5 Loans You Could Get if You Have a Bad Credit History

canstockphoto9959220When you get turned down for credit it can come as a major shock. If you’re already struggling with your repayments because of combined high interest rates and were banking on getting a new loan to reduce your monthly outgoings and stabilize things, it can feel like a disaster to be rejected.

But if you have got a bad credit history or a list of financial mistakes registered against you, getting credit from one of the traditional lenders is always going to be a struggle. The major banks and other financial institutions all have fairly strict criteria when it comes to lending money. And that means that most people with poor or simply impaired credit records are not going to be successful when applying to these institutions.

Thankfully, there are other options provided by a growing number of alternative lenders who specifically cater for people in this situation. While there are no guarantees that you’ll be successful when applying for one of these loans, there is a much higher likelihood of obtaining credit this way:

  1. Guarantor loans

Before the 1980’s and the rapid growth of credit scoring, it was fairly typical for a potential borrower to make an appointment to see their bank manager at the local branch. If they were new to borrowing or if they had not held an account at the bank for very long, the manager would often ask for some form of security before agreeing to issue a loan. That security would often be a third party – a guarantor – who would agree to making the loan repayments should the borrower get into difficulty or otherwise fail to keep up with the schedule.

Guarantor loans are a newer version of this age-old form of lending. They work because the lender uses the credit rating of a third party when making a decision on whether to issue a loan to an applicant. That third party becomes legally bound to the credit agreement and responsible for making repayments in the event that the borrower gets behind. The guarantor can be a friend, a family member or even somebody at work.

  1. Homeowner loans

If you own your own house either outright or with a mortgage, then you may be able to successfully apply for a homeowner loan. These come with lower rates of interest than unsecured loans and, very often, have much higher capital sums on offer. It all depends on how much equity you have in your property (the difference between a home’s value and the outstanding balance of the mortgage). When you successfully apply for a homeowner loan, the credit balance is secured against your house meaning that if you fall behind with repayments or default, the lender will be able to apply to a court to take possession of the home and sell it to cover the outstanding loan amount and any interest.

Homeowner loans are similar to mortgages with sums of up to £250,000 (sometimes more) available and very long repayment schedules which can stretch to 25 or even 30 years.

  1. Payday loans

While payday loans have had a bad press in recent years, new rules imposed by the Financial Conduct Authority mean that all lenders now have to adhere to strict limits on the amount of interest they can charge and the number of times they can allow a borrower to ‘roll over’ repayment of the loan to a subsequent month. The APRs advertised on payday loans can still appear to be very high but it’s worth remembering that these are short term loans and APRs are a representative annual rate. Most payday loans are just for a month or two meaning that you will only ever have to be a small fraction of the total amount that you borrowed. Payday loans are available for sums ranging from £100 up to £1,000 and are a safe option for those confident that they will be able to make the repayment comfortably on time. For example, somebody who borrows £200 at an APR of around 1,400%, will then will only repay £250 – meaning that the total interest will be 25%, not the APR advertised in the headline figure. 

  1. Sub prime personal loans

While the banks may not want to offer somebody with a poor credit rating an unsecured loan, there are plenty of other lenders who do exactly that. Unsecured personal loans are usually shorter term loans than secured ones and will come with shorter repayment schedules and smaller capital amounts. They also come with higher interest charges because the lender is taking a bigger risk when lending to people who have a record of financial mismanagement. The sums involved are smaller than with homeowner loans and are usually amounts between £1,000 and £10,000. A small group of lenders are able to offer large amounts – up to £25,000 – although people with seriously impaired credit may be unsuccessful when applying for one of these. Repayment schedules are usually anything between one and seven years although some lenders do have plans which stretch out to 10 years.

  1. Credit unions

Credit unions represent a small but growing part of the lending market in the UK. They are mutual organisations – meaning that they are owned by their members – similar to the ownership structure of the old building societies. Credit unions serve the communities that they are based in and offer savings accounts and loans to people who live or work in the area. The major downside to borrowing from a credit union is that most will ask new members to become savers before considering them for credit. This is because the money that they lend is based on the capital that they hold on deposit. While the amounts that credit unions used to offer was small, loans are now growing in value with many now offering larger sums – sometimes up to £10,000. The interest rates on offer are often lower than for sub prime loans.

