go on to buy your annuity through them. This is subject to annuity purchase funds of £18,000+. I will also receive £75 in vouchers as a referrer.

annuity line MS vouchers Review of Annuity Line

I’d decided that even with the changes to accessing a personal pension in the March 2014 Budget, I would nevertheless proceed with the purchase of an annuity. I believed that there was a possibility that annuity rates would drop in response to this change.

 

Subscribe to the My Money Podcast from Help Me To Save in iTunes

Read the rest of this entry »

share medium Review of Annuity Line

Using the Financial Ombudsman Service

Written by Demetrius Vouyiouklis

financial ombudsman Using the Financial Ombudsman ServiceI had a problem with my Cash ISA transfer with Santander and they had admitted error. During my  dealings with Santander, I had claimed compensation for time/effort/upset caused by them, in addition to putting my financial losses right. Although Santander eventually paid for the financial losses they had caused me, I felt that they had been rather ‘light’ with the amount of compensation for my time/effort/upset.

Since I had already contacted Santander to complain and their eventual decision had been final, I was entitled to have my complaint considered by the UK Financial Ombudsman Service. This service is ‘free’ (it’s paid for by the UK’s financial services sector through a combination of statutory levies and case fees) and it’s independent, meaning it takes no sides. The Ombudsman’s office has experience in similar matters, which is good if, like me, you’re coming up against a big bank for the first time. Furthermore, you are not bound by its decision, meaning that if not satisfied, you can take your issue to court. On this basis, I proceeded to the Ombudsman with my complaint.

Subscribe to the My Money Podcast from Help Me To Save in iTunes

Read the rest of this entry »

share medium Using the Financial Ombudsman Service

Review of Bank of Scotland Classic Account with Vantage

Written by Karen Bryan

bank of scotland Review of Bank of Scotland Classic Account with VantageThe Bank of Scotland Classic Current Account with Vantage pays 3%  (variable) interest on balances between £3,000 – £5,000. The rate of interest drops to 2% on balances between £1,000 to £2,999 and 1.5% on balances under £1,000. There’s no interest paid on balances over £5,000.

The highest rate of interest I could find on an open to all instant access savings account was 1.35% on the Tesco Bank Internet Saver.

Read the rest of this entry »

share medium Review of Bank of Scotland Classic Account with Vantage

Cut in Legal Aid has Caused Mediation to Drop by 38% in a Year

Written by Karen Bryan

legal aid Cut in Legal Aid has Caused Mediation to Drop by 38% in a YearLegal Aid cuts were always going to put up certain barriers to justice; a fact which is clearly illustrated in one damning statistic: since Legal Aid was cut the use of mediation services in family law has dropped by a staggering 38%. The amount of people representing themselves in a court of law is rising, which in turn means people involved in family disputes are no longer being encouraged towards professional mediation.

The government introduced the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO) in 2012. Amongst other amendments to varying areas of Law, it meant legal professionals no longer had a duty to inform clients of mediation services. This is despite mediation being one of the only places legal aid wasn’t dramatically cut. This effectively severed the link between lawyers and mediation despite the fact individuals need high quality advice to make informed decisions at mediation. Before this, lawyers were obliged to direct clients towards mediation services as part of the conditions for Legal Aid. The figures are striking: in 2012/13 there were 13,609 cases of mediation; in 2013/14 there were 8,400.

Read the rest of this entry »

share medium Cut in Legal Aid has Caused Mediation to Drop by 38% in a Year

Low Price and Free Delivery from ao.com

Written by Karen Bryan

 Low Price and Free Delivery from ao.comWhen our almost 15-year-old LEC fridge freezer finally packed in, at the worst possible time, we needed a replacement as soon as possible.

We had been away for a few days during warm weather and arrived home on a Thursday evening to discover the breakdown. I reckoned that we’d have to pay a premium for a weekend delivery on an item ordered on a Friday. However, I didn’t want to wait another two days for a fridge/freezer.

On the Friday morning, we spent quite a bit of time looking for a new fridge/freezer. There weren’t that many options for the 50/50 fridge/freezer split we wanted. We settled on the Hotpoint STF187WP, priced at around £300.

Read the rest of this entry »

share medium Low Price and Free Delivery from ao.com

The MON£Y SAV£R free monthly newsletter from Help Me To Save helps you -

  • Save more money
  • Spend less
  • Live well

Take control of your money now