Networking in Surrey

February 2012 Blog Posts (21)

It won't happen to me................

Recent data released by one of the biggest insurance providers in the UK has revealed the rather alarming statistic that half the life insurance claims received were made for those under 55 years old.

It noted that the average age of claimant was 56 and that it paid out almost £42m in benefits to bereaved families.

This data serves as a timely reminder for adults of all…

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Added by Mark Williams on February 29, 2012 at 12:30 — No Comments

First step towards a rate rise ?

Hundreds of thousands of customers could see their mortgage payments rise after Britain’s biggest mortgage lender said that it is raising the cap on its Standard Variable Rate (SVR) – the first step towards a rate rise.

Halifax, part of Lloyds Banking Group, has written to forty thousand customers indicating that it is raising the cap on its SVR to 3.75pc above Bank of England Base Rate or 4.25pc. These forty…

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Added by Mark Williams on February 28, 2012 at 14:00 — No Comments

Competitions in your line of business - have you tried?

I am a Wedding Photographer based in Purley, Surrey. I was advised at a seminar I attended to try my luck at entering my favourite photos into wedding photo competitions. The reasons given for this is that it can raise your game, and help maintain the highest standards. Of course doing well in such competitions can do no harm to your reputation either!

If you haven't tried, it is worth investigation if such competitions or…

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Added by Alan Barnes on February 27, 2012 at 23:30 — 1 Comment

The sands of the interest only clock are about to run out

We are all familiar by now with the pension time bomb; it has been rearing its ugly head in the news for years.

However, we are less familiar with another time bomb that has also been ticking away over the past 20 years or so and which is now going off in people's faces up and down the land.

I am talking about the waves of interest-only mortgages taken out in the late…

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Added by Mark Williams on February 27, 2012 at 15:30 — No Comments

NiS Networker plus! launching next week!

I've been beavering away and surveying Members (and anybody else who will spare me the time!) to discover how I can add value to NiS with a paid-for 'upgraded Memnbership' - and at last NiS Networker plus! (NiS+) is ready to launch! It's for people who want to make a better return on their investment in networking and help others to do that too... It's going to be fun and generate more business for us all - so what's not to like?…

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Added by Keith Grover, Copy Writer on February 23, 2012 at 23:30 — No Comments

LIfe at the sharp end

A company I've worked with for a few years now, have gone from strength to strength.  So much so, that the 2 owners are currently taking an 8 week sabbatical in foreign climes, and whilst they're away, I'm minding the business for 2 days a week.

The difference between meeting the directors at work and me working from their offices has been a real eye opener.  I've been surprised that a company I thought I knew pretty well, has some quite basic issues in customer…

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Added by Jayne Westwood on February 23, 2012 at 14:00 — 3 Comments

Networking in Surrey News – week beginning 20 February 2012

It's been well over three weeks since my last NIS newsmail – but I have been sending out regular brief bulletins with details of events coming soon on the site, which several members have said they’re finding very useful in planning their networking diaries, so these will continue.…

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Added by Keith Grover, Copy Writer on February 23, 2012 at 12:00 — No Comments

The digital train is leaving – are you on it?

We have all read articles about the ‘Digital Revolution/Explosion’. We know ourselves how easy it is to be connected virtually everywhere. But have you really considered the effect this rapid smartphone/smarttv/tablet adoption is having on how your customers buy from your business?

These were the predicted online trends a good few years ago that are now a reality.

Consumers are…

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Added by Fraser Ritchie on February 21, 2012 at 10:00 — No Comments

Higher 'loan to value' mortgages better than a stamp duty 'holiday'?

The end of the stamp duty holiday for first-time buyers on 24 March will have little impact on the housing market compared to the availability of 95% loan to value deals.

The increased availability of 95% deals, which hit a four-year high, is likely to have a far more positive effect on the housing market.

Recent data in fact shows the concession has done little to…

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Added by Mark Williams on February 17, 2012 at 11:00 — No Comments

Alcohol - how many units can your business take?

