• Cards & loans

    Interest-free credit card terms have more than doubled in five years. Will 0% deals continue to climb and should we be worried?

    Interest free terms on credit cards have been steadily rising since they were first introduced in 2000. In those days borrowers did not have to pay interest on their balances for the first six months. Borrowers can now get a bumper 43 months at 0 per cent interest using a balance transfer credit card or a slightly shorter 31 months using a specialist purchase deal the longest deals ever offered.The level of household debt is rising by more than 10.3 per cent a year, and there are fears these cards are heaping fuel on the fire. Do they show any ...

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  • Cards & loans

    Could you spot the warning signs of problem debt in friends and family? One in ten Britons are struggling in silence - here's how you can help

    As many as eight million people in the UK are overwhelmed by financial worries and are frequently unable to pay monthly bill payments. Yet money worries are still a taboo subject for many people and less than one in five will actually seek help. This leaves 10 per cent of Britons suffering in silence and dealing with problem debts alone, according to research from the Money Advice Service. But how can you spot this among your friends and family and what can you do to help? [media_photo id="794287" height="423" width="634" alt="Bills mounting up? Make sure you ask for help early ...

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  • Cards & loans

    App-based bank, B, unveils new low-rate credit card which won't charge you for overseas spending

    Digital challenger, B, has launched its first credit card offering free overseas spending, a low interest rate of 9.9 per cent and no transfer fees.The off-shoot of Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks launched in May last year with both a current account and savings deal, available only through its smartphone app.The bank s app already offers real-time insights on your spending, plus it lets you tag transactions and set up budgets in much the same way as popular start-up banks Monzo and Starling. ...

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  • Cards & loans

    Why banks can give you a credit card you never applied for and lump you with a higher rate or shorter 0% interest deal

    Nearly a quarter of borrowers believe that getting accepted for a credit card guarantees them the advertised interest rate and 0 per cent promotion.But what many consumers don't realise is that in order to meet advertising standards lenders are only required to offer these eye-catching deals to 51 per cent of the borrowers they accept.That means, obviously, that up to 49 per cent of those who make it past the first hurdle and get accepted, could get lumped with a much more expensive deal. [media_photo id="754156" height="423" width="634" alt="Credit report: Your score is difference between getting the deal you apply ...

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  • Cards & loans

    Sainsbury s bank launches longest-ever purchase credit card offering borrowers 31 months of 0% interest

    Sainsbury s Bank has upped the ante on its purchase credit card, boosting the 0 per cent interest deal to a market-beating 31 months.The new deal overtakes the likes of Santander and Tesco Bank - which both recently improved their own offers - Halifax and the AA, all of which now offer interest-free deals lasting 30 months.These 0 per cent interest cards have come under fire from experts recently over growing fears they could encourage borrowers to take on debt they may not be able to afford to repay in the future. [media_photo id="750304" height="423" width="634" alt="Home improvements: 0 per ...

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  • Cards & loans

    Lloyds Avios credit card customers unable to redeem points for summer trips after balances vanish and it will take six months to fix

    Some Lloyds credit card customers, enticed by the bank's offer of Avios points that can be redeemed for flights, have seen balances vanish and told it will take fully six months to rectify.One customer, Jamie Seabright, received his new Lloyds credit card at the end of January. It was to be linked to his Avios account so he could start accumulating points. However, some four months later, the card is still not linked and he has been told it will take 26 weeks to put right. [media_photo id="747715" height="435" width="634" alt="Credit card problems: We have been contacted by readers with ...

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  • Cards & loans

    Half of under-35s couldn't pay an unexpected bill of 250 - and even 80% on good incomes struggle with debt

    Half of households under the age of 35 couldn t afford an unexpected bill of just 250, forcing them to turn to a credit or the bank of mum and dad, according to new research from Experian.More than a third of millennials, those in their 20s and 30s, regularly rely on a credit card and 13 per cent have a personal loan to help fund expenses such as their car, the costs of a holiday and even their rent.In contrast, two thirds of households at the other end of the age spectrum, those in their 60s and 70s, are completely ...

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  • Cards & loans

    How to make a credit card work for YOU: The tricks to avoiding the traps laid by 0% interest deals

    Household debt is becoming a growing concern, with experts worried consumers are taking on debts they cannot afford to pay back. Credit cards with long 0 per cent deals attached can tempt people into taking on debt piles that cause them difficulties further down the line, drawing people in with tempting terms of up to 30 months on purchase cards and 43 months for balance transfers.Lenders don't offer these deals for your benefit. They are banking on the fact that you will fall foul of the small print and end up paying interest on the whole lot or that you ...