Article provided by Mike James, an independent content writer working together with technology-led finance broker Solution Loans – a company with many years’ experience in advising clients of their most suitable type of credit.

Why Many PPI Claimants Want Estimates Of Their Claims’ Value Before Claiming

canstockphoto1478706There is a growing trend amongst UK payment protection insurance claims victims of wanting to know the value of their claim in advance as opposed to waiting until the claim has completed and receiving their check in the mail.

What is a PPI Claim?

The term “ppi claim” refers to when a potential ppi miss-selling victim endeavours to get a refund for the miss sold policy they paid insurance premiums on.

This can be done in 2 ways:

1. Use a ppi claims management company to help you, some of them offer free ppi calculator estimations to help the website visitors estimate the value of their claims. Once you engage the services of a claims management company the claim begins and if successful you will receive your refund & someone else does the work and the chasing up for you (you just have to provide information) (you will pay a fee on completion).

2. Claim yourself without the use of a claims company, slower, however it is free, with no fees payable to a company for their services.

Why Do People Now Want To Calculate Their Refund Before Claiming?

One reason is that there are costs associated with using companies, so some people want to calculate the value of their claim upfront along with any costs that may accompany that refund.

Another reason is the growing availability of these ppi calculation tools that can give people guidance on how much their claim could be worth (before it was a compliance minefield, now it is permissible and is perfectly fine as long as no false statements are included).

An additional reason is just pure curiosity, people like to get excited about windfalls and the prospect of a big refund, this is human.

An advantage of knowing what a claims’ value could be is that it gives the claimant an idea of how much investigation could be required too, and whether it is worth them pursuing it alone in relation to how much money they could be refunded by the banks.

Aside From A Refund, Are There Other Fees Or Compensations Due?

Interest is paid on each insurance premium payment to the rate of statutory interest (which is 8% in the UK), this is given to the victim of miss-selling once their claim is completed (if successful), certain charges can also be repaid, it is worth discussing this with the company that you decide to put the claim through with.

It is advised that with the impending ppi claims deadline, any claims not started yet are put through as soon as humanly possible, even if this means using a claims’ firm to expedite the commencement of it.

Once spring 2018 comes it will likely be too late due to the recent enforcements by the financial regulators as the banks’ campaigning has granted them a deadline, however there is still more than enough time for people to input their claims until that comes into play.

There are a wealth of websites and lots of information to guide anyone making a claim, simple searches online can give all the information someone might need in order to get started.

P2P lending: 4 great benefits for personal loans

canstockphoto11348652The market for unsecured credit is barely recognizable from what it once was. The days of queuing up outside the bank to fill out piles of paperwork are very much a thing of the past, with online lenders having infiltrated the industry and effectively transformed the landscape. Yet while these have brought some much needed competition and convenience to the sector, not all of these online platforms offer the most scrupulous of interest rates, meaning you need to keep your wits about you if a helping hand is what you need.

One of the standout varieties of platforms to offer personal loans are peer-to-peer lenders, which conduct their business by matching the funds from ordinary people who opt to lend their savings – rather than putting it into the bank – directly with those in need of credit. Such a streamlined process eliminates all intermediaries, and P2P platforms do not use any lender capital for personal gain.

Instead, the platform acts purely as a mediator, and ensures the proper controls are in place so that this direct relationship between lender and borrower functions smoothly. For this, it commands a small admin fee, but there remain significant benefits for the customer. As a borrower, here are four which standout:

Value

Aside from the efficiency of the business model, these companies operate entirely online, meaning overheads are kept to a minimum. As a result, creditworthy candidates can expect to get loans with APRs starting from 5-6%. In addition, any fees are clearly visible on their websites, and, in general, very reasonable.

Simple

It really is as straightforward as completing an online form to get a personalised loan quote; one that takes just a couple of minutes to complete. If you’re then happy with the provisional quote, completing the application is just as quick. You may have to submit some bank statements while credit checks are performed, but other than that, there is no effort required.

Quick

Assessing your application usually takes just a solitary working day, and, if approved, you can expect the funds to arrive in your account overnight. That’s it!

