This may sound like a silly question but there has been a stampede of buyers and collectors looking to acquire the very earliest of the Five Pound note releases. However, is this a big fuss over nothing?
The Bank of England issued the notes on 13th September 2016 to quite a big fuss as they were made of a plastic polymer and distinctly different from any other bank note ever created.
The notes were released and some early-bird, eagle eyed people spotted that the earlier run of notes were identified by a serial number prefixed by AA or AK. The belief was that these notes would actually be worth more than £5.00 as they would subsequently be in demand by collectors or general members of the public.
Sure, there will always be a small number of people who like to collect the first editions of anything, and this is quite common amongst notes and coins in a similar way to Stamps. Where the problem lies is that many people heard about this hype of the £5.00 note and started paying anything from £30.00 up to hundreds of pounds - remember, this is a £5.00 note !!
So, is this all madness?
Well, in short, yes. Many people who bought into the hype would have bought the £5.00 notes for more than a fiver only to find out that it was mainly a load of old tosh and it really only ever will be worth a fiver. There are exceptions... If you have an early AA 01 0000xxx note then it will indeed be amongst the very early notes and 'may' have some enhanced value but there were just short of a ONE MILLION £5.00 notes with the AA prefix. Now, that is some hyped up malarkey, similar to the Pump'n'Dump practice in Penny Share trading.
The very first public note, AA01 000007, is to be retained by the Bank of England and may be later sold at auction. Even then it might only reach high hundreds or very low thousands so any people who paid similar amounts for the 'normal' notes may have been effectively mugged. The very lowest serial number notes are given to the Queen.
The hype was further exacerbated by an Ebay listing that seemed to go for just over £80,000 !! This later turned out to be completely nonsense but had a knock on effect of making the average punter hell bent on securing early 5 pound notes. The vast majority of these people are now sitting on a bit of paper, well, plastic that it, would you believe it, only worth 5 pounds.
If you have managed to save up some money or want to put part of your monthly salary away for the future and get a good return, there are numerous investment plans and opportunities available nowadays.
With any investment, you need to do your research first and make sure that it fits with what you want to achieve before you go ahead and give your money over. You should also be looking at investing for the long-term rather than hoping to achieve short term gains. With that in mind, here are our top choices for investing in 2017:
1. Switch to a High Interest Current Account
If you want your money available as and when you need it but also want to get some interest back, then a number of banks like Santander and Nationwide offer high interest accounts. You should only be going for this if you have a substantial amount in your account at the end of each month. Many of these offer interest rates of around 3% for balances over £1,500 to £2,500. Certain conditions do apply, however, and you may feel you may be better off putting a set amount of money away in a separate savings plan.
2. Use Your ISA Allowance
One of the most readily available and simple investment options is to open up an ISA. You are allowed to invest £15,240 a year currently in one of these packages. There are a number of different types to choose from including cash or stocks and shares ISAs. The good news is that you can split your allowance between a number of different products.
Cash ISAs are like normal savings accounts and you don’t pay tax on the interest you earn. The interest rate is normally set at a particular rate. Stocks and shares ISAs allow you to invest in particular funds and decide how much risk you want to take on. There are other products such as the Help to Buy ISAs that allows you to build equity to purchase a home. While interest rates and earnings from ISAs remain fairly low at the moment, the tax advantages and the potential for long-term investment still make them a decent and reasonably secure proposition.
3. Put Money Into Your Pension
Another option is to boost your pension for retirement. Adding in extra can mean you get a greater pot of money when you finally finish work. This is a good idea if you want to take the long view and don’t need to access your money until you have reached retirement age. You’ll have to decide whether your pension is the best vehicle to make the most of your money but it’s worth contacting your provider and working out the pros and cons.
4. Investing in Start Ups
If you have excess income and are looking for something that could have big returns but is a bit of a gamble then investing in new companies could be the way forward. There are a number of sites now that are designed to help new ideas get the funding they need to hit the market. If you invest in them you get to share in the success of the company. Of course, it’s not for the faint-hearted and you have to prepared to lose your money if the company doesn’t get off the ground.
