Cash Genie to refund £20m: does it affect you?

posted by Laura in Debt, Payday Loans Leave a comment

Payday loans company Ariste Holding Limited, which trades as Cash Genie, has agreed to pay out over £20 million to more than 92,000 of its customers.

The announcement comes a year after Cash Genie voluntarily told the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the body which regulates them, that they had treated customers unfairly.

Linda Woodall from the FCA said: “We have been encouraged that Cash Genie has been working with us proactively and openly to put things right for its customers after these issues were reported.

“Although standards in the consumer credit sector are improving, it is disappointing that examples of poor practice in the payday market keep surfacing.”

Francis McGee, Director of External Affairs at StepChange Debt Charity, said: “It has been well established that unfair practices were widespread in the payday loan industry. Today’s news that tens of thousands who were on the receiving end of unscrupulous behaviour will be compensated is extremely welcome.”

So what actually happened?…

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How will upcoming benefits changes affect my DMP?

posted by James in benefits, DMP 8 Comments

The July Budget revealed plans to reduce welfare benefits by £12bn. There are two questions that are likely to be on your mind if you’re on a debt management plan (DMP). Firstly: what benefits are going to be affected? Secondly: how will these changes impact my finances and my DMP?

We’ve summarised the biggest changes, when they’re going to happen and who’s likely to be affected by them. We’ve then covered some likely questions that might crop up if you’re on a DMP.

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5 budgeting apps road-tested

posted by James in Budgeting, Money saving 6 Comments

Making a budget and actually sticking to the budget are two entirely different things. We all start off with good intentions but then life happens and sometimes it all goes out of the window.

Keeping track of your spending using your smartphone is a good way to try and stick to your budget. Or at least it’ll tell you exactly why you’re not able to keep to your budget. They don’t put any more money in your pocket but it could make you more organised about how you spend it.

We’ve picked five budgeting apps and each member of the MoneyAware team has test-driven one of them for a week to see what they think of them. Here are our opinions about the apps we tried out: Continue reading »

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Know your rights: July’s debt news

posted by James in Debt, Debt companies, Dodgy practice Leave a comment

We’ve had Wimbledon, a short heat wave and plenty of drizzle, so it’s safe to say that summer has properly begun. What better way to enjoy the longer evenings and warmer rain than to kick back and enjoy the latest edition of debt and money news?

We’ve scoured the web for all the latest news on debt and money, so you don’t have to. Find out the latest on phoning 0800 numbers from your mobile, banks using jargon, soaring rents, payday loan complaints and much more. Well, a bit more.

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Save money on electricity: a step-by-step guide

posted by Jenny in Budgeting, Money saving 2 Comments

Looking to save money on your bills but don’t know where to start? Me too. I’ve been gathering electricity saving tips to help reduce our energy bills.

Turns out, this is basically a list of reasons why I shouldn’t be allowed to live on my own. It’s also a list of my crimes against energy-saving. I’m sorry world, I can change.

If you find you’re doing most of these things already, that’s excellent, go you! If not, don’t worry. We’re in this together.
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How to tell a genuine freebie site from the fakes!

posted by Jasmine Birtles in Dodgy practice, Free things to do, Money saving Leave a comment

As you no doubt know, we’re big fans of MoneyMagpie.com, one of the most savings-savvy websites around. Jasmine Birtles is here to tell us how to sort the genuine freebie website from the fakes. Take it away, Jasmine!

Freebie sites are a great way to save money.  Why pay for something when you can get it for free?

And there are a lot of genuine free things you can get online and offline (as our article for 50 ways to live for free will attest). As expected, however, there are scammers out there looking to take advantage of your desire for a freebie. Let’s look at the biggest warning signs of a bogus website so you can side-step a ton of heartache…

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Host your own garden party on a budget

posted by Lucia in Budgeting, Debt, Money saving Leave a comment

If you can’t get to Spain, why not bring Spain to you! Lucia in our training team gives you her tips to make a Mediterranean feast on a budget…

Phew, we can all breathe a sigh of relief…summer has finally landed. Well, that’s what my calendar tells me, but the weather’s saying differently at the moment!

At this time of year all my friends want to spend the weekend in the pub, and the cost of this can soon add up.

As an alternative, how about asking the girls round for a summer garden party? If you’ve not got a garden you could easily pack up the food and take it to the park, or even have an indoor picnic. With a little bit of creativity you can whip up some tasty food and drinks without breaking your food budget. If everyone helps out and brings a bottle, you can still be the hostess with the mostess!

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