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Savings Advice


As someone with a few quid tucked away, (for a rainy day, you understand) I was interested in a BBC show  the other evening which promised to tell me how I can make the most of my money in these difficult times. Guess what - it didn’t.

I learned that returns for savers are low (really?) and that I should put my first few coppers into a tax free  ISA (really again?) the next bit into a regular saver account  paying high interest (about £2,000 a year if you’re lucky) and then anything else into a mix of bank and building society accounts offering the best rates at the time. I’m glad I tuned in. I could never have figured that out for myself.

I then had to listen to expert financial advisors telling me that property was a bad investment and that I really needed to be in the stock market. It’s a piece of advice I’d have paid more heed to if the aforementioned advisors sold property but didn’t sell stock market products. Oh, and the fact that I’ve made about twenty times the money in property than I’ve ever made from the stock market in the past 10 years.

Just to complete the picture, I was told that gold and wine have been the best investments over the past 2 or 3 years. Very useful  information. I’m surprised they didn’t tell me Louis Oosthuizen  just won the Open Championship. Must mean he’s going to win it again next year.  I could make a fortune placing that bet.

Look, I don’t know what the best place for YOUR money is (and even if I did, I wouldn’t be allowed to say), but what I do know is this  - hand it over to a shyster in a suit with a vested interest and there’s only one person guaranteed to make a decent return, and it won’t be you.  Take control of your own financial destiny, and you’ll almost always do better.

Good News From The Government

It looks like the new government if fulfilling its pledge to end the war on motorists. They’re slashing central funding for ‘road safety’ meaning that  local authorities may no longer be able to afford to run their fixed speed cameras, the fines from which, go straight to the treasury. Oxfordshire council are set to switch off their cameras next week, and others are expected to follow suit in the coming weeks. Cameras across Britain raise an estimated £100 Million in fines each year, and the road safety benefits are doubtful at best. What isn’t in doubt is that tens of  hundreds of thousands of drivers will have more cash in their pockets if the hated cameras disappear.

More Good News From The Government

It’s early days, but the Prime Minister appears to be enthusiastic about  a new report prepared by bank bench MP’s which recommends a severe curbing of the activities of  ambulance chasing lawyers.  These ‘legal professionals’ - many of whom would be selling used Vauxhalls on a forecourt near you, were it not for the ‘no win-no fee’ system – aggressively tout for business, and then  make a small fortune  running up costs out of all proportion with any  damages due to their clients. It’s the companies and organisations they target who usually end up footing the bill. The new proposals include banning compensation claim advertising,  closely regulating  activities of these lawyers,  and scrapping conditional fee (no win no fee) arrangements in compensation cases. The only downsides I can see to the new arrangements are that people who have stubbed their toe on a raised kerb stone will have to make do with a plaster, and second hand car dealerships will be deluged with job applications. I think we can all live with that.

£2 Million Profit Calling!

Last week, we told you about  a housewife from Leicester who  was looking to make some extra money after her husband was forced to quit work  due to ill health. She  turned to something that had been around all her life – Avon.

She found over 300 customers in her first 2 months and 8 years later, now has 1,750 freelance consultants working under her. Last year she brought in over £2 Million  and has a BMW and 2 Mercedes on the drive (registration 4VON) as testimony to her success.

Not suggesting that you should drop everything and become an Avon representative, but rather that you take a step back and look what’s already right under your nose. Just because a business or opportunity has been around for what seems like a lifetime (and with Avon, it’s probably several lifetimes!) doesn’t mean it should be discounted. Quite the reverse, because it’s obviously stood the test of time.