Finance

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Is your poor credit rating looming over your every financial decision? You are not alone! In the current financial climate it is becoming increasingly more common for new and existing home owners and renters alike to be turned away by home and contents insurance providers as a result of their poor credit rating. But this isn’t the end of the line for you, there are still options available…

Why has my credit score affected my insurance premium?

Insurance companies follow the same strategy as all other money lenders in that they want to be sure that you can afford the monthly repayments for your insurance premium. Unfortunately your poor credit score doesn’t paint the best picture for your future ability to keep up with regular payments.

What can I do if my insurance is turned down?

It’s never too late to improve your credit score; from jumping on the electoral register to applying for a credit card – there are plenty of things you can do to rebuild your rating. However, your score is not going to go from red to green over night so you are going to need to find some cover in the meantime.

In this instance, the most important thing to look for in a home insurance provider is that your premiums are not heavily biased by your low credit score.

Doing your research into companies that will accept you based on your rating is going to take some time – so we’ve done the leg work for you!

CoverBuilder are a specialist home insurance provider who specialise in protecting individuals who are struggling to get insured due to their individual financial circumstances. In fact, they are able to offer payment options to 95% of cases with poor credit.

Will I have to jump through hoops to find out if they will accept me?

If you have been turned down by a different provider, you might think that a company who is willing to take you onboard based on your history will expect a lot from you and will leave you lingering while they calculate the risks.

We’ve found that CoverBuilder only require the basics to be able to offer you a quote, so once you’ve completed your online application form they are able to provide you with an instant decision. They also provide a friendly online instant chat service for support, so you don’t need to worry about discussing your financial woes over the phone with an unsympathetic call centre robot.

Don’t forget, it’s really important that you’re upfront and honest with your insurance provider and declare any previous financial difficulties with them. If you later need to claim and they find you’ve been dishonest you’ll be at risk of not being eligible for a payout when you might need it the most.

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The global forex market is witnessing a daily trade of over $4000 trillion, and is emerging as the largest financial market across the globe. Owing to the immense popularity of forex, traders of all levels ranging from amateurs to professionals are enticed by it.

Forex is easy to trade, there are round-the-clock sessions and you don’t need to put a high amount at stake to try it out. However, whether you are a well-seasoned professional or are just learning about the financial markets, it’s vital that you be wary of common pitfalls and don’t lose money.

Here are some essential tips that can help you avoid losing money in forex trading:

1. Start With A Practice Account

Nearly all trading platforms allow the traders to use the practice accounts, which are often referred as “Demo Account” or “Simulated Account”. One can place hypothetical trades with these accounts without requiring to put actual funds on stake. Using such an account, you can learn the different trading techniques and also become adept at the order entry techniques as small mistakes here can result in easy loss of money.

The most important part of a trading account is you can develop your own trading strategies and evaluate their effectiveness before getting stuck into real-time trade.

2. Learn Before You Trade

Forex is one of the easiest trading markets to understand and get involved in. However, just because it’s easy to get started it does not mean that you should enter unprepared. It’s vital to develop a thorough understanding of the various aspects of forex trading, and how the process of trading actually works.

You should also consider investing in some good Forex trading books to research the best trading strategies and top pitfalls which cause people to lose money in the markets.

3. Don’t Get Tempted By the Tools

Once you begin trading in the real world and open your forex trading account you will be provided with access to a plethora of technical analysis tools. Take these with a pinch of salt as some of them are a little biased and many do not show you the whole picture.

The most important consideration when using investment analysis tools is to look at how your stocks/shares have performed in the very long term and then consider any external factors which may have an impact on their performance.

4. Learn Money Management Techniques

Using the right money management techniques is very important to avoid losses during forex trading. Many seasoned traders agree that it’s not difficult to secure a trade at any price, but it is difficult to get out of the trade at the right time.

You should be aware of the techniques for money management and money saving strategies – especially the “Protective Stop Loss” to keep losses under control, if they occur.

5. Start With Small Stakes

After you have done your homework, spent time in your practice account and developed your trading strategies, it’s the right time to go live. You can now start investing and trading in real cash – start small, be patient with your trades and give them time to grow. As your confidence increases you can begin to increase your investments and operate at higher stakes.

Be wary of success, if you hit the right trade at the right time it can feel exhilarating but always be concious that trades can drop just as fast as they rise. To stabilise your level of risk, be sure to split your investment across multiple trades.

If you are new to Forex and are looking a reliable forex trading platform, take a look at ETX capital who offer an astounding array of trading and spread betting opportunities.

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cottage uk

There’s been a lot going on in the last few months, and 2016 wasn’t exactly a walk in the park either. So where has this left things for property?

Well, some experts are saying that the house prices are going to be flat for a couple of years. However, when you look into what flat means it’s just not rising quite so astronomically as they have been but still on the incline.

The other negative news to have but a dampener on things is the changes to stamp duty taxes that have had a huge impact on the number of transactions in the housing market. From April 1st 2016, Stamp Duty increased by an additional 3% on properties going up the scale, increasing the top band to 15%. The rates only affect people who are buying an additional property, such as buy-to-let properties and landlords.

However, amid the negativity, property developers and investors are still in a prosperous position. No matter what happens with Brexit or how cautious buyers are being, the fact remains the same: Britain needs more homes and where there is a demand, there is a market.

The area that has been most heavily impacted with a drop in prices and far less transactions is London. Since Brexit, it is reported that the capital has been the hardest hit with some places showing negative growth overall and being dragged lower by the most expensive boroughs.

Although London isn’t looking like the best opportunity at the moment, there are other areas in the UK that are thriving. The houses that are vanishing off the market the fastest can be found in Northampton, Milton Keynes, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Bristol and Southampton, to name a few.

