Browsing "Guest Post"

A New Mobile Payment Option for Businesses

Dec 13, 2013   //   by Keith McDonald   //   Guest Post, Latest Product Updates  //  1 Comment


Mobile card payment is something of a buzzword now, with many merchants looking to modernise their business by accepting card payments in a new and innovative way.

There is definitely some confusion about how existing mobile payments work, especially those that rely on near-field communication (NFC). For example, a recent YouGov survey of over 1000 UK adults shows that only one third are even aware of NFC technology (a figure that has barely risen since last year). Only one fifth of the people surveyed have ever used their phone to make payments using NFC technology. Over 56% did not believe the technology was safe. These numbers have serious implications for merchants and the type of mobile payment solution they decide to implement.

However, the question is: how can merchants continue to be innovative and cost effective in their choice of payment methods when such technologies are mistrusted by the British public?

The answer is to take an established, widely used technology and turn it on its head in a technologically innovative way.

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Is your small business insured correctly?

Dec 6, 2013   //   by Keith McDonald   //   Guest Post, Insurance  //  Comments Off on Is your small business insured correctly?


How much do you know about the specific insurance requirements for your business? Ashley Curtis tells us more about the liabilities that employers face and why finding the correct insurance package is an important step. 

As a small business owner, acquiring the correct insurance for your business needs to be one of your top priorities; not least because one type of insurance is a legal requirement in the UK. However depending on the type of industry your business resides in, it might not be necessary to acquire every type of policy under the sun.

Admittedly, this can lead to some confusion amongst small business owners and their insurance policies. I often hear entrepreneurs boasting about the deal they got on their professional indemnity insurance when they didn’t need that particular coverage in the first place!

Consequently, it’s worth going through any existing policies and asking yourself, “Is my small business insured correctly?”

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Check Your Entitlements With Charity’s New Benefits Tool

Oct 17, 2013   //   by Keith McDonald   //   Guest Post, Home and Living  //  2 Comments

With 13 million living in poverty in the UK and a radical shake-up of the UK benefits system, charity Turn2us has launched a free Benefits Calculator to help people find out if they are entitled to additional financial support. Below, the charity tells us what it’s all about.

Critical Illness InsuranceAs a charity that helps people in financial need, we hear many different stories from people of all backgrounds, and know that anyone can be hit by financial hardship at any time in their lives.

Unforeseen circumstances such as job loss, family breakdown and illness are just a few of the factors that can significantly affect household income. The rising costs of everyday essentials, reduced incomes and continued public sector cuts have also had an enormous impact, and increasing numbers of people are struggling to make ends meet.

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Save Money on DIY With Great Apps

Sep 30, 2013   //   by Keith McDonald   //   Guest Post, Home and Living, Money Saving Tips  //  2 Comments

DIY and home-improvement are two things every homeowner should be thinking about if they want to add value to their house, says Ryan Hirst of Eurofit Direct. Below, Ryan investigates the best apps for DIY and home-improvement that will provide ideas and help to save you money.

Home InteriorOur home is a reflection of ourselves, and because of this people build an opinion of us based upon how our home looks. We should be looking to improve our home all the time for it to hold its value in an ever-competitive housing market.

Whether its little home DIY crafts or large scale renovation projects like replacing your kitchen, home improvement can be done by anyone.

Whatever the home improvement or DIY intention may be, one thing has a massive effect on what we can and can’t do: money. Hiring a handyman or a professional can be expensive, and even buying little features for your home can quickly add up. So, with this in mind, we need to focus on how we can spend our money as best we can.

That’s why, today, I am going to introduce you to a few DIY apps that are available on the iPhone, all of which will help you on your way to improving your home. These apps are packed with inspirational videos, photographs and write-ups on everything DIY and home-based. Whether you are looking for some crafty DIY tips to make your bedroom more romantic or need some information on fitting your kitchen sink, these apps will provide it.

Just think about how much money you could save if you don’t need to hire a professional or go shopping for these crafts – there are so many tasks we can all do with a bit of help, and these guides assist with exactly that.

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New Rules Allow ISA Investors to Target AIM Shares

Sep 11, 2013   //   by Keith McDonald   //   Breaking News, Guest Post  //  Comments Off on New Rules Allow ISA Investors to Target AIM Shares

Joe Cox of GE Capital Direct offers a considered response to recent changes in regulations that allow AIM shares to be included within investment ISA allowances.

Stocks and Shares

On August 5th the Government relaxed the rules on AIM shares in investment ISAs, to the satisfaction of some and the consternation of others.

Reasons abound as to why opening ISAs up to the alternative investment market (AIM) is a good thing for investors. Chief amongst them is opportunity for a double tax break.

In the 2013/14 tax year the ISA allowance is £11,520, all of which can be put into an investment ISA, which will attract no capital gains tax and incur a lower tax rate on dividends. Most AIM shares fall outside the scope of ‘business property relief’, which means they don’t attract any inheritance tax, giving investors a second tax break.

The advocates of AIM also see a macroeconomic benefit from opening up ISAs to smaller companies like those listed on AIM, benefiting small cash strapped businesses that are the engine of national economic growth.

“The government has tried to push banks to lend to small companies but it has now woken up to the fact that there is a vigorous equity market [in the UK] that is looking to invest in these businesses,” says Gavin Oldham, chief executive of The Share Centre, who has been campaigning for the change for 12 years.

And he may yet be proven right. According to Pensions and Savings provider Sippdeal, since the restrictions on AIM shares were lifted on August 5th a quarter of all purchases by stocks and shares ISA savers last month were for shares listed on the alternative investment market. That’s a lot of money being invested into these small companies.

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Ways to improve your chances of getting a mortgage

Sep 5, 2013   //   by Keith McDonald   //   Guest Post, Home and Living  //  Comments Off on Ways to improve your chances of getting a mortgage

Lauren Sutton, financial news writer and first-time homeowner, offers some handy hints and tips about making yourself a more attractive proposition to a mortgage lender.

Happy family near new house

You’ve come across your dream house on a website. There it sits, glistening among hundreds of other, quite frankly inferior options. You view it; you want it; you must have it. The only thing stopping you from grasping the keys and getting settled in is finance.

Unless you’ve got a lump sum of £100,000-plus stored away in a savings account, it’s likely that you won’t be able to buy your house up front. You’ll be less than surprised to find that very few others do have the correct amount to hand. This is why most first-time buyers will require support from a lender to help them purchase their flat, apartment or detached house over a stretched period of time.

The product that ties this agreement together is called a mortgage and you’ve probably heard a few whispers about how it works. The size of the loan, maturity of the loan, interest rate or method of paying off the loan can all vary, but we’re going to focus on how you can actually get one.

It’s imperative that you make yourself attractive to lenders before you apply for a mortgage – regardless of the mortgage types, of which there are many – including a guarantor mortgage, low deposit mortgages and many more – so here’s how you can improve your own profile.

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