Flexible

Other than good value, this may be the best reason of the lot to choose a peer-to-peer lender. You get to choose to borrow an amount anywhere between £1,000 and £25,000, and also the period over which you would like to pay it back (1-5 years). It means you can structure a repayment plan that suits you, and what’s more, some platforms like Lending Works even give you the opportunity to make early settlements down the line at no extra cost.

Certainly, for those in need of credit, these are not bad times to be taking out a personal loan. Bank of England rates remain entrenched at record lows, and as the loans sector becomes increasingly diverse, it is the consumer who continues to benefit. So with such a favourable set of options at your disposal, it makes sense to explore credit providers of all shapes and sizes in order to find the best deal you can. But if it works out that after doing your research you are drawn to peer-to-peer lenders, don’t feel sceptical. Feel vindicated.

Binary Options for Dummies

canstockphoto19654068This article isn’t going to teach you how to become an expert trader, but it will inform you about the basics of binary options trading and how to get started as a binary options trader. We will look at the important aspects that you need to know as well as a few very basic trading strategies, the navigation of a trading platform and we will also give an example of a straightforward trade. Let’s get started.

What is a Binary Option?

The prefix ‘bi’ means two as in bicentenary and the word ‘binary’ is a computer term for a numeric system that only uses two numbers, 0 and 1. By adding the word ‘options’, we come up with ‘binary options’ which in effect means two choices, of which only one will prevail. Binary options trading involves forecasting the direction in which the price of selected market tradable assets will move, either higher or lower, in a specified period of time. The binary options contract between you and your broker is a very simple contract in which the potential profit as well as the potential risk are fixed at the time the contract is entered into or in binary options language, when the trade is struck or opened. Here again there are two possibilities, if your forecast is correct, you receive the predetermined payout and if it is incorrect, you forfeit your investment amount only.

The three elements that comprise a trade in binary options are the expiry time, the strike price and the return offered by the broker. A very basic example of the structure of a binary options trade would be if the oil price is at $55.04, the strike price, per barrel and you forecast that the price will be higher in exactly 5 minutes, the expiry time. Your binary options broker, such as Banc De Binary, has offered a return of 80% on a correct forecast and you invest £10. Five minutes later, at the expiry time of the trade, if the price of oil does increase to $55.05 per barrel, you will have made a winning trade. You then receive a payout of your original investment (£10) plus 80%, a total of £18. Had the oil price have dropped below $55.04, you would have lost your investment. Simple!

Binary Options Variations

While binary options trading always comes down to only two choices, there are a number of variations that have been introduced to provide traders with alternatives. Before looking at the different variations, you need to know the meaning of certain terms and at this point the important one is underlying asset. Every binary options trade involves the price movement of a market tradable asset, known as the underlying asset. This could be a stock, an index, a currency pair or a commodity and many brokers, such as Band De Binary, offer a wide choice of global assets to trade.

Binary Options – Trade Options

The most common and widely used trade option is the Call or Put binary option where a Call option is the name given to a forecast that the price of the underlying asset will go up, while a Put option indicates a forecast that the price will decline by the expiry time.

The Touch or No Touch variation has become increasingly popular among traders and requires more knowledge of the underlying asset than a standard Call or Put binary options trade. With this variation, you have to forecast if the asset price you are trading will touch a price target either higher or lower than the strike price during the life of the trade. The price only has to touch the forecast price before the expiry time in order for the trade to end ‘in the money’. Should the price exceed or drop below the strike price before the exit time having touched the forecast price, this has no effect as the trade is closed as soon as the target price is touched. The opposite is the situation with a No Touch trade where your forecast would be that the price won’t reach a certain price level. In this case, the instant the price touches the selected level, your trade closes as a losing trade or ‘out of the money’.

There are other more complicated and sophisticated trade variations that you will understand once you start gaining experience as a binary options trader. Most brokers offer a wide range of trading options so take the time to review these options before you sign up.

How to Trade

All binary options trades are done using the binary options broker trading platform. There are different brands of trading platforms, but navigating them and placing your trades is very similar on all platforms. We will go through a straightforward Call or Put trade on the trading platform such as that used by binary options broker Banc De Binary, an example of which is directly below.

