Credit card repayments seem to be down? It’s all an illusion…

February has arrived and the bleakest financial month (January) is behind us. But we still need to be very careful when using and paying off on credit card. The payments required by the card company may appear to be getting smaller even though our spending has not. This is because card companies have been sneakily reducing the minimum amount they require customers to pay each month. The minimum credit card repayment used to average 2.15% of the amount outstanding. This now they are down to 1.53%, according to figures from the TotallyMoney comparison website. This is not good news. While […]

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40 year mortgage loans – it’s only lenders that win

Lenders have a new wheeze when it comes to lending money to home buyers. Now interest-only loans have been outlawed for all except buy-to-let borrowers they have moved to the next best thing (for lenders, that is, not borrowers) – 40 year mortgage loans. In particular, lenders are circling first time buyers who are back in the market. According to the mortgage statistics for last year, mortgage approvals rose by 122,000 to 734,969. First-time buyer numbers are well up. For example,they took out 27,000 loans in November, 2013, a rise of just 0.7% compared to October, but up 24% compared […]

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Complaints about packaged bank accounts double – have you got one?

Yet another report shows how careful we have to be when visiting our bank branch.  The latest statistics from the Financial Ombudsman reveal that large numbers of bank customers are complaining that they have been mis-sold expensive packaged bank accounts. These are the sorts of accounts that come with all sorts of bells and whistles on them, such as travel insurance, all fine and dandy if you need everything you get but otherwise an expensive way to bank. Complaints have more than doubled on 2012-13 and some bank customers were unaware that they had “bought” a packaged account.  The most […]

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When was the last time you checked your savings account interest rates?

I’ve had an instant access online savings account for a very long time. Not the same account, you understand. The better than the rest interest rate that first attracts you doesn’t stay that way for long. So I swap this account for the latest offering once a year. In fact, most savings accounts seem to come with some form of added bonus in the first 12 months. It pays to keep an eye on when that first year is up. But wait, I hear you say, surely my bank or building let me know about such an interest rate change? […]

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Voucher ninja. Even an expert supermarket money off voucher user can be caught out

So, nearly got caught out by a voucher this morning.   These particular vouchers arrived at my house in the week accompanied by 3 free dishwasher tablets.  The idea was to introduce me to a brand I did not use  and then use the voucher for £1.50 to buy some more (and switch brands forever, no doubt). I arrived at the supermarket for my weekly shop and I looked at the dishwasher tablets aisle. I picked up a box of the brand I had the voucher for. They seemed good value at 33 for around £5. Deduct the £1.50 voucher from […]

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To fix price or not to fix price – that is the energy question

I’ve just spent the last couple of days working out whether I should switch to a new fixed price tariff with my energy supplier EDF. The big issue was finding the time to do the maths and getting the right EDF representative on the end of the phone to run through the options I’d shortlisted in brain numbing detail. I’m not beyond politely terminating a call and ringing back a little later in order to get another person on the end of the phone. This holds true for all sorts of phone conversations, not just those with energy suppliers. Some […]

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House of credit cards can cost you dear

It is not only high balances on credit cards that can cost us dear. Even organised money fighters can get caught out by transactions made using their ‘stand-by’ credit card if they don’t follow a few rules… A second card is a good idea. There are always occasions when your first card can’t be used. It isn’t just that you might have maxed it out – see the example below. Money fighters always have a back up plan. But while the direct debit (DD) for our usual card choice is paid as normal the other card payment can so easily […]

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Don’t get burned by too high energy bills – move!

Figures out today show that more than 600,000 households changed electricity supplier in November 2013. The figure fell back to 390,000 in December, which is not surprising. The time it takes to change energy supplier (electric or gas) supplier is still stuck stubbornly at a lamentable three weeks despite a commitment from the Government that customers should be able to change in 24 hours. If your energy bills are too high during this relatively mild winter, changing company may help. But first and foremost you need to make sure you are on the best tariff. Too many people are still […]

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Loans situated next to the baked beans are totally indigestible

If you think you may need a loan to help ease you through the coming months – be on your guard. Money fighters don’t reach for the first brochure the drops through the letter box, or which beckons enticingly from the conveniently placed leaflet stand at the supermarket checkout. Such deals offered by well known supermarket brands heavily promote low rate personal loans for customers.   Rates as low as 4.7% are shown in large type and in bright colours. But check out the small (and by small we mean tiny) print. If you fail to do so and simply send […]

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Why we’re publishing on January 20, 2014

January 20 is Black Monday – the most depressing day of the year. This year it is probably gloomier than ever but we aim to change that. S0, even though… the Christmas bills have come home to roost gas and electricity costs have gone up and inflation is staying stubbornly higher than pay rises in fact family income is estimated to be £1,200 a year lower than it was five years ago, help is at hand. Money Fight Club will help you to get your finances fit, to see off the bullies that rip you off and to make you […]

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