Money Box

Money Box

By BBC Radio 4

The latest news from the world of personal finance plus advice for those trying to make the most of their money.


Money Box Live: Your Pensions and Investments

With the end of the tax year fast approaching, people are looking at their finances and investments. But in a cost of living crisis with unstable markets, are they performing, and how should we be investing? The experts on the panel are Sangita Chawla, Managing Director at Standard Life, and Kirsty Stone, Chartered Financial Adviser at The Private Office. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Elisabeth Mahy (First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 22nd February 2023)
22/03/23·28m 54s

Lasting Power of Attorney delays and Mortgages

The Office of the Public Guardian has told Money Box it apologises to its customers for the distress caused by delays in dealing with applications for Lasting Powers of Attorney. Its target is turning them round in eight weeks. But its own website says people should expect to wait twenty. It also says it has recruited more staff to process applications and teams have been working around the clock to reduce wait times and are now registering around 18,000 more LPAs a month than before the pandemic. We'll hear from listeners and speak to a legal expert. If you're one of the millions of people who have a mortgage, or indeed would like to get one, you might have struggled to keep up with ongoing changes to the market in the last few months. In the past two weeks nine lenders have started offering fixed term deals at less than 4% while another has doubled the amount borrowers can overpay. We'll look at how they’re affecting new and existing customers. How should I invest? New research looks at active and passive investing, we'll speak to co-author Professor Crawford Spence of King's College London. And how can you avoid an huge estimated bill from your energy company? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 18th January, 2023)
18/03/23·25m 29s

Money Box Live: Are you worried about debt?

The problem of debt is never too far from the headlines at the moment. This week a group of charities - Citizens Advice, Step Change and Christians Against Poverty - told the BBC they're seeing record numbers of people coming to them for help with problem debt. Why is that and what can people who're worried about debt do? We'll also look at the "Buy Now Pay Later" industry as the government looks impose regulation on the sector for the first time. And we'll talk about when credit can be used in the right way. All that and more with our panel of experts, Sarah Pennells, a consumer Finance Specialist at Royal London and Richard Lane, policy Director at debt charity Stepchange. Presenter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Sarah Rogers Researchers: Jo Krasner and Star McFarlane Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 15th January, 2023)
15/03/23·28m 53s

Cost of Living Crisis: Working People

The charity Citizens Advice says it's seen a sharp rise in the number of working people accessing crisis support in the past few years. In 2022, of the 200,000 people helped with a food bank voucher or an emergency grant, almost 24,000 - about 1 in 8 of them - worked. That figure was up more than double the number in 2020. We'll speak to Citizens Advice and get a response from the government. We'll hear from Harriett Baldwin, the Chair of the Treasury Select Committee, on how she wants banks to stop dragging their feet when it comes to implementing changes designed to stop people from becoming victims of push payment fraud. UK Finance, which speaks for banks, says the industry is investing billions to try to keep customers' money safe and is working on plans to slow down certain high-risk payments to prevent fraud. From this week unmarried parents whose partner dies can claim bereavement support payment worth up to £9800. We reported a few weeks ago that the change was coming and this week the application process has opened. Anyone who thinks they should be eligible can now put in a claim online via, over the phone or using a paper application form. More details here: and from the charities Child Bereavement Network ( and Widowed and Young ( And we'll discuss what GDP means for our personal finance with Diane Coyle, Bennett Professor of Public Policy at the University of Cambridge and a former advisor to the UK Treasury. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Eimear Devlin and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 11th Feb, 2023)
11/03/23·25m 24s

Money Box Live: The Art of a Complaint

In the UK, millions of people go without the refunds, the replacements and resolutions they're entitled to - because they don’t know how to complain. In this podcast, we talk about the art of the complaint. What are your rights and how can you enforce them? The experts on the panel are Lisa Webb, senior lawyer at the consumer rights company Which?, and Helen Dewdney, a consumer champion. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Elisabeth Mahy
08/03/23·28m 37s

Energy complaints rise to record levels

Paul Lewis hears how complaints to the Energy Ombudsman reached a record high last year. Plus, the child benefit trap that is catching parents unawares. And we hear one listener's difficult experiences trying to sort out the financial affairs of her terminally ill father. Presented by Paul Lewis. Reporter is Dan Whitworth. Researchers were Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner, studio manager Paul Lewis. Our editor is Clare Worden.
04/03/23·31m 20s

Money Box Live: Dementia and Money

It’s estimated that more than 900,000 people in the UK have dementia but that’s a number that's on the rise. It’s a diagnosis that raises a lot of questions, from the care that might be needed to the impact on family members, and of course there are worries about how best to manage finances as the illness progresses. This podcast is for everyone, but especially anyone who has concerns about how to protect their financial future if they lose the ability to manage their own affairs. It’s also for anyone who wants to know how they can best provide support for the people they love. To answer your questions, the experts in this podcast are, Victoria Lyons from the charity Dementia UK and Gary Rycroft a solicitor in private practice. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Clare Worden
01/03/23·33m 43s

Bereavement Support and Energy Vouchers

For the first time unmarried parents will be entitled to bereavement benefits after a change in law was passed this week. Until now these benefits have only been given to a bereaved spouse or civil partner. It comes more than four years since the Supreme Court ruled that denying them benefits was unlawful under the European Convention on Human Rights. The change will be backdated to the the day of that judgement 30 August 2018. We'll explain how it works and who can claim. Nearly a third of the vouchers issued to people on prepayment energy meters so they can access the government's Energy Bills Support Scheme have not been claimed according to figures released this week. It means more than a million households on the lowest incomes struggling to pay their energy bills are missing out on £400 of financial support offered this winter by the government. We'll investigate why that's happening, and what you should do if you haven't claimed yours. New figures from His Majesty's Revenue and Customs reveal that £5.3 billion was generated from inheritance tax, from April to December last year. That’s £700 million more than in the same period a year earlier. We'll explain how it works and who it applies to. Plus a reminder that the deadline to fill out you Self Assessment tax return is in just a few days time. (31st January 2023) Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 28th January, 2023)
25/02/23·26m 26s

Money Box Live: Your Mortgage

In this special programme we'll answer questions on mortgages, from interest rates to what to do if you're struggling to afford yours. Perhaps you’re looking to move or you need to re-mortgage this year - this is the podcast for you. The experts on the panel are, David Mendes Da Costa, Principal Policy Manager at Citizen's Advice, Charles Roe, Director of Mortgages at UK Finance and Sonya Matharu, Senior Mortgage Broker at The Mortgage Mum. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 25 January, 2023)
22/02/23·28m 49s

Debt Advice, Mortgage Costs and Savings

As hundreds of people at two large debt advice charities face redundancy – we visit a local debt advice centre to see who they help and how. Mortgage rates are at their highest for 14 years - the average is five and a half per cent for a two year fix, nearly six and half for the standard variable rate. The regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority, predicts more than half a million people will be at risk of falling into arears over the next couple of years. We'll discuss what to do if you’re struggling to afford your mortgage When and how will people who live off grid - without a gas or electricity supplier - get the government help with their energy bills? And what are the options for saving if you're on a low income? We'll discuss the government's Help to Save scheme. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast, 12pm Saturday 21st January, 2023)
18/02/23·24m 58s

Money Box Live: How to get a pay rise

If you feel your income needs a boost, or you want a pay rise, then this is the podcast for you. We discuss top tips on how to negotiate a higher salary. Official figures show that wages have grown at the fastest rate in more than 20 years - but prices are rising even faster and the gap between public and private sector pay is at close to record levels. On the expert panel are, Helen Tupper, CEO of 'Amazing If', a career development company, Radha Vyas, CEO and Co-Founder of Flash Pack, and Ed Rossiter co-founder and CEO of Phoenix, a recruitment agency. Presenter: Ruth Alexander Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast, 3pm Wednesday 18th January, 2023)
15/02/23·28m 55s

Mobile Phone Fraud and Pay Rises

The anti-fraud charity the Fraud Advisory Panel says banks are inconsistent and being caught off guard by the emerging and growing threat of mobile phone fraud. It's when criminals steal people's phones not for the actual handset but to gain access to banking and financial apps. We'll hear from one man who had £16,000 stolen when he was mugged last year. UK Finance says the industry is constantly monitoring fraud threats to help protect customers and that this type of mobile phone fraud is not a common occurrence, but that the industry is not complacent about new and emerging threats. In April we investigated complaints about Scottish Widows after listeners told us about struggles to get hold of pensions and other sums. Since then our inbox continues to receive a steady stream of similar grievances. New figures from the Financial Ombudsman Service given to Money Box show that complaints about the company rose by more than a third last year. We investigate and get a response from the company. We discuss the new details of how His Majesty's Revenue & Customs is going to change the law to help protect consumers from rogue tax repayment agents - companies who claim things like marriage or work from home allowance on people's behalf. In the autumn Money Box discovered the number of complaints to HMRC about repayment agents more than tripled in just two years with nearly two thousand being made in just the first eight months of last year alone. And, how to get a pay rise and what you should think about before you ask. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast at 12pm Saturday 14th January, 2023)
11/02/23·24m 48s

Money Box Live: How to fill out your tax return

As 31st January looms, there’s less than one month left for around 5.7 million Self Assessment customers to file their tax return or they may face a penalty. More than 12 million customers are expected to file a tax return for the 2021 to 2022 tax year by 31 January 2023 (HMRC). Whether you’re doing it for the first time this year, or not, we have the answers to all your tax-related questions. On this episode, we hear from experts, Clare Merrills, from HMRC, and Anita Monteith, Head of Taxation Policy, at the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 11th January, 2023)
08/02/23·31m 59s

Lasting Powers of Attorney and Tax Returns

In 2020, Lasting Powers of Attorney in England and Wales went digital. If you had permission to act on behalf of a relative who could no longer do it themselves you could download a digital certificate to prove it from the Office of the Public Guardian. But some organisations including His Majesty's Revenue & Customs have told Money Box they will not accept these digital certificates and demand a certified paper copy instead. We'll speak to a listener who's struggling with the system and get responses from the OPG and HMRC. People living in Northern Ireland will be watching their bank accounts and letterboxes closely over the next few weeks for some long awaited help with the cost of their energy bills. Unlike the rest of the UK, households haven't yet received any of the £400 help people in Great Britain have been getting in instalments of £66 or £67 or £200 which has been allocated to help towards the costs of alternative fuel - like heating oil and coal. We'll find out when and how that £600 will arrive. Advice on what you can do if your identity is stolen - our reporter Star McFarlane investigates after it happened to her. And what to do if you haven’t filed your self-assessment tax return yet, and how to avoid a fine. We'll speak to Dawn Register from the accountancy and business advisory firm BDO. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth, Eimear Devlin and Star McFarlane Producer: Catherine Lund Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 7th January, 2023)
04/02/23·25m 48s

Money Box Live: Happiness and Money

As the calendar page turns, so many of us also think of turning over new leaves, re-assessing what we're doing and how we are doing it. In this podcast, we are looking at the finances of happiness, in particular, whether there are lessons about the way we manage our money which can make us happier and improve our mental well-being. On the panel of experts are, Jan-Emmanuel De Neve, Professor of Economics and Behavioural Science at the University of Oxford, and Mark Williamson, Director at the charity Action for Happiness. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 4th January, 2023)
01/02/23·28m 9s

Heating the homes of the future

Money Box takes a look at three innovative energy projects changing the way people heat their homes to try to improve efficiency and reduce bills. First up is the village of Swaffham Prior in Cambridgeshire where residents and the local council have backed a scheme using air source and ground source heat pumps to warm people's homes. A new, multi-million pound energy centre of the edge of the village provides the energy through a newly installed heat network for any residents of the village's 300 homes that want to join. Secondly, Dan Whitworth visits the University of Salford and the researchers behind its 'Energy House 2' project - a scheme which has seen two, modern, full-size, detached homes built by developers Barrett and Bellway inside a science laboratory. This allows scientists to create climate conditions to put the homes to the limit to test how effective they are at being energy efficient. Finally a visit to Gateshead examines a mine water scheme being run by the council which uses the warmed water of disused, flooded coal mines to help heat council buildings and homes. More than a dozen buildings run by the council, including the local college and Sage Gateshead are signed up to the scheme as well as hundreds of homes. We'll examine how practical is it and what kind of a difference the scheme makes to people's bills. Talking us through each of these schemes are Dr Tina Fawcett from the Environmental Change Institute at Oxford University and Ben Whittle from the Energy Saving Trust. Presenter/Reporter/Producer: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial & Star McFarlane Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 28th December, 2022)
25/01/23·28m 28s

Money Box Christmas

In a year when the cost of living has dominated so many of our programmes and of course your lives, we’ll return to some of the organisations and individuals helping families cope with rising energy prices, soaring food costs and prices that only go one way - up. Paul Lewis is joined by a community interest company which focuses on fuel poverty - Warm Wales, Broke not Broken foodbank in Kinross and the South Manchester Credit Union. We'll hear from just a few of the listeners who we've helped this year to keep more of their money. We have Money Box's top five Christmas crackers – tips to save you money in 2023. And the Maelgwn Male Voice Choir in Llandudno sings some carols. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Clare Worden Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Star McFarlane Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 24th December, 2022)
21/01/23·25m 9s

Money Box Live: Cost of Living and Charities

Christmas is a time for giving and often that means charitable donations. New research from the Charities Aid Foundation suggests fewer people are supporting good causes because of the rising cost of living putting pressure on their finances. In this episode of Money Box Live, we’re talking to charity founders about how the finances of their organisations are impacted. We'll also be joined by Caron Bradshaw, the CEO of the Charity Finance Group, and Alison Taylor, CEO of CAF Bank, from the Charities Aid Foundation. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 21st December, 2022)
18/01/23·28m 13s

Scottish Budget and Cold Weather Payments

We discuss this week's Scottish Budget, from income tax to benefits. Deputy First Minister John Swinney announced that everyone earning more than £43,662 in Scotland will have to pay more income tax next year. It's as the higher rate of tax increases from 41p to 42p in the pound in April, and the top rate from 46p to 47p. We'll get reaction to that from people in Glasgow and analysis from Emma Congreve an economist who is Deputy Director at the Fraser of Allander Institute in Strathclyde. This month, we've seen freezing temperatures which, for millions of households, have triggered Cold Weather Payments. These are paid to some people in low income households who get means-tested benefits to help pay their higher energy bills during a cold snap. Payments of £25 are made automatically when the average temperature in an area is recorded or forecast to be at zero degrees celcius or below for seven consecutive days. We discuss who's eligible and how it works. Interest rates rose again this week for the ninth time in a row - from 3% to 3.5%, its highest level for 14 years. The decision will increase monthly mortgage payments for some homeowners at a time when many people are struggling with all the other rises in the cost of living. The Bank of England predicted this week that people with mortgages who need to refinance next year to a new fixed rate will face an average monthly increase of around £250 - that's £3000 a year. What does that mean for you? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Clare Worden and Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12noon, Saturday 17th December, 2022)
14/01/23·24m 58s

Money Box Live: Bereavement Finances

At some point in our lives, we all experience the death of family, friends or partners, and it is never easy. It's made worse - by what can feel like an uncaring and unnecessarily complex bureaucracy which can make dealing with your family finances difficult, draining and confusing. In this podcast, we hear the experiences of some who have gone through these problems and we look at strategies to help. On the expert panel are, Nick Hill, Senior Advice Manager at Money and Pensions Service, and Melinda Giles, Council Member for Private Client Solicitors at The Law Society. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 14th December, 2022)
11/01/23·28m 47s

Where to keep warm this winter

It's going to be the coldest weekend of the year so far. We already know that typical energy bills will be double what they were last winter. So everyone is looking for ways to use less electricity and gas at the same time as trying to stay warm. One solution is being offered by so-called 'warm banks' - places where people can go to keep warm if they're struggling to afford heating costs. The Warm Welcome campaign now has more than three thousand places open on its website and says last week alone 80 thousand people kept warm in one of them - up by more than a fifth on the previous week. We visit Widnes library and speak to the organisers of the campaign. If you’re looking for somewhere to go to keep warm the website is Losing your spouse or civil partner is always a difficult time financially - the funeral, paying bills and losing a second income all add to the stress. There is money from the government to help - totalling more than £4,000 for those without children and nearly £10,000 for those with. This Bereavement Support Payment was introduced in April 2017 and is paid to surviving partners who are under the state pension age of 66. We discuss how to get it and how to avoid missing out. A third of all bank and building society branches have closed in the last decade. One solution to this is a new expansion of banking hubs. Our reporter Clare Worden visits the opening of a new hub in East Yorkshire. And how to make sure you don’t lose out on claiming a Cost of Living Payment to help with energy bills. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Clare Worden Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Star McFarlane Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 10th December, 2022)
07/01/23·24m 49s

Money Box Live: Christmas Spending

As households grapple with cost of living pressures and with Christmas just around the corner, many will be looking for cheaper options for the big day. We speak to listeners who share with us how they’ll be managing their finances this festive period. On the expert panel are, Richard Lane, Director of External Affairs at StepChange Debt Charity and Carol Mitchell, Retail Expert at British Heart Foundation. Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producers: Amber Mehmood and Clare Worden Reporter: Star McFarlane Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 7th December, 2022)
04/01/23·28m 47s

Loot Boxes, Pension Compensation and Bank Closures

An new report suggests children are put at risk by 'loot boxes' in video games. More than a thousand steelworkers will share compensation of £49 million for pension mis-selling, but campaigners say it is unfair and inadequate. HSBC will close a quarter of its remaining branches next year. It is offering some customers free computer tablets instead. And more on spray foam - a plea for it not to be included in the Government's new £1 billion energy efficiency scheme because of the frequent problems it causes in getting a mortgage.
31/12/22·25m 27s

Money Box Live: Cohabitation

3.6 million couples in the UK cohabit, meaning they live together in a relationship but without getting married or civil partnered. In fact, they are the fastest growing type of family in this country If those couples break up then they usually split their shared finances without the help of courts or solicitors. In fact, splitting after buying a house or sharing bills together has become known as the ‘millennial divorce’ – only it doesn’t just affect millennials and there are none of the protections of divorce. That can make a big difference when it comes to splitting assets like the family home or pension savings. We're talking about this today because the government has recently said it won't be addressing recommendations for cohabitation law reforms - for England and Wales. The experts on this panel are Laura Pomfret, the founder of Financielle, an app and service focused on helping women manage their finances, and Graeme Fraser, head of family at BBS Law. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Researcher: Star McFarlane Editor: Clare Worden
28/12/22·28m 12s

Spray Foam, Fraud & Pay Gaps

We hear from a man whose home was valued at zero pounds which his mortgage provider said was because his loft was insulated with spray foam. 70,000 victims of fraud are sent texts by the police asking them to make contact - but will their bank text them too? People from diverse ethnic backgrounds are paid less than people in the UK who are white. We ask why, and what can be done about it?
24/12/22·24m 0s

Money Box Live: Your Spending Strategies

The surge in inflation is hitting wide and hitting deep, impacting everything from energy and fuel, to food and everyday household goods. With inflation this high, the effects are leading to significant changes in the way lives are being lived – well beyond those on low incomes. In practice, rising costs of almost everything has meant large swatches of Britain’s working households having to make material cutbacks, people’s disposable incomes being wiped out and donors of foodbanks becoming users. We hear from some of those people having to make changes to their spending. The experts on the panel are Sarah Pennells, Consumer Finance Specialist at Royal London, Colletta Smith, BBC News Cost of Living Correspondent and Callum Hewitt, Deputy Manager at The Sanctuary Trust Limited (charity). Presenter: Ruth Alexander Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Clare Worden Researcher: Star McFarlane
21/12/22·28m 23s

Autumn Statement Special

In this special Money Box we will delve into Jeremy Hunt's Autumn Statement and see what lies in the small print. How will changes to the support you’ll be getting to pay for your energy bills affect you? Paul Lewis and Nimesh Shah, the Chief Executive of Blick Rothenberg on why tax changes matter for you. What do announcements on benefits and getting back into work mean for those on welfare? And our reporter Dan Whitworth is live from Stafford Indoor Market to get reaction to this week’s inflation figures and the planned rise to the National Living Wage. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 19th November, 2022)
17/12/22·26m 33s

Money Box Live: Fighting Fraud and Scams

With hundreds of thousands of victims and billions of pounds stolen every year, the UK continues to be in the grip of a fraud epidemic. We'll discuss the conclusions of a House of Lords report, which describes how police, telecoms, tech and banking sectors must do more. We hear from victims of fraud and we speak to experts Kathryn Westmore, Senior Research Fellow at the Centre of Financial Crime and Security at RUSI, and Katy Worobec, Managing Director of Economic Crime at UK Finance. Presenter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 16th November, 2022)
14/12/22·28m 29s

Stolen inheritance, Fraud and Pets

A new report out today is recommending sweeping reform in the way fraud is dealt with in England and Wales. The House of Lords Digital Fraud Committee has spent six months looking at the systems enabling fraud, the response to fraud and how victims are treated. Recommendations range from a time limit stopping high value payments from leaving accounts, to what it calls 'less carrot and more stick' for companies who enable fraud. We'll speak to Baroness Morgan who is the Chair of that committee and hear from a woman who had part of her inheritance stolen in a sophisticated scam. One of the UK's largest mortgage providers has warned Money Box about the dangers of rogue companies installing insulation using what is called spray foam. Nationwide expects more homeowners to enquire about insulation as energy costs rise and the cost of living crisis bites. Dan Whitworth hears from those affected and gets a response from the industry. Can customers use government energy bill vouchers to pay for their gas as well as electricity? And the cost of living crisis has been called one of the biggest threats to animal welfare by the RSPCA. It's after a survey found that one in five pet owners are worried they won't be able to feed their animals. The office for National Statistics also says that the price of pet food has risen by almost 14% in a year, increasing more rapidly than the cost of food for humans of about 11%. We'll speak to pet owners and the RSPA. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 12th November, 2022)
10/12/22·30m 50s