Above the price chart graphic, as you can see, the underlying asset is gold and for a return of 72% on your investment, you have to forecast whether the gold price, which is at $1165.56 is going to go up, or down by 10:10, the expiry time. You enter the amount you wish to invest and then click on your selection, up (Call) or down (Put). You will also notice that the rate of return is clearly marked on the trade and for this trade it is 72%.

In the above, you can see that there is a graphic representation of the price movement of the asset. This can be adjusted to reflect different time frames and it can help the trader to determine the direction the price might take in the future. By using the historical trading patterns of underlying assets traders are able to extend the pattern into the future and thus predict the direction the price might move in going forward. The use of graphs and algorithms in calculating your forecasts is known as technical analysis which you will learn much more about as you progress as a binary options trader.

Gaining Experience

You now have the basic essentials to start trading binary options. The next move is to open an account with a reputable broker, such as Banc De Binary, who is regulated by a governmental regulating authority such as CySEC, the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission, which is recognized across all the European Union member countries. Once your account has been opened, you will have access to the education portal which offers a wealth of trading tools, information such as an eBook, training videos, trading signals and much more. This will enable you to start advancing into the more intricate niceties of binary options trading such as the different trading strategies and methods of analysis used to improve your forecasting skills.

Money-saving tips for dog owners

canstockphoto12853549Owning a dog is something that can bring fantastic benefits to you, your family and friends. Not only do you receive unconditional love and affection from a pet who is rightly known as “man’s best friend”, but you also have no excuse for missing out on getting some extra exercise.

Although a healthy dog will be relatively low maintenance, there are some essential costs and outlays that can’t be avoided. However, there are ways that a savvy dog owner can save money by using a few tried and tested tips.

Initial outlay

The first bill that a dog owner will have to pay will depend on how you choose your new pet. Buying an in-demand breed from an award-winning bloodline can mean laying out hundreds of pounds, whereas choosing a dog from a rescue centre will be far cheaper, with the costs often only including medical and administration fees.

Buying bedding, food and drink bowls and other essentials such as a collar and lead can be as expensive or as cost-effective as you like. An old laundry basket lined with worn-out jumpers or blankets can make a perfectly safe and secure bed for a puppy, and even old plates or china can be used for feeding times.

Breeds

Choosing the right breed can mean taking many different things into account. Smaller dogs generally not only need less exercise but can also be far cheaper to feed in terms of the actual amounts of food that you need to buy.

When it comes to feeding your dog, you must do your homework, as giving your dog a balanced diet is as important as it is for a human. If you get the right mix of ingredients and nutrients, not only will you have a happy dog but it will also be a healthy one, saving you money in the long run.

Medical bills

A healthy dog won’t need to go to the vet often, but in the first place, vaccinations are important. Also, no matter how well behaved your dog is or how good you are at controlling it, there are few dogs who don’t get involved in high jinks of one kind or another that results in a trip to the vet at some point. All this means that you should consider taking out a veterinary insurance policy for your dog as vets bills can be expensive.

Most people have a stock of everyday medical items in a drawer or cupboard around the home and you can make sure you look after your dog in a similar way. Bob Martin is a great place to look in order to build up those essentials that can keep your dog in tip top condition and avoid everyday problems.

Common sense

Being a dog owner is like anything else in life; if you don’t make plans and approach things in a careful fashion, you can end up spending more than you bargained for. However, with a little planning, you can take advantage of all the various tips and tricks that will save you money without having any negative impact on your dog.

Tax for contractors explained

When you set up your contracting business, you have an awful lot of things to think about: developing your business plan, getting financial backing where appropriate, and developing and servicing a client base. As a contractor, one of the most important parts of running your own business is getting your taxes right.

If you are working on a contract basis between different organizations, then your tax situation can become quite complex to deal with. Here are some of the liabilities you will have to face up to if you set up as a limited company as opposed to an umbrella company – more on umbrella companies shortly.

Value added tax

If your turnover annually is £82,000 or more (it often changes in each government budget), you must register for VAT, though if it’s less, you could register for the Flat Rate VAT scheme, which could save you money if you’re a first year business. There can be hefty penalties if you don’t register but should and if you are late to pay your VAT.

