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Equity release: the pros and cons

Releasing money from your property can seem like the ideal solution as you get older and find yourself wanting extra income. It has proven particularly popular with retirees over the past few years with pensions declining in value in real terms. This is a major decision and one that should never be taken lightly, however, and this article aims to look at some of the pros and cons.

What is it?

Equity release involves selecting a product which enables you to release some funds from the value of your property. The equity is the amount left when you take away any mortgage still owed from your property’s market value. In simple terms, it is how much you would end up with if you sold up for cash.

You may be eligible to release a large proportion of this money if you have little or no mortgage left. One of the major benefits of this is releasing a large sum to spend whilst enabling you to still live in your property.

Different types

There are different ways to release equity. The two most popular methods are through a lifetime mortgage or home reversion. The former is the most commonly chosen method and means that you take out a mortgage that will be repaid when your home is sold, either because you move into a care facility or you die.

The ‘pro’ of this is that you can normally borrow between 18 per cent and half of your property’s overall value. In general, the amount goes up the older you are.

It must be remembered, however, that the amount you will owe will go up as interest is added, although you can sometimes pay off the interest to prevent it compounding. This is particularly important if you wish to leave some capital in the form of an inheritance.

The majority of equity release providers will not offer you a guarantee of no negative equity but you may still end up with nothing left of your property’s value after the mortgage is paid off.

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With home reversion, your whole property or part of it is sold but you have the right to live there until you are no longer able to. The downside of this is that you will not get the full market value of your property and you may not be eligible unless you’re over 60.

Benefits and downsides

The major benefit is clearly the fact that you can release funds that would otherwise be tied up in your property without you having to move. The primary downside, however, is that you will not get the true market value for the property. This means you may not realise the full value of your investment and you will reduce any amount going to beneficiaries. If you’re in any doubt at all about any deals you are offered, make sure you get professional advice from a specialist such as Parachute Law.

Particular types of release schemes also have specific pitfalls. For example, with a lifetime mortgage, you could end up using up the whole value of your home to repay the loan as you end up paying interest on interest throughout the loan period. The practical effect of this is that if you were paying interest of around five percent and never paid any off, you would see your loan double every 15 years.

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If you are worried about repaying any loan, help is available from organisations such as Citizens Advice

Is releasing equity a good idea?

The answer is very much a personal one and depends on your individual needs and circumstances.

No Sale No Fee Conveyancing: The Pros and Cons

When searching for a conveyancer to deal with the sale or purchase of your home, you may come across some offering ‘no sale, no fee’ deals. Is this the best option for you? We look at the advantages and disadvantages of no sale, no fee conveyancers to help you decide.

What does no sale no fee really mean?

In no sale no fee conveyancing, you are only charged for a solicitor’s services once the transaction is complete. Usually, you will pay an initial deposit to secure the no sale no fee deal but will then not pay any more to your solicitor until the sale is completed. This can be particularly beneficial in cases where a house sale falls through, whether this is through gazumping, gazundering, a break in the chain, poor surveys or because someone simply changes their mind. However, you may still have to pay for searches carried out by third parties such as Land Registry.

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What are the advantages of no sale no fee deals?

The main benefit is that you only pay for the solicitor’s services when the sale is successfully completed. This can be particularly beneficial if your sale has fallen through because of gazumping or some other factor beyond your own control. Many may find it an attractive option in times when the housing market is slow or if they are selling the property themselves.

Instructing a conveyancer in a no sale no fee deal will usually mean paying a deposit. According to the HomeOwners Alliance failed attempts to buy and sell property sees more than £500 million a year go to waste. A small fee upfront could save you as much as £1,500 further down the line.

In some cases, some conveyancing firms, such as Sam Conveyancing, will move your deposit to another property transaction if the first falls through. However, it is important to check if this is an option with your conveyancer first. Some may let you carry out searches on a different property for free, but this is a goodwill gesture for staying with them and is by no means offered by all no sale no fee conveyancers. You must check the fine print first to see whether this is included and whether new property purchases must be within a certain time frame.

No win no fee conveyancers may also be an attractive option for those who are undecided on whether they want to progress with a purchase but need to show they have appointed a conveyancer.

What are the disadvantages of no sale no fee deals?

While the conveyancer is not paid in full until the transaction is complete, you still have to pay for searches and other disbursements. They are usually non-refundable, and so you will be out of pocket on these if the sale does fall through. In most cases, you have to pay an initial deposit which is also non-refundable.

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No sale no fee offers are not universally available. They cannot be used in certain transactions such as a property being sold at auction or subject to a chain.

Another downfall of a no sale no fee deal is that you may end up paying more overall. Some firms may charge a success fee in addition to their standard fees, while some may require a monthly retainer whether or not the sale progresses. You may also incur some hidden costs, such as administration fees. Always be sure to check out the fine print and be fully aware of all implications before signing up to a no sale no fee offer.

