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General Chat Thread, Financial advice please in General; Within the confines of IT, I can terminate network cables, code in several programming languages and maintain a network of ...
  1. #1

    webman's Avatar
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    Question Financial advice please

    Within the confines of IT, I can terminate network cables, code in several programming languages and maintain a network of computers... but when it comes to money, the extent of my knowledge is essentially limited to "money goes into bank, I spend some of it, and the balance decreases."

    I would like to save for a holiday which will cost a fair chunk of money, and am wondering which is the best and most financially-rewarding method to do this. I've done a bit of searching and think I could be looking for a cash ISA, or a regular savings account with an interest rate of about 6%. I certainly won't be saving more than 3,600 a year.

    But I just don't know enough to make a decision. Any knowledgeable Edugeekers able to help or point me in the right direction please?

    Thanks in advance,
    Craig.

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    Jobos's Avatar
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    I would go with the ISA.

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    A tossup between an ISA or gold bars IMO.

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    How long will you be saving for?

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    ISA is generally good. I have one of those, but as I only put money into it and rarely take money out, I didn't bother to check my statements in detail for quite some time. Eventually I signed up for internet banking, saw the amount of interest I was getting per month and almost fell out of my chair.

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    webman's Avatar
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    About 3-5 years.

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    Midget's Avatar
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    I have my money in an ISA (natwest @~4.5%) there are much better places for it but its tax free and it's easy. If you want long term investment you'd have to speak to an Independant Financial Adviser to see about putting your money into one or many funds. If you wanted to go that route I could find out some IFAs in your area.

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    somabc's Avatar
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    You should compare different accounts.

    Fool.co.uk - Compare ISAs - Featured Partner ISAs
    High interest savings accounts | ISAs | investments - moneysupermarket UK
    Savings Accounts: Earn 6.55% instant access ...
    Cash ISAs: Earn 6.25% instant access tax free...


    in the event any UK Bank goes bust you are covered up to 50,000 so you should be alright there.

    Look for the highest interest rate possible, do you require online account management, think about whether you want interest paid monthly or annually. Beware a bank that charges any kind of withdrawal fee or charge, or interest penalty. Do you want to deposit a chunk of money every so often or do you want to deposit a regular amount every month via Direct Debit?

    Once you find an account that meets your criteria sign up!

    I think the HSBC Cash ISA @ 6.25% AER would fit your needs if you have an HSBC current a/c as well
    (but I am not an IFA)
    Fool.co.uk - Compare Isas - HSBC E-ISA <strong> 6.25% AER </strong> - More Information

    There is also the Post Office Cash 6.25% ISA, which is open to everyone
    http://www.postoffice.co.uk/portal/p...diaId=82300739
    Last edited by somabc; 4th October 2008 at 06:24 PM.

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    webman (4th October 2008)

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    Sylv3r's Avatar
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    I have a cash ISA with my current bank HSBC and get around 6.25% interest on it. As long as your not going to dip into it everynow and account this should be your best bet.

    You can either setup a direct debit to put x in each month or add to it whenever you want / have spare funds up to 3,600 per year.

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by webman View Post
    I've done a bit of searching and think I could be looking for a cash ISA
    I can't really offer you much advice, but I would point out that Nationwide, who I've had an ISA with for over decade, aren't a bank, they're a mutual society, and are looking like a safe bet at the moment. Other building societies also exist. I know Nationwide sometimes offer 3-year fixed-rate bonds, you put your money in for three years and get a decent fixed rate of interest.

    Do you have to save up for a holiday? Can't you just walk to wherever you want to get to?

    --
    David Hicks

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    mattx's Avatar
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    See if you can get a copy of today's Independant as there is always a good breakdown in there for savings / shares / bonds etc. I usually get that along with The Guardian as they have a good money section - although it's been a bit crap lately with all whats going on in the money markets.

    Money Saving Expert: Consumer Revenge - Credit Cards, Shopping, Bank Charges, Cheap Flights and more is also an excellent site for giving you the latest good deals etc.

    If you are putting money away for 5 years you can get good rates + bonuses for not touching the money for that period - you will pay tax on some of these accounts though - the rates you get on those are better than the ISA's you see floating around so you may need to work out what Tax you may end up paying. In the Independant Money Section there are long and short term breakdowns of accounts currently doing the rounds - some only need a deposit of 1000, some require more, but the interest is what has it going for you.
    You can spread short term accounts if you wish - specially in oversea banks but again you tend to get caught with the Tax. There are of course ways round this........

    Check this out for a short term interest high account:

    http://www.theaa.com/savings/year_fixed.html

    7.21% is a good rate - I think i will be opening up one of those next week.....
    Last edited by mattx; 4th October 2008 at 07:20 PM.

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    webman (4th October 2008)

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    webman's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the help... (and to somabc for those links). I will definitely have a look around as the cash ISA seems the way to go, being tax-free and all. I'll just be depositing the odd variable amount here and there when I can; and preferably I'd like to manage it exclusively online.

    Quote Originally Posted by dhicks View Post
    Do you have to save up for a holiday? Can't you just walk to wherever you want to get to?
    It's a bit of a long way to walk from here, New Zealand... I'd prefer to have all the money I need before I go; I don't want to start relying on credit cards.

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    Don't forget if you have a good credit rating you can start Stoozing....

    Stoozing Quick Start Guide

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    if you have the money then a cash isa is a good way to store to your money as its tax free. If you are saving up then you can get regular savings accounts upto 12%, the catch is with these that you have to make a regular payment, you cant withdrawl the money and they only last for one year, they are however great for amazing a lump sum.

    the best thing to do is to create a waterfall. for this you should have your normal account with one bank then a series of accounts with another. In the second bank you should have a series of accounts.

    1. easy access, normal current account
    2. e saver, an e savings account that you can access but has a higher rate of interest ( look for 5%)
    3. a regular saver (look for around 10%)
    4. an isa ( where you will put the money that you dont expect to take out untill you've finished saving)

    then each month leave enough in your first bank to pay your bills and move the rest to the first account in the second bank , and trickle your money through.

    alliance and leicester are probably the best bank for this.

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    witch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by webman View Post
    Thanks for all the help... (and to somabc for those links). I will definitely have a look around as the cash ISA seems the way to go, being tax-free and all. I'll just be depositing the odd variable amount here and there when I can; and preferably I'd like to manage it exclusively online.
    The only extra piece of advice I would offer is to set up a regular deposit, no matter how small (work out the very lowest you could manage - even 20 a month is 240 a year). It is amazing how even the smallest amounts add up, and if you are 'depositing the odd variable amount here and there' it is easy to not put anything in for a while.

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