Corporation tax

You pay this on your annual profits. You accountant will register your company for the tax, prepare your accounts and submit them. You need to pay your CT within nine months of the company’s year-end.

National insurance

You will be liable to pay NICs (National Insurance Contributions) on all salaries you pay your staff. You will have to pay it for yourself as well, depending on the level of your salary. You could choose to pay a salary below the threshold of contributions and make it up with dividends.

Dividend tax

If your company pays you a dividend and the income is less than the higher rate of income tax, you don’t pay tax on it, nor do you pay NICs.

Income tax

As an individual limited company contractor, you need to complete a self-assessment form every year, with the return being submitted each year by January 31. It’s possible, dependent on your circumstances, that you could have to make payments on account towards your tax liability in the current year.

Umbrella companies

These are very useful vehicles for contractors dealing with many other issues in their business. Essentially you become an employee of the umbrella company and are taxed exactly as if you were a traditional employee. You can make deductions for the fee for the umbrella company as well as aspects such as pension contributions. The rest of your income is then taxed at standard Pay As You Earn (PAYE) calculations. You’ll also have to pay NICs on that income.

Payroll will be processed on your behalf by your umbrella provider, and all deductions will show on the pay slip. It takes a lot of administrative work away from you and gives you more time to dedicate to building up and developing your business.

An umbrella company can also supply all necessary insurances and full statutory employment rights.

Planning for the future

Tax is a tricky business and it’s easy to get things wrong accidentally, leaving you open to penalties. Using the professional services of an umbrella company can remove that burden of worry.

Tackling substance abuse in a small business in order to improve profitability

Employee substance abuse is nothing new. Some people misuse alcohol, illegal drugs or prescription drugs every day. The effects of substance abuse can on the workplace is being understood more and more. Many jobs these days require employees to be bright, alert and have fast reflexes. If someone has been abusing substances and tries to do their job, there is a chance that a serious accident could happen, or at the very least, that the job will be performed inaccurately and below standard.

What is employee substance abuse? 

Employee substance abuse is when an employee misuses either legal or illegal drugs or alcohol in their own private time or while at work. This can cause many issues within your workplace and can cause problems in many areas such as:

  • Reduced productivity and performance from hangovers or the after effects of substance use
  • Having sick days frequently due to substance abuse
  • Lack of attention and concentration due to preoccupation with getting and using substances while at the workplace
  • Committing crimes by selling or buying illegal drugs while at work
  • Stress and anxiety from the abuse of substances by an employee’s love one
  • Health and safety risks

All these issues can affect health and safety, productivity, efficiency and profit within your small business. If people are working with dangerous equipment that requires them to be highly concentrated, there is a huge risk to health and safety regulations being carried out by that person. They are more likely to cost the company money through sick days and will slow down the rate of productivity within your business, therefore affecting profit margins.

How can employers avoid substance abuse in the workplace? 

As an employer, you can try to avoid substance abuse in the workplace by carrying out regular drug testing on your employees. Employers and their staff can work together to create a clear policy in regards to what behaviour at the work place will and will not be accepted. By creating an Employee Assistance Programme, employers can help any member of staff who needs help to avoid or recover from substance abuse.

Drug and alcohol testing in the workplace

Drug and alcohol testing can be part of your health and safety policy as well as a duty of care to your employees. There are several ways the test can be carried out such as with an oral fluid lab test, urine or hair sample. This is then sent for laboratory testing at an audited and accredited laboratory where the results will be found. The advantages of drug testing in the workplace is that it is clear for all staff within the company that drug or alcohol abuse will not be tolerated behaviour for health and safety reasons, the wellbeing of other employees and the cost to your company.

It is important to tackle substance abuse within the workplace and clearly communicate with your employees regarding this matter, as well as offering them help and support should they need it.

Short Term Loan Facts

There are times when the unexpected happens which is the best time for a short term or payday loan.These types of loans are an effective and beneficial option that gives people instant money. If you’re in a financial bind a this kind of loan is a quick solution. You can easily apply for a payday loan online from the comfort of your home. There are many lenders that offer loans at a wide variety of different rates and terms. The biggest factor are the high interest rates.