Splendid, Slough in the County of Buckinghamshire

The large town of Slough is situated in the county of Buckinghamshire, approximately twenty miles west of London.  A great commuter town for the (approximate) 164,000 residents, many of whom work in the busy City but want the beauty of a more rural community. This thriving, multicultural town attracts potential residents and workers from all over the country and has the highest concentration of company headquarters that have set up base in its trading estates, outside London itself. The power station there has been steadily supplying power to the massive trading estate it is based on since 1920.

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There is also a huge retail outlet for the residents to enjoy alongside several splendid primary and secondary schools for the children to attend. The hard-working students who attend the schools are amongst the top ten best academic achievers in the country.

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The residential areas are growing quickly, in order to house all the families that want to set up home in this thriving community. The army of builders are working hard to clear any derelict buildings in order to erect new homes, doctors’ surgeries, dentists, veterinary practices and hospitals. The team operating the diggers are very careful not to damage any electrical cables, phone lines, gas pipes or sewers.  If they find any pipes that are cracked they may well decide that a Drain Lining Slough  company could repair them and contact a professional company such as to sort out the problems.

The Old Firm derby that ignites a city

Glasgow is renowned as being a tough place. Its hard streets belie a city of cultural status. It has the largest population in Scotland and is the fourth largest in the UK. It is a proud city full of prouder people, and rightly so, due to its heritage as a great ship building area. Whilst this has fallen away with time, the city has maintained its populus and is now know for its financial sectors. It also has a prosperous tech industry with companies like Web Design Glasgow based organisation for example.

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To show how proud the city is it comes together, or more correctly divides, for four very important games in the year. They are usually the defining games of the Scottish premier league. It’s the match between Glasgow Rangers and Glasgow Celtic. To say that it is played with passion is a very big understatement.

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It is reckoned to be one of the oldest derby matches (where 2 teams from the same city or town play against each other) in the world. So far, it is Rangers that have won the most matches with 168 to Celtics 161. 101 of them have resulted in a draw. The game is played under the shadow of sectarianism. The Protestants favour Rangers and the Catholics support Celtic. This has led to many unfortunate clashes off the field as well as on it.

Deciding to downsize and move from a large family home to a small bungalow in Wiltshire

With the financial climate as difficult as it is at the moment, the rate of inflation rising alongside food and petrol prices soaring, lots of older couples are making the decision to downsize from a big family home to a smaller bungalow.  When you have a large property and your children have grown up and moved away to a different county, possibly Wiltshire, you could also make the momentous decision to sell your old family home and move to a smaller, newer home, possibly a bungalow to live closer to your children in Swindon, Wiltshire.

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With floors all on one level, a smaller more manageable garden, less maintenance on the property itself and somewhere safe to park your car with secure Garage Doors Swindon by a company such as  a bungalow could be the ideal new forever home.  Once you have found a suitable property to move to, the process of selling your current home can begin, a quick declutter, fresh coat of paint and tidy up of your unruly garden and you are set to get the Estate Agents around for a valuation.

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Hopefully your newly refreshed house will sell quickly, and you can put in an offer on the chosen new bungalow. Packing up your precious possessions and arranging the movers is next on the list of things to do. Once all the surveys and checks have taken place you can sign the final contracts and enjoy the big day when you take possession of the keys of your bungalow.

What Kind of Financial Support Do Businesses Need?

Business owners need a variety of types of financial support for a vast number of purposes. Some common reasons for seeking external funding are buying machinery, increasing staff numbers, or refinancing existing loans to reduce monthly payments. According to a recent British Business Bank survey, 44 percent of SME businesses had taken out external funding at some point during the past three years. These types of loans can be an invaluable asset in many situations. Continue reading What Kind of Financial Support Do Businesses Need?

What is conveyancing?

You have probably congratulated yourself on getting through the initial stages of a mortgage application. Completing the agreement in principle, where the lender will give you an indication of the amount they can lend. The next stage is to complete a Needs and Circumstances conversation where you will give over all of your financial income and outgoings, the monthly budget you have available to pay the mortgage down and what type of mortgage you want.

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There then follows the process of conveyancing. This stage can seem to be you paying a lot of money for very little. It’s why you need to have a Conveyancing Cheltenham based company like Montpelier Legal on hand to help you get through it. They will be able to advise and guide you through the legal side of the purchase and keep you informed on all the stages.

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Basically, the Conveyancers will make sure that there are no legal bars from covenants, rights of way, potential compulsory purchases and if there are any issues from the survey that need to be dealt with. A good rule of thumb with a house purchase is that if you don’t hear from the Conveyancers, everything is going as it should be!

Finally, the conveyancers will be the ones that will take the money from the lender and then immediately pass it onto the builder or seller. Once this is confirmed you can receive the keys to the home from the seller, an official act of making it your own home.

