01/03/2014 Your Money


Similar Content

Browse content similar to 01/03/2014. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!



Before that, we have this week's Your Money.


This is Your Money, your weekly guide to making the most of your


cash here every weekend on BBC News television available all week on the


BBC iPlayer. More and more people are seeking


help for problems with payday loans. What alternatives are out there?


Peter tut ton from the debt charity StepChange has the answer for us in


a moment. In recent weeks and months, the talk in most of the


media's been about the return of a bouyant housing market. For some


parts of the country, the property picture looks bleak with nearly half


a million homes stuck in negative equity. As we approach the end of


the tax year, we look at common mistakes people make with savings


and investments. We have tips for how to avoid them.


There's been a big rise in the number of the people struggling with


payday loans. The step change debt charity says nearly 67,000 people


asked for its advice last year. Up over 80% on the year before. The


average client who asked for help had an overall debt of over ?1700


spread across three payday loans. But what are the alternatives? Peter


from StepChange debt charity joins me now. Peter, there's been a rise


of people getting into duct. Why are we seeing this rise? Why are there


more people finding themselves in this sort of trouble? A third more


people contacted our helpline service, in particular a rise in


payday loans. It is because times are still very hard. Household


incomes have been hit hard over a long peered. People are struggling


to make ends meet. People are struggling with basic things, paying


the rent and fuel bills. People are using credit to fill that gap.


Problem is, if you're using a payday loan, a short repayment peered, you


create a bigger gap next month. You get into the cycle of having to use


more and more credit to make ends meet and you fall over badly. I


imagine people going to payday lenders have exhausted what they can


with banks. What other credible alternatives are out there? A lot of


the people we see will have a lot of outstanding credit with mainstream


lenders like banks. The first thing they are exhausting with the banks


is if you are using a payday loan because you can't get credit from


the banks but are making payments to other credit, first thing to do is


ask for help. Rather than think, get more credit, ask for help from your


lenders, get some advice. We would expect lenders to be showing people


in hardship may need to pay less for a period of time until they get back


on their feet. It may be credit but utility providers and landlords.


Credit is not the answer to financial difficulties. If credit


can help you. Before taking it, you think, can I afford to make it pay


it back? If you can pay it back there are other things like credit


unions. They are still patchy but there's a lot of work going on.


Local authorities are working to try to get more provision. Do shopping


around. You may be able to get a cheaper loan. Look at a loan that


takes longer to pay back. Less pressure on your next month's


finances. When people call your charity, what do you offer them? The


first thing is we reassure people there is a way out of debt. It looks


like a nightmare but people can get out. We help people budge he and


prioritise what's important. We find people are not able to pay for food


because she are paying credit agreements. Firstly, make sure you


can pay for your essentials. We help negotiate with creditors,


affordable, sustainable solutions. Other solutions. We can help with


things like bankruptcy and things like that. There are a range of


options out there rather than using credit you cannot afford. Get some


advice if you're struggling. Peter, thank you.


It will cost you more to post a letter from the end of the month.


Royal Mail's announced price inceases. The price of a first`class


stamp will increase by 2p. A second class stamp goes up 3p. If you want


to send a large letter, that anything up to 100 g, you'll have to


pay 3p more. Or second class is a rise of 4p. These prices kick in on


31st March of the In spite of what you're told, many


parts of the UK are not experiencing record house prices. Nearly half a


million households in the UK are still in negative equity meaning


their homes are worth less than their mortgages. That can make it


impossible for such people to sell up and move on. Overall, 8% of


borrowers are in that situation. In are parts of the country where house


prices are falling, the problem appears to have got a lot worse.


Brian Milligan's been finding out. In many parts of the UK, whole


communities have been left behind by the house price recovery elsewhere.


