How to get value for money when purchasing a new motor

There are few feelings quite like being able to get behind the wheel of that car you’ve had your eye on for months or even years, for a great price.

Many of us depend on a set of wheels for work and/or personal purposes. However, you won’t want to feel ripped off or have to fork out more than you’re comfortable with or can manage on a month-by-month basis.

So, here are some great ways to clinch the right deal for the car you want.

Prioritise needs over wants

Sure, in a complete money-no-object situation, perhaps you’d have the luxury of buying exactly the car you’ve always dreamed of, and maybe even another car for day-to-day practical purposes.

But most of us aren’t in that situation. So, focus on what you need first. Ask yourself, for instance, whether you really need a brand new car, rather than a better-value used alternative. After all, according to MoneySavingExpert, a new car typically loses nearly half of its value in the first three years.

Consider the next model down from your ‘dream’ car

Continuing the above theme, if possible, try to strike a nice balance between your needs and wants, by considering downsizing to the next obvious model. Do you really need a BMW 5 Series if a well-specified 3 Series would serve you just fine? Maybe you were initially going to get a Golf, but have since spotted a Polo that caters to 80% of your most pressing priorities for a lot less?

‘Dropping down one’ from the model you might have originally targeted doesn’t just save money on the upfront price of a car. That’s because smaller (and smaller-engined!) cars also usually cost less on an ongoing basis, not least due to better fuel economy.

Buy when the car is in less demand

You know that time-honoured money-saving tip of buying your Christmas gift wrapping for the following December in the January sales, rather than in those few urgent days before Christmas Eve? Well, you can apply similar logic to car purchases.

If you fancy a convertible, for example, wait until the colder and rainier months to make your move. Conversely, those in the market for a four-wheel-drive car might be best-served approaching dealerships in the summer.

Haggle… but with a plan

Obviously, if you buy your new motor online, there isn’t much opportunity for old-fashioned haggling. But if you do come face-to-face with a dealer, they’ll almost expect you to haggle at least a bit – it’s something of a ‘no no’ to pay a car’s list price at a brick-and-mortar dealership.

A common ‘beginner’ haggling tip is to get the dealer to throw in something for free, such as a sat nav or floor mats. Meanwhile, more confident and experienced hagglers may like the idea of getting offers from multiple dealers and playing them off against each other to land the best price.

Whether you’re a novice, intermediate or advanced haggler, do at least have a plan. Research price ranges for the given car for different mileages, and have a set price that you refuse to go over.

If you need finance, approach a broker

Not all of us have the money to pay for a new car sitting in our bank accounts. So if you do need to borrow, consider a personal loan from your bank or building society – ensuring it is not secured against your house, given that this would put your home at risk if you fell behind with repayments.

Alternatively, look to a car finance broker, which doesn’t lend you the money directly, but instead calls upon a panel of lenders to present you with the most competitive finance deal for your situation. CarFinanceGenie, for example, is a trusted provider of car finance in Essex even among those who have poor credit and might have been turned down elsewhere.

There you go – just five great ways to spend less on your next vehicle, so that you end up with a car you can be proud of, without being pushed dangerously into the red.

The Basics of the Stock Market

A stock exchange, share market or equities market is an association of traders and owners of securities, who collectively represent ownership claims to companies; these can also include commercial securities such as mortgages, notes and commercial property. The exchange of commodities or stocks involves the exchange of one commodity for another; it also includes the exchange of shares of a company for the ownership of other shares in the same company.

Stock markets are governed by stock exchanges. A company’s share is listed on the stock exchange and traded among stock holders. There are different stock exchanges in the world. These are stock exchanges operated through government agencies, stock exchanges established by local governments, or stock exchanges set up by individual companies, such as the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). The U.S. Federal Reserve Board establishes the New York Stock Exchange.

