A turning point for Environmental Social and Governance investing?

Matthew Barrand Blog, Investment

Investing according to environmental, social and governance principles (ESG) has been a fast growth area, according to figures, UK-based ESG funds saw record inflows between March and July 2020, with £362m invested in July alone. The acronym, ESG, refers to three key factors used by investment companies to evaluate corporate behaviour: Environmental criteria – such as; carbon emissions, waste management …

Pensions

Tackling the growing number of small pension pots

Matthew Barrand Blog, Pensions

The Pensions Policy Institute (PPI) has published a report examining the growing problem of small deferred pension pots and how the issue might be addressed. The number of deferred pension pots in the UK is likely to rise from 8m in 2020 to around 27m in 2035. Member charges often erode small, deferred member pots over time and small pots …

SA – 21 not out

Matthew Barrand Blog

When the Individual Savings Account (ISA) was launched in 1999, the allowance was £3,000 for a Cash ISA or £7,000 for a Stocks and Shares ISA each tax year. Now at the grand old age of 21, the overall allowance has risen to a generous £20,000. In the early days, choice was limited to either a Cash ISA or a …

Your family

Titanic disaster led to historic life insurance payouts

Matthew Barrand Blog

When the ‘unsinkable’ Titanic hit an iceberg and sank in 1912, life and accident insurance companies lost $3,464,111, according to a contemporary article published in The Shore Press. The accident led to some of the largest insurance payouts ever, with the beneficiaries of business magnate John B. Thayer receiving a total accident insurance payout of $120,000 (equivalent to around $3.2m …

Rediscover our island

Small Island living – rediscovering what we already have

Matthew Barrand Blog

In recent weeks, there has been an 800% rise in Brits searching for ‘Staycation UK’, as the uncertainty surrounding international travel during the pandemic continues to prevail. Appreciating what you already have… Destinations such as Plymouth, the Isle of Wight and Exeter are expected to recover quickly due to the staycation tourism boost, according to new research. It would seem …

Pathway to shared ownership

Government launches new model for Shared Ownership

Matthew Barrand Blog, Property

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has announced a new model for shared ownership to help more people onto the property ladder by vastly reducing the minimum initial share, and launching a consultation to ensure new homes deliver the accessibility that families need. The new shared ownership model will reduce the minimum initial share you can buy in a property from 25% …

Stamp Duty Update

Stamp duty update

Matthew Barrand Blog, Mortgages

The government introduced an immediate temporary Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) holiday in England and Northern Ireland until 31 March 2021 by raising the threshold above which the main rate of SDLT is payable from £125,000 to £500,000. For second homes, the 3% additional rate will continue to apply. The Scottish Government has since announced that they have increased the …

Flexible mortgage

Do you want your savings to work harder?

Matthew Barrand Blog, Savings

Do you want your savings to work harder, but feel uncomfortable with taking any investment risk? – then a Flexible Offset Mortgage could be for you… Very simply described, an Offset Mortgage is a way of using the credit balances in your savings and current accounts including ISAs, to help reduce the mortgage balance you are charged interest on. By …

Protection

Huge rise in protection policy take up

Matthew Barrand Blog

If you were unable to work due to accident, injury, sickness or redundancy, you would still need to support yourself and your family financially. Whilst you might have enough savings to tide you over for a short period off work, if it went on for longer, it could be a struggle to meet mortgage costs and other household bills; this …