Money Box Live: Renting

There are around eight and a half million families who rent - quite a bit more than those who have mortgages - so the rise in housing costs, on top of a cost-of-living crisis, is likely to be causing significant challenges for millions of people. The official numbers from the Office for National Statistics show that, on average, rental inflation is now 3.6%. It's highest in the East Midlands and lowest in London. But companies such as Rightmove, HomeLet and Zoopla report much bigger rate increases of between 9 and 12%. That is likely to reflect the situation that landlords are often not raising rents for existing tenants by very much but when a home changes hands - they may take the opportunity to raise rents much more significantly. In Scotland, emergency legislation was passed which froze most rents until the end of March 2023. So the situation is quite different from the rest of the UK. To guide us through what is happening and what best to do about it are: Aneisha Beveridge, Head of Research at the estate and letting agents, Hamptons, Deborah Garvie, Policy Manager at Shelter England, and Allan Fuller, an independent estate agent. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 9th November, 2022)
07/12/22·28m 53s

Landlords, Heat Networks and Happiness

The interest rate rose to 3% this week affecting mortgage rates. We'll be looking at what that means for buy-to-let landlords. Many will have interest only mortgages linked to the interest rate so they'll begin rising almost at once. What does it mean for landlords but also tenants? We'll discuss how the freeze in tax thresholds impacts your income and look at what could happen over the coming years. Why over half a million households could be facing heating bills more than double those covered by the Energy Price Guarantee. It's because they warm their homes using heat networks - communal heating systems used in blocks of flats or housing estates. New figures suggest more than half of NHS and public sector workers eligible to get cheaper broadband are missing out. And is happiness linked to your income? How much per year would it take to make you happy? Email us with your thoughts now to Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 5th November, 2022)
03/12/22·27m 14s

Money Box Live: Your Pension

Are you one of the nearly three million people who has lost track of a pension? There is almost £27 billion that has been paid in by individuals and employers into a pension pot, but the firm holding the money has lost track of the owners. We'll give advice on how you can track your lost pension and take listener questions. Email your question now to Featuring, Lauren Wilkinson, Senior Policy Researcher at Pensions Policy Institute, Duncan Stevens, CEO at Gretel and Nigel Peaple, Director of Policy and Advocacy at Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 2nd November, 2022)
30/11/22·28m 46s

Broadband and the costs of being disabled

Broadband providers have been told by the regulator Ofcom to 'think carefully' before making significant price rises. Most providers of telecoms and broadband raise their prices each spring in line with inflation plus three or four percentage points. That means some firms could put up prices by 16% next year - an extra £5 a month in some cases, and most have yet to confirm their plans. Stories of economic turmoil and falling share prices have led many investors to wonder what they can do about their investments. Especially when they get financial statements telling them the value of their pension fund or savings have fallen sharply. We'll speak to Kirsty Stone who's an independent financial adviser at The Private Office about that. The government has recently been encouraging claims for what is called Pension Credit - a top-up to the state pension for people aged 66 or more whose income is low. In June, the Department for Work and Pensions held its annual Pension Credit Day of Action to encourage people to claim this benefit. But has it been too successful? The Department says applications are at an all-time high but some listeners are telling us they're experiencing long delays. And, what's it like trying to pay for energy bills when you're disabled. We'll hear from a woman with cerebral palsy who's got £5,000 of energy debt. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Sarah Rogers Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Star McFarlane Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 29th October, 2022)
26/11/22·25m 15s

Money Box Live: Your spending habits

Food prices are rising at their fastest rate for more than 40 years. Figures out this week from the Office of National Statistics the price of budget food is up 17% in the 12 months to September - with big increases in the cost of basic ingredients like bread, pasta, cooking oil and tea. Add spiking transport, rent, mortgage and energy costs to that - and the squeeze on household finances couldn’t be clearer. We’re looking at what the higher cost of living is doing to our spending behaviour. We’ll be hearing how some of you are keeping costs down - and also looking at potential options for financial support. Charmaine Cozier will be joined by experts, Krystle McGilvery, a Behavioural Finance Consultant, and Michael Clarke, Head of Information Programmes at Turn2us. Email us now with your experiences to Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Amber Mehmood Researcher: Star McFarlane Editor: Justin Bones (First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 26th October, 2022)
23/11/22·29m 9s

Energy Saving Special

The Money Box team concentrates on the biggest cost of living fear that people bring to the programme - how will I pay my energy bills when the price of everything else is rising so rapidly and support may be withdrawn. We'll ask what another new Prime Minister and the government’s scrapping of the Energy Price Guarantee after April mean for those facing fuel poverty? Our reporter Dan Whitworth visits the Energy House at the University of Salford. It’s a Victorian terrace house built inside a warehouse to test energy efficiency. Listen out for top tips on how to save money on energy costs in the home. And our experts will answer listener's questions on energy saving - from whether to keep your heating on all day to the most energy efficient ways to cook. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Eimear Devlin and Star McFarlane Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast Saturday 22nd October, 2022)
19/11/22·28m 48s

Money Box Live: Your tax and your money

The government has spent the past few weeks introducing and then withdrawing a confusion of financial policies, which first introduced the largest package of tax cuts in decades and then, in the face of market chaos, decided that they weren't such a good idea and withdrew many of them. So where does this leave the personal finance of people who've seen two mini-budgets, two chancellors, an emergency bond-buying programme, mortgage rate increases and widespread uncertainty about the future? In particular, we'll be looking at how it affects the self-employed - all 4.3 million of them. Featuring Helen Thornley from the Association of Taxation Technicians and Andy Chamberlain, Director of Policy at The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 19th October, 2022)
16/11/22·29m 53s

A whirlwind week: tax, pensions, savings and mortgages

The Prime Minister has announced another U-turn in her government's tax-cut plan, in an effort to reassure financial markets. Liz Truss says she will reverse her plan to scrap an increase in corporation tax and admits the government's mini-budget had gone "faster and further" than many expected. It comes after the PM sacked her chancellor, Kwasi Kwarteng, and replaced him with former health and foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt. We'll ask what all this means for your income, pension, savings and mortgage. The first £66 discounts from electricity bills are now being paid, but some suppliers are using the money to pay off old debts. Felicity Hannah investigates. Charities call for changes to a website which they say is misleading disabled people over their eligibility for a railcard. We'll get a response from the Rail Delivery Group and the Department for Transport on that. And the government has promised £100 to help with heating bills for households who are not on the mains gas network. We explain when and how it will be paid. Presenter: Paul Lewis Team: Felicity Hannah, Clare Worden and Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 15th October, 2022)
12/11/22·29m 36s

Money Box Live: Kids and the cost of living

As we move into a winter of record energy prices and double digit inflation, many families are facing the challenge of trying to keep costs down. But how do you educate your children about the cost of living crisis without scaring them? Ruth Alexander and a panel of experts answer your questions on how to navigate what can often be a tricky subject, and share tips on how to teach your children about money. Featuring Evelyn Forde MBE, Headteacher at Copthall School and President of the Association of School and College Leaders, Stephanie Fitzgerald, Head of Young People Programmes at The Money Charity and Eileen Adamson, Money Coach at Your Money Sorted and co-host of BBC Scotland's Clever About Cash podcast. Presenter: Ruth Alexander Producer: Katie Barnfield Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 12th October, 2022)
09/11/22·28m 44s

Northern Ireland energy and the cost of living

In the past week energy companies in Northern Ireland have announced increases in the price of electricity and gas. It comes as people in Northern Ireland wait to hear the details of exactly when they will receive the £400 off their electricity bills from the UK government and when and how the Energy Price Guarantee will apply there. The UK government has said the Guarantee will provide equivalent financial support to those in Northern Ireland as the rest of the UK some time in November, but it will be backdated to 1st October. We'll hear from people in Banbridge in County Down and from Peter McClenaghan at the Consumer Council of Northern Ireland. Sixty thousand people who had tax rebates claimed on their behalf by a company will have their money paid back to them, in full, directly by His Majesty's Revenue and Customs. It comes after an investigation by this programme. Dan Whitworth will have more on this. Forty thousand people who had funeral plan policies with a company called Safe Hands Plans Ltd which went into administration are now being offered new deals to take up a plan elsewhere. We'll explore what those are and what it means for those affected. Plus, how to avoid energy bill scams and how to talk to children about the cost of living crisis? We'll speak to Ricky Boleto, presenter on CBBC Newsround. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 8th October 2022)
05/11/22·27m 53s

Money Box Live: Dealing with Debt

With the energy price cap rising again, and the cost of living putting pressure on many people's finances - what can you do if you are struggling with debt? Felicity Hannah and a panel of experts answer your questions on everything debt related - from credit cards and interest rates, to dealing with debt collectors, and support if you have been the victim of financial abuse. We also hear advice on how to spot loan sharks and what to do if you are involved with an illegal lender. Featuring Laura Suter, Head of Personal Finance at AJ Bell, Jay Lowe, Money Advice Manager Staffordshire North & Stoke on Trent Citizens Advice, and Cath Williams from the England Illegal Money Lending Team. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Katie Barnfield Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 5th October, 2022)
02/11/22·28m 49s

Energy special: Llandudno live

As energy bills rise, Paul Lewis and the team are in North Wales for a special programme focusing on the cost of living. The team will be joined by guests offering advice and support to those struggling to pay their energy bills, afford the cost of food and manage their money. Broadcasting live from the heart of Llandudno, we’ll hear directly from those facing a difficult winter and look at what help is available. Our reporter Dan Whitworth is also in Bethesda, a community leading the way on generating its own energy and learning how to use less. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Producer: Clare Worden Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 1130am Saturday 1st October, 2022)
28/10/22·51m 22s

Money Box Live: Mortgage Special

With changes to the stamp duty threshold, some of the UK’s biggest mortgage lenders halting new home loans, and some economists predicting interest rates could double by spring, what does this all mean for you? Our panel of experts hear concerns and questions from listeners about the housing market volatility. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Katie Barnfield Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Clare Worden
25/10/22·28m 53s

A not-so 'mini budget'

Paul Lewis has full details of what the mini budget will mean for your finances including changing tax rates, stamp duty alterations and support for those on low incomes. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Clare Worden (First broadcast Saturday 24th September 2022)
22/10/22·26m 0s

Money Box Live: The Future of Cash

Ten million people would struggle to cope in a cashless society even though only 17% of payments are not made with notes and coins, the Royal Society of Arts found. With thousands of bank branch closures in recent years, and access to cash withdrawals under threat, we discuss if we’re ready to abandon cash. Dan Whitworth is joined by a panel of experts to hear callers experiences and thoughts on the UK becoming a cashless society. With Natalie Ceeney CBE, Chair of Cash Action Group and Mike Chambers, chief executive of payment consultants Northey Point. Presenter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Clare Worden
18/10/22·28m 21s

How Much Should It Cost To Get Out Of Debt?

As the Government begins a sector review Money Box explores personal insolvency options and why some are much more expensive than others, plus what is a deed of assignment and might you have agreed to one? And Paul Lewis investigates a new fraud involving buy now pay later companies. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Clare Worden (First broadcast, 12pm Saturday 17th September 2022)
15/10/22·23m 55s

Energy Bills, Banknotes and Coins

Today on Money Box we will mark the death of Queen Elizabeth II by looking at what will change – from our stamps to our passports. We'll speak to Dominic Chorney - an Ancient Coin Specialist at Baldwin's - one of the largest coin dealers and auction houses in the world. We'll also get reaction the government announcement on energy bills - answering your questions - email Plus, more than fifty thousand people have applied for an interest free loan to help them pay for food at the supermarket Iceland. We'll speak to Simon Dukes, the Chief Executive of the lender Fair For You. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Producer: Clare Worden Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12noon, Saturday 10th September, 2022)
08/10/22·24m 3s

Money Box Live: Making savings work for you

The UK Inflation rate has hit 10.1%, the highest it’s been for 40 years, and it’s set to go even higher. In this programme, our panel of experts hear about your saving habits and answer your questions on how to protect your savings from the record levels of inflation we now have. Sarah Coles, senior personal finance analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, Mat Megens, CEO and founder of HyperJar, and Bukiie Smart, personal finance expert, will answer your questions. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 7th September, 2022)
05/10/22·27m 48s

Rent cap consultation for social housing tenants

Millions of people living in social housing in England could see increases to their rent capped next year. A consultation has been launched by the Government. If the plans go ahead it would protect 3.8 million households from a rise of potentially more than 10 percent. We'll speak to renters on a housing estate in Cheshire and get reaction from the National Housing Federation and the Local Government Association. If you're a pensioner you may have heard about extra money you could get to help pay your heating bills. The Winter Fuel Payment is higher this year meaning people who're eligible could get up to £600 depending on their circumstances. To qualify you must have been born on or before a specific date set by the government - which this year is 25th September 1956. We've been contacted by two people who reach pension age this winter but are unhappy because they don't fit that criteria. We'll get a response from the Department for Work and Pensions. Plus, we'd like to hear from you about your saving habits. Are you managing to save at the moment? Maybe high prices are eating away at your nest egg or perhaps you're unsure what options you have - let us know - we have Anna Bowes, savings champion on hand to help. And, why trusts need to be registered with HMRC. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 3rd September, 2022)
01/10/22·24m 47s

Money Box Live: Your energy bill questions answered

In this programme we'll provide answers and advice for those worried about the cost of energy. Household energy bills will rise again this autumn to two and a half times what they were last year. Bills for businesses are already climbing. Mike Foster, an energy analyst from Energy & Utilities Alliance, and Amy Taylor, a debt advisor and Chair of Greater Manchester Money Advice Group, will answer your questions. Email Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 31st August, 2022)
28/09/22·28m 34s

Energy bill special: Q&A

In this special programme we'll answer your questions and provide advice for those worried about the cost of energy. Ofgem has announced that the typical household energy bill for people in England, Wales and Scotland will hit £3,549 a year from 1 October. People on prepayment meters will typically pay an additional £59 a year on top of that. Adam Scorer from the fuel poverty charity National Energy Action and Kathryn Porter from Watt-Logic, an energy analyst who's worked for EDF Energy and Centrica, will answer your questions. We'll get the latest from Westminster on what financial support people can expect this winter. And we'll hear more on the "warm banks" being set up by councils, community groups and libraries, for people to spend time in if they can't heat their homes. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Hannah Mullane Researcher: Eimear Devlin Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm on Saturday 27th August)
24/09/22·25m 1s

Interest Free Loan Scheme to help 20,000 people

A scheme offering interest-free loans to the financially vulnerable is being expanded to reach up to 20,000 people. After a successful trial at South Manchester Credit Union the No Interest Loan Scheme (NILS) will be rolled out across the UK from September. It's backed by the Treasury but will be run by credit unions and other lenders. The aim is to offer emergency loans to people who would normally be turned down because they can't afford the interest payments. We'll speak to Economic Secretary to the Treasury John Glen. As a new survey, commissioned by the BBC, suggests half of people working are planning to increase their hours to boost their income and almost one in three people are thinking about taking a second job, we'll hear from the Low Incomes Tax Reform Group about the implications for tax and benefits. More on how thousands of people may be able to boost their state pension by paying extra National Insurance Contributions. Paying just one missing year can mean an extra £275 a year for your pension. Plus, less than half the firms that sell funeral plans look set to be approved by the regulator when tough new rules begin in six weeks. More on how you can check yours. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Katie Barnfield Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 18th June, 2022)
15/09/22·28m 25s

Food Poverty

In England and Wales the school summer holiday is just beginning but Scotland and Northern Ireland are already well into their long and, often costly, summer. But for some families the challenge isn’t just keeping the kids busy, it’s keeping them fed – particularly when food prices are rising. Felicity Hannah, along with a panel of experts, are looking at what support is out there to help with food poverty and holiday hunger. Panel: Dr Megan Blake – Senior Lecturer, Food Security Expert Billy McGranaghan – Founder of Dad’s House Jonathan Sharples – Community Support Worker Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Elisabeth Mahy
24/08/22·28m 51s

Food banks warn they are struggling to meet demand

Food banks across the UK have told Money Box they are facing increased demand, but falling donations, as the cost of living crisis bites people across the income range. This research, which took place in June, covered 116 out of 505 organisations which are part of IFAN - the Independent Food Aid Network. Those 116 organisations cover 203 food banks across the UK and 9 out of 10 of them told us they had seen an increase in demand since the start of this year. More than half said they've also seen seen food donations fall. IFAN, a registered charity and anti-poverty campaign group, helps run food banks which tend to be run by volunteers across local communities. For context, we don't know how many food banks there are in the UK, but the Trussell Trust, which has its own network of more than 1,400 of them, recently reported giving out more than 2.1 million food parcels in the year to March. We reported on Money Box a couple of weeks ago that energy prices are expected to rise substantially in October and then again in January. But why does the price get fixed by the regulator Ofgem? Would a change in the way the market works bring bills down? We'll hear from Dr Craig Lowrey, Senior Consultant at Cornwall Insight which produces forecasts of where the price of energy is going. Why it's not too late for pensioners to claim extra help and get the first £326 cost of living payment that is being sent out this week. (the number for claiming is 0800 991234) Plus, new data suggests many homeowners are fixing their mortgage rates early, in the hope of securing a better deal. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 23rd July, 12pm)
20/08/22·29m 25s

Gender Identity and Finance

Being transgender or non-binary means you can have a lot of extra things to manage and finances, along with the admin involved, can be a big one. Felicity Hannah is joined by a panel of experts to discuss changing your name and gender at the bank, the lack of options when filling in forms, and raising money for medical care. Panel: jane fae – Director – TransActual Cleo Madeleine – Spokesperson – Gendered Intelligence More info:
17/08/22·28m 29s

Energy costs versus incomes

Families on a low income face spending more than a quarter of the money they have left after paying their mortgage or rent on energy bills from April next year. The Joseph Rowntree Foundation says it's even tougher for single people on a low income with no children, where it rises to more than two thirds. The calculations are based on latest predictions from the energy analyst Cornwall Insight, which says the typical annual bill could reach more than £3,300 in the new year. The data also shows that the government's £37 billion support package has reduced costs this year. We'll get reaction from the government, the energy regulator Ofgem, and Energy UK who represent the industry. It's not long until school's out for summer, in England and Wales at least - Scotland and Northern Ireland are already deep into that school summer break. We'll take a look at what financial support is on offer for families to help with costs. How rising inflation is pushing more people into higher tax bands and what you can do about it. And the listener who paid off her mortgage, only to discover the bank had used her money to pay off someone else’s. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Katie Barnfield Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 16th July, 2022)
13/08/22·24m 44s


After two years of Covid restrictions, much of the world has now opened back up and plenty of us are planning to take full advantage this summer. But what if it all goes wrong? What are you entitled to? What kind of insurance cover should you get? And how can you make sure you have a happy holiday? Felicity Hannah, along with a panel of experts, are here to give you the answers on all things travel. Panel: Simon Calder - travel journalist Lisa Minot - travel editor - The Sun Producer: Drew Hyndman and Di Richardson Editor: Richard Fenton-Smith
10/08/22·38m 34s

How changes at the top of government could affect your money

It's been quite the week in politics and on this week's Money Box we'll take a look at what it could mean for your personal finances. One of the biggest challenges the next PM will face is the economy and the many households feeling the squeeze. It's thought some of the candidates favour tax cuts, but there's also pressure to increase taxes to control government borrowing. Heather Self a tax expert at Blick Rothenberg and Tom Selby from the investment company AJ Bell will discuss. According to a new report, out on Monday, more people are falling behind with at least one household bill as the cost of living rises. Money Box has been given an early look at the Coronavirus Financial Impact Tracker, which suggests one-in-six households are now ‘in serious financial difficulty' compared to one-in-ten in October. Debt is also climbing - particularly among people who were already struggling. We'll speak to Professor Sharon Collard from the University of Bristol, who is one of the authors of the financial impact report which is funded by the Aberdeen Financial Fairness Trust. Plus advice from the debt charity Stepchange. Also, if you ignore a current account for too long - can your bank really take your money? And how hard is it to get it back? Our reporter Dan Whitworth investigates. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 9th July, 2022)
06/08/22·25m 32s

The Cost of Cancer

Getting a cancer diagnosis can be a scary and fraught time, before you even begin to consider the financial pressures. Affording time out of work, the cost of getting to appointments, or even the price of drugs in different parts of the country can present issues for many. Ruth Alexander is joined by a panel of experts to hear caller experiences of the costs of cancer. Panel: Ceinwen Giles - Shine Richard Pugh - Macmillan Producer: Drew Hyndman and Amber Mehmood Editor: Beatrice Pickup
03/08/22·29m 4s

What do National Insurance changes mean for you?