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  • Cards & loans

    Britons load up on store cards, payday loans and car finance at astonishing rates as worried regulators plan a borrowing crackdown

    Britons are loading up on store cards, payday loans and car finance at astonishing rates, worrying regulators who are planning a crackdown on consumer borrowing.A string of announcements by major lenders, some of whom target customers who struggle to get credit, has laid bare the scale of the consumer credit binge.NewDay, which owns the Aqua and Marbles credit card brands, as well as providing store cards for House of Fraser, Debenhams and Topshop, said its lending grew at an astonishing 32 per cent in 2016, with one million new customers borrowing. [media_photo id="699383" height="463" width="634" alt="Exhausted resources? British consumers are ...

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  • Cards & loans

    Watchdog sets out plans to prob high levels of consumer debt and how firms treat vulnerable consumers

    Household debt is rising to record levels as the rate at which credit is approved picks up pace, the financial watchdog said today.The soaring levels of personal debt, which have risen due to the low cost of credit, are now a main priority for the Financial Conduct Authority. In February alone, the rate of spend on credit cards was at its highest level since 2006, the Bank of England said recently. Vulnerable customers are one of the FCA's main priorities during the ...

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  • Cards & loans

    City watchdog will force providers to help millions of credit card customers trapped in persistent debt

    Credit card customers who are in persistent debt should receive more help from providers to clear it, the financial regulator has said today.Around 3.3million Britons are described as being in persistent debt - paying more in interest and charges than they have repaid on their borrowing over an 18-month period.These credit card customers are profitable for banks and other financial firms, the regulator said, and they rarely step in to help them. Credit headache: Customers in persistent card debt could have interest and ...

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  • Cards & loans

    Credit boom 2.0? Credit card spending grows at its fastest pace since February 2006, official data reveals

    Britons spent 9.3 per cent more on credit cards than they did a year ago in February prompting fears another credit-fuelled financial crisis could be around the corner.The rate of spend on credit cards is at highest level since February 2006, according to statistics from the Bank of England analysed by This is Money.The amount outstanding on credit cards now sits at 67.3billion. This is the highest level on record and some 10billion higher than just two and a half years ago. [media_photo id="619575" height="368" width="634" alt="Concern? Annual spend on credit cards is growing at its fastest pace since early ...

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  • Cards & loans

    What are the best and worst ways to borrow if you need less than 5,000? From personal loans, to credit cards and overdrafts

    When needing to borrow a small amount of money, most people will head straight for their bank - but this could be an expensive mistake.Despite record low interest rates on personal loans, borrowing a smaller sum can be expensive, with much higher rates charged to borrow a few thousand pounds than are offered on larger amounts. To help take the mystery out of finding the most affordable method of borrowing for your needs, This is Money has taken a look at the most cost-effective ways to borrow less than 5,000. [media_photo id="613911" height="381" width="634" alt="Need to borrow a small amount? ...

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  • Cards & loans

    The top 10 reasons banks turn borrowers away: From the generation rent trap to starting a family or an ex-partner's debts

    Almost one in five people applying for a credit card or personal loan over the past year has been turned down, according to research by BuddyLoans.Having a poor credit history is the top culprit when it comes to rejection, preventing 40 per cent of people getting accepted for a credit card, loan or even a phone contract. Borrowers blame everything from the generation rent trap or an ex partner's debts to the effects of having a child on their finances, for their less-than-perfect scores. [media_photo id="601983" height="423" width="634" alt="Credit Refusal: Missed payments top the list for the worst offender affecting ...

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  • Cards & loans

    Harsh and unfair tactics used by some bailiffs are pushing more people into debt, charities warn

    Fundamental changes are needed to the way in which bailiffs collect debt, a group of charities has said today.Some bailiffs are still using intimidating behaviour, failing to accept affordable payment offers and failing to take account of vulnerable clients, the group claims.The charities are calling on the Ministry of Justice to introduce an independent regulator to cover bailiffs, to restructure the way bailiffs are paid and to reform the way complaints about them are made. [media_photo id="569426" height="560" width="634" alt="The charity Step Change said one in six people visited by a bailiff in the past year said they had been ...

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