All change and no change!

More brains to tackle the trickiest situations as we merge with Mortgage & Finance Arena.

Gone Fishing

As I write this early on a lovely summer morning I do recall well going fishing with my dad. It was enchanting……… but that is not what this is about.

Beware the SDLT Trap!

Purchase a second residential property and you pay a 3% Stamp Duty Land Tax surcharge. If this second property is for your own residence and you sell your current home within three years you can reclaim the surcharge. “Straightforward” you may think. In practice danger could be ahead.

25 years on: nostalgia isn’t it what used to be

April 1991 was when I started out as a commercial finance broker. My first ever completion was a shop in Ashbourne financed by Royal Bank of Scotland, a bank with a lovely culture in those days. What was unusual is that most of my colleagues did not use high street clearing banks then: the favourites were finance houses, Allied Irish Finance, Barclays Mercantile, First National Bank and Woodchester…………remember them?

All the Fun of the Fair

I’m often asked what it has been like to be operating on my own instead of under the national franchise umbrella which sheltered me for nearly 20 years. Well after five years of being completely independent I think the answer lies with the client response.

The Commercial Lending Space Ship

There’s a steady queue for this ride. Now the economy appears to be steadily improving, business people are looking for lift-off.

Where now for business finance?

The recent Business Finance Expo, organised by the National Association of Commercial Finance Brokers, had stands manned by about 80 different lenders; and three of the high street banks weren’t even there. So what is going on and why are smaller businesses still finding it hard to get a loan?

Loan Wars? Only on price …… and only sometimes

The demand for mortgages for house purchases has slowed down so the lenders are dropping their prices. Five year fixed rate deals can be had at less than 2.0%! This is jolly exciting if you are a problem –free applicant buying a new home or if you are on a lender’s standard variable rate and want to remortgage. But what about everyone else?


Choosing the right solicitor for your transactions is vital. This is true for a house purchase, buying a leasehold pub business or writing your will. The piece of legal work you want to do may seem simple enough but there may be any number of complications which need to be sorted out before you can proceed.

Deal of the month

So the Bank of England think that the rising number of self-employed people may slow down growth in the Economy. They are probably right, but for reasons which the Bank and the financial regulators have created.