The term stock exchange was derived from a Greek word meaning “the exchange of commodities.” This expression has been adopted by governments, courts and regulatory bodies to describe financial markets that involve trading of securities, usually equities. The term share or stock, in its common use, refers to any number of shares of any particular stock. Stock markets differ widely, as well as the regulations governing their operation. For example, a common stock market is often referred to as a stock exchange.

A variety of firms conduct research on the various stock exchanges. These studies are done by brokers who buy and sell stocks. When buying a stock on the stock exchange, a broker obtains knowledge of the current market price in his or her preferred stock and reports it to the market maker. When the market maker buys the stock, the broker reports this to the market and the two parties, or the seller and the buyer, then enter into a contract known as a stock exchange.

There are three major types of stock exchanges, and they are the over-the-counter (OTC), under-the-counter (OTC), and closed system exchanges (closed system). OTC refers to markets where only brokers buy and sell securities. OTCs are not regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and can be traded privately between broker-dealers. The closed system provides a complete regulatory environment. for the exchange of securities through a national clearing house.

Stock exchanges have an enormous impact on financial markets and the economy. They play an important role in the allocation of capital and are a main source of finance in many countries. In the United States, they account for about two-thirds of the gross domestic product. They vary greatly in their scope and structure. Stock exchanges may include general market-based marketplaces, regional markets, municipal or regional markets, or countrywide markets.

There are three major types of stock exchanges: the over-the-counter (OTC), the under-the-counter (OTC), and the closed system exchanges. OTC refers to exchanges where only brokers buy and sell securities. The closed system exchanges are those that operate only under a national clearing house and are not open to the public. Regional stock exchanges include state-based markets, where the exchanges are located in various counties or states.

The size and number of stock exchanges are dependent on the type of market. The largest markets, such as the NYSE and NASDAQ, account for about ninety percent of total trading volume. In fact, the two largest exchanges, the New York Stock Exchange and the Chicago Board of Trade, account for almost two-thirds of the total volume. The Chicago Board of Trade has the most trading volume on an annual basis.

Traders can make money from stocks that they buy and sell by buying and selling shares of stock themselves, or by placing trades in an exchange. An individual trader can also buy and sell securities through a broker, who may be a specialized trader or an independent firm.

Brokerages provide services to help brokers facilitate trading activities, as well as to supply them with information regarding the market. Many firms will manage all aspects of a trading business for their clients, while others may focus on just one particular area of the trading process. Brokerage firms usually do not hold the stocks.

Investors should always conduct thorough research before investing in the stock market. This research should include a thorough review of the company’s record, an assessment of the market, and an understanding of how the market works. Investing in the stock market is a complex and time-consuming process, so it is important that you get the proper guidance before you start trading.

Why Investing in Cryptocurrency is Risky?

Cryptocurrency is the digital or virtual currency in this modern age that serves as a means of exchange. Over the years, the cryptocurrency network has spread widely to the extent that its means of exchange purpose is adequately met. Without exaggerating, it is safe to say that a little above half of the world’s populace has an understanding of the strings of benefits they stand to gain. However, not every one of them knows about the risks attached to the Crypto network.

Decentralized Status

Although the decentralized Status in the Cryptocurrency world is one of the advantages that digital currency and investors enjoy, however, this same perk is very risky. The lack of physical presence in the cryptocurrency world equates to the lack of a central authority or institution. This lack of central authority, therefore, leaves room for discrepancies to happen. This means that when any form of complication arises, the investors may be left in a lurch because there is no central authority or government to report the case.

Market Manipulation

Due to a lot of social engineering and misinformation on digital platforms, the Crypto network is affected, and investors manipulated. However, the investors affected most are those with little or no knowledge whatsoever about the risks and changes in the market system.

Hacks

Unlike the physical banks where money and other valuables are stolen at gunpoint, the Cryptocurrency world is safe from this. However, this does not outrightly write off the fact that theft and other illegal acts happen in the Crypto world. It is a digital network that is not free from being hacked. 2018 and 2019 recorded the highest attacks on Cryptocurrency. However, hackers got out with more money ($875.5 million) with only six hacks to the Crypto network. In 2019, they could only get away with $283 million. Hence, the risk of being hacked is a significant security threat to the Cryptocurrency world.

