4 Reasons to Get a Mortgage and Buy a Property

4 Reasons to Get a Mortgage and Buy a Property

For first-time buyers, getting on the property ladder is one of the most difficult processes in the entire world. As people say however, ‘nothing in life worth having comes easily’ and that is very true when it comes to buying a property.

Once you take the plunge, save up the deposit, wade through various mortgages options and eventually sign on the dotted line and receive the keys to your new home, you’ll be so glad you did it. All of those years of hard graft, saving, stressing, and preparation will have been worthwhile. If you’re still not sure whether or not getting a mortgage could be right for you however, here are 4 reasons to get a mortgage and buy a property for the very first time.

Buying a house is an investment

Most things in life, tend to lose value the second we purchase them, with cars being a prime example (unless it’s a classic). Some purchases however, prove to be fantastic investments. Gold is one, and property is another. When you find yourself wondering whether the numerous mortgages deals you were offered were worth it, just remember that house prices are almost certain to increase with each passing year. Each year house prices will generally increase in value, which means that, when the time does come to sell up, if that’s what you want to do, when you sell up you will receive a very impressive return on your investment.

You’ll have your independence

If you still live at home, or perhaps room share with others, even though you may enjoy yourself, sometimes you will crave your own space and independence. When you decide to get a mortgage and buy a property for the first time, you will find yourself having more independence than you could have ever imagined. You have your own space, you can decorate the way you want to, you can wear what you want, and you can do whatever you want (within reason) as you will be under your very own roof.

You get to put your own unique stamp on the place

If you rent a property, a room, or still live at home, you aren’t the homeowner, so you don’t get to decide how to decorate and furnish the home. That means that, if you do want to decorate, you either have to ask permission first, or you simply know outright that redecorating is not an option. Once you’ve obtained your mortgage and have moved into your new home however, you get to put your own unique stamp on the place and can furnish and decorate it however you like.

You take pride in ownership

Let’s face it, when we eventually obtain a mortgage and buy our very first property, this will be one of the proudest achievements of our lives so far. Buying a home will give you a great sense of achievement, and will give you something to be proud about.

4 Benefits of Car Finance

4 Benefits of Car Finance

When it comes to investments, there are some things in life that are guaranteed to increase in value. Gold is generally a prime example, as is property. But what about some investments that don’t pay dividends? Well, as fantastic as they are, a lot of people will tell you that cars lose value the second they leave the showroom.

To many of us however, we don’t care as we take great pleasure in driving around stylish motor vehicles. Rather than buying a used vehicle however, it might be worth looking into car finance instead. Here’s a look at some of the main advantages of choosing car finance.

Flexible payment options

One of the best things about getting a car on finance is the fact that it provides you with flexible payment options. Depending on the type of deal you get, and the deposit you put down, you can split your payments up into monthly instalments over a prolonged period of time. The longer the finance deal runs for, the less you will pay each month. Having this type of flexibility is very beneficial as it means you can pay a small amount each month and still have plenty of money left to cover other expenses such as, you know, living.

Purchase a nice car

Let’s face it, with bills to pay and lives to lead, not everybody has the luxury of being able to afford to pay thousands on a car, either new or used. Because of this, some of us are forced to spend a few hundred and buy a cheap, used banger just to get us from A to B. Normally these cars fail their MOT or break down so we wind up having to spend more anyway. By getting a car on finance however, you can purchase a newer, nicer, more reliable vehicle and still have plenty of money left to cover your other living expenses etc.

Safety

Another thing we don’t often consider when buying used cars on the cheap is the fact that as they are normally older, they lack certain safety features and are therefore more dangerous to drive. If you get a car finance deal and buy a newer car however, the car will be newer which already makes it safer. On top of that, it will also have more safety features and technology in general. Newer cars have parking sensors, cameras, ABS brakes, emergency braking, and much more besides. Car finance gives you the ability to purchase a safer, more advanced car, without spending a small fortune all in one go.

Save money

We know that with car finance you do wind up spending slightly more than the car is worth overall, but even so, you still end up saving a significant amount of money by going with a newer car. As the car is newer it is more reliable, so you’ll have to spend less on parts and repairs. What’s more, many new models are also road tax exempt as they give off such low emissions, so once again, that’s another saving.

How to Haggle for a Great Broadband Deal

How to Haggle for a Great Broadband Deal

As you probably know, without the internet we would be pretty-much done for as far as society goes. We rely on the internet and our broadband deals for a variety of reasons, and without it you wouldn’t be reading this article right now. We use the web for our shopping, we use it to pay our bills, we do our work online, and we like to spend our free time online in the process.