Why it is Important that all Businesses Recycle

Recycling is a big part of life here in the UK, as we all try to do the best we can to tackle climate change. This is true for businesses as well as individuals, and recycling at work is something that needs to be organised and managed well to get the best out of it. It is important that all businesses do their best to limit their carbon footprint and do as much as possible to be environmentally friendly.

Starting up a business recycling scheme in the workplace is a great way to ensure that you are doing your bit to help the planet. Companies such as this business recycling Cheltenham based service will be able to help you with this, so have a look into the services that are available in your area to help you to plan for and facilitate this.

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There are many things that you can actually recycle, that you might currently be putting into your general waste bins. These things include, but are not limited to, plastics, cardboard, polystyrene and packaging materials, as well as electrical equipment. Some waste is hazardous, so you are legally obliged to have it removed and destroyed in accordance with the law. Some examples of hazardous waste include batteries, hazardous chemicals, such as solvents, and materials like asbestos.

Something else that will benefit you when you start up a recycling scheme is getting all of the employees involved. Setting up a recycling workforce will help to encourage teamwork and also will boost the morale of employees. Working together to save the planet is a great way to do this! It will also benefit you as you are likely to save the business money when you recycle more. This is because you will not have to pay the ever-increasing prices for general waste to be taken away and the tax on landfill.

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As more and more businesses become aware of the need to do everything to battle climate change, it is hoped that this will not only help the planet but ultimately will create a more caring business community, where much more focus is also put on community responsibility and care.

How to Convert Web Visitors Into Sales

As an online business, you want your visitors to visit your website and buy something, but how do you do this? Keep in mind that not all leads are created equal.

In addition to using Google rankings to determine which products perform best, you should also monitor trends and make sure that your product descriptions are accurate and up-to-date. Your end-to-end website experience should be smooth and visually appealing, and navigation should be seamless and easy to use. Your site should include a prominent call-to-action, and your pricing and promotions should be advertised clearly. The key to converting web visitors into sales is to build a list of interested individuals and create an effective email marketing campaign.

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To determine how to improve your conversion rate, divide your overall number of visitors by the total number of conversions. Then, divide that number by the total number of new customers. Your conversion rate should be above 1%. Once you’ve nailed this, you can focus on increasing your conversion rate. A higher conversion rate means more qualified leads and more revenue. And as a webmaster, you can do that by learning more about the psychology of your target customers.

If you’re looking for more ways to convert your website visitors into sales, a blog is a good way to create a relationship with your audience. It can also help to create a brand identity by answering customer pain points and establishing trust with the customers. Your call-to-action (CTA) should relate to the topic of your blog and encourage your readers to take the next step toward your conversion goal. If possible, use case studies or testimonials from satisfied customers as the primary conversion tools. For help from an SEO Agency Belfast, go to

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Once you have built trust with your visitors, you’re ready to convert website traffic into sales. It’s easy to attract visitors to your website, but converting them into sales is much harder. If your website is not successful in converting your visitors into buyers, it’s like window-shopping. The more visitors you have on your site, the more chances you’ll have of a successful conversion. So, start today and start converting your visitors into sales.

A blog can be your secret weapon to converting web visitors into sales. By using the right words and writing a persuasive copy, you can convert your traffic into hungry buyers. And, as you know, a blog is a powerful tool in this respect. As long as you’re creating valuable content, it’s easy to convince people to buy.


More people than ever are playing football

Recent research has discovered that one in five people in the UK are regularly playing or participating in football. This figure is steadily increasing, and more people than ever are now playing the beautiful game. The FA also says that youth football is increasing in popularity across all sections of society, with increases in the number of women and girls playing, while the number of disability teams has also risen by 14%.

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Increase in participation

There have been a number of successful initiatives to encourage participation in football, with a year-on-year increase for the last few years. Football is the biggest participation sport in the UK by a long margin and looks set to continue its rise across all sections of society as the sport becomes more inclusive and more money is poured into encouraging participation in schools, among disabled people and among female participants.

Walking football

An interesting new type of football that is gaining in popularity is walking football. There are 800 clubs in the UK and this game offers a great low impact version of football as running is forbidden. Due to the massive new interest in walking football, the FA has had to draw up a rule book for the sport that everyone agrees on!

Football kits

The size of football squads has increased, as more players are getting involved in the game. With the increase in participation across all sections of society, there is an increase in the demand for football clothing and accessories, and many brands are benefiting from increased sales.

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Smaller games and pitches

Casual games of football are increasingly becoming the norm too, and many other variations of the game are also popular and growing in interest in the same way that walking football has developed a huge following. Other versions of football that are gaining in popularity are mini football games and 5-a-side games. Smaller pitches are often used for children’s games and games with fewer players than the traditional 11. This has also increased participation and enjoyment for smaller matches and for training sessions and skills development. Of course having enough room in the back garden to play can be very important, especially if you have younger ones keen to play. This can be something to consider if looking to buy a new house as making sure the garden is big enough could be the deal breaker, so if you are looking to move and need a deed of trust cost company then why not consider companies like Sam Conveyancing.