Technology

Over the years, investors, as well as financial institutions, have not been able to curb the effect of technological complications in the Cryptocurrency world. This is because there is much technological advancement which everyone does not understand fully. Therefore, investors must read more about Crypto trading platforms to have a full grasp on different opportunities and platforms available in the world of Cryptocurrency for them to invest.

Poor Liquidity

Liquidity in the Cryptocurrency market allows for stability in the prices of goods and assets. However, the same Crypto market battles with the challenges of Liquidity. When the Crypto market faces the problem, it results in a volatile market which will cause an increase in the prices of assets.

Fraud and Money Laundering

Since there is no central authority to report any fraudulent activity, investors are at a loss when or if they become victims of fraud and Money Laundering. Over the years, people believe that the Cryptocurrency world gives room for fraudulent activities of all sorts. Hence, this is a significant risk for all investors to look out for especially those that do not wish to be victims of such criminal acts.

10 tips for finding a great accountant

The Money Guy

Although an accountant might be capable of what they’re actually doing, they might not be the proper fit for your business. In this article, we have mentioned a comprehensive 10-step checklist for choosing an accountant.

Look for recommendations

It’ll be a sensible idea to ask your friends and other familiar persons for recommendations in case they have used the services of an accountant in the past. You can talk to the accountant in person after getting the referral.

Talk to more than one accountant

It is a fact that there are quite a few accountants in your area, you should make it a point to talk to several of them before appointing one for your business This will help you to compare amongst different accountants and choose the best one out there.

Make certain that they fit your business

Make it a point to select an accountant who is experienced regarding the business that you are operating. For example, if you happen to be an IT contractor, it will be of no use to select an accountant who is specialized in pubs.

Can they advise you about recent changes

The world of business and accounting is always changing. Is your accountant up to speed and can they advise you about the latest changes in tax rules for example. If you in the UK can they advise you about setting up companies in Ireland after Brexit ?

Make sure that he is qualified

Ensure that the accountant does have an accounting qualification and happens to be a member of an accounting body like the ICAEW.  In case he is a tax agent, he will be able to give you advice on tax only. He will also be able to offer financial planning advice in case he has got a Financial Services license .

What services are being offered by them?

Accountants are going to provide different services, and you will be able to select which services you require from them. For instance, although they might be offering a bookkeeping service, you will not require their assistance in case you want to make use of online accounting software. You need to understand what exactly you need from your accountant before appointing him.

Fees

In case you are running a small business, it is natural for you to try to save money. Therefore, it will be imperative for you to go to the correct accountant. There are many accountants on the market offering quality services at reasonable rates at present. Also, try to find out whether they have got any hidden charges.

Personality

It is natural for you to interact with the accountant whom you’re appointing from time to time. Therefore, it will be imperative that your personalities should not clash. Always go for an accountant who is friendly as well as amicable.

Obtain proof

While appointing the accountant, always ask for a copy of the Public Indemnity Insurance of that person along with his operating license. Any professional accountant will furnish you with all these documents, which will provide you with total peace of mind.

Will he be able to prosper your business?

The accountant is going to become involved with your company’s operation from the very beginning, and therefore you should not take this decision lightly. Try to find somebody whom you can trust and who has got the required experience behind him. Good accountants will help your company prosper by dealing with your complicated accountancy work and will also provide you with business advice.

Tips for choosing the right insurance company

A lot of people have invested in an insurance company, ensured that they always made the payments at the right time, only to later regret why they invested in the insurance company. Despite the high level of insurance company regulation in the United States of America and other countries in the world, people regularly have issues with insurance companies.

The issue ranges from an insurance company refusing to pay the claim and trying to defend that is not part of the insurance coverage even when it seems to be to instances where it takes weeks or months after you needed the claim before it is honored. This is why it is important to invest in the right insurance company. Here are some tips for choosing the right insurance company.