Needless to say, broadband providers have picked up on the fact that we’re so reliant on them, and to be quite frank, some of them are charging their customers extortionate amounts of money for a service that can be obtained much cheaper from somewhere else. If your broadband provider is ripping you off, it’s time to haggle and get a better deal, either from them or with somebody else. Here are some tips on haggling for a great broadband deal.

Ask your provider for a discount

First and foremost, we understand that switching broadband providers, while not being the hardest task in the world, is still another job we could do without. Ideally, we’d stick with the provider we’re with now, but would pay much less. Believe it or not, but one of the best ways of getting a better deal from your broadband provider is to simply give them a ring and ask them. You’d be amazed by how many times a simple phone call and the request of a discount works. At the end of the day, you’ve nothing to lose and everything to gain, so give them a call, tell them you’re unhappy with the amount you’re paying, and see what they can do for you.

Get quotes from elsewhere

Another great haggling technique when it comes to obtaining a broadband deal is to speak to other providers and get quotes from them. Tell them how much you are paying now and they will almost certainly offer you a better price for the same deal and service, otherwise you’d have no incentive to go with them. Once you obtain these quotes you can then go back to your current provider.

See if your current provider can beat the quotes you obtained

Once you’ve obtained a few quotes from other providers, call your current provider, tell them you are unhappy and are thinking of leaving because of the price, and tell them the cheapest quotes you were offered. As they will likely want to retain your custom, they will likely offer come back with an even better offer then the cheapest quotes you received.

Play hard ball

If you are still not happy with the offers your provider has come back to you with, now it’s time to play hard ball. Assuming you are at the end of your contract, or are soon to be, simply tell them that if they don’t offer you a better deal, that you are going to cancel and not renew with them again. If they value your custom, they will offer you a cheaper rate. If not, and you seriously are looking to leave, go with one of the other providers who gave you a quote and see which offers they have for you.

Tips on Saving for a Deposit for a Mortgage

Tips on Saving for a Deposit for a Mortgage

Let’s not beat about the bush here, when it comes to buying a house, people in this generation are in a far, far, far more difficult position than their parents were a generation ago. Mortgages are much tougher to obtain, house prices have increased drastically, and banks and lenders are much stricter with whom they lend to, and the amounts they lend. Perhaps the hardest part of buying a property for the first time however, or any time for that matter, is actually saving up the deposit to buy the house in the first place.

The magic number is generally 10% of the property’s value, so if you’re looking at buying a property for, say, 100,000 Euros, saving up 10,000 Euros while paying your bills and living your life is far from easy. There are, however, a number of things you can do to save for a deposit without living like a hermit for several years. Here are some tips on saving for a house deposit.

Try not to rent

Okay, though none of us would relish the thought of giving up our independence and moving back in with our parents, or a family member, if you are serious about buying a house then you will need to get your deposit together. For many, this means not renting a property and instead moving back home and paying your parents board instead, which will likely be less than a monthly rent. In the past, once children reached 18 and were classed as adults, they moved out into the big wide world, got a job, brought a home, and that was that. Nowadays however, things are very different. If you can’t move back home or don’t want to, consider renting a room rather than a property and put the money you are saving on rent, to one side for your deposit.

Sell old and unwanted items

Yes, we know it’s a bit of a pain in the backside taking photos of items, listing them on auction sites, and selling them when you have a life to lead, but if you want to save money, this is a very viable option. Selling old and unwanted items will generate some extra cash for you, which you will not miss. Put it into a savings account and watch it grow.

Get a lodger

Assuming you are renting, if you do want to save money it could be worth you taking in a lodger. Now, the first thing you need to do here is check with your landlord that they are okay with you doing so. They will probably ask for a higher monthly rent from the pair of you, but this will still mean that you are saving money in the long run and again, when you are saving money, make sure you set it aside.

Get financial assistance

There are various help-to-buy schemes now in place that are designed to help first-time buyers save for a deposit, so it may be worth looking into those. As well as that, you could consider asking for a loan from a family member/close friend.

4 Things New Homeowners Should Do When Buying a House

Broadband – 4 Things New Homeowners Should Do When Buying a House

After the stress and aggravation associated with buying a house, and the finances involved, it’s now time to start thinking positively and focussing on the fact that you have just purchased a new home. After buying a house you will no doubt be eager to get moved in as quickly as possible, which is why you need to start looking at broadband, energy suppliers, and things of that nature.

