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Archive for the ‘8 Money Matters’ Category

Dog’s Breakfast

Refreshed by a gentle festive season, I sit down to pen my words of wisdom with a calm sense of optimism and a feeling that everything in the garden is rosy. Oh, sorry, I must have been thinking of a different year. This one seems to have started with the only thing better than bad news, being no news! (more…)

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In the last edition I left you, dear Reader, in a state of suspense, having just mentioned the infamous Northern Rock Building Society. Twelve years, or so, ago, we lived in a world of readily available finance, at broadly average interest rates, with little restriction on the level of borrowing. World economies were doing well, and property values were increasing steadily, resulting in a general feeling of prosperity for the majority. (more…)

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Having recently attended a 25th anniversary seminar session organised by a highly esteemed mortgage packaging company, I am minded that the market has changed, enormously, over the time I have been working. In 1986, when I joined the financial services industry, the Bank or Building Society Manager, was King. Either you had to have been saving with an institution to amass your deposit, then go cap-in-hand to the Manager; or pay a visit to an intermediary, who had the ear of a few local managers and was trusted to introduce business to them. In any event, a  deposit of some 20-30% would be required before most lenders would consider candidates to be suitable borrowers. (more…)

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In this issue David Foot makes some observations on the current financial climate and the circumstances that affect it.

The first thing to note is that volatility has returned, to a fair degree, in world markets. As I have said before, a degree of volatility is not a bad thing: it provides buying opportunities for investors and Fund Managers, where they can buy some appropriate stocks at discount prices. (more…)

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In this article David Foot addresses the issue of interest-only mortgages, and, more specifically, a shortfall of funds with which to repay them when they fall due.

This is inspired by a case that I have been dealing with recently. My client, a lady in her mid-forties, was sold an endowment mortgage; an interest-only borrowing facility with a life assurance and savings plan alongside, intended to provide the requisite life cover, and a tax-free lump sum enough to repay the borrowed amount, and, hopefully, a tidy little nest-egg over and above that.  (more…)

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A little departure from the norm this issue. A subject that has become increasingly popular of late, and will continue to do so, especially as the provision of first-rate occupational pensions is becoming less commonplace, and contributions into personal arrangements are generally somewhat inadequate. This is the thorny subject of ‘Equity Release’ or ‘Lifetime Mortgages’. Much has been said about such arrangements over the years, a fair amount of which was ill-informed, and some, pure sensationalism. I hope to shine a little light on these products, so that you may have a better idea of the realities (and fallacies) of the arrangements that are available these days. (more…)

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