Why a bad credit rating could damage your personal relationships

According to a 2016 NerdWallet survey, almost 50% of people said that they wouldn’t date someone with bad credit. And the better educated the demographic, the more that figure increased. We live in an age of app dating when decisions about potential appeal are apparently based very much on looks. Eligibility comes into play in terms of personality and hobbies but there isn’t that big a focus on financial compatibility. Whether it’s a reluctance to mention money at an early stage because it feels like it’s “bad taste” – or something else – the way that we date today ignores this huge elephant in the room. But, as the NerdWallet survey shows, it’s crucially important to many people. Does money matter? NerdWallet’s survey was carried out last Valentines Day and provided some crucial insights into where money and credit intersect with love and romance. 60% of women, for example, said that a partner’s financial situation was important to them, as compared to 45% of me


Signs that the UK economy is beginning to falter

The economy is both a total mystery and a source of great concern for many of us. And in the last couple of the months of this year there have been some worrying signs that things might not be all that positive in terms of UK economic prospects. With growth rates hovering around 0.3% and 0.4% for the last three quarters – pretty sluggish, for those who aren’t that familiar with what growth rates should be – speculation is rife that the economy is definitely not doing as well as it could be. So what signs are there that the economy is struggling and what could be behind it? The Signs of Economic Trouble Ahead Brexit – in early November, Mark Carney Governor of the Bank of England told the media that the UK economy would be booming right now if it wasn’t for the fact that Brexit had happened. The blame is being squarely placed on the slow negotiations, which have created enormous uncertainty among those with the cash to start stimulating the UK economy again. The increase in i

All you need to know about Universal Credit and how it works

Universal Credit is a new kind of benefit being introduced by the UK government. It aims are to simplify the current benefits and tax-credit arrangements. But it is clear that Universal Credit is not exactly universally loved. Prime Minister Theresa May has been warned that Universal Credit “could be her Poll Tax” – i.e. as controversial and damaging as that levy was for Margaret Thatcher. So, what does it involve and why is it causing so many problems? What is Universal Credit? Universal Credit is a new means-tested benefit that applies to those who are of working age and on a low income. It is designed to replace a number of existing benefits, including: Child Tax Credit Working Tax Credit Housing Benefit Income Support Income-related Employment and Support Allowance Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance. The intention behind Universal Credit is to create a single umbrella for all these existing benefits, to simplify the current system and to encourage people back in to work. T

What the recent FCA Financial Lives survey tells us about the UK population

The FCA Financial Lives survey is one of the largest surveys looking at consumers and finance. It investigates UK consumers and their experiences of financial products and services, based on interviews with 13,000 people. The survey is designed to provide data and context for the work that the FCA does in consumer protection. However, it also offers some key insights into how UK consumers are handling their finances. Consumers financial vulnerability is high According to the survey, 25.6 million people in the UK are potentially vulnerable to financial harm. So, for example they may not have access to the internet or to safety nets such as an overdraft. The most at risk age group is the over 85s 77% of whom show vulnerability to financial harm. Those who are vulnerable to potential harm are twice as likely to have used high cost short term credit and many would struggle if their monthly obligations increased just a little. For example, 45% said they would find it difficult to pay rent

How telematic black box insurance for young drivers works

Younger drivers have always faced challenges when it comes to getting insurance. Statistically the most likely to have an accident, younger drivers are usually considered one of the highest risk groups by insurance companies. As a result, those who are new to the roads are often faced with enormously high premiums. So, when black box insurance – also known as telematics was introduced to help younger drivers reduce costs it seemed like the perfect solution. What is black box insurance? 750,000+ vehicles in the UK now have black box devices. When you sign up for this type of insurance, a small ‘black box’ is fitted to your car, which records various features of your driving. It will look at factors such as speed, distance travelled and when you’re on the road. It is also able to measure factors such as breaking time and cornering. To this, an insurer’s individual algorithm is applied, which weighs up all the data delivered by the black box and scores based on quality of drivi