We are living in a world that is becoming increasingly reliant upon modern technology which is why getting a good broadband deal is so important. As well as sorting all of your appliances out of course, you will also need to ensure that you make the house habitable. To make your move that little bit easier, here’s a look at 4 things new homeowners should do when buying a house.

Decorate

Unless you opt to buy a new build, there’s a good chance that when you move into a house you have purchased from somebody else, that you will want to decorate and put your own unique stamp on the place. Remember, you’re looking to make this house your home, so decorate the way you want to. We aren’t going to tell you which colours to use, and which accessories to buy because that’s entirely down to you. All we will say is that you need to go with styles that you enjoy, not what somebody else likes.

Sort your broadband

Trust us, when you move into a new home the sooner you can get your broadband sorted out the easier life will be. Many of us rely on the internet for work purposes, so that is reason enough to get it sorted right away. On top of that, having the internet will enable you to communicate with others much easier, plus you can order things for the house, and of course, you can get other issues sorted like utilities.

Find an energy supplier

Once in your home you will of course need gas and electric, or just electric in some cases. These utilities unfortunately do not come for free but if you shop around and look online (another reason to get your broadband installed ASAP) you will find some great deals. It’s a bit of a pain at first, but if you set aside just one or two hours you could potentially save yourself a fortune. There are of course, a number of websites and forums out there created specifically to help people save money on things like this, so just bear that in mind before you begin your search.

Have the boiler serviced

At the hub of all houses is the boiler. If your boiler breaks down you will be without heating and hot water, and you don’t need anybody to tell you how awful that would be, especially in winter. What’s more, boilers are incredibly expensive to replace so the last thing you want is to have to buy a new one after spending who knows what on a new home. Having it serviced will help keep it in full working order for longer.

Interesting Facts about Broadband and the Internet

Interesting Facts about Broadband and the Internet

Nowadays, the internet is as common in everyday life as the humble television set. It’s hard to believe then, that a little over two decades ago, having online connectivity was seen as a luxury that only the very privileged could afford. We rely on the internet for so many things in day to day life that in all honesty, if for some reason the world were to lose online connectivity, even for a short period of time, chaos and anarchy would likely ensue. As awesome as the internet is, we bet there are a number of facts relating to the internet that you weren’t aware of. Many of these facts are nothing more than just useless trivia, but they’re incredibly interesting nonetheless, and who knows when they may come in handy. Here are some interesting facts about broadband and the internet that you probably didn’t know.

There are a lot of websites online

Shock horror, the internet has a lot of websites, who knew? Yes, okay, you can hold the sarcasm however, because you’ll likely be surprised when you learn precisely how many websites there are. As of October 2018, there are more than 1.9 BILLION websites online, and that number is growing every single day. Some are awesome, some are horrendous, and some are just plain bizarre, but they are there nonetheless.

More than 1 in 2 people uses the web

We knew that the internet was popular, but did you know it was this popular? Currently there are 7.53 billion people in the world. As of this writing, just shy of 3.8 billion people are connected to the world wide web in some capacity.

We spend a lot of money online

Whether you’re buying your dog a cute outfit to wear during the holidays, or a brand-new processor for your work laptop, you can buy virtually anything online. Because of this, we spend a lot of money online in the UK, but do you know how much? Well, roughly each year, we spend an astonishing £1.7 Trillion on the web.

Hacking is a problem

Like it or not, online cyber crime is a real problem. Many websites, big and small, have been hacked in the past, and sadly that will likely be the case for the foreseeable future. Every single day however, around 85,000 websites are hacked by cyber-criminals, with WordPress sites being amongst the most vulnerable.

The first email was sent earlier than you thought

It wasn’t until the mid-nineties that the internet started to take off. The world’s very first email however, was sent way back in 1971. While the world’s first text message read ‘Merry Christmas’ the world’s first email was decidedly more boring. We know that because US programmer Ray Tomlinson sent it, and he can’t actually remember what it said.

We send a lot of emails

Talking of emails, while most of yours are probably spam, you do get the occasional useful one. But do you know how many emails are sent thanks to the internet and broadband? Well, you’re about to. We send 250 Billion emails every single day.