According to Prime Location, Northampton is attracting people who have been forced out of London’s price hike and in 2014, Northampton was voted the best place in the UK to start and run a business by credit reference agency Experian. Prime Location also suggests that development is thriving in Northampton with plenty of opportunities for investment in rental properties as well as buying off plan plots.

If you’re looking for property investment solutions outside of London, it may be best to organise your thoughts and speak to a professional. Daniel Goldberg, First Urban’s director and shareholder, would be able to provide plentiful advice on the current housing market, where works best for you as an investment and how you can still make a profitable business out of property investment.

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save money on great clothes

We shouldn’t feel guilty about wanting to look good in nice clothes. However, take a walk through your local shopping centre and you could be excused for thinking that you need to spend a great deal in order to look sharp. Consider that expensive fashion brands can “buy” more publicity, says The Guardian‘s Hadley Freeman; there are plenty of inexpensive clothing options out there which would have simply slipped past your radar. Here is how you can take advantage of them.

Shop at charity outlets in upmarket parts of the country

Freeman acknowledges that coming across “good cheap stuff requires some nosing out on your part” – and some of the places where you could nose around include charity shops. You shouldn’t just pick any, however; stick to those in posh areas. Hadley enthuses: “This was one of the best fashion tips I got as a teenager and it has honestly never let me down.”

Presumably the reason why this tip works so well is that, in these affluent areas, people can afford high-quality fabrics – but, once they no longer want them, a charity shop is one of the first places that they consider handing those surplus-to-requirements clothes to.

Continue your shopping trip in… your own cupboards

Sometimes, it seems, you don’t know just how much you already have until you’ve had a good rummage. By having this in your home’s cupboards, you could come across various items that you had bought long ago but since forgotten about.

Maybe, on a trip to Paris five years ago, you purchased a souvenir t-shirt that, you could now realise, still fits. Alternatively, you might have accidentally wedged a jumper between a couple of drawers when hurriedly looking through them during a moment of urgency a while ago; now could be the time to pull out those drawers and retrieve that still-perfectly-usable garment!

Avoid trends… or, at least, ones that will be short-lived

Keeping up with fashion trends can undoubtedly be expensive, considering how often they change. Therefore, if you are in the habit of following them, you could, as MoneyAware advises, save money by dropping that habit… or tweaking it. You could, for example, stick to trends that should last a few more years at the least. Alternatively, you could opt for classic styles – think 1950s style – that typically take a while to go out of fashion. Marilyn Monroe has been a style icon in many decades!

When you buy new, buy quality

Sometimes we just can’t avoid buying new clothes – we might need them for work or an important event. A good rule of thumb for buying new clothes is to buy something that will last, something that will stay in good shape after washing and something you can where for a variety of occasions.

For example, if you are looking for a pair of shorts for the summer – think about whether you can get a quality pair that you could also wear to work and even in the garden. Dickies Life stocks a pleasing range of work shorts – including slim, multi-pocket and industrial varieties. Buying quality often means only buying once every few years rather than every few months!

How have you saved money clothes in the past? Any tips for catching a bargain?

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events affecting stocks

There are many things that can have an influence on the global stock market, from a controversial change in political leader to a natural disaster. One thing can start a wave of change and before you know it, the stock market can have changed in the blink of an eye.

When something happens on the international stage, good or bad, there is never a doubt that it will have an effect on the stock market. In this piece, I have looked back at some of the top world events that shook up the stock market in 2016…

1. THE TRUMP ELECTION

Yes, I thought we ought to get the most controversial out of the way first! While stock markets were expected to tumble on election night, surprisingly Wall Street reacted quite positively to the shock election of President Trump. In fact, in currency markets the US dollar hit a high against the Japanese Yen for the first time in several months!

2. THE BREXIT VOTE

Brexit shook up the UK stock markets something rotten in June last year and we saw the British pound drop to its lowest value in more than 30 years, a significant depreciation against other major currencies. Unsurprisingly stock markets across Europe declined significantly in the initial aftermath of the referendum.

3. HURRICANE MATTHEW

Natural disasters can have a crippling effect on a country’s economy; Hurricane Matthew in September 2016 was no different and has been recorded as the costliest hurricane since Sandy in 2012. Before Matthew hit, stocks for Florida based insurance companies fell by up to 15%. Investors began to retreat from companies deemed most at risk and shares suffered steep declines.

4. CHINESE MARKET CRASH

In January 2016 the Chinese market plummeted into unforeseen chaos and saw investors fight to sell off their assets – ultimately they saw a sharp decline in the Shanghai Composite Index by 6.9%. This rippled across the global stock markets and around the world stock markets lost more than $4 trillion.

5. OPEC OIL CUT

Oil prices have remained low as a result of over production and producers have been receiving low sales revenue over the recent years. In November 2016 Organisation of the Pertroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) announced that its 14 member countries would work to reduce their oil production for the first time since the financial crisis in 2008. After this announcement Brent crude prices rose by approximately 8% and trade prices began to increase.

What We Can Learn…

Where possible, we should be on the lookout for key events and dates that are likely shake our investments. However, not all of these will be highlighted in the mainstream media; we can take a more structured approach to monitoring such dates by utilising an economic calendar. The new Economic Calendar from CMC Markets certainly deserves a mention here and a tool such as this can increase your awareness of major changes to the market that may affect your investment decisions.

The CMC tool is an easy to understand live market calendar which gives you access to key economic announcements that will affect price swings in major index, currency and commodity markets. A really helpful tool to help you to identify stock market fluctuations and influencers.

Do you take world events into consideration when planning your investment choices? and how do you keep track of them?

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Is your poor credit rating looming over your every financial decision? You are not alone! In the current financial climate it is becoming increasingly...