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British Pensioners Unprepared

on Wednesday, 20 February 2013 17:07.

Pensioners in Britain are among the ‘worst in the world’ when it comes to preparing for retirement. A global survey by HSBC found that British would-be pensioners have only saved enough money to live comfortably for 37% of their retirement years. The survey looked at 15 nations in the developed and developing world included the USA, Singapore, Australia, UAE and Malaysia.

Mansion Tax Extension Debated

on Monday, 18 February 2013 13:30.

The Liberal Democrats are to consider the extension of their ‘mansion tax’ policy to include multiple properties. This could mean that those with second homes, holiday lets and buy-to-let properties may get tied into paying this additional tax.

Rates Are Down But Fees Are Up

on Monday, 18 February 2013 13:24.

Since June 2012, the mortgage market has seen a significant increase in fixed and tracker rate mortgage deals being offered, and at record low interest rates. However, according to the price comparison website Moneysupermarket.com, the falling interest rates have come at a cost of increasing fees.

Promising signs of recovery for mortgage market

Written by Sam Jones on Saturday, 16 February 2013 20:44.

January saw approvals for mortgages reach a four year high, according to research from e.surv. The Chartered Surveyors, put the rise down to a combination of falling mortgage rates, a wider range of mortgages available and an improvement in lender confidence.

e.surv's latest Mortgage Monitor shows mortgage approvals climbed 17% from 55,785 in December to 65,184 in January, making it the strongest month for house purchase lending since February 2008 – pre- financial crisis.

'Ticking Time Bomb' of Interest Only Loans

on Tuesday, 12 February 2013 14:51.

A high number of borrowers on interest only mortgages are in danger of being unable to pay off their remaining debt when their mortgage term ends. Recent findings by the market research consultancy company, BDRC Continental, reported that 39% of borrowers on interest only loans do not have concrete plans for repaying their debt. This equates to 700,000 homeowners, or £75billion worth of property loans.

Banking To Be Made Easier

on Thursday, 07 February 2013 17:15.

The Chancellor, George Osborne, has recently announced plans to make the housing market more competitive, and the banking system easier to manoeuvre. At the launch of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) report on the state of the UK economy, the Chancellor called for the Bank of England to loosen its money lending criteria. It is hoped that this will encourage lenders to offer lower interest rates, thus creating economic growth through increased lending.

House sales up in 2012

Written by Sam Jones on Wednesday, 06 February 2013 21:59.

Figures released by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) have revealed a 5% rise in the number of successful house sales last year. A total of 932,000 properties were sold during 2012, up from the 885,000 recorded in 2011, which reflects the highest level of sales seen for five years.
HMRC believes the Funding for Lending Scheme (FLS) has provided a significant boost to the mortgage and housing sectors, with a wider availability of lower mortgage rates. Chief economist at the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), Simon Rubinsohn, said: "What we have had is a decent recovery in the second half of the year, helped by a little more confidence due to the FLS, which has helped give a bit more accessibility to mortgage funds."

Housing Market Has New Lease on Life

on Wednesday, 06 February 2013 17:01.

The UK housing market appears to be gaining momentum as Halifax announced house prices have risen by 1.3% in January 2013 compared to January 2012. This is the first annual improvement in 27 months.

Pension Contributions Steady due to Rising Living Costs

on Tuesday, 05 February 2013 16:26.

The pensions and insurance advisory company, Friends Life, have revealed findings that nearly two in three would-be pensioners over the age of 50 have never increased the amount they contribute to their pension pot.

The survey of 1,606 people aged 50-64 across the UK, found that 90% of future retirees had not even considered increasing their pension contributions. Of those surveyed, one in four stated that they believed they had already saved enough in their earlier years of work, thus providing them with a comfortable retirement fund. For some, this may be enough. As the expected retirement age will rise to 67 by 2028 for both men and women, many people may be expecting to work longer, therefore being able to save more for their retirement.

Bootle The Buy-to-Let Boomtown: Merseyside district tops list of UK's most lucrative areas for landlords

Written by Sam Jones on Friday, 01 February 2013 19:56.

A Merseyside district has topped the list of UK's most lucrative areas for landlords.

Bootle is now the most profitable area of the country for those investing in buy-to-let properties, research reveals. The Merseyside district offers the best return on investments, with landlords obtaining an annual yield of 8.3% on their initial purchase, data from Home.co.uk has found.