Mistakes People Make When Buying a Car

For many of us, a car isn’t just a luxury, it is a necessity that we rely on in everyday life. We use our cars to take us to work, to pick the kids up, to run errands, and of course, to go out to fun places on our days off. So then, the last thing you will want to envision is your four-wheeled pride and joy suddenly deciding to break down one day and never work again.

Unfortunately, at some point in time that scenario may come to fruition, leaving you in desperate need of a replacement car. And fast. Before rushing out to pick up a replacement however, it pays to do your research. From a lack of car finance to failing to read up on online reviews, here are some common mistakes people make when buying a car.

Buying cheap used cars

It’s never nice when your car decides it’s had enough, nor is it ever cheap. If you intend on getting a replacement car however, it isn’t recommended that you buy a cheap used car. If the car is cheap, it’s cheap for a reason. It will likely be old, will have too many miles on the clock, and could have other underlying mechanical issues as well. This means that it will likely break down fairly quickly, meaning you have wasted your money buying it, and will need to spend yet more money on getting another replacement. Some used vehicles work incredibly well and work for years, but it is a risk.

Not considering car finance

To some people, cars are seen as wastes of money and so they only decide to ever go with cheap vehicles. Often, they find that these cars break down. They fail to consider car finance as a viable option, when in reality it could save them money. Car finance allows you to get a newer, more expensive vehicle by paying it off in instalments, rather than all in one go. This flexibility with the payment means that you can enjoy a nice car without spending a fortune in one sitting. A newer car will be nicer, will last longer, will be cheaper to run and maintain, and will also be safer.

Not reading reviews first

Whether you have your eye on a specific model of car, or on a specific garage or dealership, you should always do your research and read reviews first. See what others have to say about the car, and/or the dealership or garage in question. If you are coming across negative feedback, or a lack of feedback and reviews, this is worrying as you could end up being sold a dud. On the other hand, if you are finding plenty of positive feedback and reviews, this is certainly a good sign.

Letting your heart rule your head

In an ideal world we’d all drive the cars we want, but sometimes that isn’t practical. If you are already on a budget and want to save money, buying a powerful car that gets poor MPG is not a practical decision. If you have a large family, a 4-seat convertible is also not practical. Yes, when buying a car, often you should listen to your head instead of your heart.

First Time Buyer Mortgage and Property Tips

Getting on the property ladder for the first time, no matter your age, is one of the most intimidating yet exciting experiences you will ever encounter. Buying a property in this economic climate is probably the hardest it has ever been in recent history, but it can still be done very effectively with the right know-how. Securing a mortgage is tough enough, but once that is done there’s then the matter of making the property liveable, and, you know, actually finding the right property and area to live in.

If you’re looking to become a first-time buyer but aren’t quite sure where to begin, here are a few first-time buyer mortgage and property tips to make the experience that little bit easier.

Consider the area

While finding your dream home is all well and good, for a lot of people it is the area that’s more important than the actual property itself. Before you begin looking for a house you should ideally look at areas you like. Find an area and try to discover as much about it as you can. Look at travel links, amenities, schools, medical care, and average property prices. You also want to find out whether it is a decent area to live. If it’s really cheap, find out why that is. It may be that the area looks nice on paper but has a lot of crime and anti-social behaviour. Needless to say, if that is the case, we’d advise you to keep looking.

Know your budget

Another important thing to consider is what you can afford. We aren’t just talking about the price of the property, we’re also talking about living costs, mortgage repayments, and so on. Work out how much you earn, how much you will need to spend on absolutely everything, and whether or not you can comfortably afford it. Don’t forget to factor in unexpected costs such as home repairs, new vehicles, vehicle repairs, time off from work, and so on. If things are looking tight, either consider somewhere cheaper or look at viable ways of bringing more money in each month, or of cutting back.

Secure yourself a mortgage agreement in principle

After you’ve been offered a loan, the next thing you need to do is secure yourself a mortgage agreement in principle. This is a free document that helps prove to potential lenders that you are a worthy candidate.

After buying, do as much of the work yourself as you can

Once you’ve finally purchased your new property, have got the keys, and are finally able to get inside, it’s worthwhile doing much of the work yourself. Unless you have plenty of disposable income, you’ll probably be looking to keep costs down which is why it pays to do the work yourself. It will almost certainly need decorating, but rather than paying professional decorators, why not buy the paint and decorate yourself. If you are pretty handy, do as much of the work yourself as you can. If you want a new bathroom, if you are able, remove the old one yourself before hiring a builder as you will have saved them a job, so you’ll receive a cheaper quote. The more you can do, legally and safely, the better.