From 6th July, everyone in work will see a cut in the taxes they pay. It's because the level of pay at which National Insurance begins will be raised. Two million people on part-time low pay will not pay any national insurance at all. Ministers say it's a tax cut of 330 pounds per year for a typical employee, but that is not the whole picture. The rate of national insurance rose three months ago. So this cut is in a tax that is already costing millions of workers more. We'll hear from families in Stockport on how their income is being squeezed and speak to the Minister responsible for tax policy Lucy Frazer, the Financial Secretary to the Treasury. If you are a victim of crime it is most likely that your money is stolen through fraud. New figures out this week showed the amount stolen and the number of victims rose substantially last year - as they have every year that the figures have been collected. We'll get reaction from Her Majesty's Inspector of Constabulary, Matt Parr. A new act banning ground rents for most new residential leases in England and Wales came into force this week. It's part of the government’s Leasehold Reform plans. We'll find out more about the new rules from a legal specialist in leasehold. Plus, why has a much anticipated code of practice designed to regulate the private parking sector been withdrawn? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast at 12pm, Saturday 2nd July, 2022)
30/07/22·25m 7s


Fraudsters are always trying to get at our money, and the pandemic has changed their tactics and their access to our data. Felicity Hannah and our expert panel discuss the latest fraud figures, how to protect yourself, what your rights are, and what to do if you're targeted by scammers. Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Drew Hyndman Editor: Justin Bones and Elisabeth Mahy
27/07/22·33m 23s

Energy firm introduces late payment charges

Scottish Power has introduced late payments fees for its five million customers saying the move "brings us in line with other suppliers" and reflect the costs of collecting debt. The change comes at a time when consumers are facing record high energy prices with some estimates suggesting millions more households face the real prospect of falling into fuel poverty this winter. An employment tribunal rules that a man suffering from long covid is protected by the Equality Act. It means employers have to make "reasonable adjustments" in the workplace to help sufferers and could have far reaching legal implications for the estimated two million people thought to be living with long covid. We look into a listener's question about only paying for the energy she actually uses - instead of relying to estimated average payments across the year. And the Universities Minister confirms in Parliament a roll out date of 2025 for Alternative Student Finance aimed at helping muslim students with sharia compliant loans. It comes after the scheme was first talked about during David Cameron's time as Prime Minister nearly a decade ago. (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 25th June, 2022)
23/07/22·24m 49s

Self Publishing

Do you want to write a book? How would you go about publishing one? Many people now look away from traditional publishing and towards self publishing. Whether it's doing it all yourself or using hybrid publishers, which offer publishing services for a cost, it can be a risky and potentially expensive option for would be authors. Felicity Hannah is joined by our panel of experts to discuss self publishing and to hear experiences, comments and questions from callers. Panel: Nicola Solomon - Chief Executive - Society of Authors Adam Croft - Author of The Rutland Crime series. Producer: Paul Waters and Drew Hyndman Editor: Beatrice Pickup and Justin Bones
20/07/22·28m 15s

Single Parents

Single parents often face particular financial hardships, especially with the economy facing severe challenges and prices rising so fast. A single parent with no support can find it harder to get work, more expensive to find childcare and difficult to provide the basics needed for family life. In today's Money Box Live, Adam Shaw hears from listeners about the challenges and options available to single parent families. We also hear from Victoria Benson, the Chief Executive of Gingerbread, the national charity which works with single parent families, and from Claire Reindorp, CEO of the Young Women’s Trust. Producers: Paul Waters and Drew Hyndman
13/07/22·28m 30s

Energy costs: your questions answered

This week, energy analysts Cornwall Insight predicted that the already record breaking price for energy will rise further and the annual cost for a typical household would be £2880, which is £900 more than it is now. The Chancellor has promised more help but the questions we've received recently show that many listeners are still not clear about exactly what they will get and when. Our reporter Dan Whitworth finds investigates how it will work for people who live in park homes or pay their utility bill direct to their landlord. Some vulnerable people are being excluded from using their own money to shop online, as a result of new procedures imposed across the banking industry in March. We speak to UK Finance about what the banks are doing to make new anti-fraud features usable by people who are disabled, getting old, or don't have a mobile phone signal. New figures from HMRC have revealed that 61% of eligible families are not claiming tax-free childcare, missing out on billions of pounds in savings. It comes as the Social Market Foundation announces a cross-party commission, that will work to analyse the impact of poor childcare provision on wages and poverty. We speak to John Penrose, the conservative MP, who will be part of the commission. Also, who gets what from the hundred pounds it now costs us to fill up a reasonably sized car? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12noon, Saturday 11th June, 2022)
09/07/22·25m 8s

The costs of being disabled

85% of families with disabled children use more energy, from electric hoists to extra heating and powered wheelchairs. Going without these can mean a significant decline in the standard of living and health for disabled people and their families. With energy costs soaring, how are disabled people coping? What support is available? We have tips on how can you save money on energy, food and other necessities as prices soar. Adam Shaw is joined by Emma Tracey from the Access All podcast as they discuss the cost of living for disabled people. Panel: James Taylor - Director of Strategy - Scope Helen Undy - Chief Executive - Money and Mental Health Listen to the Access All podcast: Producer: Drew Hyndman Editor: Emma Rippon
06/07/22·34m 31s

Cost of Living Special

Every time we buy food, put fuel in our car, or get an energy bill the cost of living hits us where it hurts - in our pocket. Prices are rising faster than at any time in the last 40 years and that is not predicted to get any better until well into next year. However, does the standard measure of prices rising overall by 9% a year reflect the reality of households? We'll hear from Jill Leyland of the Royal Statistical Society and from Michael Hardie of the Office for National Statistics about this. We'll also speak to families who find themselves unable to afford essential costs. Our reporter Elisabeth Mahy visits Oakham in Rutland to see a beautician with two children, who is finding her money won’t stretch as far as she needs. New data from the market research company NielsenIQ explores how our supermarket shopping habits are changing. And we’ll hear from some online advice groups about what, if anything, we can change to reduce the impact of the cost of living crisis. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Elisabeth Mahy Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12noon, Saturday 4th June, 2022)
02/07/22·27m 30s

Changing your money mindset

How do you tighten the purse strings when you've always been a big spender? Could your hang-ups be holding you back? And how could changing your mentality help your wallet and your mental health? Ruth Alexander and a panel of experts chat to listeners and find our just how to change your money mindset. Panel: Norma Cassius - Psychotherapist and Founder - Think Like A Bank Julie Flynn - Independent Financial Adviser and Chartered Financial Coach - Bree Wealth Producer: Drew Hyndman Editor: Jon Bithrey
29/06/22·29m 0s

What help can pensioners get with their rising fuel bills?

This week, the chief executive of the energy regulator Ofgem warned the energy price cap could rise to £2,800 a year for a typical home. A few days later, the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, unveiled a £15 billion package to help households with their fuel bills - the second in three months. We'll discuss the details of what that means for pensioners with Helen Morrisey from Hargreaves Lansdown. We'll hear from the CEO of Amigo loans on a new scheme, approved by the High Court this week, which will allow thousands of people who were mis-sold loans to apply for compensation. What to do if you end up paying for a subscription unwittingly or can’t cancel it – and how the government plans to try and prevent consumers losing out. And a Money Box mini on the new interest rate for Premium Bonds announced this week. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm on Saturday 28th May, 2022)
25/06/22·25m 27s

Let’s Get Physical

Is that gym membership really worth it? Are there ways of getting fit for free? And can you ‘invest’ in your own health? Adam Shaw is joined by a panel of experts to answer your questions. Phill Wright - Business Transform Manager - Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity Steven Scales - Director of Membership and Sector Development – UK Active To share your experiences or to ask a question email Producer: Drew Miller Hyndman
22/06/22·29m 16s

How new rules might affect your energy bills

This week, the energy regulator Ofgem, announced that the price cap, which most of us now pay for our electricity and gas, would be set every three months, not six as it does now. It says updating it more frequently should help avoid the kind of price shocks people are seeing now - with some saying their bill is doubling. It will also help the suppliers because if prices rise sharply they will not have to sell electricity and gas at below market rates for so long. Ofgem is also introducing a new charge on firms that offer customers cheaper deals. In future if someone switches to a cheaper supplier that supplier will have to pay a fee to their old supplier of part of the difference between the old and new rate. Critics say this Market Stabilisation Charge will make it uneconomic to offer cheaper deals. We'll discuss that with Neil Kenward the Director for Strategy at Ofgem. As inflation hits a 40 year high with prices rising 9% a year, our reporter Dan Whitworth visits Money Matters an advice centre Glasgow, which says it's facing unprecedented demand for help. And, in April, the Institute for Fiscal Studies warned that for some people the interest rate on their student loans could hit 12% later this year, because it is linked to inflation. It warned that might put some school-leavers off university. Or that high-earning graduates might be tempted to raid their savings to pay off their remaining debt. We'll hear from one graduate considering borrowing to pay off his student loan, and speak to Nick Hillman, the Director of The Higher Education Policy Institute, about the pitfalls of doing that. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 21st May, 2022)
18/06/22·28m 31s

Student Finance

Are you ready for the start of university? From loans to bursaries, discounts to freebies, Charmaine Cozier puts your questions to our expert panel on all things student finances. We hear from Jordan, Andrew, Phoebe, and Susan as we try to prepare you for higher education. Panel: David Thomson - Head of Operational Support - Student Loans Company Tom Allingham - Save the Student
15/06/22·29m 9s

The people using pawnbrokers to pay for food and fuel

The National Pawnbrokers Association tells Money Box it will hold talks with the Financial Conduct Authority next week. That follows a report which shows people on low incomes are pawning goods to pay for food and fuel. As the cost of living crisis hits more households, pawnbrokers say they're becoming a more important source of credit. Critics argue that pawnbrokers charge annual interest rates of 120% and undervalue people's possessions whilst supporters say they're a vital source of finance for people on low incomes who can't get loans from banks. We'll discuss this - and hear from people in Chester selling things like phones and laptops in order to keep afloat financially. New analysis of Land Registry figures suggests house prices have gone up by 11 percent since before the pandemic. But the data, which compares average prices of properties sold in December 2019 with those in December 2021 shows that not all homes are equal. Prices of terrace houses rose by 13% but prices for flats dropped by the same amount. Semi detached and detached houses rose the most. Up by 20% and 26% respectively. We'll discuss that with property and mortgage experts. We'll hear how some young people are facing months of delays trying to access money from their Child Trust Funds. And the new rules on claiming tax relief for working from home. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm on Saturday 14th May, 2022)
11/06/22·25m 40s

Working with Long Covid

What happens when Long Covid means you just can’t work like you used to? What kind of support could you be entitled to? And do you qualify for any benefits? Seb Choudhury hears from Holly, Jules, Lesley, and Sara about their experience with Long Covid. Whilst our panel of experts offer their advice and tips for returning to and leaving work. Panel: Ruth Cornish – Founder and HR Expert – Amelore Will Hadwin – Benefits Adviser & Trainer More information: Presenter: Seb Choudhury Producer: Drew Hyndman Editor: Maggie Latham
08/06/22·28m 24s

How to apply for help paying your energy bills

According to the charity National Energy Action 6.5 million households are now living in fuel poverty which is up 50% on October last year. Fuel poverty is defined differently across the UK, but if you cannot afford to heat your home to the temperature needed to be healthy then you are in fuel poverty. People struggling to afford their energy bill are always advised to contact their supplier. We've been finding out what help is available. A report has highlighted the need to ensure low-cost flood insurance is available for those on lower incomes. According to the Resolution Foundation more than 1-in-3 of the lowest income households would like contents insurance but cannot afford it. It says as floods become more common in the UK more people could lose out financially. The government says everyone should have access to affordable flood insurance. The Association for British Insurers says there are already some low cost home contents insurance products for those in social housing and that it's looking at ways to improve financial inclusion. We'll speak to the Chief Executive of Flood RE which is a scheme designed to help insurers offer cheaper cover to those in flood-risk areas. How will final salary pensions be affected by high inflation? The pensions consultancy XPS estimates that people on these pensions could be worse off by £7000 over the rest of their lives as inflation rises above the caps. We'll find our more about their research. And what does the new Bank of England interest rate rise to one percent mean for your personal finances? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle
04/06/22·25m 8s

Growing Your Own

How much does it cost to rent an allotment? What food can you grow if you don’t have a garden? And can you really save money by growing your own food? Felicity Hannah chats to Sheila, Rebecca, Ross, Paul, and Jess about their growing questions and experiences. As always our expert panel is on hand to answer their questions and give their green fingered tips. Panel: Wilfred Emmanuel-Jones – The Black Farmer Russell Attwood – The National Allotment Society
01/06/22·28m 22s

Government changes guidance on energy bill support payment

Some government guidance to give some people a £150 council tax rebate in April to help with record energy bills has been changed. The treasury says it was always clear, including its press notice and the leaflet which went out to millions of households, that the £150 council tax rebate to help with the cost of living would be paid “from” April. More on this story. More than two million people who rely on six means-tested state benefits are going to be moved to the newer benefit Universal Credit over the next couple of years. Just over half of them will be better off on Universal Credit, but the government estimates 900,000 people will be entitled to less money. The Department for Work and Pensions says Universal Credit is a dynamic system which adjusts as people earn more or indeed less, and simplifies the safety net for those who cannot work. We'll speak to a benefits advisor about the transition. And, we'll hear from an 83-year-old grandmother who says her financial independence has been taken away after extra security measures her bank brought in mean she can no longer shop online. It's part of new procedures were imposed across the banking industry. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle
28/05/22·25m 7s

The Cost of IVF

How much would you pay to increase your chances of having a baby? Would you travel abroad? Borrow money or ask family for help? The use of private IVF clinics is soaring and prices for a cycle of treatment can reach over £10,000. Felicity Hannah chats to Jess, Steve, Peter and Pragya. And our expert panel responds to their questions and experiences. Panel: Tone Jarvis-Mack – Chief Executive – Fertility Foundation Kayleigh Hartigan – Founder – Fertility Mapper Katherine O’Brien - Associate Director of Communications and Campaigns – British Pregnancy Advisory Service
25/05/22·28m 19s

Ukrainian refugees struggling to open UK bank accounts

Ukrainian refugees are now beginning to arrive in Britain under the Homes for Ukraine Scheme. Money Box has been contacted by two host families having difficulty helping their guests open UK bank accounts. Karina, a doctor, escaped from Kyiv and with her mother and her 5 year old daughter. They then travelled 1,700 miles to London. They are being hosted by Roger Corke and his family. They need a bank account to get benefits and give them some financial independence. We'll hear about their experiences and get a response from the banks and the government. Energy company bosses have been grilled in Parliament this week by MPs unhappy about price rises that critics are warning could push millions of people into fuel poverty by the end of this year. Also discussed at the same meeting was the issue of credit balances - when suppliers hold onto customers' money above and beyond what they actually owe. We'll hear from a listener about that and discuss plans by the energy regulator Ofgem to put in place more regulation to protect credit balances. Also, one listener's experience of opening a new bank account and his shock at realising he also had access to three accounts from another couple. We'll investigate that. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle
21/05/22·27m 58s

Saving Money but not on Chocolate

Energy bills, the big food shop, the price of filling up the car - everything costs more just now and there’s no sign it’s going to change soon. Felicity Hannah and guests ask where can you look for cheaper options, to make our money go further, but still have some fun? She is joined in the studio by expert deal hunters who promise not to suggest cutting back on Easter eggs. Bukiie Smart, accountant and the creator of the Save Spend Invest. Claire Walsh, a chartered financial planner. And journalist & money saver extraordinaire Mike Powell. Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
14/05/22·27m 46s

Small Businesses and Scams

Scams are on the rise and small businesses are no safer from fraudsters than consumers. And in some cases, businesses are being scammed by their own customers. Action Fraud, the UK’s national reporting centre for fraud and cyber-crime, say that one in four small businesses are affected by fraud every year, with costs to businesses estimated at early £19 billion. How do entrepreneurs keep their budding business safe? What should companies do to protect their data? And when it all goes wrong, who can help small businesses? Louise Cooper hears from Shara, Raoul and Louise about their experience of scammers targeting their businesses. And she’s joined by our expert panel: Paul Meskall - Manager of Fraud & Cyber Crime Prevention - UK Finance Dr Roger Barker - Director of Policy and Corporate Governance - Institute of Directors Gary Rycroft - Partner - Joseph A. Jones & Co.
11/05/22·29m 54s

"A special place in hell for crypto fraudsters"

The Government announced plans this week to impose more regulation on firms where people legally buy and sell bitcoin. One major crypto platform where people do this is called Kraken - which is where 77-year-old Graeme moved more than half a million pounds which thieves then stole. Graeme was robbed of his savings, his car, and his house by thieves who manipulated him to buy cryptoassets. We hear from Curtis Ting, a Managing Director of Kraken. In an extreme case of council tax arrears, we hear from Robert who has just received his first council tax bill after 24 years living in the same house. The London Borough of Barnet is demanding more than £30,000 in arrears. So what's going on? And does Robert have to - finally - cough up? We hear from barrister Alan Murdie who specialises in council tax, and edits the Council Tax Handbook for the Child Poverty Action Group. Thinking of claiming a Working From Home tax rebate? Listen to this first. HM Revenue & Customs has told Money Box it will be launching a consultation this year to find new ways to tackle repayment agents who charge people for claiming routine tax rebates which they could claim free themselves. If you go via an agent, it could take half your pay out in fees. Money Box reporter Dan Whitworth investigates, and we also hear from technology journalist David McClelland. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Marianna Brain Production Coordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Emma Rippon
07/05/22·26m 9s


Millions of households are facing a £700 a year rise in fuel costs from now with the increase in the energy price cap. This comes on top of other hikes in the cost of living like council tax and more expensive food bills. How are people coping now the cap has been lifted? An expert panel gives advice. Expert panel Dhara Vyas - Policy, Advocacy & Campaigns Energy UK Abby Jitendra - Principal Policy Manager on Energy, Citizens Advice
04/05/22·29m 49s

How to get £150 for your fuel bill

Welcome to April, the season of rising prices and higher taxes - including the largest increase in energy bills. The first of two payments to help with those bills should arrive this month - a £150 rebate paid by local councils to all householders in Great Britain in council tax Bands A to D. (In Wales and Scotland the money will also go to Band E-H householders who benefit from council tax reduction schemes.) For those who pay council tax by direct debit, getting the money should be straightforward. But as Money Box's Dan Whitworth reports, others - including students - may find it more difficult. We hear from Abby Jitendra, principal policy manager for energy at Citizens Advice. What's going on at the pensions and insurance company Scottish Widows? Listeners ask Money Box for help with very long delays in accessing money and problems with funeral plans. We hear from Kirsty Stone, independent financial adviser at The Private Office. From Wednesday 6th April, divorce will be easier in England and Wales. No more will one partner have to prove fault by the other. No more will a 2 or even 5 year separation be needed. It can all be done in 6 months, online and without the courts. And the same for ending a civil partnership. But is this too hasty to sort out financial arrangements? We hear from Jo Edwards, Head of Family at Forsters Solicitors. More than £1.5 billion in pension credit went unclaimed in 2020 leaving up to 850,000 pensioner households short. We hear from Henry Tapper, of the Pension Playpen, about a new initiative from inside the pension industry to tackle the problem that a third of the pensioners who need this extra money don’t get it. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Marianna Brain
30/04/22·26m 12s

Young People and Money Anxiety

The cost of living crisis is fuelling valid fears about personal and household finances - but what happens when money anxiety gets out of control? Many young people worry about their own and their family's finances, but what can they do to conquer the fear? We hear from Iona Bain, musician turned financial author who specialises in millennial personal finance. She founded Young Money Blog after suffering with money anxiety herself. And we also hear from Sharon Davies, CEO of Young Enterprise, the national charity providing enterprise and financial education to young people up to the age of 24. Presenter: Bukiie Smart Producers: Paul Waters, Maggie Latham & Drew Miller Hyndman Production Coordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Emma Rippon
27/04/22·29m 19s

Inflation and the cost of living crisis

Inflation is the rise in the price of everything we buy. This week the Office for Budget Responsibility predicted prices would rise more than 7% this year, peaking at nearly 9% this winter. We hear from Isabel Stockton of the Institute of Fiscal Studies, on tax changes and the worst inflation most people have ever seen. Some very vulnerable people are facing an even worse cost of living crisis than the rest of us. The amount of money that working age disabled adults are allowed to keep from their benefits - the "minimum income guarantee" - has been frozen for 7 years, even though prices have risen. Money Box reporter Dan Whitworth investigates. And we hear from a family affected, and from Jackie O'Sullivan, Executive Director of Advocacy for the learning disability charity Mencap. The Chancellor is raising the income level at which employees start paying National Insurance. From July, anyone earning less than £12,570 will not pay NI contributions. How will this affect your state pension at retirement age? Money Box has reported sad stories of people who are manipulated by thieves into investing in what they thought was cryptocurrency. Most retail banks follow a code intended to ensure that victims are refunded where they are groomed into transferring their savings to crooks. However, banks often refuse to refund the money stolen by these psychological techniques. But one bank, TSB, refunds almost everyone. We hear from Paul Davis, TSB's Director of Fraud Prevention. And a major funeral plan provider, Safe Hands, goes bust with too little money to honour its promises. What faces their 45,000 customers now? Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Marianna Brain Editor: Emma Rippon
23/04/22·24m 45s

Spring Statement 2022

The chancellor, Rishi Sunak, gives an update on the health of the UK economy. What will it mean for your household finances? A panel of experts will analyse what he says and we want to hear your thoughts too. Are you cheered or concerned by the state of the nation's finances? And how will it affect the way you spend or save your hard-earned cash? Also, looking ahead to the new tax year, we'll discuss the tax rises which begin in April and the outlook for our personal finances over the next twelve months. Guests: Heather Self, Corporate Tax Partner, Blick Rothenberg Mike Brewer, Chief Economist, The Resolution Foundation Laura Suter, Head of Personal Finance, A J Bell Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Drew Hyndman Editor: Emma Rippon
20/04/22·29m 14s

Cryptocurrency scammers steal a man's house

We report on a man who was fed up with poor returns on his savings and tried to invest in cryptocurrency instead. But he ended up losing his savings, his car, and his house as thieves stripped him bare. Money Box reporter Dan Whitworth investigates. The government is about to announce changes to who is eligible to receive the Warm Home Discount in England and Wales. This £140 payment off one electricity bill will be raised to £150 from next winter. But charities are warning that there will be more than 200,000 disabled people who will no longer get the payment even though, overall, it will go to more people. We hear from Louise Rubin, Head of Policy and Campaigns at the disability equality charity, Scope. One in four households will not be able to pay their electricity and gas bills in October if prices rise again as they are expected to - that's according to Citizens Advice, as the cost of heating our homes rises much faster than our incomes. Already millions of households are in what is called fuel poverty — unable to afford to heat and light their home. We hear from Caroline Flint, the newly appointed chair of the government’s Committee on Fuel Poverty. And there are two weeks left to top up your 2021/22 tax free ISA. But would you do better using a regular savings account? We hear from Anna Bowes, co-founder of Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Louise Clarke-Rowbotham Editor: Richard Vadon
16/04/22·25m 13s