5. Online Investing
The growth of online platforms that allow you to invest has been one of the major developments to come out of the financial industry in the last few years. Sites that give you more control of what you invest your money in can bring decent returns. Many assess what kind of investor you are and have plans ranging from cautious to the less risk adverse which means you can often earn more interest than with other investment options. Like any investment activity, of course, you should do thorough research and make sure you know what the risks are.
PPI was mis-sold regularly by Banks and other lenders and you may be able to claim back the fees plus interest for FREE using our Mis-Sold PPI Form Download.
PPI was the 'optional' Payment Protection Insurance that was added to personal loans that you may have taken out in the past. The idea was that you would be able to claim later on this should you come into payment difficulties due to illness or losing your job. However, many people were not given a choice on this, or just would not be eligible.
There are over 20 million PPI policies in existence. You need to check if you had one.
1. Firstly, you can check if you ever had PPI by looking at your paperwork or even simply asking your bank.
2. Are you likely to be eligible? You might be if any of these happened:
a) You were told that the PPI addition was compulsory
b) You didn't realise you even had the PPI cover
c) You were sold a wrong fitting policy?
d) You were self-employed, unemployed or retired?
e) You already had an underlying medical condition
3. Download THIS FORM and send it in to the lender, filled out.
The festive season is almost upon us and many people are beginning to prepare for Christmas and all of the wonderful festivities to come. Although the festive season is a time of joy and a time to gather and connect with our family and loved ones, for many people it can also be a very stressful time, and this is because the festive season can turn out to be a very costly season. It really is unnecessary to spend such a large amount of money during the festive season, and we should be able to enjoy the festive season without going broke each year. Let’s explore a few helpful tips to help you cut your costs during this festive season:
Lower cost Xmas gift agreements
Simply write an email to your friends and family and agree not to go crazy this Christmas on presents or come to an upper cost limit agreement. You could also consider a no-gift exchange agreement with your closest family and friends. Remember, Xmas is not actually about spending money but the overall message of coming together in love and support.
Homemade Xmas gifts
Purchasing gifts for all of your family and friends is one of the most costly activities when it comes to Christmas. Making your own gifts is a great way to drastically reduce your costs. Not only will this save you money, but people genuinely enjoy receiving homemade gifts, as they are more personal and come from the heart, as opposed to some product manufactured in a warehouse. You may find that your special homemade gifts are a favourite this Christmas.
Make your own Xmas decorations
Purchasing Christmas decorations each year is another expensive aspect of Christmas. The best thing to do is to save all of your Christmas decorations so that you can reuse them each year. You can even create your own Christmas decorations which is also a wonderful festive activity to do with your kids. You can even use old decorations and recreate them into new ones.
Go easy on your Xmas lights
It is simply not cost-effective and it also creates a heavy impact on the environment when we decorate our homes with an excess of Christmas lights. It is simply not necessary and we need to be realistic about our budgets and our impact upon the environment. It is best to minimize the amount of Christmas lights you put up this year, and it will help to cut your costs if you can use energy saving lights or LED lights which use far less electricity than standard lights.
Save your Xmas meal leftovers
Plenty of food goes to waste during the holiday season and this is definitely something that will eat into your pocket. Save or freeze any leftovers you may have so that you can make use of them at a later stage and not see it go to waste. You can also cut back on electricity costs by choosing to prepare lighter meals which do not need much energy to prepare. For example, instead of using a lot of electricity to bake a cake, you can opt to make a fruit trifle instead which you will not need to use the oven or stove in order to prepare.
Use Back Friday pre-Xmas and the Sales post-Xmas
If you have the need to purchase gifts for your friends and family then you are most likely to make the best savings on Black Friday. The date for Black Friday this year is Friday, November 25th, 2016. Certainly, this will be of most use if you are intending to buy larger or more expensive gifts this Christmas. Also, in readiness for next year, you could buy Xmas 2017 presents in the sales following this year's Xmas. Another good tip is to buy smaller items or sale items throughout the year thus leaving you with no hassle, grief and sudden costs around Xmas time. Alternatively, helping you get ready for next Xmas you could have a budget and put away £x.00 each and every month. You could gauge it on just Xmas presents or include the other costs of Xmas such as travel, food and drink.