3 Ways to Pay Off Your Mortgage Faster

For any homeowners out there, one of the biggest goals in life is to be mortgage-free. Once you have paid off your mortgage that’s it, you legally own the house, you no longer have to pay back the mortgage lenders, and you therefore will save a good few hundred Euros every single month. Not only that, but it’s also a great thing to brag to your mates about down at the pub. For some people, paying off the mortgage however, is a mere pipedream. For others, it is a very real possibility. To help show you how real it really is, here’s a look at 3 ways for you to pay off your mortgage faster.

Pay more each month

Let’s face it, with many properties costing more than one-hundred grand on the lower end of the scale, there are few people out there who could realistically afford to buy the house outright, there and then. Instead, they take out a mortgage loan and pay monthly instalments over the course of several decades, until the mortgage has been paid off, including interest. If however, you pay more than the minimum payments required each month, even by just 5o Euros, you’ll find that you have paid off the mortgage much quicker than you could have imagined. Many mortgage deals will allow you to pay extra each month, but if not, you can simply open a savings account, pay into that each month, and use that at the end of your fixed rate.

Cut back on unnecessary luxuries

Another useful tip for when it comes to paying off your mortgage early is to simply cut back on unnecessary luxuries, and instead set the money aside and use it to pay off the mortgage. If for example, you normally treat yourself to a coffee at a coffee shop on your way to work each morning, why not simply have a coffee at home before leaving? A regular coffee once per day may not cost much, but over the course of five days, the weekly cost adds up. Apply this same principle to a month, and even a year, and you could potentially have saved yourself a grand or more, which could be used to pay off the mortgage faster.

Find a better deal

When it comes to mortgages, many lenders out there are very competitive. This means that there are some great deals to be had. How the lenders make their money is by charging interest. The more interest they charge, the more you pay, and vice versa. If your current mortgage deal is at, say 3% interest, why not shop around and consider switching to a lender that charges 2% interest instead. Interest rates change constantly, and if you can find a long-term deal with a mortgage provider offering you a lower interest rate than what you are currently paying you’d be foolish not to go with them.

Car Finance and More – Tips for Buying a Used Car

When it comes to investments, used cars are probably not up there as being the wisest choice. Unless you purchase a classic or supercar, the second you drive the vehicle out of the showroom it loses value. The thing is, we don’t buy cars with the intention of making a profit when we sell them (unless you’re a car salesman).

 

We buy cars because they’re practical, they’re necessary in many cases, and they provide us with fun. Buying a used car is always a risk, even if you get the best car finance deal possible. To help ensure you get the best price possible, and the best car finance deal possible, here are some tips for buying a used car.

Don’t ask for their best price

A lot of people when attempting to haggle over a used car, will ask the salesman what his best price is for the vehicle. Basically, they’re asking him for the lowest price he would sell it to them. The thing is however, is that by doing that you are putting the salesman in control.

He can come up with any figure he likes, and obviously he’s going to overinflate the price because he wants to make as much commission as possible. Instead, be open and honest and tell him how much you are willing to spend. Be firm, stand your ground, and don’t get into a haggling war. If the salesman is convinced that you are not open to negotiate the price, there’s a good chance you’ll get it for what you want to pay, and on your terms.

Consider car finance

In an ideal world, when we buy a used car we’d always pay cash for it. The reality is that if you are buying from a car dealership, the car will cost thousands of Euros, so monthly car finance payments may be your only option. With finance you do pay slightly more than the vehicle is currently valued at, but it makes your monthly payments more manageable. Always shop around for car finance, as you may get some great deals.

Be friendly and polite

A lot of people like to think that they’re a big-time business tycoon in the board room, and so when they enter into negotiations over a used car they’re often stern-faced, abrupt, and sometimes rude. If you’re rude to a salesperson, or any person that you’re doing business with for that matter, they aren’t going to go out of their way to help get you the best price possible. Be polite, smile, and be friendly. You never know, it may help knock a few hundred Euros from the price that you pay.

Don’t be sucked in by the hard sell

After you negotiate a deal on a used car, the next thing you need to prepare yourself for is the onslaught of upselling the salesperson is about to hurl your way. The salespeople make good commission on things like: paint protection, upholstery protection, gap insurance, and so on, and they will do their best to convince you that you need all of these things. Stand your ground and be firm with the fact that, almost certainly, you don’t need these things.