It’s not always easy to draw the line between what people do in their own time, which is arguably not the employer’s concern, and what happens in the workplace.  Surely, it is not the employer’s place to dictate what their employees do in the evenings or at weekends?

Live and let live!…

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Added by Mara Thorne on February 17, 2012 at 9:00 — No Comments

Saving Money and Reclaiming Money!

 Couponing

If you have ever thought of saving some money in the Supermarkets, I suggest you take a look at http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/deals/supermarket-coupons

It’s definitely worth a look and if you, like me, are finding the cost of groceries increasing on almost a daily basis, then please…

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Added by Jane Hardy on February 14, 2012 at 15:30 — No Comments

Dragons searching for new recruits...

 Dragon's Den is searching for new entrepreneurs to pitch their ideas for investment.

The BBC will be auditioning throughout the coming months. If you would like an application form please send an email to the BBC or visit their website.…

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Added by Keith Grover, Copy Writer on February 10, 2012 at 17:59 — No Comments

Parents unaware of critical illness benefits

Parents are risking the financial security of their families should they become seriously ill by not thinking about critical illness (CI) protection.

Of the small percentage of those who have purchased insurance, a significant number did not know if it included cover for their children.

It is a sad fact , but children's illness are the fourth highest claim reason on…

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Added by Mark Williams on February 9, 2012 at 13:30 — No Comments

The end of interest only borrowing ?

Interest-only mortgages are set to disappear as a major high street bank restricts access to home owners.

Santander has become the first major high street bank to insist that home owners need a 50pc deposit – or 50pc equity in their home – if they want an interest-only mortgage.

This move not only affects those buying a property, but will also hit existing borrowers who…

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Added by Mark Williams on February 8, 2012 at 12:30 — No Comments

Bank of England to determine shape of mortgage market ?

Tough new rules to ban unsustainable mortgages and prevent another housing bubble are to be handed to the Bank of England, the Chancellor signalled last night.

George Osborne told MPs the Bank of England was set to win powers to vary what mortgages customers can buy to prevent overheating in the housing market.

A new Financial Policy Committee at the Bank would be able…

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Added by Mark Williams on February 7, 2012 at 12:00 — No Comments

Britain is a nation of animal lovers...and insurers?

People living in the UK would still rather insure their pets than themselves or their loved ones.

Although parents are more likely to buy protection, almost two-thirds (60%) do not have any cover in place.

The research found that less than one in ten (9%) people have bought critical illness (CI) protection, while 12% have pet insurance.…

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Added by Mark Williams on February 3, 2012 at 16:30 — No Comments

2012 Marketing plan - themes to consider

They say only change is constent & when it comes to marketing even what you thought was the right blend of channels & propositions last year will be very different in 2012.

New opportunities pop up all the time but only those that start to gain some customer momentum become worth considering – having critical mass or ‘having more than half doing the same thing’ is what we used to say when stealing theories from quantum physics was the trend.…

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Added by Fraser Ritchie on February 3, 2012 at 11:31 — No Comments

The banker, the bonus and the knighthood

What a week for bank bosses!  First Stephen Hester was pressured into foregoing his bonus of 3.6m shares as head of RBS.  Now his predecessor, Fred Goodwin, has been stripped of his knighthood.  And there’s not much sympathy around for either of them, tainted as they are by the unforgivable sin of being “fat cat bankers”.

 It’s interesting that the public furore focuses so much on the “bonus culture”, while little fuss is made of their very substantial salaries: Stephen Hester earns a…

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Added by Mara Thorne on February 2, 2012 at 17:03 — No Comments

State should pay benefits according to mortgage rates (Council of Mortgage Lenders)

Lenders are urging the government to pay out Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI) to reflect borrower's mortgage rates and save around £26m a year or almost £40m with a cap of 1.5%.

Borrowers are eligible for SMI  if they are on income support, jobseeker's allowance and pension credit , and can claim payments to cover their mortgage interest at a flat rate of 3.63%, with all payments paid direct to the…

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Added by Mark Williams on February 2, 2012 at 11:30 — No Comments

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