Category: Personal Finance

Buying a property abroad can be both a home away from home and the first step in creating an international real estate portfolio. The secret to buying a property overseas is similar in some ways and very different in others, to buying it at home. Do not buy a property to make a quick buck, either at home or abroad. Instead, buy for reasons such as it offering great value, providing good returns via rentals, similar properties in that area showing good appreciation or, of course, because you like it. This is where buying at home and abroad can be similar.

The differences are both many and varied. Buying property abroad means purchasing it under another country’s laws. Complex legal frameworks are very different from country to country. Managing these legal issues in the sale transaction is just one hurdle. In some cases, even the issue of title transfer can have its own set of complexities. In parts of Mexico, even if you buy a property the title is not transferred to your name; you just get a long-term lease on the property. Financials, in terms of finding the right channel for transferring the funds and managing exchange risks, is yet another dimension to be managed.

Fahad Al-Rajaan is the president of the Kuwait Real Estate Investment Consortium. As a member of the ruling family, he is responsible for eliciting foreign investments in Kuwaiti real estate projects. His focus on security of investments, transparency of laws and rules, and a high degree of investor sensitivity make him a valuable resource in the development of Kuwait. You can get more info on Fahad Al-Rajaan here.

It becomes almost compulsory to avail the services of specialists while negotiating an overseas purchase. These specialists can range from those managing your foreign exchange transactions and risks, to finding a reputable legal firm to handle the transaction within the country of purchase, you will of course need to find avenues to search for and identify the property you select. Getting someone to conduct a site inspection is often a good idea.

What are some of the hot destinations that an investor might be interested in looking at? Well, that depends on how far away from home you want to venture. If you are a first time buyer and want the property to be closer to home, you can look at options like Panama, Costa Rica, and the Cayman and Caribbean Islands, eastern Mexico and Mexico City. Ideal properties are located in countries with a history of governmental stability with sound financial policies and a strong legal architecture.

A little further away, but meeting the criteria above, are the UK and the Euro zone. Both Spain and Italy currently offer excessive supply and hence offer good value. The Middle East gets a bad rep due to the never-ending conflicts that rage there; however, in the midst of this chaos are two bastions of solidity in Kuwait and Dubai. Both destinations have stable leadership and offer transparent laws, which afford ease of transaction. Both destinations also continue to appreciate over time.

Personal Finance

What are balance transfer credit cards?

These are credit cards that allow you to transfer a balance from another card onto them. They are typically promoted as 0% APR credit cards and provide you with a period of time in which you will pay no interest on the balance you transfer.

You will usually pay a fee to make the transfer. This is usually a small percentage of the amount you are transferring. For example you may come across a card that offers 12 months free for balance transfers that has a 2% charge. If you were to transfer £1,000 to that card the fee would be £20. If you transferred £3,500 the fee would be £70. As such it makes sense to look at the fee to see how good the deal is.

Why might you want to transfer a balance?

Perhaps you have more than one balance on other credit cards. The more cards you have with outstanding balances, the more you will pay in interest each month. You might also find it difficult to keep track of your card payments if you have two, three or more credit cards with outstanding balances.

Additionally, regardless of how many or few outstanding balances you have, you might be charged a high rate of interest on them. If you’re paying, say, 17.7% interest and you can move that balance to one of the 0% APR credit cards on the market, you could save a significant sum of money every single month.

How can you save money with 0% credit cards?

We have seen above that moving a balance to a 0% credit card is a great way of saving money. You can pay the minimum each month if you wish and save on paying any interest. However the best way to save money is to pay off as much as you can each month of the interest free period given on the card.

For example, you may have paid £100 a month before, of which a certain amount was interest. If you continue to pay £100 a month you will reduce your debt much faster since no interest will be added to the amount.

Manage your credit cards more easily

Looking for 0% credit cards is a great way of managing any outstanding balances you may have. Look for the longest-lasting 0% period you can and transfer multiple balances onto it if the credit limit allows you to. While you will pay a fee to make the transfer(s), you will save a small fortune in interest each month. This is why so many people look for these deals. They allow them to reduce the amount they hold in debt and perhaps even get rid of it altogether.