Russia and Pensions

How do you make sure your pensions and savings and invested ethically? Do you know where your pension is invested? How much of your money is invested in Russia? How can you put pressure on your pension providers to invest ethically? Felicity Hannah chats to listeners, guests and our panel of experts about how to make your money ethical. Panel: Lucy Coutts, Investment Director at JM Finn wealth management Becky O’Connor, Head of Pensions and Savings at Interactive Investor Find out more: Producer: Drew Hyndman Editor: Maggie Latham
13/04/22·28m 8s

Boosting your benefits and new online shopping checks

Buying things online will be more difficult from Monday. A new law means that every purchase will have to be authenticated by an extra process after you have put in your card number, expiry date, and CVV code on the back. It will mean better protection against fraud, but may exclude some people from online shopping. We hear from Rob Cameron, Chief Executive of Barclaycard Payments, and Helen Saxon, Deputy Editor at Money Saving Expert. Two not-for-profit lenders have come up with a way to help low income families get the state help they are entitled to. Millions of people miss out of billions of pounds in means-tested benefits every year. Now these lenders have built in a benefits calculator to their loan approval process to help customers claim money they didn’t know they were eligible for. We hear from Theodora Hadjimichael, Chief Executive of Responsible Finance. Thousands of people try to avoid paying care home fees by putting their house into a trust. They're told it's a way to avoid the local authority counting its value so they get their care free. We hear about one listener's unexpected £900 bill, and about the many pitfalls involved, from Annie Shaw, Saga Magazine’s financial agony aunt. Why are petrol and diesel prices so high at the pump? Money Box reporter Dan Whitworth investigates. And a Money Box podcast exclusive - Disability Rights UK has lost almost £43,000 after NatWest mistakenly cleaned out its account without notice and transferred the money to the Crown. We hear from the charity's CEO Kamran Mallick - and whether Money Box is able to get the money back. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Louise Clarke-Rowbotham (Photo Credit: Sturti/Getty images)
09/04/22·29m 31s

Renting lowdown

The average UK rent has broken through the £1000 barrier for the first time and inflation is starting to push up landlords costs. How do you beat the rush for viewings? Could rent controls be a short term solution? And could a good tenant and landlord relationship solve all your woes? Charmaine Cozier is joined by an expert panel for tenants and landlords to answer questions and offer advice. Ruth Ehrlich, Policy Manager at Shelter. Chris Norris, Director of Policy and Campaigns at the National Residential Landlords Association. Elsie Bradley-Middle, Member of ACORN Renters Union. For more information on renting and letting: Producer: Drew Hyndman Editor: Emma Rippon
06/04/22·28m 31s

New moves to fight fraudsters faking phone caller IDs

The telecoms watchdog Ofcom has drawn up proposals to make it harder for criminals to fake caller ID when they phone people. It’s called number spoofing and happens when crooks use technology to make the number that comes up on your phone appear as though the call is coming from a legitimate organisation like your bank or the police. We hear from Lindsey Fussell, Ofcom’s Group Director for Networks and Communications. Big changes to the way student loans are repaid in England could change the balance for parents who can afford to pay for their education. The government's plans would extend the repayment period for the loans from 30 to 40 years before any balance is written off and reduce the earnings threshold at which the extra 9% tax kicks in. We hear from Sarah Coles, senior personal finance analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown. A listener who pays for energy via prepayment meters asks if it's worth topping up ahead of prices rises in April. We hear from energy suppliers and the regulator, Ofgem. Plus a David and Goliath story. Money Box listener David takes on HMRC over self-assessment tax return financial penalties. Listen to find out who wins this time - and how. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Ben Henderson Editor: Emma Rippon (Photo credit Tero Vesalainen/Getty images)
05/04/22·26m 7s

How to stop investing in Russia

As Russian military forces continue bombarding Ukrainian cities and civilians, are your investments supporting the Kremlin's regime? International companies have been pulling out of Russian investment, and pension funds and investment firms say they are reducing holdings in Russian companies. But what can ordinary investors do? Are you aware that a tracker fund or an investment bond might help support Russian firms? We hear from Lucy Coutts, Investment Director at JM Finn Wealth Management. For 1.7 million people across the UK, funeral plans offer peace of mind that when the inevitable happens their loved ones will be spared having to pay for a funeral. But there is big change on the way for the industry and those customers. By this summer all firms in the sector must be authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority, to raise standards in the industry. But an indirect consequence of this is that tens of thousands of customers could lose out. Money Box reporter Dan Whitworth has been investigating. We also hear from Matt Brewis, Director of Insurance at the Financial Conduct Authority, and from James Daley of Fairer Finance. Many listeners have been getting in touch to ask about rises in the standing charge in their energy bills. We hear from Helen Barnard, Associate Director at the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. And Money Box has won back more than £8,000 for a listener who received a huge - and incorrect - fuel bill from Ecotricity. The company founder, Dale Vince, explains what went wrong and what he thinks is going wrong with the wider energy sector - and how to fix it. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Ben Henderson Editor: Emma Rippon (Photo credit: Anghi / Getty Images)
02/04/22·25m 31s

Surviving Debt

As the cost of living rises, more people are facing going into debt. Whether it’s your rent, mortgage, utility bills or credit cards, breaking the cycle of debt isn’t easy. Who can you go to when you’re struggling to pay your debts? How do you prioritise your spending? Can you even negotiate your debts down? And how can you avoid debt altogether? Felicity Hannah talks to Chloe, Chris, Manga, Christine and James about their debt woes and wins. And to help advise and guide us through the world of debt they are joined by: Amy Taylor, Chair of the Greater Manchester Money Advice Group. Jayashri Lowe, Money Advice Manager at Citizens Advice Stafford North and Stoke On Trent. Bola Sol, financial coach and the author of How to Save It: Fix your Finances. For more information on managing debt: Producers: Drew Hyndman and Sylvie Carlos Editor: Emma Rippon
30/03/22·32m 34s

Money Box is now first on BBC Sounds

Looking for the latest episode? New episodes of Money Box will now be available first on BBC Sounds for four weeks before other podcast apps. If you haven’t already, you can download the BBC Sounds app to listen to the Money Box podcast first. BBC Sounds is also available in lots of other places. Find us on your voice device or smart speaker, on your connected TV, in your car, or at The latest episode is available on BBC Sounds right now. BBC Sounds – you can find exclusive music mixes, live BBC radio and more podcasts like this one.
03/03/22·1m 0s

My job was not ‘as advertised’

A BBC investigation has found that more than 50 people were tricked into working for a design agency that turned out to be fake. They were hired during the lockdown and convinced the company was a successful business. But it had an online universe of fake profiles, stolen work and lies. Workers were all Jobfished. Charmaine Cozier talks to BBC reporter Catrin Nye who investigated this story for the past 12 months and to former employee, Jordan Carter about what happened to him The programme also discusses what lessons we can learn to keep safe while searching & applying for jobs and what you can do if your job was not “as advertised”? We are offered guidance by: Keith Rosser , Co-Director and Chair of Jobsaware which provides free and independent advice on how to protect your rights as a non-permanent worker, whether that's through an agency, umbrella company or as part of the gig economy. John Clinch, an employment lawyer at 3CS Corporate Solicitors Ltd For further information Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
23/02/22·27m 58s

Saving face-to-face debt advice

Plans to cut back on face-to-face debt advice in favour of regional call centres have been scrapped - for now. We hear from Craig Simmons, Head of Debt Policy and Strategy at the Money and Pensions Service, and from debt adviser Amy Taylor, who is also Chair of the Greater Manchester Money Advice Group. (Debt Advice links below.) An estimated £75 million a year is stolen from people in the UK by online subscription frauds. You buy one thing and are secretly subscribed forever. Reporter Athar Ahmad investigates the scams designed to tie customers up into monthly payments without them realising. (And there's more on this story on File on 4 on BBC Radio 4, Tuesday 8pm.) Around four million people have been moved from their energy supplier to one of the remaining big ones as 29 energy firms have gone bust since January last year. And that has left many people not knowing where they are with their bills - how much they might owe and to which firm and of course what will happen to any credit they have built up with the supplier that has gone out of business. So how do you get back £500 taken by your energy supplier who has gone bust? Reporter Dan Whitworth explains. There are about 1.7 million homes in the UK that are heated by oil from a tank outside. But unlike with mains gas, there is no price cap. We hear from Money Box listeners, and from Ken Cronin, the Chief Executive of the UK and Ireland Fuel Distributors Association, UKIFDA. Debt Advice links: Money Helper - Citizens Advice - Step Change - National Debtline - Advice NI - Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporters: Dan Whitworth & Athar Ahmad Researcher: Marianna Brain Editor: Emma Rippon
19/02/22·25m 55s

The Cost of Dating

Valentine’s Day, this week, may have been good, bad, ugly or plain irrelevant – but for millions of people it will also have been expensive. So in today’s Money Box Live, Adam Shaw and guests look at the costs of dating. What do you spend on finding and hooking up with someone? Is it worth spending money on how you look on dating sites, plus for the date itself? And do you split the bill at the end of a date? Adam Shaw talks to listeners Jan, Roger, Fay, Georgie and Mike who tell us about their money & dating experiences. And to help guide us through the finances of dating they are joined by: James Bloodworth, journalist, author and host of a podcast called "The Modern Dating Economy" and Jo Hemmings, dating coach & behavioural psychologist, a woman who knows her way around the love & dating game. For more information: Producer Smita Patel Editor Rosamund Jones
16/02/22·36m 48s

Tracing lost and forgotten financial assets

You could get the best Christmas present this year, cash you thought you had lost forever! Louise Cooper and guests discuss how to trace financial assets you may have forgotten about in old bank accounts, pensions, investments and perhaps insurance policies. Joining Louise Cooper to discuss how to locate your share of an estimated £50 billion languishing unloved and unclaimed in various places are: Kaya Marchant, Pensions Specialist at MoneyHelper Carol Knight, Chief of Operations at The Investing and Saving Alliance Janet Reid, Head of the Lost Accounts Project at Cambridge Building Society Producer Smita Patel Editor Alex Lewis
15/02/22·29m 1s

Cost of living squeeze for benefits and state pension

In April, benefits and the state pension will rise by just over three per cent. That is less than half the increase in prices which is predicted by the Bank of England. So people on benefits will be able buy less even with their increased benefits. One campaigner said it’s not so much choosing between heating and eating - more a choice between freezing or starving. What’s it like for people on the front line of the cost of living crisis and should taxpayers even be paying for a rise at all? Last week we learned that the price of gas to heat our homes was going to soar – but most people are protected by the price cap. That’s not the case for around 800,000 households which get heating from Heat Networks - or communal heating - where multiple homes, usually flats, are heated by one boiler. The residents pay for their gas through management agents or housing associations. And because these are commercial contracts they are not capped like for domestic fuel. Their bills look set to triple or even quadruple. We find out what help, if any, is out there for them. For nearly half a million UK pensioners living abroad the increase in their state pension will be even less than the 3.1% mentioned earlier. It will in fact be zero. In about 50 countries the pension is increased with inflation as it is in the UK. But in the rest of the world including Australia, Canada, and New Zealand as well as India and most African and Caribbean countries, the state pension is frozen at the rate it is first paid abroad. A petition to change this was launched in January but it still has barely half the signatures needed to get a Government response. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Chris Flynn Producer: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Marianna Brain Editor: Emma Rippon
12/02/22·29m 15s

Energy Cap Lowdown

The recent announcement of a huge rise in energy prices comes amidst wider worries about rising prices. Everyone is facing much higher energy bills and some are faced with the choice of heat or eat. The government has stepped in, offering some financial help. In today’s Money box Live Adam Shaw hears from listeners Peter, Mary, Tessa, Jacob , Jess and Sue about the impact of such measures on their lives and asks, Is it enough? And is everyone in the UK entailed to the money being offered by the state, to help with such pricey gas and electric bills? Adam also talks to Neil Kenward, from the industry regulator Ofgem They are joined by an expert panel who give information on where you can turn to for help and advice.: Alex Belsham-Harris - Head of Retail Energy Policy at the Citizens Advice And Dhara Vyas -Deputy Director of Policy, Advocacy & Campaigns, Energy UK For further help & guidance on the Energy Price Cap & what money you are entitled, you can access details here: Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
09/02/22·39m 21s

Energy, employee rights and mortgages

A 54% increase in the energy price cap means a huge rise in what your provider can charge you to heat your home, keep the lights on and cook your food. The UK Government’s stepped in to help – many households will get several hundred pounds to lessen the bill shock. But what are the details about who exactly gets that money and how people can access it, what about households on low incomes and how does help vary across the UK? We put listener questions to a panel of experts to find out. A Court of Appeal judgement has huge implications for the plumber who is now owed £74,000 in holiday pay after the court agreed he was an employee as opposed to being a self-employed worker. But beyond one person being showered with money what are the wider implications for workers’ rights? We examine this case, where it might go from here and what it means for other people in similar situations. And as Britain’s biggest bank offers one of the lowest rates around for a 10-year fixed-rate mortgage we examine the state of the mortgage market. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Chris Flynn Producer: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Emma Rippon
05/02/22·25m 42s

Foster Carer Finances

Before you have children, it’s important to think about the finances. And that’s just as true for anyone considering becoming a foster carer. So, what are the allowances, fees, rewards and tax implications for those who welcome and care for a child in their home? Felicity Hannah talks to foster carers Bryony, Walt, Dot, Phil and Jane about why they foster and their experience of the finances of fostering. They are joined by an expert panel: Vicki Swain, Head of Policy and Campaigns at the charity The Fostering Network Harvey Gallagher, Chief Executive of the Nationwide Association of Fostering Providers And Suzanne Griffiths, the director of Foster Wales, which is the national network of 22 Welsh Local Authority fostering services For more information about fostering, including the finances of looking after children, you can access the following: And you can listen to an earlier edition of Money Box Live about Carer Leaver finances here: Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
02/02/22·34m 27s

Heir Hunters

Long lost, wealthy relatives who’ve sadly died but for whom you “might” be the next of kin – too good to be true or the real thing? We explain how to spot the difference and how to tell the good heir hunters from the bad. A disabled mother of two is being denied Healthy Start vouchers for her young children because she is on the wrong benefit. The vouchers provide more than a thousand pounds over four years to help low-income mothers buy milk and food for their growing children. But disabled people on a benefit called Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) only get the vouchers while they are pregnant. The latest Crime Survey for England and Wales shows a massive rise in the amount of fraud being carried out against victims – up by more than a third to 5.1m cases between October 2020 and September 2021. Inflation is already at levels not seen for a generation and this week food poverty campaigner Jack Monroe highlighted how she believes the real figure can be even worse for people on low incomes. So how was inflation first calculated, what are the different ways it’s been measured in the past, how do they compare to the here and now and should it be changed for the future? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Chris Flynn Producer: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Drew Miller-Hyndman and Sandra Hardial Editor: Emma Rippon Email story ideas and questions to or tweet @Moneybox
29/01/22·29m 47s

Energy Prices

As millions of people are paying even more for their gas and electricity, Charmaine Cozier, listeners and experts discuss why prices are set to increase further, the pressure it’s putting on household budgets and what options might be available to help cushion the financial impact. We hear from callers Catherine, Peter, Janet & Mary about their experiences and worries regarding a significant increase in their energy bills. And experts Abby Jitendra, Principle Policy Manager on Energy for Citizens Advice and Vanessa Clark, Partner at Baringa, a management consultancy that works with the energy industry, join the programme to offer advice. You can access more information on the Citizen's Advice website Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
26/01/22·25m 24s


From CryptoPunks to Bored Apes to original artwork and more, there has never been so much interest in them. Even big traditional art galleries are getting in on the action. Felicity Hannah looks at the financial world of NFTs, non-fungible tokens. They have a boring, slightly odd sounding name but they are generating a lot of excitement. So what are they, why do people want them and what are the risks? Are NFTs dangerous speculation or a new kind of asset? Joining the discussion are Andrea Baronchelli, associate professor in Mathematics at City University of London, & lead on the Token economy at The Alan Turing Institute. and Genevieve Leveille, CEO and Co-Founder of the blockchain-based business AgriLedger. The programme also hears from Bella and Jack who have bought NFTs. Frances Coppola. economist & Journalist, Sebastian Fahey, head of the NFT division at the auction house Sotheby’s & artist Waxbones. Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
24/01/22·34m 11s

Fraud and energy

A Money Box investigation has discovered how a scam that saw criminals steal nearly £4m from 69 victims was barely investigated by the police – a response described by HMIC as “woeful”. Of the 69 cases, only 5 were passed on for investigation. We find out why. Twelve senior tax experts have asked the Chancellor to consider a new settlement opportunity for taxpayers facing what is called the loan charge. 50,000 people have been told they owe tens of thousands of pounds to Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs due to the way they were employed in the past. These demands have caused serious financial hardship, in many cases with devastating personal consequences. Most households are facing a serious jump in the price they pay for energy in April as the price cap on energy bills looks set to increase by up to 50%. We answer one listener’s question about whether or not he’ll still have to pay more despite only using electricity in his home and being with a 100% renewable energy supplier. CREDITS: Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Chris Flynn Producer: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Drew Miller-Hyndman and Sandra Hardial Editor: Emma Rippon
22/01/22·25m 31s

Being a Guarantor

Would you ever consider being responsible for someone else’s mortgage? Or their rent? Or a debt? What if it was someone you loved and wanted to help? That’s exactly what guarantors agree to do. Felicity Hannah, callers & an expert panel discuss how it works, why it’s needed and what happens if something goes wrong. We hear the experience of Philippa, Clare, Peter, Tim & Geraldine alongside advise from: Jayastri Lowe, Money Advice Manager for Citizens Advice Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire North. John Wightman, Head of Practice for Lending & Affordability at the Financial Ombudsman Service. Gary Rycroft, senior partner & solicitor at Joseph A. Jones & Co, based in Lancaster. And you are access more information about being a guarantor via: Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
19/01/22·32m 24s

Energy bills

In April households are likely to see an increase of up to 50% in the cost of their energy bills. Many people already struggle to pay for gas and electricity so the upcoming price hike is expected to push many more into debt with their suppliers. What can people – and the energy industry – do to try to minimise the impact on people’s finances? Starling Bank has stopped paying for adverts on Facebook and Instagram until, it says, they do more to stop scam ads from being placed on their sites. We find out what Facebook parent company Meta has to say about the move and find out what action, if any, the other challenger and traditional banks are doing about it. Individual Voluntary Arrangements to help people find a way out of debt have come under the microscope before for being mis-sold. Now there is a consultation about their use. And after a huge response to a story about cheques on last week’s programme we hear from listeners about their thoughts on them and take an alternative, historical look at those humble rectangular pieces of paper that stir so much passion. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Chris Flynn Producer: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Drew Miller-Hyndman Editor: Emma Rippon
15/01/22·31m 23s

Care Leaver Finances

It takes a lot to get started in adult life - finding a flat, learning to budget, perhaps heading to university or a first job. Many new adults rely on their parents for help but more than 10 thousand young people a year leave the care system. In this edition of Money Box Live, Felicity Hannah, care leavers, a foster parent and a panel of experts discuss what support is on offer for young people leaving care. We hear from Callie, Mark, Chantel and Elias about their lives in care and how they have been treated by the system in relation to their financial entitlements. Joining them are Carrie Wilson Harrop, Young Persons consultant at The Care Leavers Association; Sam Turner, Policy and Participation Manager at BECOME, a national charity for children in care and young care leavers and Eilidh Malcolmson, a team leader who works with the continuing care and aftercare social work team for North West Glasgow. - helpline 0800 023 2033 or Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
12/01/22·30m 33s

Pensions for teenagers?

Automatic pensions are suggested for 18-21-year olds, the best ways to invest your money in 2022, the tax implications of cash inducements - and the rise and fall of cheques. There is growing support to reduce the age at which auto-enrolment pensions start. Currently, the limit is 22 years old, leaving younger people missing several years of contributions. We look at what those extra years could mean in terms of financial support for later in life. 2021 was a good year for investors with the FTSE 100. It recovered from a 14.3% fall in 2020 by rising…14.3%. It was the best year for the UK stock market since 2016. But with inflation on the rise, what are the best options for people with some cash to invest in 2022? We get advice from two experts. What are the tax implications of all those cash offers and incentives customers get to switch things like bank accounts? Does HMRC even have to know? We answer one listener’s question about just that. And when did you last write a cheque? A generation ago they were a common means of payment. Even ten years ago they were still used regularly. But with the introduction of internet banking and instant online transfers and payments their use has plummeted. Last year cheques accounted for fewer than one in three hundred payments made in the UK — just 135 million out of a total of 40 billion transactions. So what does the future hold for those small bits of paper? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Chris Flynn Producer: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Drew Miller-Hyndman Editor: Emma Rippon Studio Manager: Antonio Fernandes Production Coordinator: Janet Staples Email or tweet @Moneybox with questions for the team.
08/01/22·24m 26s

Consumer Rights

Pyjamas and jumpers are the most unwanted gifts we receive and in the post-Christmas period about 10% of us return at least one gift to the shops. Since we spend about £80 billion over Christmas each year returning even a fraction of that involves a huge amount of money, both for shoppers and the shops. Adam Shaw and guests explore what are our consumer rights. What you can and can’t return? What you need to prove the purchase was made and where a bit of post-Christmas goodwill might help you get a refund and exchange Joining Adam are experts Jemma Cox from Welsh Trading Standards, Martyn James from the free resolution service Resolver, and Andrew Goodacre, CEO of BIRA, which is the leading trade association for independent retailers in the UK. And they hear from shop owners and customers about their experiences. Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
06/01/22·25m 20s

How to Make Money from Unwanted Presents and Belongings

Felicity Hannah and guests discuss how to make money from unwanted presents and belongings. And they hear from listeners who sell on, re-gift and rent out.
01/01/22·24m 40s

Relationships and Money

How we manage financial relationships with the people we care about. whether it be sharing money, lending it or simply having a different view about money from your partner, it can lead to friction or arguments with those closest to us. Felicity Hannah is joined in the studio with Dee Holmes, a counselor from the relationship charity Relate and Julie Flynn, an independent financial advisor & certified financial coach, as well as listeners Mohammed, Ollie, Sarwar and Sally who share their experiences. Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
29/12/21·28m 0s

What can you do if two suppliers bill you for the same energy use?

