Child benefit and state pension - It’s not the most obvious link. But if you are a parent who is looking after a child instead of working, you need to register for child benefit in order to build up your entitlement in retirement age. Austerity swept away the universal child benefit and those households where one parent earns more than £50,000 have to start giving it back until it is removed altogether above £60,000. Unsurprisingly, many who fall into this bracket simply opt not to take it and see no point in registering. Unfortunately, mums and dads who stopped work to look after children are now finding they’ve missed building up their state pension. It should be easy to fix, but HMRC and the government have been stalling parents affected. That’s why This is Money has started a campaign to get this mess fixed, before it gets any worse.
On this week’s podcast, Simon Lambert, Lee Boyce and Georgie Frost discuss how this all happened and why it matters to not just those affected. And finally, can you really have a weekend away in Europe, flights and a decent hotel for £57? Yes you can, thanks to a very clever new website we tracked down.
As banks went kaput a decade ago, the safety of our savings was thrust into the limelight. Most had never considered that cash in the bank was at risk and knew little about the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. When Icesave blew up a year after the Northern Rock collapse things changed dramatically. We should all be up to speed now, but how safe are your savings? On this week’s podcast, Simon Lambert, Tanya Jefferies and Georgie Frost we look at savings protection but also how you could end up losing money by sticking with cash. Ironically, worries about banks a decade ago triggered a flight to safety and more people stashing money in savings accounts rather than investing. But had people invested as Lehman Brothers collapsed they would have more than doubled their money by now.
Taking the risk as the world appeared to be falling apart would have been the right move. Yet, at that point the stock market was already down 20% and fell by that again before it hit the bottom, so how many would have been brave enough? Also on this week’s show, we discuss how easy it might be to hit the £1million pension lifetime allowance sand whether your car might fail its next MOT.
Today we’re by John Myers, co-founder of London YIMBY, which stands for Yes In My Back Yard. The group campaigns for more homes in London and the rest of the UK. Interviewed by IEA News Editor Kate Andrews, John talks through the main obstacles that stand in the way of building more homes, and how the current system makes it near impossible for quantity and quality in the housing sector to go hand-in-hand.
John explains how the severe imbalance between supply and demand for housing in the UK, means that desperation to become a homeowner takes precedent, and often the aesthetics of property go out the window. John talks us through some solutions to the housing crisis, including allowing homeowners to have more control over planning permissions on their own street.
Finally, the pair discuss the perverse incentives in politics around the housing crisis, and what decisions could be made in Westminster to help more young people secure cheaper mortgages and cheaper rent.
Richard Blanco asks Douglas Haig, Vice Chair of the Residential Landlords Association and Richard Lambert, Chief Executive Officer of the National Landlords Association about the work of landlord associations; whether they can be legitimately seen as the voice of landlords; how their offer supports the landlord community; and why campaigns to prevent – and now roll back – recent tax changes have been thwarted. Also joining the debate is Vanessa Warwick, landlord and founder of propertytribes.com, who outlines the role she sees for digital platforms. What role might these organisations play as the government tries to professionalise and regulate the sector, should landlord associations merge to give them more clout, and is it fair to criticise web portals as a forum for ranting?
Commercial property has had a good run recently. Does that mean you shouldn’t include any in your portfolio? Ed finds out from Mark Callender, head of property research at Schroders, Colm Lauder of Goodbody stockbrokers, and Scott Longley of ETFstream.
Chris Norris, NLA Director of Policy, and Nigel Lewis, Head of Content at The Negotiator, join Richard Blanco to discuss the latest issues affecting the world of property. There’s a new Ministry of Housing and we exchange views on the seventh housing minister to be appointed since 2010. There’s an update on changing gas, electricity and carbon monoxide safety regulations, the new Fitness for Human Habitation Bill and some unexpected changes to arrangements for licensing and Article 4. Will you be contributing to the consultation on the proposed Landlord Redress scheme, and what do you think about Labour’s proposals to give tenants the right to have pets? Inside Property is produced in collaboration with the National Landlords Association.
Following new research which reveals that two thirds of us don’t love the home we live in, Adam Cox talks to Will Jones and Andrew Weiss of BHETA. They discuss the emotional aspect of home ownership, home improvements and renting, as well as how a bit of courage and enthusiasm could be an opportunity to create huge equity in your property – and to climb the property ladder.