If you have one or more credit cards with a balance that is held over every month where you only make the minimum payment each time, look for balance transfer credit cards today. They could save you a lot of money in the long run.

This post was contributed by moneysite.com – Online money transfer.

 

 

Personal Finance

Has the issue of PPI compensation left you confused or uncertain? Many people do not realise that they have been mis-sold policies and are eligible to claim a refund as millions have before them. Thanks to a ruling from the High Court, lenders that used selling tactics that violated regulations must pay back all charges on mis-sold policies, along with additional compensation. The average payout for a single policy is £2750, and banks and lenders have put billions of pounds aside to cover refunds.

About PPI

Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) insures borrowers against involuntary redundancy, sickness and accidental injury. Should this occur, it will cover their repayments on a credit agreement such as a loan or mortgage. Usually it will last for twelve months, but may stretch to two years in some circumstances. Many people do not realise they have been mis-sold policies and are entitled to PPI compensation. Why not contact us and see if you might be able to make a claim?

How to Find out if I can Claim?

If you can prove that you have been wrongly sold a PPI policy, you are entitled to make a PPI compensation claim. When taking out a credit agreement, your rights should have been explained in full, and this includes the right to shop around for the best PPI rate. A lot of the time, lenders implied that customers had to take out a PPI policy from them directly in order to receive credit. In other cases, the borrower was charged for a PPI policy without even being told. These tactics and more qualify as mis-selling, and if you have been mis-sold a policy you are legally entitled to make a claim.

Best way to Make a Claim

Many customers who have fallen victim to the scandal choose to lodge their PPI compensation claims with the help of a claims management company. We are confident that our experience in handling PPI claims will allow us to give you all the help you need in the most effective way. Our claims handlers are highly experienced and ready to give you advice and assistance in making your claim successfully. We offer a no win no fee* service, so if your claim is not successful you will not pay anything. Why not contact us to find out how we can help you reclaim the money that you are owed?

How Much Could you get back in PPI Compensation?

As every PPI policy is different for each type of credit it covers, and the amounts borrowed individual to each customer, the PPI compensation amount will be different for every claimant. The average payout, however, is in the region of £2750, though the amounts won by some customers have reached the tens of thousands. It’s also not impossible that you’ve got more than one PPI policy, and each policy is likely to have its own individual refund payout amount.

PPI calculator will be able to help you get an approximation, though an associate of our team will be pleased to assist you to work out a more precise amount. Its most accurate if you have certain information on the PPI policy to hand, including the amount of the outstanding loan as well as the rate of interest you needed to pay etc.

We’ve already helped a lot of people make claims that were successful, so see exactly how we could help you and get in touch with us today.  Our team of experienced claims advisers are on hand to help you put your PPI claims on mis sold policies into action, and we will also offer you not only a no win no fee* package (so that you do not have to pay anything in the event your claim is unsuccessful), but we will also make sure you are kept up to date with developments at all times.  We also use specialist solicitors who will ensure you get maximum compensation – don’t settle for less. It is your basic right to make a claim, so why not let our team take the stress out of the process for you?  You’ll then be free to ponder on what exactly you’ll be spending that PPI compensation money on…

Personal Finance

One in five SMEs reported cashflow was a major challenge to the successful growth of their business, according to a recent report. The report also suggested that the concern about cashflow was highest in companies that were confident about growth in the future – this is a problem that is largely connected to success (the burgeoning UK economy) instead of to failure. While it is encouraging that more SMEs are feeling positive about their financial future, without sustained growth success will never be possible. Here’s how to use cashflow finance to ensure that cashflow problems don’t appear on your radar.

Cashflow Problems Halting SME Growth?

In the Albion Growth Report, sole traders were the group most likely to suffer from cashflow concerns (24 percent of those polled). Larger SMEs were less likely to report cashflow issues but they are still a worry for many organisations, no matter what size. Companies in the South West and Wales were those most affected by cashflow (or lack of).