Money Box listener Rebecca found herself caught between two of the UK’s biggest energy firms. After moving to a new home in the summer she changed the supplier from British Gas to EDF. Then a few weeks ago she received bills from both companies, meaning she'd have to pay twice for the gas she’d used once. Rebecca tried to resolve the situation in between her long shifts on an A&E ward but both firms insisted she owed the money and she received a legal threat. Then Money Box stepped in…… This week interest rates rose for the first time in more than three years. What might the increase from 0.1% to 0.25% mean for those savers getting much less than that from their accounts? If you’re planning on buying gift cards for Christmas - spare us a minute of your time first. The Bank of England says it wants to scrap a mortgage affordability rule that aims to prevent people getting into financial difficulty. It’s the one where applicants need to prove they could still make monthly payments if their mortgage interest rate rose to 3% above the lenders’ standard variable rate. A consultation on the change is due to start early next year. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Charmaine Cozier Production Coordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Emma Rippon
18/12/21·25m 13s

Pioneer Zopa exits peer-to-peer lending

Sixteen years after it appeared as the first of its kind in the world, Zopa has announced it's leaving the peer-to-peer lending business to focus on banking activities. Peer-to-peer matches people who want to lend money with individuals or businesses that need it. What will it mean for Zopa investors, borrowers and the wider industry? A new partnership is set to increase protection for people who are in debt to loan sharks. The collaboration between the Vulnerability Registration Service and the Illegal Money Lending Team will enable utility suppliers, mobile phone firms and other organisations to identify and support more of their vulnerable customers. A married couple have two full state pensions - but one is much higher that the other. We explain why. This week Bank of England Deputy Governor Ben Broadbent warned that inflation in the UK will “comfortably exceed 5 percent” by the spring. Rock bottom interest rates on savings accounts are well below that meaning the spending power of money in them will erode over time. So might investing be the way to protect savings against rising inflation? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Charmaine Cozier Researcher: Drew Miller Hyndman Editor: Emma Rippon
11/12/21·28m 4s

The Cost of DIY & Home Improvements

Buying a home is likely to be the biggest investment of our lives and it’s no wonder that people want to spend money improving it. During lock down, many more of us have been laying our own patios, fixing shelves or employing builders to create the extension that we’ve always dreamt about. Adam Shaw , expert guests and listeners discuss the finances of home improvements. How to negotiating with builders, how much to set aside for contingencies, what to do if you feel the job is not up to standard and how to get your money back if you are not satisfied. We hear the experiences of first time buyer Frances, builder Tomas and DIY shop owner Louis alongside experts Brian Berry, the CEO of the Master Builders Federation. Chloe McCulloch, the Editor of publication & website, Building and Martyn James from the independent, free, issue resolution service, Resolver. Email to share an experience or with a question for the panel. Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
08/12/21·28m 59s

'I had £18,000 stolen after my drink was spiked'

A 26-year-old believes his drink was spiked on a night out and his finger print used to unlock his smart phone allowing thieves to steal £18,000 from his bank accounts. A leading anti-fraud campaigner warns that criminals appear to be adopting the "sinister" tactic of spiking drinks to get money. The Government is asking Parliament to pass a retrospective law which would make it easier to collect tax from higher income people who claim child benefit. The Finance Bill measures stand to override a legal ruling which allowed some households, where someone has income over £50,000, to keep the High Income Child Benefit Charge which they should have paid. Courts had decided that HMRC should not have used discovery assessments, which allow it to reopen closed tax periods and issue bills for previous years, to recover it. Some people on low incomes may find it harder to receive tax credits and other benefits after the way the money is paid changes next year. It's part of a wider government push to get all entitlements paid into bank accounts but debt experts warn that some vulnerable people may not meet the criteria for a bank account. This week Zog Energy became the 25th supplier to collapse. If yours has ceased trading with your account in credit how do you get a refund? Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Charmaine Cozier Researcher: Drew Miller Hyndman Editor: Emma Rippon
04/12/21·25m 26s

Financial Abuse

Restricting access to money, bank accounts and the right to earn an income are a few of the many and varied forms of financial abuse, often accompanied by other types of domestic violence. Sadly it’s estimated that one in six people in the UK are dealing with this deeply distressing method of coercive control. In this episode Felicity Hannah hears from some of those affected and about the organisations ready to help including: Dr Nicola Sharp-Jeffs, founder and CEO, of the charity Surviving Economic Abuse (SEA) Cris McCurley Partner & Solicitor at Ben Hoare Bell. Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
01/12/21·28m 50s

Money Box wins back £145,000 for a vulnerable customer after his bank said no

A High Street bank has refunded £145,000 to a man in his eighties after Money Box intervened. Alan was persuaded by thieves to transfer tens of thousands of pounds into what he thought were investments. The money was moved through his account at Metrobank which for many years had seen little activity. But the bank failed to notice large sums being transferred in from his savings and investments and out again almost at once. When a different bank finally blocked the scam, Metrobank only recovered a small proportion of the stolen money before closing the case. Then Money Box intervened and won back for Alan the full amount. We hear from Alan's wife Elizabeth. And from Morven Lean of the Alzheimers Society on how to work with banks to protect relatives with dementia from theft. Plus Kate Frankish of PayUK reveals new ways they're developing to try to cut authorised push payment fraud in future. Also - Dave, who got in touch with Money Box , describes the "black hole" he entered when the Department of Work and Pensions told him part of his salary could be taken to pay off a £1,000 benefits debt. The problem was - he'd never claimed the benefit, didn't owe the money and wasn't told which part of government was poised to take it from him. A year after problems like these were first raised by the programme, Stephen Timms, chair of the Work and Pensions select committee, assesses how well the DWP is fixing them. Plus - Would you borrow half the deposit you needed to buy a home if it meant losing half the profit when you sell it? Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Drew Miller Hyndman Editor: Emma Rippon
27/11/21·29m 8s

Running an Online Business

What does it cost to run an online business? Small business owners share their experiences of setting up, marketing and developing their online brand with Adam Shaw and guests. If you've a story, a good tip or lesson learnt we'd love to hear from you. Tweet @Moneybox or e-mail now and please include a phone number if you'd like to join in. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
25/11/21·35m 14s

Problems with eco-homes and equity release

We're urged to be more environmentally friendly, but one listener has found he cannot release the equity he has tied up in his specially built, and officially signed off, eco-house. Is the equity release market out of step with efforts to counter climate change? We find out, with Money Box reporter Dan Whitworth and Amanda Moore, senior adviser at the UK’s largest equity release advice firm, Key. Money Box has fresh revelations about criminal websites on the open internet. Two weeks ago we told you about the websites on which crooks buy and sell your confidential financial information. This week, Money Box reporter Kaf Okpattah has found another website which sells a do-it-yourself tutorial explaining how to bypass banking security by intercepting one-time passcodes, in order to steal money from accounts. The government is proposing an Online Safety Bill - but will it stop criminals taking our cash? We hear from Damian Collins MP, Chairman of the parliamentary Select Committee looking into it. Some people who claimed Universal Credit benefits during the Covid pandemic may have to pay it back because the Department for Work and Pensions is suspicious about some claims. That's according to the Child Poverty Action Group, which says the DWP may be acting unlawfully by assuming that anyone who has failed to verify their identity in time - by sending a selfie by their front door holding a local newspaper, for instance - has been wrongly claiming help. We hear from CPAG solicitor, Claire Hall. And our Money Box Mini this week: Can I give my beach hut to somebody without anyone having to pay tax? Listen in for the answer. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporters: Dan Whitworth & Kafui Okpattah
13/11/21·30m 56s

The Cost of Inventing

How do you turn a brilliant idea into a usable and saleable product, what does it cost to protect your design and how do you get the funding to start production? On Wednesday’s programme Adam Shaw speaks to independent inventors who've developed solutions to personal problems and now sell them worldwide. If you’ve an experience or question you’d like to share we’d love to hear from you too. Tweet @Moneybox or e-mail now Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
11/11/21·35m 13s

Voucher fraud - how employers' social media can put staff at risk

We hear from a new starter whose boss asked her to buy £800 of vouchers - but it turned out to be a scam. Employers’ social media could be putting staff at risk from fraudsters, but to whom can victims turn for compensation? Dr Elisabeth Carter, criminologist and forensic linguist at the University of Roehampton tells us how scammers use a technique known as "genre mapping". Many of us who are self-employed or with side hustles channel the income through our personal accounts, but as one Money Box listener and yoga teacher found out, it can lead to your personal account being suddenly frozen. Andy Chamberlain from IPSE - The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed - lays out account holders' rights. If you're half of one of the almost one in 10 married couples with an age gap of more than 10 years, your pension could take a surprise hit in the event of your partner dying. Many pension schemes contain a discretionary clause known as the “young spouse discount.” One Money Box listener tells us how her pension was unexpectedly and substantially reduced when her husband of 40 years died - because he was 25 years older than her. We also hear from former pensions minister, Steve Webb, partner at the pensions analysts, Lane, Clark and Peacock. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Kafui Okpattah
06/11/21·27m 25s

Support for families

Felicity Hannah talks to parents and community groups about the challenges facing many families and asks what financial and practical support is available. We'd love to hear your views and questions. Tweet @Moneybox or e-mail and remember to include a phone number if you'd like to take part. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
03/11/21·33m 28s

How much should the state pension rise by?

How much should the state pension rise by? Baroness Ros Altmann says pensioners are being short changed by a government plan to temporarily break the link with earnings. It'll save tax payers billions, but cost each pensioner hundreds of pounds. Baroness Altmann tells how she hopes to block the plan in the House of Lords next week and force a rethink. A Money Box investigation has discovered that criminals are openly buying and selling your financial information online. This data is known as “fullz”. This illegal trade used to take place on what is called the dark web but has now moved to social media and the ordinary web where it's much easier to find. Money Box Reporter Kaf Okpattah has been delving into the "fullz" trade. We also hear from a victim of the fraudsters, from Jason Dyer of cybercrime intelligence firm Scylla Intel, and from Amber Burridge, Head of Fraud Intelligence at CIFAS. People in Northern Ireland are facing even bigger rises in their gas and electricity bills than those in the rest of the UK. It's been described as the "worst energy price shock since the 1970s.” Gas bills have already gone up by 35 per cent in some cases, and there have been big price rises for electricity and heating oil - which most people use in Northern Ireland. More increases are expected in December. We hear John French, the CEO of the Utility Regulator of Northern Ireland. And the boss of one energy supplier says it's up to customers to wear more clothing if they want to keep their bills down. We hear from Bill Bullen, Chief Executive of Utilita Energy, about his Wear Warm campaign and why he says householders should not let their home temperature rise above 21°C. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Kafui Okpattah Researcher: Chris Blake
30/10/21·33m 46s

Autumn Budget 2021

What will Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s Autumn Budget mean for your personal or household finances? Paul Lewis and guests would love to hear your views and questions on Wednesday's Money Box Live. Joining Paul are: Laura Suter, Head of Personal Finance, A J Bell Heather Self, Corporate Partner, Blick Rothenberg Mike Brewer, Chief Economist, The Resolution Foundation Anita Monteith, Tax Technical Lead and Senior Policy Adviser, ICAEW Tweet @Moneybox or e-mail and remember to include a phone number if you'd like to take part. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Rosamund Jones
27/10/21·27m 24s

New green savings bonds

The government has launched its new green investment bond for savers. The money raised will go to the Treasury and it says help pay for existing green priorities such as making transport cleaner and supporting energy efficiency. Individuals can put up to £100,000 into the National Savings & Investments green bond. It will pay 0.65% a year for three years. But there are dozens of similar products that pay a lot more. Is that the price of going green with your finances? We hear from Becky O’Connor, head of pensions and savings at Interactive Investor. If your energy firm has gone bust and you’re on a low income can you still get the £140 warm home discount off your winter electricity bill? We cut through the confusion with the help of energy analyst Ellen Fraser from Baringa consultants. The pensions gender gap is estimated to be more than double the earnings gap between men and women. But why do pensions magnify the disparity between men’s and women’s pay? Why are women losing out? And how can young women today ensure they're not on the wrong side of a pensions gap when they retire in future? Money Box researcher Anita Langary, and Daniela Silcock, head of policy research at the Pensions Policy Institute, explain. And Money Box reporter Dan Whitworth investigates the case of a graduate who has got back the £1100 she overpaid on her student loan — six years late. Sarah Coles, personal finance analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, explains how to find out if you have overpaid the Student Loans Company, and how to get your money back. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Anita Langary
23/10/21·28m 33s

Turning our money green

Many financial products are labelled as green, sustainable or ethical but how can you be sure that your mortgage, investment or pension really does have a positive environmental impact? What are the options and where can you find the information you need? Why not join the conversation with Felicity Hannah and guests on Wednesday's Money Box Live. e-mail now and please include a phone number if you'd like to take part. On the panel: Lily Tomson, Share Action. Rebecca O’Connor, Interactive Investor. Jeannie Boyle, EQ Investors. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producers: Paul Waters and Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
20/10/21·33m 40s

The future of face-to-face debt advice

Debt advisers in England fear that government plans to change the way their service is funded will see big cuts in the amount of face-to-face advice available. We hear from a woman who says in-person debt advice helped turn her life around, in a way that online of over the phone assistance could never match. And debt adviser Amy Taylor, who is chair of the Greater Manchester Money Advice Group, tells us about the impact the changes could have in face-to-face help for people in her region. The parents and guardians of young people who lack mental capacity are still being denied access to their child trust funds, despite the government promising to look at the problem a year ago. In the wake of this week's House of Lords debate on the issue, we hear from campaigning parent Andrew Turner on changes he would like to see to the current expensive, difficult and lengthy legal process facing families who want to access the cash their children need. And as three more energy suppliers go bust this week, Dermot Nolan, the former chief executive of the energy regulator Ofgem, tells us what he thinks is wrong with the system... and how it should change. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Anita Langary Editor: Emma Rippon
16/10/21·25m 30s

Spending Black

Joice Etutu hears about some of the financial, mentoring and marketing initiatives supporting black entrepreneurs. Can business know-how and raising consumer awareness help to bring about positive change and address economic equality? We’d love to hear from you too, e-mail with your ideas and experiences. Presenter: Joice Etutu Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
13/10/21·32m 29s

Small businesses 'overlooked' in energy crisis

Hundreds of thousands of small businesses are not covered by the energy price cap which sets a maximum charge for each unit of electricity and gas. The existing cap only applies to domestic customers. Many small businesses have seen their bills soar over the last few weeks. Edinburgh University is denying some students access to its healthcare service because the GP register is full. But can the students claim for having to go private? And the contactless payment limit on your cards will rise to £100 next Friday. Some banks are letting customers choose their limit. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Kafui Okpattah Researcher: Anita Langary Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
09/10/21·29m 49s

Energy Prices

As temperatures drop and energy prices rise we're talking about bills, energy providers and switching on Wednesday's Money Box Live. What are your rights if your energy supplier stops trading? What happens about credits you’ve built up or money you owe? Do you have a say about the new tariff you’re moved to and is financial support available if you’re worried about paying your bills? We’d love to hear your energy stories, questions and views so e-mail now. Please include a phone number if you’d like to chat to presenter Adam Shaw and guests on Wednesday. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
06/10/21·37m 59s

Proposed changes to student loan repayments

People in England and Wales who started university from September 2012 could see their student loan repayments rise by hundreds of pounds a year. Economic abuse has grown during the pandemic. We talk to one woman who was forced into debt by her husband. And one 82-year- old wants to know where his £1200 savings bond has gone which he took out in 1986. How do you trace old financial products? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Anita Langary Production Coordinator: Janet Staples Producer: Alex Lewis /Charmaine Cozier Editor: Emma Rippon
02/10/21·26m 54s

End of Furlough

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, known as the furlough scheme is coming to an end and we'd like to hear what this means for your job or your business. Are you able to work as you did before the pandemic, or will you be facing difficult financial and personal decisions? What are the alternatives and potential solutions if staff or employers need or want to work differently? Whether you’re running a small business or you’re an employee, e-mail now and please include a phone number if you'd like to take part. Joining Paul Lewis on the panel are: Maya Alba-Heller, ACAS Adviser Hannah Thomas, Employment Solicitor, Markel Law Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
29/09/21·28m 36s

Keeping energy bills in check

As the price of gas and electricity continues to soar. What more can be done to keep our bills in check? New pensioners who have turned 66 this year are facing long delays before their pension is paid as the queue of those waiting doubles. And as theft from customers bank accounts rises 80% in six months, should the Government declare fraud a threat to national security? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Anita Langary Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
25/09/21·25m 21s

Saving for Children

Do you have a question about saving and investing for children? Whether you’re interested in easy access, regular savings accounts or thinking of stocks and shares, our panel will be ready to help on Wednesday’s Money Box Live. Whatever your question, e-mail now and please include a phone number if you’d like to take part in the programme. Joining presenter Charmaine Cozier are: • Chartered Financial Planner Claire Walsh • Rachel Springall from financial comparison site Moneyfacts Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
22/09/21·28m 11s

Big growth in money mules accounts

Four energy companies go bust in a fortnight. Gas and electricity prices set to rise by 12% for millions of customers. And there are warnings of energy shortages this winter. What can consumers do to protect themselves? There has been a rapid growth in the number of young people who appear to be laundering money through their bank accounts for criminals. And a bank offering special deals for students turns down one eighteen year old because her credit score is only ‘good’. Presenter: Paul Lewis Researcher: Anita Langary Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Series producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
18/09/21·24m 47s

Sending money to family back home

Many workers send a share of their wages abroad to support loved ones financially, a responsibility they may or may not be able to shoulder. In this episode Joice Etutu explores the aspirations of those supporting family overseas plus the emotions, pressures and difficult questions that arise. What is the right amount of money to send, how do you choose between competing requests, what personal sacrifices do you make and where do you draw the line or say no? We’d love to hear your personal stories, views and experiences so please get in touch if you’d like to take part, e-mail or Tweet @moneybox Presenter: Joice Etutu Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
15/09/21·26m 48s

Failures on young black unemployment

Thieves are going after the millions of pounds being handed over to people reaching the age of 18 from their Government-sponsored Child Trust Funds. Why are there not more effective, targeted fraud warnings? The unemployment rate among young black people during the pandemic was more than three times higher than the rate for white people of the same age. This week the Government was grilled over what's been described as a 'shocking inequality'. And mortgage interest rates hit record lows with more than 120 offers below 1% but only those with equity or savings already can get them. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Anita Langary Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
11/09/21·25m 16s

Student Money

As students across the UK set off for university, we’re taking a look at the big student money dilemmas. E-mail with your experiences, ideas and questions now. From student loans to bank accounts, scholarships and finding a job. Felicity Hannah and guests will be ready with help and advice about paying your way through university. Joining Felicity are: Tom Allingham, Save The Student. Pamela Lockhart, Student Money Adviser, Dundee University. Rachel Springall, Moneyfacts Comparison Site. We’d love to hear from you too, e-mail with your experiences and questions and please include a phone number if you’d like to join the conversation on Wednesday 8 September at 3pm. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
08/09/21·31m 14s

Bitcoin fraud totalling £500k

Money Box hears from the successful businessman who had half a million pounds stolen in three months through a Bitcoin fraud. He wants to warn people that "if it can happen to me, it can happen to anyone" Plus we speak to cyber security expert Lisa Forte about how to help protect yourself when investing in cryptocurrency. Buy Now, Debt Later - how spreading the cost of buying could lead to being chased by debt collectors. A report by Citizens Advice says 10% of BNPL users end up being chased by debt collectors. And the Teacher’s Pension Scheme demands thousands of pounds back from a pensioner on benefits even though its error led to her being overpaid. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Anita Langary Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
04/09/21·24m 55s

The Hangover: The Fiscal Fallout

Covid has been an economic crisis as well as a health emergency. In this four-part series Felicity Hannah meets families, businesses & local councils whose lives and fortunes have been changed completely by the pandemic. This week, in the final programme, she chairs a discussion looking at what Covid will cost the nation’s economy with panellists Dr Gemma Tetlow, Chief Economist, Institute for Government, Lord Jim O’Neill, former Conservative Treasury minister & John Gathergood, Professor of Economics at Nottingham University. Producer Smita Patel Editor Alex Lewis Studio Engineer James Beard
28/08/21·24m 28s

The Hangover: Local Councils

Covid has been an economic crisis as well as a health emergency. In a new four-part series Felicity Hannah meets families, businesses & local councils whose lives and fortunes have been changed completely by the pandemic. This week, she meets the leaders of three local councils – Wirral, Lancashire and Newcastle - to find out what Covid has done to their budgets and how that will hit their communities. We hear how some councils saved money because families were too scared to send elderly relatives into care homes, while most faced huge extra costs and have struggled to recoup income lost through local lockdowns. How will they cope as they face a £3 billion funding gap over the next few years? Producer Helen Grady Researcher Louise Byrne Editor Alex Lewis
21/08/21·28m 25s

The Hangover: Business

Covid has been an economic crisis as well as a health emergency. In a new four-part series Felicity Hannah meets households, businesses & local councils whose lives have been changed completely. Who are the winners and the losers of the pandemic? This week she travels to Manchester to meet three very different businesses who have experienced the financial highs and lows of the Covid crisis. From a small booming online enterprise to an iconic music venue which saw sales disappear overnight and a large construction company which, despite having to cut jobs, has carried on building. Producer Smita Patel Researcher Louise Byrne Editor Alex Lewis
14/08/21·28m 21s