Take this street in West Yorkshire where many houses are still worth


less than their owners' borrowed to buy them. This one is worth 75,000


but the mortgage is for ?95,000 to sell it, the owner would have to pay


the ?20,000 different back to the Bank. I'm paying ?250 per month


extra on top which is barely affordable. They new that full well


when I was negotiating with the bank at the time. But it is the stress


involved, really. A negative equity map of the UK shows a country of


huge housing contrasts. While London has just 1% of borrowers in negative


equity. In Northern Ireland, 41% of mortgages are affected. In the north


of England 16% of borrowers owe more than their homes are worth. A


situation that's got worse in the last six in months. You are finding


there's still a lot of people with negative equity? Like others, this


Tyneside lettings agent has seen a boom in business from those in


negative equity. Those who cannot sell try to rent their homes


instead. Some find banks and building societies unsympathetic. If


you're in negative equity, I do feel sorry. It may be a decision that's


out of your control. You're not able to sell your properties because


you're left with that deficit of ?20,000 which I'm sure the bangs and


mortgage lenders will want repaying. Negative equity is only really a


problem if you have to sell. Some lenders say they will transfer a


mortgage in negative equity to a new home if you have a per ninety job


and can pay extra. The advice is ask. They may allow you to take the


mortgage with you and take that loan that you owe to the next property.


It is not disastrous if that happens. Talk to your lender as


early as possible. Most of the 463,000 borrowers in negative equity


remain stuck until their houses go up in value. Some with blighted


homes across the north are being told that could take another five


years. The big six energy firms have been


told to hand back over ?400 million back to customers. Credit left in


customer accounts when people move or switch suppliers has accumulated


over the past six years. It is estimated 300 million people are


affected. It is investigating whether the return of money to


customers complies with existing rooms.


Enable married couples and civil partners to determine how their


property is shared if their relationships breakdown. Couples can


make pre`nup actuals but courts don't always uphold them.


Some tenants are being ripped off by rogue let he is agents who take


thousands of pounds as holding depot its, refuse to let them move in and


pocket the cash. Around 500 cases have been reported to Trading


Standards authorities in the last couple of years but Shelter say this


is just the tip of the iceberg. Fed up with high mobile phone bills?


They could become a thing of the past. WhatsApp, being bought by


Facebook for ?12 million say it will add a voice calling function. It


wants its app to be on every phone in the world.


The end of the tax year is almost here. But have you made the most of


this year's allowance? In the rush to allocate your cash it is always


East why I to fall foul of mistakes which could cost you dearly.


Tomorrow Stevens joins us now. Tom, why do people leave it to the last


minute? That is one of the key mistakes people make at this time of


year. They leave their ISA allowance to the last minute. It is great we


are talking about savings now but people should be thinking about


savings all the way through the tax year and not just right at the end


which is when they are more likely to make a mistakes. Do you think


this is the biggest mistake people make every year? It is a key


mistake. Others are people tend to hide in the perceived safety of


cash. That's a mistake at the moment because cash rates on ISAs are


extremely low and in fact, below the rate of inflation. You're losing


money over time by doing that. The third mistake is people put all


their eggs in one basket. A lot of our viewers are quite risk averse.


They are happiest in cash. What would you say to them? There things


you can do which are not as safe as cash. So you do need to take a


slightly higher risk by going into the stock market. But you can spread


your money around in what's called a multi`as set fund. It spreads your


money between shares, bonds, property and cash. By doing that,


you reduce your risk but open yourself up to the better returns


you can get from these assets than pureeing cash. `` pure cash of the


Many of our viewers will not have taken up their whole allowance. What


can they do at this late stage? Investigate the idea of starting a


monthly savings plan. If you put your money all in at one go you risk


getting in at a bad time in the marketment if you drip your money in


across the year, once a month put the same amount in. You will smooth


your returns. You will ensure you invest at the bottom of the market


as well as at the top. You put yourself in good regular savings


habits. Your advice, get a plan basically, and have it lined up in


advance? Yes. Easier said than done? It is extremely easy to do. You can


save from as little as ?50 per month and once you've done it, set it up,


you can forget about it. Tom Stevenson from Fidelity, thank you.


The message is have a plan. And get started. Thank you. That's all from


Your Money for this week. News, tips, information on savings,


borrowing, pensions, any time you like online.


You can get updates by following our feed on Twitter.


We are back next week. Goodbye for now.


This is BBC News, the headlines: Armed men patrolled Ukraine's


regional parliament as Crimea's new


Download Subtitles