Easing Cashflow Concerns with Cashflow Finance

According to the data in the recent report, one third of companies plan to raise finance for growth within the next year. The reasons for seeking finance include making more capital available for business development activities, and expansion of business premises. Whatever you want to spend the money on, there is one way to generate finance that can help build your business and ease cashflow worries.

What is Cashflow Financing?

Cashflow finance is a form of business financing where the loan drawn from an external organisation or bank is backed by the expected cashflow of the company making the loan application. According to ultimatefinance.co.uk, cashflow finance is used by SMEs looking to grow or to finance the purchase of another company or some other major purchase. Cashflow finance differs from asset finance, where the loan is backed by the assets owned by the company. The schedule for repayment of the loan is based on the cashflow projection.

Advantages of Cashflow Financing for the SME

The advantages of this form of financing, particularly when it takes place through a specialist organisation rather than a major bank, include the flexibility and adaptability connected to the loan which makes it easier to find a solution that is tailored to the exact needs of the SME in question. Raising finance through cashflow financing is a way of ensuring that the company has the means necessary to grow in the short- and long-term, while maintaining an affordable level of debt that is manageable both in the near future and further down the line when the company has grown and expanded. Using a specialist organisation for financing purposes is preferable as it cuts down the risk of ending up with a product that is unaffordable or which does not suit the company – high levels of debt that are unable to be maintained are not a solution to growth.

Sources: http://www.bridgingandcommercial.co.uk/article-desc-4314_sme-growth-hampered-by-cash-flow-concerns#.VCBEUFeMTWU

Personal Finance

Lights. Camera.  Action.  Today in the marketplace, it’s not good enough to have an outstanding product for your targeted audience; you must appeal to them in ways that they enjoy.  With society becoming a more visually oriented entity, it should become apparent that you must connect with your audience with quality videos that show them what your product is about; this is a much more powerful strategy than having them read about your goods and services. Your goal should be to grab the attention of your audience as quickly as possible, provide them with information about your product, and prompt them to buy before they leave your website for a more interesting location.

Go Beyond Your Brand

Of course you will want to discuss your ideas with the team of experts that you hire, but ask their opinion about providing your visitors with more than just information about your brand. You might want to schedule a series of videos that “show how” to do a particular task with your product or give them an educational lesson on the benefits of doing proper maintenance with your inventory items.  This will attract their interest and keep them coming back to your website for more videos that teach them in an interesting and powerful manner; this will also help to establish your company as an authority in the niche.

Build Your Credibility

With a video, you can show that your company is a credible provider of a product that can enhance the lives of your consumers. You can demonstrate how effective your product really is which helps to build up trust with your clients.  Using these interesting and informative videos will increase your rapport with clients and convince them that seeing really is believing.

Develop Your Company’s Personality with Videos

Today’s consumers are seeking products with which they can identify and those that elicit feelings of emotion and confidence. Effectively produced videos can help your clients to associate those feelings with your product for higher conversion rates.  Whether you use storytelling to evoke these feelings or bits of humour that can also be used as a powerful instrument, your video must capture the interest of your audience quickly and create a bond with them that they won’t soon forget.  Knowing how to develop your company’s personality with their work will be the focus of an experienced team of professionals who know what will work best for your company.  You should visit rawproductions.tv so that you can begin to get a feel for the services that are available to your business and how they can be effectively used to drive traffic that generates leads and sales for you.

If you want to be the best in your niche, you must take steps to use the technological advances that are currently preferred by consumers. Knowing that quality videos can take your marketing to higher levels of success should be the catalyst that causes you to explore this new opportunity.

Personal Finance

We would all like to be able to avoid the business overdraft if we can help it. Sometimes it is just not the most practical method of financing the development or growth of a business, plus business overdrafts are becoming increasing hard to get from banks. There are these days many alternatives out there. It pays to do your research and speak to the experts to get some advice and guidance as to what might suit your circumstances. Here are some of the options that you might consider.