The Hangover: Households

Covid has been an economic crisis as well as a health emergency. In a new four-part series Felicity Hannah meets households, businesses and local councils whose lives have been changed completely. Who are the the winners and the losers of the pandemic? This week she travels to Stoke on Trent to meet two households who have experienced the financial highs and lows of the Covid crisis - Katie, a self employed piano teacher and a single mum of four, and Tyler, in his early twenties, who lives at home with his parents. Both have had their lives transformed due to money matters. Producer Smita Patel Researcher Louise Byrne Editor Alex Lewis
07/08/21·28m 17s

Timeshare Holiday Ownership

How does timeshare holiday ownership work and what should you find out before signing up? On Wednesday’s Money Box Live Louise Cooper and guests look at the costs and considerations of timeshare holidays. We’d love to hear from you too. If you’re thinking of becoming a timeshare owner send us your questions and if you’ve already got one please share your wisdom! e-mail now. On the panel: Laura Johnston, Adviser, UK International Consumer Centre Paul Gardner Bougaard, Chief Exec, Resort Development Organisation Presenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Sally Abrahams Editor: Alex Lewis
06/08/21·28m 43s

Access to accounts

A new plan has been brokered to cut down on aggressive debt collection by bailiffs. Will it work amidst fears of a post-pandemic surge in debt problems? Tesco and M&S are both closing all the personal currents accounts they operate. What does this say about the role of supermarkets as financial institutions, and what should you do if you’re affected? Digital current account provider Pockit says it’s had to freeze around 1,000 accounts due to suspicious activity reports. A number of those customers say they are taking legal action to get access to their cash. And how can a pension fund you have paid into disappear as charges erode its value.? GUESTS: Joe Shalam - head of the Financial Inclusion Policy Unit at the Centre for Social Justice Peter Hahn - Emeritus professor at the London Institute of Banking & Finance Helen Saxon – banking editor at MoneySavingExpert Gina Miller – founder of the True and Fair Campaign Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Sowda Ali Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
31/07/21·27m 1s

Disability and Employment

How can our workplaces become an inclusive and fair environment for employees with a disability? If you’ve an idea or experience about job hunting, career support or staff retention e-mail now, whether you’re an employer or an employee, we’d love to hear from you. On the panel with presenter Charmaine Cozier are: • Liz Johnson, Co-Founder, The Ability People • Martin Sigsworth, Employment Manager. Thomas Pocklington Trust (TPT) • Angela Matthews, Head of Policy and Research, Business Disability Forum Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Alex Lewis
28/07/21·28m 57s

Frozen Out

Thousands of people say they’ve been shut out of their bank accounts without warning or explanation. MPs are investigating whether innocent customers have been caught up in a crackdown on money laundering. For the first time in 25 years the one-off payment given to adult prison leavers in England and Wales is to be raised. The Prison Discharge Grant will increase from £46 to £76, but what difference will that make? Last year 155,000 people shared an extra £16m in pay after that HMRC ensured they were getting minimum wage. Plus the latest clampdown on debt packager or IVA lead generator firms GUESTS: Nicki Stopford - chief operating officer for the online complaints service Resolver. Monique Williams - Head of Delivery at Switchback, a charity for male prison leavers Clare Merrills - from HMRC Amy Taylor - Chair of the Greater Manchester Money Advice Group Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
24/07/21·25m 7s

MBL: Travel Rights and Money

What do you need to know about travel rights, money and insurance this summer? Adam Shaw and guests answer your questions about the practicalities and costs of travelling this year. Are you considering a summer holiday? Have you rebooked a cancelled trip? How much is a PCR test, what does the travel traffic light system mean for your insurance and how do you get the best deal on your travel money? e-mail now with your questions and stories. If you’ve just returned from a trip we’d love to hear how you got on. On the panel are: Rory Boland, Travel Editor, Which? Helen Saxon, Money Saving Expert Graeme Trudgill, British Insurance Brokers’ Association
21/07/21·34m 33s

Bereavement benefits

More than 20,000 bereaved families can now claim financial support once restricted to married couples and civil partners. The payments worth up to £10,000 have been extended to cover all couples who lived together and claimed child benefit. Eight years ago the government said it would introduce funding for university and higher education that is comparable with the principle of Islamic finance. So when will it happen? And what should banks do to protect problem gamblers. GUESTS: Omar Shaikh - Advisory Board Member UK Islamic Finance Council Professor Sharon Collard, Research Director at the Personal Finance research Centre at the University of Bristol Danny Cheetham - anti-gambling campaigner Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
17/07/21·24m 54s

MBL: Single Parents

There are almost 3m lone parent families in the UK and for many the pandemic has put increased pressure on already stretched family finances. The charity Gingerbread say that single parents are more likely to have lost jobs or experienced reduced hours and falling incomes. If you’ve a question or a tip about supporting children when you separate, dealing with child maintenance payments and arrears or maximising your income, we’d love to hear from you. Or if you’ve got some advice to share about free or low cost family activities for the summer we’re all ears, e-mail to join the conversation. On the panel are: • Ros Bever, Family Lawyer, Irwin Mitchell • Victoria Benson, CEO, Gingerbread • Phil Agulnik, Director of benefits checker entitledto Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Alex Lewis
14/07/21·31m 57s

'For your protection'

When banks stop you spending your own money. Barclays and Santander have banned payments to one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges while TSB may soon stop payments to all exchanges. Why tens of thousands of people could be eligible for significant refunds after the HMRC lost what could prove to be a landmark case concerning the way it deals with child benefit paid to high earners. What will change when the Financial Conduct Authority takes over regulation of pre-paid funeral plans? Using your money to make a difference – the impact that green or eco-friendly pensions can have on combating climate change. And financial lessons for cub scouts, following the launch of their Money Skills Activity Badge. GUESTS: Philippa Hann - specialist financial services litigator at Clarke Willmott solicitors Stefanie Tremain- Director at Blick Rothenburg Sheldon Mills - Executive Director for Consumers, FCA Tony Burdon – CEO Make My Money Matter Jeannie Boyle - Chartered Financial Planner and executive director of EQ Investors Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
10/07/21·33m 32s

Young entrepreneurs

What help and support is available to people with a business dream? How do you develop the skills you need to run your own business? We hear from some entrepreneurs about the experience of turning their ideas into reality. To share your experiences and any questions e-mail: Presenter Louise Cooper is joined by an expert panel: • Lisa Wardlaw, College Delivery Manager, Young Enterprise Scotland • Julian Hall, founder, Ultra Education • Alison Edgar, The Entrepreneur's Godmother Presenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Diane Richardson Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Alex Lewis
07/07/21·27m 35s

Google’s investment ad crackdown

Google is cracking down on financial-scam adverts in the UK, but will it work? Campaigner Mark Taber tells us what needs to be done to stem the millions of pounds lost to bogus investment schemes each year. It was reported this week that the financial regulator has banned one of the biggest crypto currency exchanges from operating in the UK. Jannah Patchay, founder of Markets Evolution, and Jason Deane – a consultant for Luno, explain why those reports were wrong. Park Christmas Savings, one of the UK’s most popular savings clubs says it will review its refund policy following a Money Box investigation. And the push for Plain Numbers – why just a few small changes to the way financial information is displayed can dramatically increase customers’ understanding. Mike Ellicock explains the thinking behind his campaign. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researchers: Stefania Okereke and Anita Langary Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
03/07/21·29m 42s

Community Energy Projects

Would you like to generate your electricity through a local, renewable energy project rather than buying it from a big supplier? In this episode, Adam Shaw and guests consider the costs and practicalities of setting up and running community-led energy projects, do such initiatives make financial and environmental sense? Joining Adam are: Jodie Giles, head of community and local energy at Regen Tanuja Pandit, director of Power Up North London Steve Shaw, the director of Power for People If you've a story or view to share we’d love to hear from you, e-mail Presenter: Adam Shaw Producers: Diane Richardson and Paul Waters Editor: Alex Lewis
30/06/21·35m 50s

Left behind by the decline of cash

Should the government force banks to guarantee everyone access to cash? Age UK warns that despite the rise of digital payments, millions of people still rely on cash and the charity says it should be seen as an essential service - like electricity, water, or the post. Barclays bank is to repay millions of pounds to customers miss-sold loans to pay for a timeshare scheme in Malta, but hundreds of others say they should be getting their money back too. The UK’s biggest insurance firm and a major housebuilder have agreed to refund customers who have overpaid for freeholds and ground rents. It’s a major breakthrough for some leaseholders but will the industry follow suit. And one listener tells us his story of emerging from the black hole of debt. If you've been affected by any of the issues in this programme, you can find a list of support organisations at GUESTS: Joel Lewis - Policy Manager Age UK Sian Williams - Director of Policy at the anti-poverty charity Toynbee Hall, Sebastian O’Kelly - Leasehold Knowledge Partnership Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
26/06/21·24m 57s

MBL: Covid weddings

Arranging your wedding or civil partnership during Covid can be very tricky, especially as rules and restrictions change. But what are your rights if your plans are disrupted? Can you cancel and get a refund if your guest numbers are cut, you're told not to dance, or people - perhaps close family - are not able to attend because of changes to rules? Should you expect to be able to postpone without penalty? Can venues hang on to part of what you've paid up front? Is there any point in getting wedding insurance? Our panel of experts can advise: Pran Bhanot, litigation solicitor and wedding specialist at Meaby & Co. Jemma Cox, Lead Officer for Civil Law at the Chartered Trading Standards Institute. Wedding planner Jessie Westwood of Studio Sorores, who is also part of the #WhatAboutWeddings campaign. We also hear from Hamish Shephard of the BrideBook app and our listeners' experiences. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Paul Waters Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Alex Lewis
23/06/21·29m 10s

The race to avoid stamp duty

Thousands of people are struggling to complete the purchase of their new home before a big rise in Stamp Duty begins on the first of July in most of the UK. High street banks are told they are wrongly denying compensation to victims of fraud and they’ve been given a timetable to change their procedures. And grieving families could be paying hundreds of pounds too much for a funeral because firms do not display their prices clearly. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Helen Grady Editor: Alex Lewis
19/06/21·25m 56s

MBL: Trading in stocks and shares

Low interest rates on savings has made many people consider putting money built up during the pandemic into stocks and shares in the hope of higher returns. But what do you need to know BEFORE you make that first trade? We explore the risks, how to navigate the jargon and - most importantly - whether this type of investment is really for you. Do you have an experience you'd like to share? Email us: Expert panel: - Susannah Streeter, Senior investment and markets analyst, Hargreaves Lansdown - David Stevenson author of “Investing in shares for dummies” and Adventurous Investor column, Financial Times Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Rumella Dasgupta Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Alex Lewis
16/06/21·27m 48s

Bitcoin or Britcoin?

Bitcoin or Britcoin? The Bank of England has published the results of its consultation on creating a new central bank digital currency – and also the prospect of regulating other commercial digital currencies – so-called “safecoin”. We hear from the Bank’s deputy governor, Sir Jon Cunliffe and from cryptocurrency expert Kate Baucherel. Four years after the Grenfell Tower fire in which 72 people died, leaseholders living in tower blocks affected by the cladding crisis have started receiving and paying bills, sometimes for tens of thousands of pounds. The money is to pay for work to make the buildings safe. For homes in buildings under 18 metres high, which don’t qualify for a share of a £5 billion government fund, the bills can be huge. In February, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said there would be a loan scheme to help those people pay, and that it would be capped at £50 a month. But so far there’s no sign of the loans, nor much indication of when they might appear. We hear from a leaseholder facing payment demands now. And solicitor Liam Spender, of the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership, tells us what the options are for those affected. It’s about to get easier for people with problem debt to freeze their repayments and even write off what they owe. The rules on Debt Relief Orders are changing in England and Wales at the end of this month, and will increase the number of people eligible to apply. Sam Nurse, director of the Money Advice Hub, explains the details. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Stefania Okereke
12/06/21·27m 41s

MBL: Hospitality staff shortage

Pubs, bars, cafes and restaurants in England Wales, Northern Ireland and parts of Scotland are now open for indoor business. But there’s growing concern about the numbers of vacancies across the hospitality sector. According to trade body UK Hospitality there is a shortfall of almost 200,000 workers. If you run a hospitality business, how difficult are you finding it to get staff? Are you a worker who’s left the sector to look for employment elsewhere? Let us know your experience: In recent years the hospitality industry has seen a massive growth as more and more of our disposable income has been spent eating out. Could these staffing problems bring this trend to an abrupt end? With many hospitality businesses struggling during the pandemic - despite government support -staff have had to be laid off. Continuing lockdown uncertainty also hasn’t helped. Expert panel: Kate Nicholls - CEO at trade body UK Hospitality Gerwyn Davies - Senior Labour Market adviser at Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development Presenter: Louise Cooper Researcher: Anita Langary Producer: Rumella Dasgupta Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Alex Lewis
09/06/21·29m 27s

DWP urged to rethink the two child Universal Credit cap

Children’s Commissioner for Wales Professor Sally Holland explains why she, along with the Commissioners for Scotland and Northern Ireland, want the DWP to drop a Universal Credit entitlement rule introduced by the coalition government in 2017. It only provides support for a maximum of two children with a few specific exceptions. Money Box reporter Joice Etutu hears from some of the thousands of people who have received random cheques from HSBC Banking Group. Amounts vary from tens to thousands of pounds. They’re still also being sent out to the group’s M&S Bank, first direct and John Lewis Finance customers who had arrears on loans between 2010 and 2019. Many thought it was a scam, but it’s not. EU citizens who want to continue living in the UK are in danger of missing a crucial deadline which could see them lose access to benefits and the right to work. June the 30th is the last date to apply for the EU settlement scheme which allows people to retain their legal status post Brexit. However there’s concern many won’t realise they have to do it. Guest: Kate Smart, Chief Executive of the charity Settled. The ban on bailiff-enforced evictions in England was an emergency measure to protect renters in arrears related to the pandemic. It ended this week so where does that leave renters who are still having money problems and what other changes might be on the way for them - and their landlords? Meera Chindooroy, Deputy Director of Campaigns, Public Affairs & Policy for the National Residential Landords Association and Chris Wood Assistant Director of Policy at Shelter discuss. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Joice Etutu Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Charmaine Cozier Editor: Alex Lewis
05/06/21·25m 24s

How to complain and get results

What are you rights when making a complaint? How do you make sure you escalate your grievance to the right person? What difference can social media make in getting your grumble seen and sorted? Adam Shaw is joined by Martyn James from Resolver, a free, independent issue resolution service. and Alicia Alinia , Managing Director, Consumer Legal Services at the law firm, Slater & Gordon. Producer Smita Patel Editor Alex Lewis
02/06/21·28m 55s

Continuing problems applying for National Insurance Numbers

A Money Box listener has been refused work by two employers because he was unable to provide his National Insurance Number despite the Department for Work and Pensions saying individuals can start work without one. Last year we reported that people coming to the UK with the right to work weren’t able to obtain a National Insurance Number because the government had stopped issuing them. People can now apply - but that process takes up to 16 weeks and trying to get work in the meantime can be tough. Paul Lewis talks to Jonathan Reynolds MP, Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions. National Savings & Investments apologises to more than 14,000 customers after it changed the terms and conditions on a savings product without telling them. We hear from Gary Rycroft, a partner at Joseph A Jones solicitors. The regulator clamps down on insurance firms who cut prices for new customers while quietly increasing them for loyal ones. Michael Sicsic, managing director of financial services consultancy Sicsic Advisory, and a former head of supervision for general insurance at the FCA explains all. And this week a judge rejected a 'scheme of arrangement' offer by Amigo Loans Limited to missold customers. What happens now? Paul talks to Sara Williams, founder of the debt advice website Debt Camel. Presenter: Paul Lewis Researcher: Sowda Ali Production co-ordinator: Brenda Brown Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Alex Lewis
29/05/21·25m 13s


Apprenticeships allow you to earn money as you study for qualifications and gain practical experience on the job. There's a wide range of careers and industries to choose from but a recent Ofsted report said that 10% of apprenticeships are inadequate, so how do you find a good quality scheme to help you develop the skills you need to succeed? On Wednesday's programme Adam Shaw speaks to apprentices and employers about their experiences and ambitions and we'd love to hear from you too. If you're interested in becoming an apprentice or you're an employer who'd like to hire apprentices e-mail now. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
29/05/21·27m 24s

MBL: Financing Electric Vehicles

One in four of us is considering buying an electric car, according to the energy regulator Ofgem. So, what are the finances of going electric? They often cost more to buy but the claim is that they can be cheaper to run. Adam Shaw and guests discuss the cost of buying, insuring, charging an electric vehicle and the tax breaks you get if you buy or lease an electric car through a business? Adam is joined by Ginny Buckley, founder of, an electric car advice site & Hayley Jay, business specialist sales, from the car dealership Furrows. And we hear from listeners about their views on electric vehicles. Producer Smita Patel Editor Alex Lewis
26/05/21·28m 45s

FCA to force firms to treat customers better

Financial firms are being told they will be forced to treat their customers better under plans by the regulator for a new “Consumer Duty”. It will set down a higher level of consumer protection that firms will have to follow. The consultation on the plans has just been published and the new rules should be in force by the middle of next year. Paul Lewis talks to Nisha Arora, Director of Consumer and Retail Policy at the Financial Conduct Authority. Money Box continues to get complaints from customers who have current accounts with the online firm Pockit. They tell us that the money in their accounts - often thousands of pounds - has been frozen, sometimes for months. Virraj Jatania, Pockit’s founder and Chief Executive, provides some answers. Every month millions of people in the UK use the social media platform TikTok. It specialises in short videos normally made by individuals on their mobile phone and edited to music. The videos cover everything from comedy to dance to money. But we hear about concerns that these videos encourage young people to get into bad money habits. Presenter: Paul Lewis Researcher: Sowda Ali Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Alex Lewis
22/05/21·33m 21s

MBL: Mortgages & the Pandemic

Buying a house with a mortgage is one of the biggest commitments we make in life. The pandemic has seen households managing lower, unpredictable incomes with furlough and government grants on offer. What effect has that had on lenders and their decisions to approve or decline applications? If you’re trying to get one or switch to a better deal - how are you finding it? What new mortgage products are banks and building societies now offering borrowers? Charmaine Cozier is joined by: Runouska Dass, Independent mortgage broker Keith Barber, Director of Business Development, the Family Building Society Producer Smita Patel Editor Alex Lewis
19/05/21·29m 5s

Difficulties claiming Personal Independence Payment benefit

Many people on Disability Living Allowance are rejected when they are assessed for the newer benefit Personal Independence Payment (PIP). Paul Lewis hears about some of the experiences of claiming PIP and discusses with Daphne Hall, vice chair of the National Association of Welfare Rights Advisers and Dr Jim McCormick, chair of the Disability and Carers Benefits Advisory Group. More than 100,000 couples in the UK divorce each year — around 40% of marriages. It is over 20 years since divorcing couples could bring the value of pensions into the pot when they share their assets. But only one out of every eight cases take pensions into account as part of the financial settlement. So why is pension sharing at divorce forgotten in so many cases? Paul Lewis speaks to Jo Edwards, head of Family Law at Forsters. Up to a quarter of a million people over the age of 70 get no state pension - but around half of them could. Former pensions minister Steve Webb explains all. It’s nearly three months since we first reported that people were suffering weeks of delays when they try to access their pension funds invested with Prudential. Since then those weeks of delays have turned into months… and still the problems continue. Dan Whitworth investigates. Researcher: Anita Langary Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Alex Lewis
15/05/21·27m 24s

MBL: The Cost of Pets

Last year families spent nearly £7 billion on their furry friends. Pet ownership has soared and so has the number of services on offer for the modern-day pooch. Felicity Hannah and guests discuss the rising costs of buying a pet, keeping it well & safe, whether to insure it and the demand to cater for all their needs from luxury food to care day. Producer Smita Patel Editor Alex Lewis
12/05/21·29m 2s

Is new guidance on selling high rise flats fit for purpose?

Mortgage providers are refusing to follow new guidance intended to help hundreds of thousands of people who are unable to sell or re-mortgage their flats because of the cladding crisis. The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, RICS, issued the guidance to its members across the UK just two months ago. But Money Box has learned that despite being involved in preparing the guidance, many lenders aren’t following it - leaving people struggling to sell because buyers can’t borrow the money they need. Welfare benefits expert, Anna Stevenson from Turn2us outlines how people on Universal Credit will be able to get cheap broadband and some free calls from June 1st and discusses other discounts on utilities for people on benefits. National Savings & Investments does not use two factor authentication when you log on to your account. Is that a security risk? Paul Lewis talks to Adenike Cosgrove, a cyber security strategist at Proofpoint. And nearly two million workers who do more than one part-time jobs are excluded from being automatically enrolled into a works pension - but many are not aware they can join anyway. Pete Glancy, Head of Pensions Policy, at Scottish Widows explains the rules. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sowda Ali Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Alex Lewis
08/05/21·30m 16s

MBL: Personal Banking and the Pandemic

The Covid-19 pandemic has placed a huge amount of pressure on banks and customers alike. How have you - and your bank or building society - adapted? Felicity Hannah and guests explore how the Covid-19 pandemic has reshaped the way we manage our money and whether those changes are here to stay. E-mail with your personal banking stories, questions and experiences. Have you changed your banking habits? Has your access to support, products or services altered? What is your bank or building society doing well and what could be done better? Joining Felicity are: - Julie Ann Haines, CEO Principality Building Society - Alex Neill, CEO of Resolver complaints website - James Daley, consumer campaigner and founder of Fairer Finance Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producers: Smita Patel and Diane Richardson Editor: Alex Lewis
05/05/21·32m 23s

How does the Direct Debit Guarantee Scheme work?

