Money Musings

The latest views, tips and opinions

The simple way to avoid debt at Christmas

Spend less than you earn. Don’t spend money you don’t have on things nobody needs. These tips, like many aspects of managing money, are rather simple, and yet I can guarantee there will be thousands, perhaps even millions, who ignore this sound advice and get...

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You’re being financially repressed

Make no mistake you are being financially repressed. You may not have heard this term mentioned in relation to your personal finances so firstly, I will explain what financial repression is before outlining some of the methods currently being used to financially...

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What goes into your comprehensive financial plan?

What goes into your comprehensive financial plan? This guide provides an overview of Virtual Money Coach; the unique and unbiased comprehensive financial planning service. Find out how my services can help you, what's involved in the process and why this service is...

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Money worries? How to Stop Worrying About Money

Money worries. We all have them in some form, right? Some of us have no real need to worry about money, and some of us should perhaps worry a little more about it! Money worries are sometimes justified, but often illogical, however at all times, money worries are...

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Do depressions no longer exist?

Rather than dealing with the issues created by decades of ever increasing debt, we appear to prefer a policy of denial and repetition of the same mistakes. Our politicians and central bankers appear to be playing a modern game of hide and seek, as poorly played by...

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7 steps to financial freedom

Here are the 7 steps to financial freedom: 1. Avoid debt like the plague. If you are in debt you owe your time and labour to someone else. You are a serf. To have financial freedom you need to be free from debt. 2. Spend less than your earn. Spending more than you...

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Inheritance Tax Allowance

The inheritance tax allowance is important when planning to mitigate your inheritance tax liability. In simple terms, it's what the government allows you to pass on tax free, with everything in your estate above this figure subject to inheritance tax when you die. But...

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IHT nil rate band

Inheritance tax is payable in the UK when the value of your estate (property, money and possessions) are above a certain limit. Anything below this limit is known officially as the IHT nil rate band. It is known as the nil rate band because inheritance tax within this...

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Common types of investment risk

Successful investing rests upon understanding, accepting and managing the various types of investment risk you face. The decisions we make today have to interact with the future before we know whether the correct decisions have been made; i.e. whether we have...

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Financial vs. personal decisions

The best financial decision isn't always the correct one to take. Your personal decisions need to reflect an understanding of your finances, but a commerical reality isn't the only reality to consider. Your personal decisions need to be unique, based on your life's...

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Don’t Outlive Your Money

How much is enough for your retirement? Many people often think about this but few take action to address it. Research indicates that us Brits are one of the world's worst at saving for retirement. The average British worker saves less than £1.80 a day for...

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Mind The Yield Gap

In this article I will discuss the yield gap. Taking higher investment risk requires the reward of higher return, otherwise who would ever invest in the riskier activities? Just because the theory makes sense, it doesn’t necessarily translate to you actually being...

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What mid life crisis?

We've all heard the joke about people having a mid life crisis. That guy in their forties and fifties who goes out and buys a convertible sports coupe or Harley Davidson are labeled as going through some form of mid life crisis – but for the vast...

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Hate Money? Love Life!

There are many who appear to hate money, well at least that’s my interpretation via the media, but I’m sure everyone loves life. The two are irrevocably intertwined and I also feel that this perception of money being evil, or that you somehow hate money and wealth is...

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Guaranteed Investment Return

The promise of a guaranteed investment return. Sounds attractive doesn't it? If you do not read this article (repeatedly until the lesson sinks in) then I'm afraid that your path to prosperity is at great risk and could very well end up losing your shirt. You are no...

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Tax avoidance morality

The phrase tax avoidance will no doubt raise a few blood temperatures. Tax avoidance is clearly a sensitive subject. The outrage in the UK over the recent Panama papers revelations and in particular David Cameron’s father’s offshore financial affairs, highlights this...

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We are all wealthier than Emperors and ice cream proves it!

For those who are critical of capitalism, they should probably take a closer look at history to obtain some perspective of the real world. Peasants of today (like me) live a more comfortable existence with a greater variety of produce and services, than an emperor...

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Margins of safety when financial planning

When creating your financial plan we are going to get some factors wrong. When investing mistakes will be made. But don’t worry. Investing and financial planning are about allocating your resources sensibly for the future. The very nature of the future (i.e. it hasn’t...

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Retirement Reality

Retirement is often marketed with images of happy and healthy people playing golf, going on cruises or walking in a park or the great outdoors. But your approaching retirement reality is likely to be filled with a combination of excitement, relief, worry or outright...

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Get some fuck you money

(This article, as the title 'get some fuck you money' indicates, is a little impolite and in your face. If that sort of thing offends you then it's probably best to read my other money musings that are far more polite.) Many financial planners rightfully trumpet...

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How to think about insurance – using logic

Here’s how you should think about insurance. First think about the severity of the risk you are protecting against and secondly consider the possible scenarios that will occur in the future. Severity of risk Is the event you are insuring against likely to have a...

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The best way to save for your children and grandchildren

Many of you wish to set aside some money to help your children when they get older. There is one way of saving for your children, which trumps any other available option. That option is to save into a personal pension. Many people don’t realise that you can save into...

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