Asset Financing:

This is where you spread the cost of purchasing new equipment or machinery over a period of time. It is basically a loan provided by a financing company to purchase assets without spending a huge lump sum upfront. This helps a business to manage its cashflow and finances in a more manageable way. This type of finance has huge benefits as it allows finances to be focused in the areas which actually need to be developed in order to make the business more profitable. It is perfect whether just starting out or expanding and growing an existing business. Existing assets can also be used as collateral in order to gain access to further finances in order to manage cashflow gaps or develop the business in other directions. There is plenty of information and advice on things like asset finance to be found at Ultimate Finance.

Invoice Factoring or Discounting:

All businesses have cashflow issues caused by late payment of invoices. It is a naturally occurring part of the business process and has to be managed as part of any business financial strategy. One way of doing this is to take advantage of invoice factoring. This means that invoices not yet paid are ‘sold’ to a factoring company. Your business will be paid up front before the invoice is due so that you are guaranteed your money and to be able to pay your own bills and cover staff costs in a timely manner. Invoice payments are then paid by your customer to the factoring company. This provides any business with a stable and manageable income which provides peace of mind.

Take Advantage of Crowd-Funding:

Technology and the resources that it has provided us with have many advantages. One of the newest ways of providing businesses with financing support is crowd-funding. This gives a business a platform to reach out to potential investors who are willing to provide investment for returns. The internet provides us with a huge audience and it is always possible that there is someone out there seeking exactly what your business has to offer. Crowd-funding can put you in touch with the relevant people. Just be prepared to do a little bit of PR and marketing to sell you business to possible investors.

There are many other alternatives out there. It does us well to think out of the box on occasions. Always consider the repercussions of borrowing any finance and discuss these matters with a professional before you proceed.

Personal Finance

          With the economy still recuperating from the latest stock market dip, many people need money to make it between paydays. Their paychecks cannot cover all of their expenses because of the rising costs of consumer and living goods. When they lack the credit to take out a bank loan and do not want to max out their credit cards, people might wonder what other option they have to get cash fast. They may choose to use a short term finance option that will give them the financing they need without having to risk their credit score or available lines of credit elsewhere.

          When they are interested in taking out a short term cash option like a payday loan, people may wonder how this process actually works. They wonder if they should take time off and relegate themselves to standing in line at a store somewhere in their town. However, applying for this financial option no longer includes having to take time away from work or standing in long lines elsewhere. People can now use the Internet at their leisure to complete the online application that is required and find out if they are approved.

          If they can meet the basic qualifications, people may be approved for money that they need today. It is helpful if they have a job or some other source of income to show that they can pay off their loan, for example. They also may do well to have a bank account or at least a prepaid card that they can receive the cash funds on if they are approved. Having a reliable address and names of references can also work in their favor.

          If they can provide these details for the application, the lender can then determine if they are approved and for what amount of money. Many people can expect to hear back within a matter of hours, sometimes sooner. If they are approved, people should understand the terms and conditions of their loan and understand as well how to pay it back in time. The terms and conditions are available on the website. 

          People can also set up an online account with the lender so that they can manage their loan and find out when payments are due. This option lets them stay in charge of their loan and avoid any unpleasant surprises that could come from not being aware of fees and charges.

Personal Finance

Even when gold prices aren’t as high as we might like for them to be, there are still things that can be done to get top cash for gold. No matter what the current gold prices are, a person should always take their time when deciding when to sell gold and whom to sell it to. Even if a person doesn’t get top dollar for their gold, at least they won’t be taken advantage of.

Learn How Gold Sales Work

The first thing that should be done is learning how gold sales work. Gold has a melt value and a retail price. The retail price is the cost of the gold if it were being bought it in a store, and the seller will most likely only be offered a portion of this price. The melt value is the commoditized worth of the actual gold. With an heirloom gold piece, its melt value will more than likely be much less than its retail price.

The seller also has to understand how gold is measured. Scrap gold is measured in pennyweights, which is 1.55 grams. Good dealers will be able to tell how much they would be willing to pay for a pennyweight of 10k, 12k, 14k, 18k, or 24k gold.