9 in 10 of us use direct debits to pay some or all of our regular bills. 4.5 billion payments were processed in the UK in 2019. It’s a simple way to pay - you sign a mandate with a business or organisation and they take agreed amounts on a specified date. They come with a guarantee which protects you if payments are taken mistakenly. Or at least that’s what a Money Box listener thought when a payment for his gym membership went wrong. Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum have soared in value beyond any other asset. Ten years ago one Bitcoin was worth one US dollar - today one is worth 53,000 US dollars - nearly £42,000 pounds. One big concern with buying, storing, or selling cryptocurrencies is how secure it is. Paul Lewis talks to an investor who discovered £11,000 had gone missing from his account, as well as cryptocurreny expert Kate Boucherel. Last week the High Court ruled that high cost lender Provident could move forward with a scheme to pay redress to customers to whom it had mis-sold loans. Provident has said that it can't afford to pay customers with valid claims the full amount of compensation they should receive - despite other parts of its business being very successful. Paul talks to Sara Williams, founder of the debt advisor website Debt Camel. Presenter: Paul Lewis Researcher: Sowda Ali Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Alex Lewis
01/05/21·32m 55s

Dementia & Money

Adam Shaw looks at dementia and money. Producer Smita Patel Editor Alex Lewis
28/04/21·32m 29s

Can number spoofing be stopped?

The regulator Ofcom tells Money Box people shouldn’t trust Caller ID. It says the spoofing of numbers can be stopped, but to do so will take years. Spoofing has been used by fraudsters to convince thousands of people they are being called by banks or HMRC and trick them into handing over tens of thousands of pounds. It's more than two years since the collapse of London Capital and Finance where investors lost £237m. This week the government announced a new scheme in which almost 9,000 people will get some of their money back. Why do many banks charge 39% interest on overdrafts but pay less than 1% on savings? Listener Edwyn describes the difference as ‘extraordinary’ and ‘scandalous.’ Paul talks to Sarah Coles, personal finance analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown. And what happens to your pension if you die before drawing it? Romi Savova from PensionBee explains. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sowda Ali Producers: Ben Carter and Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
24/04/21·25m 21s

Problem Gambling

Have you been tempted by a quick cash win, a jackpot prize or the challenge of finding a winning betting strategy? There are many forms of gambling available online and in person to engage and entertain us but when does a gambling hobby become a personal and financial problem? On Wednesday's Money Box Live Charmaine Cozier and guests explore the enticements that lure you in, lead to compulsion and where to get help. What are the symptoms of problem gambling and the steps to recovery? Joining Charmaine are: Anna Hemmings, CEO of Gamcare Matt Gaskell, Clinical Lead at The NHS Northern Gambling Service If you’ve a question or an experience you’d like to share e-mail now Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Alex Lewis
21/04/21·28m 46s

MPs demand action on IR35

The Loan Charge All-Party Parliamentary Group has called on the Government to take urgent action to address the exploitation of some contractors, in a new report. MPs are also demanding a government-backed independent review into how the contracting market operates, to ensure contractors are paid and taxed fairly for the work they do. Paul talks to an IT project manager who barely avoided bankruptcy after an unexpected six-figure tax bill and Ruth Cadbury, co-chair of the Loan Charge APPG Group. How do banks protect vulnerable customers and protect their money from criminals? We hear one victim’s story about how she had tens of thousands of pounds stolen not once, but twice and how her bank failed to keep her money safe. Paul talks to Tamlyn Edmonds, specialist fraud prosecutor with Edmonds, Marshall, McMahon. A pilot scheme with a new approach to improve support for people with health and financial problems is being launched in Lambeth and Southwark in South London. If it's successful there are hopes it will be rolled out nationally. Paul talks to two of the people involved - Damon Gibbons, Executive Director of the Centre for Responsible Credit and Gay Palmer, a nurse and social prescriber. And in our podcast available from 2pm on Saturday you'll be able to listen to Anna Bowes from Savings Champion talking with Money Box listener Elettra about how to find the right savings account in a market with hundreds of different options. Presenter: Paul Lewis Researcher: Sowda Ali Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production co-ordinator: Sacha Cowlam Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Alex Lewis
17/04/21·32m 33s

Remote Working

Working from home is changing the way we think about where we base our life and careers, but how remote can we be from our business or office? Can you live and work hundreds of miles away from your employer and what could that mean for your personal life and finances or for the company you work for? Whether you’re an employee or an employer we’d love to hear from you, e-mail now with your thoughts, questions and experiences. Joining the conversation with presenter Felicity Hannah at 3pm on Wednesday 14 April are Neil Carberry, CEO at the Recruitment and Employment Confederation and Jodie Hill, Director at employment law firm Thrive Law. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
14/04/21·36m 32s

Why is the state pension so complicated?

More than 200 pensioners responded to a request to tell us how much their state pension was. They were nearly all different amounts. Next week the basic pension is rising to £137.60 a week and the new state pension paid to younger pensioners to £179.60. But those are amounts that hardly anyone actually gets. So why are pensions - the old and the new - so complicated? Who better to answer that than two former pensions ministers. Sir Steve Webb had that job throughout the years of the coalition government and Baroness Ros Altmann for just over a year under David Cameron. Pockit is not a bank. But it does offer what it calls a current account. In fact that is a pre-paid card which customers load money onto and then can spend it almost as if it was a bank account. But some users have told Moneybox that their accounts have been locked and they they have struggled to get through to Pockit to find out what's going on. Paul talks to Martyn James, consumer rights expert at Resolver. It is now more than 90 days since the UK left the ambit of the EU at the end of the transition period. And more than one million UK people living in EU countries must adapt to the laws that apply to foreign residents. And if you have thought that maybe one day you would like to go to work or retire to an EU country what are the rules you will now have to follow? This week we look at Spain which is home to more people from the UK than any other EU country. Barry Davys is a partner in Spectrum International Financial Adviser group based in Catalunya. Researcher: Sowda Ali Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Richard Vadon
10/04/21·36m 44s

Divorce and separation during the pandemic

There’s been a rise in the number of divorces according to the Office for National Statistics along with predictions that even more couples will split as a result of the coronavirus crisis. Many law firms are reporting huge spikes in the number of separations during the pandemic. Plans for new “no fault” divorce rules are due to come in in the next few months and will abolish the need to blame one of the parties when pursuing a divorce. But what happens to the finances during all of this? What if a couple weren’t married or owned some assets before the marriage? Presenter Louise Cooper will be joined by: Rhona Adams, partner at Morton Fraser and head of the family law team Claire Gordon, family law partner at Farrer & Co Michael Royce, senior policy and propositions manager at the Money and Pensions Service E-mail or tweet @Moneybox now with your thoughts, questions and experiences. Producer: Darin Graham Editor: Richard Vadon
07/04/21·33m 39s

What might negative interest rates mean for UK banking services?

Fancy earning interest on a £10,000 loan? We’ll find out about what negative interest rates mean for consumers in Denmark and what might happen if they were introduced here. Felicity Hannah talks to Niels Arne Dam, Chief Economist at Finance Denmark and Paul Pester, former CEO of TSB and currently the chair of research and ratings agency Fairer Finance. Women’s finances have been hit harder than men’s by the Covid crisis, so could that risk a widening wealth gap and how do we fix it? Maike Currie, investment director at Fidelity Investments and Professor Annamaria Lusardi, head of the Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center at The George Washington University School of Business have some ideas. And, if you’re eating too much chocolate this weekend then you’re not alone! But can that tell us anything about how you plan your pension, your investments, your savings? Or does it just mean you like chocolate? Felicity talks to Dr Pragya Agarwal, a behavioural data scientist and Claire Walsh, a chartered financial planner. Researcher: Jonelle Awomoyi Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Sound Engineer: Graham Puddifoot Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Emma Rippon
03/04/21·35m 34s

Number spoofing facilitating fraud

All too often we hear about fraudsters using the phone to trick victims into handing over thousands or tens of thousands of pounds and destroying lives in the process. But how often to we get to hear an actual recording of these criminals in action? We play a recording of a fraud call in progress because a criminal made the terrible mistake of calling our Money Box reporter Dan Whitworth. Paul Lewis talks to Graeme Biggar, Director General of National Economic Crime Centre for the National Crime Agency and MP Steve Baker, who's a member of the Treasury Select Committee. The Government plans to put more regulations in place to address the widespread concerns about the poor practice and behaviour of private car parking operators. A new code of practice will be drawn up, with the system being introduced by the middle of next year. Paul talks to Steve Clark, Director of Operations and Business Development, British Parking Association. The FCA says it has no current plans to take further regulatory action against a compensation scheme set up by the guarantor loans lender Amigo - despite admitting the scheme might not be compatible with its current rules. Sara Williams, founder of the debt advice website Debt Camel, talks us through the latest developments. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Jonelle Awomoyi Production Coordinator: Janet Staples Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Rosamund Jones
27/03/21·45m 33s

Debt during the pandemic

A recent report by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) found that the coronavirus pandemic has driven more people into financial vulnerability. More adults in the UK have fallen into debt or have little capacity to ride out financial shocks, the FCA said. While furlough, other support grants and the Universal Credit uplift have helped many people avoid money problems, concerns are growing over the financial damage from multiple lockdowns, job losses, lower earnings and redundancies. How are people coping with debt during the pandemic and what support is available? Joining presenter Louise Cooper on the panel: Helen Undy, chief executive, Money and Mental Health Policy Institute Richard Lane, head of external affairs, Stepchange Colin Mathieson, from Advice Direct Scotland If you have a question about debt, please get in touch. E-mail or tweet @MoneyBox. Producer: Darin Graham Editor: Rosamund Jones
24/03/21·34m 6s

Homeowners speak out on gagging clauses

The government responds to Money Box’s revelation that developers are asking customers to sign non-disclosure agreements as a condition of getting problems with their new build homes fixed. We also hear from listeners asked to keep quiet - despite the denials of developers about the practice. A change in the law next month means there could be a huge rise in the number of contractors working through unregulated umbrella companies - and some of those companies are accused of withholding holiday pay and even pension payments. And thousands of those who tried to claim universal credit in the pandemic have been rejected because they live with a partner who earns too much. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporters: Dan Whitworth & Hannah Price Researcher: Sowda Ali Producer: Simon Maybin Editor: Rosamund Jones
20/03/21·27m 44s

Shopping and Covid

There’s no doubt that the pandemic has changed the way we live. But what impact has a year of lockdowns and restrictions had on shopkeepers and shoppers? Has the last year broken the mould for retail? Many essential shops have been successful during the pandemic with some in suburban or rural areas doing more trade as many people work from home. As covid restrictions finally ease, will our shopping habits have changed permanently? Presenter Felicity Hannah is joined by: Kate Ancketill, founder and CEO, GDR Creative Catherine Erdly, founder of the Resilient Retail Club and advisor at Enterprise Nation Bill Grimsey, author of the Grimsey Review. If you have a question about shopping, city centres or the high street then please get in touch. E-mail or tweet @MoneyBox. Producer: Darin Graham Editor: Rosamund Jones
17/03/21·37m 16s

Owners of defective new homes gagged

A senior MP tells Money Box it’s “appalling” that house developers are asking some customers to sign non-disclosure agreements as a condition of fixing serious defects with new homes. A new report this week claims there are still around 250,000 mortgage “prisoners” - people trapped on high-interest mortgages. And what to do if something goes wrong when you try to buy goods and services on Instagram. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Jonelle Awomoyi Researcher: Sowda Ali Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Producer: Simon Maybin Editor: Rosamund Jones
13/03/21·34m 39s

The rise of trading apps

More people are trying their hand at trading and investing using online platforms. Much of the trend is driven by trading apps, with a rise in the number of people signing up since the coronavirus pandemic hit last year. Investors can buy shares in companies and investment funds and keep track of them on their phones. Many of the apps say their services are free to use and commission-free, so how do they make money? Why have trading apps grown so quickly and what are the risks and benefits of investing this way? Presenter Charmaine Cozier is joined by: Martin Bamford, chartered financial planner and head of client education at Informed Choice and Ryan King, founder of Making Money Simple. If you're thinking about investing using an app or would like to share your experience, then please get in touch. E-mail or tweet @MoneyBox. Producer: Darin Graham Editor: Rosamund Jones
10/03/21·27m 56s

Economic abuse law changes

Earlier this week the Government announced that economic abuse will be a criminal offence under the Domestic Abuse Bill. The law previously only recognised abuse that took place within a relationship, not after separation. We hear one survivor's shocking tale - she was left with nearly half a million pounds of debt - and hear her reaction to the law change. Paul Lewis talks to barrister Dr Charlotte Proudman. On Wednesday the DWP revealed that 200,000 women could be in line for payouts averaging £13,500 to compensate them for the underpayment of their state pensions going back decades. The DWP estimate the bill to be about £2.7bn. Paul talks to Sir Steve Webb, former Pensions Minister and current partner at Lane Clarke & Peacock who explains why some pensioners lost out and who is likely to benefit now. The calculator Steve Webb mentions during the interview is available here - In the Budget the Chancellor confirmed that newly self-employed people who completed a tax return for 2019 to 2020 are now eligible for financial help. The group, which includes more than 600,000 people who became self-employed last year, were unable to access the first three instalments but they can now apply for the fourth Self-Employment Income Support Scheme grant. Paul talks through the changes with Andy Chamberlain, Director of Policy at IPSE. NatWest has become the latest high street bank/building society to launch a lottery-style savings account. With interest rates so low, is this the future? Rachel Springall, finance expert at, explains Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sowda Ali and Jonelle Awomoyi Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Rosamund Jones
06/03/21·25m 14s

How might the Budget affect you?

Paul Lewis is joined by a panel of experts to discuss how the Budget might affect your finances. Panelists: Anita Monteith – Tax manager at Institute of Chartered Accounts in England and Wales Heather Self - partner, Blick Rothenberg Accountants Tina Riches – volunteer, Tax Aid Gareth Morgan - chief executive, Ferret You can also e-mail or tweet @moneybox.
03/03/21·38m 7s

Carers call for increase in allowance

Nearly a million carers will get an increase of just 35p a week from April. 939,000 people receive a benefit called Carer’s Allowance — currently £67.25 a week — for looking after another person who is severely disabled. In order to qualify people must provide for at least 35 hours a week - though most will spend considerably more time caring than that. The April rise amounts to just 1p extra per hour. This increase is in line with the rate of inflation the previous September when inflation was just half of one percent. Paul Lewis talks to the leader of the Liberal Democrats, Sir Ed Davey, and Gareth Howells, Chief Executive of the charity, Carers Trust. After last week’s item about one family’s 20 hour wait to tell HSBC about a push payment fraud which cost listener Richard £8500, Money Box asked for your experiences getting help from your bank when a theft happens. Hundreds of you were in touch. Dan Whitworth reports on what you told him and Paul talks to Tom Keatinge who is Director of the Centre for Financial Crime and Security Studies at Royal United Services Institute. One of Britain’s largest insurers has admitted long delays following instructions from customers to access their pension savings when they retire. Money Box received several complaints about the weeks and weeks it is taking for customers to get hold of their own money. Paul talks to Romi Savova, Chief Executive of Pension Bee. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sowda Ali and Jonelle Awomoyi Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Rosamund Jones
27/02/21·26m 2s

Managing someone else's money

Who will take care of your affairs if you can't and how do you go about giving someone the right to manage your money? It can be a big step for everyone involved but setting up a power of attorney is one way to allow someone to control your money and personal needs. One or more people can help with dealing with your bank, paying your bills, and arranging care. But what if an individual doesn't have the mental capacity to grant power of attorney and what can you do if you're concerned that a relative's finances aren’t being managed responsibly? Presenter Felicity Hannah is joined by: Sandra McDonald, former public guardian for Scotland Melinda Giles, partner at Giles Wilson Solicitors Sarah Murphy, associate director for advice, information & training at ReThink We’d love to hear from you if you’re thinking about letting someone else manage your money or if you’d like to share your experience as an attorney. Please get in touch: or tweet @MoneyBox. Producer: Darin Graham Editor: Rosamund Jones
24/02/21·30m 7s

Delays on bank's fraud line

The impact long delays have when customers repeatedly call their bank's fraud line. Money Box hears about wait times of hours and hours. Paul Lewis explores why consumers are being asked to pay additional costs on online goods they have bought from overseas and why students are fighting not to pay for rooms they don't use during lockdown. In the podcast he also interviews the head of The Business Banking Resolution Service, which began operating this week. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sowda Ali and Jonelle Awomoyi Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Rosamund Jones
20/02/21·39m 16s

Renting during the pandemic

Almost half a million UK households are facing rent arrears according to a report from the Resolution Foundation published this week. That's in large part the result of people losing their jobs or losing pay during the pandemic. The eviction ban, which had been due to expire, has now been been extended. Louise Cooper and her panel of guests consider the impact that the end of the ban will eventually have on the rental market. They will also consider the size and severity of the property maintenance backlog that has built up over the past year and answer other questions from tenants and landlords. Contributors: Sara Stephens, partner Anthony Gold Solicitors John Stewart, deputy director policy and research National Residential Landlords Association Ruth Ehrlich, policy manager Shelter Presenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Darin Graham Editor: Rosamund Jones
17/02/21·33m 8s

Credit ratings

Data processing and other mistakes led to huge financial costs for one Money Box listener whose credit rating went into freefall. Paul Lewis hears what went wrong and asks how similar problems might be avoided in the future. Also, unmarried parents still not being bereavement benefits to which the High Court has said they are entitled and Money Box reporter Lauren Moore looks into your refund rights on sale items. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Lauren Moore Researchers: Sowda Ali and Jonelle Awomoyi Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Rosamund Jones
13/02/21·37m 13s

MBL: Working abroad

Working from home has become more commonplace since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. With changes to the world of work, are you allowed to pack up your home office and work remotely in another country? Where should you pay tax? What about your employment rights? Has Brexit changed anything? Charmaine Cozier and guests look at the implications you might face if you’re working outside the UK. We'd love to hear your questions and experience. E-mail now. Producer: Darin Graham Editor: Rosamund Jones
10/02/21·27m 34s

Caravaners denied refunds on fees

Electricity and gas bills will rise in April by an average £96 a year - an increase of 9 per cent at a time when inflation is less than 1 per cent. Ellen Fraser, energy specialist at Baringa Partners explains why. Static caravan owners are paying £5000 a year or more in holiday park fees. But they have been unable to visit them during the lockdowns and say that they have been denied refunds on their annual bills. Paul Lewis talks to Gary Rycroft, a partner with solicitors Joseph A Jones and Ros Pritchard, Director General of the British Holiday & Home Parks Association. Barclays bank is refusing to refund the costs incurred by a listener after it wrongly told her it had not sold her a payment protection insurance policy (PPI). We hear from Alex Neil, Chief Executive of the consumer complaints website, Resolver. And Paul asks if firms that sell solutions to people in debt are more concerned about generating fee income than helping their customers. Sara Williams, who founded the debt advice website Debt Camel, talks through the issues. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Darin Graham and Sowda Ali Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Rosamund Jones
06/02/21·30m 51s

Financial Abuse

How do you recognise and bring an end to financial abuse? Maybe you’ve spotted that a relative is no longer eating properly, heating their home, or that money and jewellery has gone missing. Or perhaps somebody close to you is taking money, trying to take control of your bank account or even suggesting you should change your will. How do you tackle such difficult personal issues and suspicions? Paul Lewis and guest will be here to answer your questions about protecting yourself or a loved one from financial abuse on Wednesday’s Money Box Live. Joining Paul will be: Veronica Grey, Elder Abuse Charity, Hourglass Gary Rycroft, Solicitor & Partner, Joseph A Jones & Co Sandra McDonald, former Public Guardian for Scotland E-mail your experiences and questions about financial abuse to Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
04/02/21·33m 35s

MBL: Fraud

Fraudsters and scammers are always finding new ways to part you from your money, pressurising you to make a hasty decision or tricking you into sharing personal information. Fake investment firms took around £78m from UK consumers last year according to fraud reporting centre Action Fraud and now warnings are being given about Covid-19 vaccine scams. On Wednesday's programme Adam Shaw and guests will look at how to spot financial fraud and what to do if you've been taken in by these convincing criminals. We'd love to hear your questions and experience so e-mail now. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Rosamund Jones
03/02/21·27m 55s

Self-employment income support scheme discrimination claims

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, is being taken to court by mothers who claim the self-employed income support scheme discriminates against them. That's because they took maternity leave during the period their profits were assessed. The government currently calculates how much a self-employed person should receive in their grant, which covers lost profits during the pandemic, by looking at a three year average. And the maternity discrimination charity, Pregnant then Screwed, claims this disadvantages mothers whose average profits were hit because of time taken out from work. Paul Lewis talks to one of the mothers affected and speaks to Anna Dews from solicitors Leigh Day. A record one billion pounds will be spent next year on compensating customers of financial miss-selling by firms that have gone out of business, according to a forecast in The Financial Services Compensation Scheme Plan and Budget for 2021/22. The cost is more than a third higher than was paid out this year and that was over a third higher than last year’s total. It has just about doubled over three years. What's going on? Paul Lewis talks to FSCS Chief Executive, Caroline Rainbird. Nearly two months after Money Box first reported that the DWP was wrongly telling thousands of people that they owed it hundreds of pounds, Money Box continues to hear from listeners who say it is still going on. The Government told Money Box before Christmas that it had sorted the problem out. But Dan Whitworth talks to one woman who lost £1400 in December. The self assessment tax deadline has been extended to 28 February, so if you file after the original deadline of 31 January , the £100 penalty can be avoided. But the tax does still needs to be paid by the end of this month, not February. Confused? Don't worry because Heather Self, tax partner at Blick Rothenberg explains all. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Ben Carter Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Darin Graham and Sowda Ali Editor: Rosamund Jones
30/01/21·35m 12s


Stay at home is the current advice but travel companies are reporting a surge in holiday bookings from those hoping for adventure later this year. Others may have rebooked a trip which was cancelled last summer but be uncertain about whether they can or should go. What happens if your trip is cancelled again and what should you consider if you need or hope to travel safely when restrictions ease? On Wednesday’s programme Adam Shaw and guests will answer your questions about travel rules, rights and refunds. e-mail now. On the panel are: Rory Boland, Travel Editor, Which? Jill Starley-Grainger, Editor, JetsetJourneys Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Rosamund Jones
27/01/21·35m 9s