Type of insurance policies

The first thing you want to look out for is the type of insurance company that is provided by the organization. For example, you should not be looking for a house and go to an auto insurance company. Furthermore, even if you go to a house insurance company, they might not be offering a renters insurance policy. Even when offering a renter insurance policy, they might not be covering some of the items you want to cover.

In some cases, they do not make it clear that they are not covering certain things that could have been covered by the insurance policy you are opting for. This is why you must not assume but read insurance reviews and insurance policies to be sure about what the insurance policies from a particular company covers or not.

Read reviews

Reading reviews of the insurance company provides you with an opportunity to know the quality of protection you would get from an insurance policy. You will be able to find many people who have used a particular insurance company but had to back down because of issues with the insurance company.

They would be able to say their experience on the platform and when you see a lot of people having such experience, then it would become obvious that you should excuse yourself from such a company.

The reviews will help you know companies that will claim to cover for some items only to later deny it as well as those that would delay for as long as you can risking your life in the process. It would also help you know those that will stress you out before honoring a claim.

Get a professional to explain

If you are reading an insurance policy and you are confused about an area, you might want to ask a professional to help you with explaining the policy. It might be risky going for a professional within the organization as they would want to convince you to patronize their insurance company. It would be best to go to a neutral insurance consultancy or lawyer to help you with the explanation.

When the explanation contradicts what you are looking forward to, then you could continue searching for the insurance company that would meet all the conditions you want to be covered, especially when they are not unrealistic.

Finding business money transfers service

Your business is almost certainly part of a global economy.

 

You may be based in the UK and offer what seems to be a very local service, yet supply chains are still likely to stretch abroad – just think of some of the supplies and equipment you might want to buy in foreign markets.

 

In this increasingly interconnected world, your business relies on being able to import or export certain goods and services from overseas.

 

The cost of business money transfers

 

So that such necessary international trading is cost-effective, you need to consider how much you are paying on each international money transfer – and find the most effective and cost-saving business money transfers service.

 

When you compare the market, you will find that those costs may vary widely.

 

The Money Saving Expert (MSE) explains that the cost of international money transfers comprises two fundamental elements:

 

Fees

 

  • banks charge a host of fees and commissions for sending or receiving money to and from abroad;

 

  • although most high street banks give you the option of paying those fees in sterling or the foreign currency, they mount up very quickly – and MSE warns that they may be made up of several seemingly small amounts, which disguise the actual total cost;

 

  • you may need to pay a higher fee, for example, if the money transfer needs to be made more quickly;

 

Exchange rates

 

  • in addition to the fees charged by your bank, your transactions are also subject to fluctuating exchange rates;

 

  • those rates can be difficult to establish since banks do not necessarily inform you of the rate they are using when the transfer is made – and rates can vary widely during the course of a single day’s trading.

 

Saving money on your business money transfers

 

In the first place, remember that business money transfers through your high street bank are going to cost more – often significantly more – than those made through dedicated money transfer companies.

 

The fees charged by money transfer companies are likely to be lower and you may achieve a more favourable rate of exchange, too.

 

The newer “fintech” companies specialising in business money transfers are also likely to make those transfers more speedily than your high street bank. Many can make the transfer the same day, whereas your high street bank may need several days to complete the transfer – unless you pay a premium for a faster transfer.

 

In addition to the cost and speed of any transfer, you must also ensure that the bank or money transfer company deals in the currency relevant to your transaction – not all currencies are likely to be supported and those available differ from one company to another.

 

If you are trading abroad regularly, you may find that you are making repeated payments in different currencies – so, once again, you must ensure that your chosen money transfer service provider also deals in all those currencies.

 

Receiving money or making payments in foreign currencies adds a further level of sophistication to your business activities. You do not want it to be a complication, of course, so find a business money transfer service provider that integrates with the accounting and management systems you are using to simplify the reconciliation of transactions.