All That Glitters Isn’t Gold

There are some gold buyers that allow individuals to mail in their gold by sending a return pack in the mail. The gold piece will be appraised and the buyer will send a check. While this seems like an easy way to make some money, there are some mail-in companies that lowball their customers and pay less for gold than its actual worth. In order to get as much cash for gold as possible, sellers shouldn’t be afraid of doing some actual research and getting quotes from different jewelry buyers and pawn shops in order to find the best price.

Pawn It

Some looking to sell gold might not like the idea of selling to a pawn shop, but doing so is actually a great idea. Pawn shops are a business, and just like any kind of business they need their customers just as much as their customers need them. When attempting to pawn gold jewelry, it’s important to remember to never seem desperate or in a hurry.

Before going to any pawn shop, hopeful sellers should hop online to see what the current market value of their jewelry is so that they’ll be able to tell the difference between a bad deal and a good deal. It’s a good idea to call at least four pawn shops in order to get a well-balanced idea of the gold’s worth.

Gut Feeling

Rather than focusing on the dollar signs, it’s better for a person to focus on their gut. If a deal doesn’t feel or sound right, it’s best to take some time to think about it and do some extra research. The reason that it’s so important to do research before looking for gold buyers is so that the seller will have a better idea of when someone might be taking advantage of them.

Getting top dollar for gold is all about research, timing, patience, and a bit of luck. Put them all together and everything is sure to work out for the best.

Personal Finance

It is not easy to find the best debit card. You have to look at a lot of
different factors. First of all, you should look at how many ATMs are
in the area that take the card. You want a card that can be used almost
anywhere, not one that can really only be used at the bank without a
fee.

Next, you should think about security. Does the card have a picture of
your face printed on it? This is better than just using your signature
since your signature can be forged. With a picture on the card, you know
that no one can use it, even if they steal it out of your wallet.

After that, look at the rewards. Do you get points every time that you
use the debit card? If so, what can you use those points for? Some cards
will allow you to use them toward airline miles or savings at your
favorite stores. Others will just cut you a check every so often. Find
the benefits that make the most sense for you and for your needs, and
that is the card that you should get.

Finally, you should check the overdraft fees. This is the amount that
you have to pay if you accidentally take out more than you have in your
account. The lower the fees, the better. You never know when this could
accidentally happen. The best thing to look for is a card that has no
overdraft fees.

Personal Finance

Almost everybody is looking for ways to save money in every area that they can. Insurance in Greensboro NC is something that everyone in the area likely wants to save money on. Although some types of insurance are optional, other types are required by law, which means that whether you want to purchase it or not, it is required in order for you to be in accordance in the law. An example is car insurance. Most states require that you carry a minimum amount of protection on your vehicle. This type of protection is known as liability coverage in some states and personal injury protection coverage in others. Regardless, there are a few tips that you can follow to help you save money on your car insurance.

Good Driving Record

One of the most significant ways to save money on your insurance premiums is to have a good driving record. If you don’t have any DUIs, traffic infractions, speeding tickets and other types of negative reports on your driving record, then insurance companies won’t view you as a high risk driver. They will feel more secure that you won’t be getting into any accidents, so they’ll be less likely to actually have to pay out on a claim concerning you. Some insurance companies will even offer you discounts for having good driving records.

Keep Your Vehicle in a Garage

Keeping your vehicle in a garage is an easy way to get cheaper insurance rates. If your vehicle is kept in a garage, then it is less likely that it will be subject to random damage by Mother Nature like hail, falling limbs and other natural disasters. Additionally, it is less likely that it will be sideswiped by other vehicles than if it was parked on the side of the street, and it’s also less likely that it will be vandalized or stolen. Many insurance companies offer you a discount just for keeping your vehicle in a garage.

Consistent Customer

The longer you stay with an insurance company without filing a claim, the better it looks for you. Insurance companies like customers who are going to stick with them without filing claims, so if you report that you usually stay with one insurance company for a long time, then you might be able to receive cheaper rates on your premiums.

Saving money while on a budget consists of cutting costs where you can. By following the above tips, you can help cut down the amount of money that you spend on car insurance, which is a necessary expense.

Personal Finance