Here is a list of things you need to consider before applying for a payday loan:

Research several different lenders. You can do this online by search for “payday lenders”. Be sure to make a list of the pros and cons of each lender.

Check out the lending process and become familiar with the requirements that are needed to obtain the loan. You can get approved by most lenders without going through any of the more traditional lending requirements such as collateral, credit checks, paperwork, etc. So be sure to choose a lender which doesn’t require that type of process.

Be sure you know the amount you need to borrow and how long the repayment terms are and if it fits comfortably into your budget. The amount of the loan and the repayment terms can help you determine which lender is right for you.

Check the list you made of several different lenders to find the one the best suits your needs.

When applying for a loan online be sure to complete the application giving all the information that is needed. The more information you give the faster your loan can be approved.

Include proof of income from your job and any other source of income. Again the more information you give the faster your loan can be approved.

Be sure you read all the paperwork the lender includes and that you thoroughly understand it. Ask questions if you have any doubts or don’t understand the paperwork completely. Also be sure to read the fine print since this is where you will find the details of the repayments terms, interest rates, and fees.

Read all paperwork that is associated with the repayments terms especially including details about should you need more time past the due date to make a payment. This part is where the interest rates and fees can double when you ask for extended time.

These are the steps required for a payday loan. If you follow these steps and submit all the required paperwork the process will be quick and easy.

Mortgages for Older People

The media have reported an increasing number of cases where older people are struggling to find mortgages. These are credit worthy borrowers who along with other groups such as the self employed or contract workers have become known as mortgage misfits.

Changes in mortgage regulation, called the Mortgage Market Review (MMR), introduced new rules on affordability. This requires all mortgage lenders to fully assess that every mortgage they provide is affordable. However, some lenders have decided to restrict mortgages for older people as they cannot fully establish if the mortgage is affordable in retirement. This is not just impacting those wanting a mortgage in their 50s or 60s, if you are aged 41 and want a 25 year mortgage a number of lenders may not accept you. Lenders with these restrictions generally will not permit a mortgage term that exceeds the age of 65.

ICM Unlimited conducted recent research in this area on behalf of Ipswich Building Society, this identified that 39% of mortgage holders were concerned about the availability of mortgages for older people.  In fact of all the age groups 45% of the youngest group (20 – 29 years olds) said they were concerned about access to mortgages for older people.

A more significant issue was that 45% of respondents held concerns that as they got older they would end up paying more than younger people.

Why are some mortgage lenders refusing to offer mortgages to older people?

Lenders that have decided to limit their mortgage lending to people under the age of 65 state difficulties in confidently assessing their affordability. This often means that they cannot guarantee the retirement date or value of a mortgage applicant’s future pension. Whilst this may be difficult and not guaranteed, neither is a salaried occupation. What may appear to be a lack of common sense being applied is probably driven by these lenders using automated systems. These are incapable of handling situations that are not in their process flow or are based on a degree of likelihood, as opposed to 100% certainty. Furthermore, employees using these systems are restricted to only following the computers’ answers.

So what can you do if you need a mortgage for over 50s?

If you need a mortgage that goes beyond your 65th birthday then there are some mortgage lenders who will consider you. Smaller, regional building societies tend to specialise in this area of lending.  They use people and not computers to make their lending decisions. This means they can assess mortgage applications individually and on their own merits. This is ideal for those with unusual incomes, pension income or unusual circumstances. This approach can be beneficial for those needing a mortgage for older people.

2 quick tips if you are looking for a mortgage into retirement

  1. A quick call to ask the lender’s maximum lending age will help you determine if they will lend in your age bracket. You can watch this video to find out more about one lender’s retirement mortgage programme.

  2. If you’re not sure or would like help to find the right lender for you, a mortgage broker could be an idea. They may charge you a fee for their advice.

Infographic_for_Older_Borrowers_Programme_FINAL[1]

Top 5 Reasons for Borrowing Money

Guarantormyloan

 

An infographic looking into the reasons why people borrow money – whether it be for a car or home improvements. Currently in the UK we borrow on average £3326 per household, over a term of approximately 5 years. We look to high street banks, peer to peer lenders and guarantor lenders for the majority of our borrowing.