Most people have heard of ISAs and chances are, if you have savings you’ve probably invested your money in one. But are you getting the best deal or is there something out there that might suit you better?
In a savings account the interest is usually taxed at between 20-40 per cent, so cash ISAs are a good option if you want to keep your hands on your hard earned cash.
First, let’s look at what exactly and ISA is, then explore the benefits of switching your account.
What is an ISA?
An ISA is a type of tax-free savings or investment accounts. You can get an ISA from your bank, building societies or asset manager. Generally speaking, there are two types of ISA – a cash ISA or a stocks and shares ISA.
Types of ISA
If you open a cash ISA the interest earned is tax free, although remember you have to be over 16 to get this type of ISA. The other type is a stocks and shares ISA, in which your capital gains and income will be protected from tax, but your dividends are still subject to a fee. You have to be over 18 to get one of these.
Some ISAs allow instant access to your cash, while others require a notice period to withdraw money. An instant access account allows you to withdraw money whenever you want, while a fixed-rate cash ISA pays higher interest but ties up your funds for at least a year.
How to find the best ISA for you
Consider your individual circumstances. There are hundreds of ISAs out there to choose from which means you’re sure to find one that’s perfect for you.
Which? website recommends you switch ISA every year to find the best rate, instead of leaving your money in the same account for a long period of time. It’s a good idea to shop around and see who’s currently offering the best ISA deals, and you can use a special savings rates booster tool to see how much more you could be making in interest.
Do you prefer to bank online or in branch? How you choose to manage your savings can dictate the rate of interest you receive.
The amount you want to save is up to you, although if you can commit to putting in a regular amount you’re likely to get a better rate. Think about whether a monthly savings plan would work for you, or if you just want to put away a lump sum.
Time to switch?
Investigate what rate your current ISA offers, and then do a little research to find out if you’d be better off saving elsewhere. If you decide to switch bear in mind there are rules around ISA transfers which must be adhered to to ensure you get the most benefits from your savings.
Do you have an ISA? Tell us how you manage your savings…
Buying a Housewith no Down Payment – sunbelt finance
Of course there can be no better choice than to own a home in your name. But with the financial stress increasing everyday and the economical downfall every now and down, it becomes difficult for some people to buy a house. Moreover, to start the process of buying a house, you need to first pay an upfront deposit to the seller or a down payment to the lender for your home loan. Such people also cannot think of buying a house with no down payment.
Image by James Thompson via Flickr
Image by James Thompson via Flickr
But now there are certain options available in which you can go about buying a house with no down payment. The conventional mortgage is a type of loan in which the down payment is only 10 to 20 percent. Besides, it can also be done with no down payment at all. If you have a good credit score but no cash in hand, you can start buying a house with no down payment.
The deterrent to this type of loan is that you have to pay a higher rate of interest. Also, you need to keep one of your properties as a guarantee against the payment of the mortgage loan. This is because if you are going with buying a house with no down payment, it poses an extremely high risk on the lender in case you are unable to settle the amount in time.
Another way for buying a house with no down payment is to attend the federal programs. The VA (Department of Veterans Affair) is a kind of loan that is given to the military service officers who have retire from the service. With this approval, you shall start buying a house with no down payment. Similar programs are available for the rural people and others who do not have enough credit or cash to hand out.
Also, if you can win the confidence of the seller by showing him the proof of your steady job and income, you can successfully go about buying a house with no down payment. If the seller is convinced that you can settle the amount in time without having to pay any down payment, you can surely win the case.
Thus it is necessary that you have a high credit history in your name and are eligible in paying a higher rate of interest. Only in such cases can you think of buying a house with no down payment. Your credit score and monthly income stands as a proof that you will not leave the lender empty-handed in the end.
Dental finance plans for cosmetic procedures – sunbelt finance
Dental finance has become increasingly popular over the last five years and many dental practices now offer payment plans and finance options to make treatment more affordable for patients.
Which practices offer finance plans?
Many practices offer dental finance plans, but not all do; NHS dental surgeries do not offer finance and some private dental clinics may not offer finance options; the best thing to do is to contact the practice directly and ask about the services they provide; most dental clinics also have websites and you can usually find details of finance options for clients online.
Usually, finance plans are available for cosmetic and orthodontic dental treatments because they tend to be expensive and therefore patients are more likely to want to spread the cost, rather than paying the entire fee up-front.
What does a finance plan involve?
Dental finance plans are designed to make dental treatment more affordable; the exact arrangement depends on the individual agreement, but most involve paying a monthly fee towards the total cost of treatment over a set period of time. Many dental clinics offer zero per cent interest for a period of time, but this varies and you will need to check the details of your agreement to determine how much you need to pay over what period of time.
What are the benefits of a dental finance plan for cosmetic dental treatment?
The major benefit of a dental finance plan is that it makes cosmetic dental treatment more accessible. Especially in cases like a dental implant procedure, with the help of a finance plan, treatment is affordable for a wider range of people and clients are able to spread the cost over a period of time. This is as opposed to paying out a large sum of money in one go which for many people would be impossible, which means that they would not be able to have treatment at all.
How much will I pay?
The amount you pay depends on the cost of the treatment you have and the term of the arrangement (the period over which you make the payments). Your monthly payment and the total cost of your treatment will be shown in your finance agreement.