Monthly Archives: February 2016

How much time do we actually work for?

weekend-holiday-no-more-work-300If it’s Olympic year, then it’s Leap Year! And when 29th February comes along, it means of course we’re effectively working an extra day between paydays in the shortest month.

But how much time do we spend working in the UK, compared to other countries?  Some research suggests that many of us work longer hours than we need to. A TUC study in February 2015 found that one in five (20.3 per cent) regularly work extra hours for no pay, with almost £32 billion of unpaid overtime in 2014.

In terms of annual leave, how does the UK rank?
In total, most employees are entitled to 28 days leave a year – which currently comprises 20 statutory (including pro-rata time off for part-time or temporary staff) and eight paid public holidays. Continue reading

6 money-saving tips for travelling by train

OTravelling by train can be one of the most pleasant ways to travel across the country. Sitting back and watching towns and scenery pass by, without having to think about traffic and motorway turn-offs. And there are several ways that you can make sure it stays low cost.

One of the best things about a recent short stay I had in the beautiful city of Bath was the satisfaction of knowing that I’d kept the cost of getting there to a minimum, thanks to advance booking, planning timings and using a railcard.

Here are six ways you could save money on train travel in the UK: Continue reading

Grow your credit score if you’re moving to or from the UK

By Neil Stone, Experian UK Social Support team

If you have recently moved to the UK, or moved back after a spell abroad, you may be wondering what you can do to start to grow your Experian Credit Score. 

You may even be looking to spread your wings and move abroad, and wondering how this will impact your score.

Due to the differences in data protection laws between countries we are some way off having a “global” credit score, we at Experian in the UK only hold information relating to individuals at UK addresses and so moving to or from a new country will mean starting your credit history afresh.

We’ve put together some tips on what you can do to get started on building your credit history.

If you’re…..moving to the UK for the first time
Firstly, you will need to start building your credit history.  For those that have moved from another EU country, then the first step to take would be to register on the electoral roll.

EU citizens can vote in EU elections, and registering at your current address on the voters roll will help when you apply for credit, as lenders often use this to help confirm the ID of their applicant.  You can find out more about registering to vote at www.aboutmyvote.co.uk

If you are not able to register to on the electoral roll, you can add a note to your credit report (once you have obtained a copy of your credit report) to explain this, called a Notice Of Correction.

Many banks now share information relating to current accounts with overdrafts, so speaking to your bank about such an account could be the next step towards building up your credit history.

As your accounts become more established, lenders will be able to use the information to help make their lending decisions.

If you’re…..moving back to the UK
We hold information on closed accounts for six years, so when moving back from a spell abroad there may still be information on your credit report, depending on how long you have been away.

To check for any old information, make sure you supply your old UK address in your application when it asks for a previous address.

If you’re …..moving to another country from the UK ~
As information on your UK credit report is for use within the UK only, we can’t supply your UK credit report to any countries outside of the UK.

If you are moving abroad, you may want to get a copy of your credit report to take with you when you go. This way you would be able to provide a potential lender with your UK credit report yourself should they wish to see it.

The Experian Credit Score is a guide to help you understand your credit report, and how the way you’ve managed the credit you’ve had in the past might affect applications you’re making now. For more information on how to improve your Experian Credit Score, here are our top 5 tips.

Experian Credit Score top tip 5 of 5: Review your credit report regularly

tip 5 - 600x300Everyone has an Experian Credit Score. Looking after it, nurturing, growing and improving it can help you get a better rate on loans, credit card or mortgages.

Reviewing your credit report can help you look after your finances better. The data & information held there summarises your credit history, so it can be worth reviewing it on a regular basis, and making sure it provides an accurate and up-to-date picture of your credit histories.

Video: 5 top tips to improve your Experian Credit Score

Lenders usually check your credit report when you apply for financial products, as it helps them decide whether to offer you the product and which terms to set, such as interest rates. Continue reading

Should children ‘learn to earn’ their pocket money?

Did you do the odd chore to earn your pocket money when you were younger? 

DESIGN-418-pocket-money-600Sarah Willingham, consumer champion, mum of four and BBC Dragon has called for British parents to rethink how they give pocket money to their children with Experian research finding that 85% of British children that receive pocket money don’t always have to earn it.[1]

Sarah told us: “Pocket money is often the first experience children have of managing money, and I’d like us, as parents, to take a more active role in teaching our kids the importance of earning their pocket money and saving for the things they’d like. Continue reading

What age do children develop their attitudes to money?

children-age-7-money-400Although financial education became a compulsory part of the secondary-school curriculum in England in 2014, some pupils are still missing out, particularly in primary schools.

University of Cambridge research, commissioned by the Money Advice Service, shows that by the age of seven children have developed their attitudes and values towards money – and these are likely to stay with them for life. Continue reading

Safer Internet Day 2016

Safer Internet Day 2016

Safer Internet Day 2016

February 9th marks the thirteenth annual Safer Internet Day (#SID2016), a day dedicated to finding out how we can help make the internet a safer place.

Safer Internet Day, organised by Insafe in February of each year, has the target of promoting safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially among children and young people across the world.

This year’s campaign slogan and theme is “Play your part for a better internet.” Continue reading

Chinese New Year: Pay off your debts

chinese-new-year-300Did you know the Chinese New Year takes place on Monday 8 February?  The 12 cycles of the Chinese Zodiac calendar are of course represented by animals, and this year it’s the Year of the Monkey.

Among several traditions surrounding Chinese New Year, one is to pay all your debts.  This is because there is a belief held by some that if you don’t pay off debts ahead of the New Year, then you might find that you’ll end the year in similar shape.

One place to start dealing with debt is to check what’s on your credit report. Continue reading

National Voter Registration Drive

Are young people engaged enough in politics and democracy? National Voter Registration Drive (1-7 February) aims to increase voter registration among the young – something that could also improve their chances of getting credit and a wide range of online services.

Bite The Ballot, a youth-led grassroots campaign formed in 2010, runs National Voter Registration Drive, and last year’s campaign saw a world-record breaking 441,500 people registered to vote.

Are the young registering to vote?
New Experian research has found that the number of people in the UK who will turn 18 this year on the electoral roll fell by 1.69 per cent compared to 2015’s coming of age voters.  56.7% of local authorities have seen the number fall this year. Continue reading

Positive influence from parents leads to good financial habits

Parents often wonder exasperatedly if their offspring ever listen to their advice – but it appears that today’s young adults have learnt from the experiences of their elders when it comes to their finances.

Experian’s Millennial Me & My Money report found that 45% of Millennials – that’s 18-34 year olds – manage to save at least a quarter of their disposable income each month, compared to just a third (34%) of 35-55-year-olds (widely known as Generation X).

Millennial-Me-and-My-Money-Report_FINAL

Millennials who believe their parents have had a positive influence on their money habits have almost double the savings of those who say their parents had a negative influence.

See the full illustration of the Millennial Me findings here

However, those who say their parents have had a negative influence on their money management are more than twice as likely to have missed an agreed credit repayment, twice as likely to have been refused credit, and twice as likely to have run out of money before payday in the past. Continue reading