Customers of these three debt management firms should call their creditors now and seek free debt advice

posted by Rachel in Debt companies, DMP, Dodgy practice Leave a comment

If your debt management firm's closed down, we can help

If your debt management firm’s closed down, we can help

Yesterday morning, The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) warned the customers of three debt management firms to contact their creditors and find out exactly what they owe on their debts.

The debt management firms in question are Sterling Financial Security Limited (Sterling), Haydon Associates Debt Management Consultants Limited (Haydon) and Clear View Finance Limited (Clear View), all based in Lichfield.

Most customers of these firms have had 90% of their monthly payments deducted in fees, meaning that only 10p out of every pound they were paying was actually going towards their debts.

The FCA have announced that these firms have failed to comply with the requirement to provide regular written balance statements to customers. As a result, the FCA has withdrawn permission for them to offer debt management services or set up new debt management plans.

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May’s top debt and money news

posted by Jenny in Debt Leave a comment

Debt news title and newspaper on purple background

Know your rights

There’s been some troubling news this month with devious happenings coming to light that involve pension scams to con innocent folk out of their cash.

Not to mention controversial rip-off letting agency fees making renting a new home cost a small fortune and confusing energy bills bamboozling us into potentially paying more than we should.

On top of all that, we keep signing up to things, forgetting about them and continuing to pay for services we don’t use. How did it come to this? Luckily, we’ve gathered stories on each topic to help avoid such nightmares. Have a good read and make sure you know your rights.
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Free home insulation – do you qualify?

posted by Rachel in Budgeting, Money saving, Priority Household Bills Leave a comment

You may have heard that free insulation is available from some of the big energy companies in the UK. Maybe you’d like to apply – we all like to save money where we can, after all. How do you know if you qualify? And if so, how simple is it to get the insulation installed? 

British Gas is providing loft and wall cavity insulation to households that meet the qualifying criteria, either for free or at a heavily discounted cost. Anyone can apply for free insulation regardless of their income or the utility provider they’re with. Apparently nine out of ten households will qualify, whether they’re working or on benefits.

This incentive is being carried out as part of the Energy Companies Obligation (ECO) scheme the government has set in place for UK energy companies. We’re committed to helping you save money on your living costs, so find out if your household qualifies for the ECO scheme.

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National Vegetarian Week: 5 cheap midweek veggie meals

posted by Laura in Budgeting, Money saving Leave a comment

Frittata

Veggie meals don’t have to be dull!

As this week is National Vegetarian Week, could there be a better time to embrace your greens? It’s estimated that around 1.2 million people in the UK are vegetarian, and many more are choosing to eat meat-free meals. Even Jamie Oliver is reported to be eating veggie a couple of nights a week. Not only can it be a healthier choice, it can help you save money on your food shop.

I decided to be a vegetarian before I hit my teens, after bowing to peer pressure when one of my friends wore a badge to school which said ‘cows are for mooing not barbecuing’. My mum rolled her eyes but agreed to go along with it, thinking it’d just be my latest phase. 14 years later and I’ve still not grown out of it!

When most people think of vegetarian food, they think of dry nut roasts and tasteless tofu. But in actual fact there are so many delicious meals you can make without spending loads of money on meat. I’ve put together a list of some of my favourite recipes…

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7 new uses for old things

posted by Jenny in Budgeting, Money saving Leave a comment

When we spend money we may as well squeeze every single penny out of the things we buy, right? Glad you agree! Join me on my mission to dabble with the boundaries of being overly frugal as I attempt to give everything a second lease of life.

They say cats have nine lives, well these objects have at least two, I tell you. Here are my top seven new uses for old things that’ll save you money, straight from Jenny’s
marvellous recycling emporium. That name makes reusing things sound pretty exciting doesn’t it? Before we have time to debate whether it actually is or not, here’s the list:

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April’s top debt and money news stories

posted by Rory in Bankruptcy, Debt, Debt advice in Scotland, Debt companies, Debt Law, Payday Loans 5 Comments

Know your rights

April 2015 debt news

As the new tax year begins, we’ve seen the introduction of large-scale pension changes that have a wide-ranging impact for many people, including our clients.

April has also seen the introduction of a new type of debt solution in Scotland to help people with lower incomes who are struggling with their debts. In other news, caps on hefty bills caused by unauthorised calls are set to be limited by mobile phone companies and the UK’s largest payday loan company Wonga has announced a significant profit loss and is considering a change of name.

And finally, find out how one restaurant owner’s act of kindness went viral on social media!

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Are you being mindful with your money?

posted by Jo at Mental Health Foundation in Mental Health Awareness Week, Wellbeing Leave a comment

For this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week, we’re re-launching Debt in Mind, our page dedicated to the link between debt and mental health, as well as information on how to deal with both. This year, our friends at Mental Health Foundation (MHF) will be talking about mindfulness and the various benefits it can have on a person’s life. Visit the re-launched Debt in Mind section from mid-May.

You may have heard about mindfulness. Perhaps you think it means sitting cross-legged on the floor and meditating. Maybe you think it means to simply concentrate on your breathing.

You may have even heard that it means to focus on your bodily sensations. Mindfulness is all of those things, and so much more.

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