Students left without access to student finance

Tens of thousands of students are being denied access to student funding despite a Government pledge in 2013 to change things. The delay to an 'alternative' student finance scheme would enable thousands of Muslim students to fund their university education every year. A damning report into how the Financial Conduct Authority has acted on pensions transfers. Many who've taken bad advice may have no recourse to compensation. Money Box has learnt that since the pandemic started last year thousands of people have been refused Universal Credit because they have over £16k in savings. We hear from someone who claims this rule has put her home deposit back by 10 years. In the podcast we are joined by Martin Lewis with an update on the fourth slice of the Self Employment Income Support Scheme. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer/reporter: Alex Lewis Producers: Darin Graham and Ben Carter Editor: Rosamund Jones
23/01/21·31m 32s

MBL: Leasehold Reform

What could the new plans for leasehold reform mean for you? Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has announced what he calls the biggest reforms to English property law for 40 years, making it easier and cheaper for leaseholders to buy their freehold or extend their lease and introducing Commonhold tenure. On Wednesday's programme Felicity Hannah and guests take a look at the new proposals and ask how the system works in Scotland, where leaseholds were abolished in 2004. On the panel: Alan Cook, Partner, Pinsent Masons, Glasgow Sebastian O’Kelly, CEO, Leasehold Knowledge Partnership Dona Awano, Solicitor, Commonhold and Leasehold Experts Limited We'd love to hear your questions and experiences so e-mail now to join the conversation. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Rosamund Jones
20/01/21·33m 35s

Getting your credit balance back from your energy supplier

If there is a hundred pounds or more credit on your electricity or gas account you can get it back. We tell you how to do it and explain what the situation is if the firm has gone bust. Simon York is the man in charge of tackling fraud at Her Majesty’s Revenues & Customs. We find out how much of the furlough grants have been lost to criminals. What happens to drivers whose car is parked on the street but can’t afford to get it taxed or MOT’d? And the man who asked his insurer a question and the answer cost him £350. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Ben Carter Researcher: Sowda Ali Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Rosamund Jones
16/01/21·29m 1s

MBL: Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin values again capture the headlines, some central banks are developing their own digital currencies and PayPal and Facebook are entering the market. Digital currencies are evolving rapidly but what do you need to know before you consider buying, storing or selling cryptocurrencies? On Wednesday’s Money Box Live, Louise Cooper and guests discuss the development and the risks of digital currencies and we'd love to hear your stories too. e-mail now with your questions and experiences. On the panel: Marcus Hughes, Coinbase UK and Europe General Manager Olinga Taeed, Visiting Professor in Blockchain, Birmingham City Business School Presenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
13/01/21·31m 12s

Brexit and your money

For the first time since 1974 the United Kingdom is not part of the European Union, so how will this affect your finances? We look at the new Global Health Insurance card and explore why we might end up with better compensation for delayed flights. We also discover why some banks are closing UK accounts held by people living in the EU... and some aren't. And ask what UK pensions and benefits will be paid in future to British emigrants living in EU countries? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Ben Carter Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Richard Vadon
09/01/21·32m 6s

Financial Education

How good are you with money? Are you a saver, a spender or a canny investor and where did you learn those skills - from family, school, or maybe you taught yourself through the university of life? On Wednesday’s programme we want to find out what makes financial education work well, what do young people want to learn about money and how can we help them to achieve their financial goals? To share your ideas and experiences with Felicity Hannah and guests e-mail now. On the panel: Dr Elizabeth Kilbey, Consultant Clinical Psychologist. Rebekah Kelly, Head of Education - School Age, MyBnk Stephanie Fitzgerald, Head of Young People Programmes, The Money Charity We also hear from Emma Muckalt, joint winner of Interactive Investor's Personal Finance Teacher of the Year 2020 (Primary School). Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
07/01/21·34m 24s

A vision of our financial future

2020 has been a tumultuous year, full of the unexpected, so what can we anticipate for our finances over the years to come? In 1998 futurologist Graeme Leach wrote a report for Barclays called ’2020 Vision’, designed to look beyond the impending millennium to life in the next 20 years. It wanted to stimulate thinking and discussion on how the future will look. Join Felicity Hannah to discover how Graeme’s predictions for 2020 have weathered and discuss with three listeners what their hopes and aspirations are for the next 20 years, what have been their successes and failures from the last 20, and what lessons can be learnt. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
02/01/21·27m 29s

MBL: Charity fundraising

It’s been a tough year for charities since the global pandemic struck but many of you have come up with innovative ways to raise money for the causes you love. The closure of charity shops and the cancellation of events has greatly reduced income and many charities are also experiencing rising demands, so finding new ways to generate income has been vital. On Wednesday’s Money Box Live Louise Cooper and guests will look at charity finances and fundraising in 2020. Joining Louise are: Caron Bradshaw, Charity Finance Group Daniel Fluskey, Institute of Fundraising Robin Osterley, Charity Retail Association We’d love to hear your ideas and experiences so e-mail now to join in with the conversation. Presenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
23/12/20·35m 1s

Regulator "flawed approach" to minibond firm

A damning report by Dame Elizabeth Gloster finds that the financial regulator failed nearly 12,000 people who lost up to £237 million after an investment scheme collapsed. How have those who lost money reacted to her findings? A search through 390,000 online adverts for rented homes reveals that on two websites more than 80% discriminate against people on benefits. And concerns from the team dedicated to chasing, catching and prosecuting illegal loan sharks about the rise of people being targeted via social media. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Ben Carter and Maryam Ahmed Producer: Darin Graham Series Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
19/12/20·31m 15s

Rise in complaints about banks to Ombudsman

Exclusive figures from the Financial Ombudsman Service show a big increase in the number of complaints about banks in relation to fraud and scams. The stats show the FOS upholds 32% of complaints on average – but when it comes to fraud and scam cases that number nearly doubles to 58%. What does the FOS think about recent reports in the press that suggests banks are trying to get out of their voluntary code to refund victims of fraud? We hear from one case study who had £13,200 stolen 18 months ago and was refused a refund, until Money Box got involved. Paul talks to Debbie Enever from the Financial Ombudsman Service In an exclusive interview Paul speaks to Alex Marsh, the UK boss of the biggest player in the Buy Now Pay Later market. The FCA is currently working on its review into BNPL as the industry braces itself for the prospect of regulation More listeners have been contacting Money Box to tell us they are being pursued for debts of over £1000 by the Department for Work and Pensions. It is trying to recover a payment they have never had from a benefit they are not claiming. We hear from some of those affected. Five major house builders are changing the way they sell new leasehold flats. Sebastian Kelly from the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership explains all. Producers: Ben Carter and Darin Graham Reporter: Dan Whitworth Editor: Emma Rippon
12/12/20·30m 32s

MBL: Shared Ownership

If you’re priced out of the housing market, could shared ownership help you onto the property ladder? Offered by housing associations and private developers, these schemes allow you to buy a share in a property while paying rent for the portion that you do not own. Paul Lewis and guests answer your questions about the pros and cons of shared ownership. How does it work and what are the costs, responsibilities and restrictions? E-mail your questions, thoughts and experiences now to On the panel will be: Kelly McCabe, Managing Director, TMP The Mortgage People Amy Nettleton, Chair, Shared Ownership Steering Group Giles Peaker, Housing Partner, Anthony Gold Solicitors Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
09/12/20·29m 4s

Fraud victims facing salary deductions

We've been hearing from listeners who’ve been contacted by Department for Work and Pensions demanding repayment of Universal Credit advances that the DWP says they’ve received. The trouble is, they’ve never even applied for Universal Credit, let alone had an advance. The DWP are also contacting these fraud victims employers to deduct the money owed from their salary before investigations are completed. Two dozen people are facing the threat of redundancy because the small business they work for is being forced to shut down because it can’t get insurance. How is this possible and why isn’t the insurance market working like it should? Solicitor Merlin Batchelor talks us through his problem and Felicity talks to Martin McTague from the Federation of Small Businesses which is calling for the insurance industry and policy makers to investigate what’s going on. Savers at the UK’s government backed bank, National Savings and Investments, are struggling to withdraw their funds after the firm slashed its interest rate to next to nothing. Jill Waters, NS&I’s retail director joins us to explain what’s going on. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producers: Ben Carter and Darin Graham Editor: Emma Rippon
05/12/20·29m 49s

Payment Holidays

Is taking a break from regular payments on your mortgage, credit card or a loan for example a good way to help you through financial difficulties? Charmaine Cozier asks what you should consider before deferring regular payments and whether there are alternatives or long term consequences for your money. We'd love to hear your questions, experiences and views so please e-mail now. On the panel are: Sam Nurse, Money Advice Hub. Your Debt Doctor, Ripon Ray. James Jones, Experian. Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
02/12/20·27m 1s

Fraud in the Direct Debit system

Money Box has found evidence of fraud in the Direct Debit system. We hear how Ursula, pictured with her son Phil, was repeatedly targeted. But how can you protect yourself against this fraud, once criminals use stolen personal details to drain your account? We get insight from Lisa Forte of Red Goat Cyber Security. Also - young people and hard up families are being priced out of rented homes by landlords asking for six months rent in advance. We hear from Jennie Bibbings of Shelter Cymru and John Stewart from the National Residential Landlords Association. And a breakthrough for some parents of children with learning disabilities who haven't been able to access their child's savings once they reach 18. Two child trust fund providers, OneFamily and BMO Finance, are defying government guidance and giving parents control of the money owed to their child. Normally parents have to go through a long, expensive process which may cost more than the total invested for their child in the fund. We hear the latest on this good news for some families, but also look at the plight of the many more still stuck with the old system, as their providers hang on for new guidance from the government. Plus in the Money Box Podcast Extra – the horrific case of a student in Nottingham who was assaulted and robbed – but struggled to be set free from his housing contract to recuperate at home. We hear what students can do if they feel they have to withdraw from their student accommodation contract. You can find details of the National Code for student housing and complaints process here Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Paul Waters Assistant Producer: Darin Graham Programme Coordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Emma Rippon
28/11/20·37m 11s

MBL: What does the Spending Review mean for you?

As the government lay out their financial plans for the next year, Paul Lewis and our panel discuss how they will affect your money. From pay and benefits to housing and tax, the Chancellor's announcements could have a big impact on personal finances. Here to translate and dissect the Spending Review are our expert panel: Anita Monteith - Technical Lead & Senior Policy Adviser, Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales Helen Barnard - Director, Joseph Rowntree Foundation Heather Self - Partner, Blick Rothenberg Email in your questions and comments on the Spending Review to Producer: Beth Sagar-Fenton Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Emma Rippon
25/11/20·36m 29s

Parents not able to claim Test and Trace Support Payment

Money Box investigates why parents who have to take unpaid leave to look after children who need to self isolate are unable to claim the £500 Test and Trace support payment. The Government wants to expand shared ownership as part of a five year housing plan. But is part renting, part buying a leasehold flat really a staircase to heaven? And why young people that the government has encouraged to pay into a Lifetime ISA account are unable to receive Universal Credit. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
21/11/20·29m 29s

MBL: Record redundancies

The UK is seeing a record number of redundancies, with the latest figures showing more than 314,000 people lost their jobs over the summer. Charmaine Cozier and our panel are here to answer your questions on all things redundancy, from legal rights to budgeting while you're out of work. Drop us a line with your thoughts or questions: or tweet @moneybox Panel: Susie Al-Qassab - Head of Employment Law, Hodge Jones & Allen Solicitors Bukiie Smart - Founder of Save Spend Invest Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Beth Sagar-Fenton Editor: Emma Rippon
18/11/20·32m 52s

Warm Home Discount 'lottery'

How do you make sure that people get advice before they cash in their pension funds early? The latest figures show that more than £2 billion was released early by nearly 350,000 people in the three months to September. Only about one in 30 of the people who take money out get guidance or advice about their decision. The Government’s answer is what it calls a ‘stronger nudge’ and on Monday it is expected to set out its plans to MPs as a new Pension Bill comes to its finale in the House of Commons. Chair of the Work and Pensions Committee, Stephen Timms MP, thinks a nudge is not enough. The Warm Home Discount gives customers on low incomes or in particular family circumstances £140 off one winter energy bill but Money Box has heard that some people who should be eligible to receive the discount are being refused because the scheme is running out of money and suppliers are tightening up the conditions. We speak to the boss of Utilita. How to talk to children about money and 19,000 investors want to know why they have not been able to get their hands on their missing millions for well over a year. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Darin Graham Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Richard Vadon
14/11/20·33m 2s

MBL: The "excluded" self-employed

In the early days of lockdown the government announced support for the self-employed who'd had their work impacted - or even destroyed - by the pandemic. But it's estimated that more than a million people have been unable to claim any financial help from the scheme, and they've been in touch with Money Box in droves. Adam Shaw and our panel hear from some of those who've been stuck without government support and want to know why not, and ask what other help is out there for freelancers. Panel: Andy Chambers - Director of Policy at IPSE, the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed Tom Waters - Senior Research Economist from the Institute For Fiscal Studies Caroline Miskin - Technical Manager from the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales Producer: Beth Sagar-Fenton Editor: Emma Rippon
11/11/20·34m 49s

Refused a home Covid test

A Money Box investigation has found that people across the UK are being refused home Covid tests because of their credit histories. The government uses a credit scoring database to verify the identity of those asking for the tests but that relies on people having a credit history big enough to leave a footprint. The guides on how to commit scams (and get away with it) being sold online and in plain sight on social media platforms. And the ins and outs of the new furlough as announced by the Chancellor on Thursday. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Kafui Okpattah Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Richard Vadon
07/11/20·26m 16s

MBL: Can I afford a baby?

Felicity Hannah and our expert panel field questions on all things baby related - from parental leave and pay to saving for a baby, your legal rights, budgeting, dealing with unemployment and finding out what government help you can expect. Our panel includes: Laura Suter - Personal finance analyst at AJ Bell, and new parent Nick Hill - Money Advice Service Nyaradzo Nyakatawa - Legal advisor for charity Pregnant Then Screwed Producer: Beth Sagar-Fenton Editor: Emma Rippon
04/11/20·34m 20s

The end of furlough

As the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme wraps up, what are your redundancy rights? And what happens if you’re on a zero-hours contract? Gym members are being pursued by debt collectors after they cancelled their direct debit for fees to gyms they couldn't go to because of the pandemic. And why are banks refusing to open accounts for newly formed charities and community groups? Presenter: Paul Lewis Researcher: Darin Graham Reporter: Kafui Okpattah Producer: Simon Maybin Editor: Richard Vadon
31/10/20·30m 13s

MBL: Lockdown Entrepreneurs Revisited

Starting a business is hard, but starting one during lockdown is harder. Louise Cooper and guests revisit young entrepreneurs who made their side hustle into their 9-5 during lockdown to see how they’re getting on. They also hear from some new businesses owners looking for some help and guidance about starting and sustaining a successful company. Guests: Emma Jones, founder of Enterprise Nation Annabel Cork, founder of Make It Your Business Producer: Beth Sagar-Fenton Editor: Emma Rippon If you’ve got a story to share, do email us on or you can Tweet us @moneybox
28/10/20·34m 15s

Tier 3: The last shift

The numbers of people targeted by thieves on Instagram has sharply risen during lockdown and Action Fraud is warning Instagram users to be wary of fraudulent investment posts offering ‘get rich quick’ schemes. Criminals use the app to promote investment schemes, luring users with the promise of high returns. We speak to one man caught out. As Tier 3 coronavirus restrictions expand, we look at the support in place for workers. And it’s already estimated that nearly two million people who were not in financial difficulty before the pandemic are now struggling to pay all of their bills. Could a 'temporary' debt payment plan help them through the worst of the crisis? Presenter: Paul Lewis Researcher: Darin Graham Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Richard Vadon
24/10/20·26m 23s

Looking for work

If you’re under 30 and struggling to be noticed by employers our panel are ready to help. Find out which industries are hiring, how to handle CV gaps and what to focus on when you get an interview. Email questions and tips to: or tweet us @moneybox Panel: Lauren Mistry, Operations Director at Youth Employment UK John McCourt, Careers adviser with Skills Development Scotland Emlyn Evans, Adviser with Career Wales Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Beth Sagar-Fenton Editor: Richard Vadon
21/10/20·28m 43s

Why can't I get an NI number?

Money Box has learnt that thousands of people with the right to work in the UK have not been able to access a National Insurance number. Without one they may not be able to work, open a high street bank account or claim benefits. The Bank of England has written to lenders to find out whether they are ready for a zero or even a negative Bank Rate. How likely is it and what will that mean for our savings, mortgages, and other debts? And the life insurance policy that wouldn’t pay out when a terminally ill man needed the help. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
17/10/20·36m 50s

MBL: Mortgages for first time buyers

Buying your first home has always been a challenge, but amid the madness of 2020 it could be harder than ever. Adam Shaw and a panel of guests answer calls from would-be first-time buyers, from the actor just starting to think about getting on the property ladder, to the social worker wondering whether shared ownership is the answer, and the dad who's seen his dream home slip away as lenders demand larger deposits. If you've a question or a story to share, do email us on or you can Tweet us @moneybox. Producer: Beth Sagar-Fenton & Darin Graham Editor: Emma Rippon
14/10/20·38m 54s

Airbnb agrees to share tax data with HMRC

People who let out property using Airbnb have been warned this week that the firm will send HMRC the details of their earnings going back to 2017. It may mean that some hosts will receive surprise tax bills. Thousands of people who invested in a mini-bond sold by a firm called Wellesley face an impossible choice next week. They must decide if they want the company to go into administration and lose everything, or vote for what is called a Company Voluntary Arrangement and lose nearly everything. When your vehicle is damaged and it is another driver’s fault it's pretty standard practice for their insurer, not yours, to sort out the repairs to your car but it has emerged that it can leave you without a right to complain or get redress when things go wrong. We speak to the MP calling for change. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
10/10/20·29m 17s

MBL: Eviction Bans

Renters could be at risk of losing their homes because of changes to the eviction ban that was brought in to protect tenants during the coronavirus pandemic. It's estimated that landlords have lost millions in rent since lockdown hit in March. What financial support and help is available and what are the different rules for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland? Louise Cooper is joined by Anny Cullum from Acorn Communities, Meera Chindooroy from the National Residential Landlords Association and Giles Peaker, a housing lawyer from Anthony Gold Solicitors. We'd love to hear your questions about renting, tenancies and evictions. E-mail or tweet @moneybox. Presenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Darin Graham Editor: Emma Rippon
07/10/20·33m 35s

City's plan to end poverty in 10 years

The costly experience of being unknowingly signed up to a phone competition service. We hear how one subscription cost a Money Box listener over £1,000 across 5 years. A new Sharia compliant investment fund has been launched on the London Stock Exchange. How does it work? Edinburgh - Scotland's wealthiest city - launches a plan to get rid of poverty by 2030. And hints and tips for making difficult financial decisions. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Darin Graham Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
03/10/20·30m 50s

MBL: Personal Insurance

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) say that 6 million policy holders are paying too much for their insurance premiums and that radical reforms could save consumers £3.7bn over 10 years. So how do you get the right policy at a fair price? Joining Paul Lewis to answer your questions and offer advice are: Louise O'Shea, Graeme Trudgill, British Insurance Brokers' Association (BIBA) We'd love to hear your questions and ideas about personal insurance, e-mail now and tweet @moneybox we'll include as many as we can in the programme. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
30/09/20·30m 53s

Are car warranties worth it?

This week the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, revealed new measures to help stop mass job cuts in these economically uncertain times. This latest plan - the Job Support Scheme - was spurred on by the ending of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (or furlough). From November, if bosses bring back workers part time, the government will help top up their wages. But there are concerns that it does nothing to assist the millions who have already missed out on government help. We also discuss whether it's worth buying a warranty on a second-hand car. One man spent £400 but was told it did not cover a £2000 repair. As businesses struggle in the Covid-19 era are they exploiting young workers by getting them to do job trials but refusing to pay them? And in the podcast the one subject that has dominated emails to in recent months... how to get your money back for a cancelled flight, holiday, wedding, concert, football ticket, you name it. We reveal the answer. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Darin Graham Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
26/09/20·33m 24s

MBL: Armed Forces Financial Help

What financial support and guidance is available for serving and former members of the Armed Forces and their families? Joining presenter Charmaine Cozier to talk through some of the information, help and advice on offer are: Forces MoneyPlan The Royal British Legion The Forces Pension Society SSAFA – the Armed Forces charity If you’re a serving or former member of the Armed Forces we’d love to hear your money questions and experiences e-mail or tweet @moneybox. Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
23/09/20·28m 52s

Ex-pat bank accounts closed due to Brexit

Thousands of British people living in European countries have been told their UK bank accounts will be closed by the end of the year because of Brexit. Money Box has learnt that Lloyds Bank and Barclaycard have been writing to customers telling them to cut up their cards and pay off any outstanding overdrafts or debts in two months unless they can provide a UK address where they are resident. Buy now, pay later - the slogan of easy credit for generations but now it's being offered routinely in shops and online whenever you buy anything. The regulator is launching a review. A ban on evictions for residential tenants ends in England and Wales this weekend. We hear from tenants and landlords. And - in the podcast - what to do if you've ever been charged to keep hold of an old email address when you've changed broadband provider to get your money back. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Darin Graham Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Richard Vadon
19/09/20·29m 27s

MBL: Paying for University

Tuition fees, loans, student jobs and financial help, whatever’s on your mind we’d love to hear your questions, dilemmas and advice so e-mail now. Ready to guide you through university costs, student money and work will be: Tom Allingham, Save the Student. Eden Cairnie, StudentJob. Judith McMeekin, Student Money Adviser, Ulster University. Kellie McAlonan, Student Money Adviser, University of the West of Scotland. Presenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Richard Vadon
17/09/20·31m 12s

Concern over increase in unpaid internships

With fewer jobs and rising unemployment among young people Money Box has seen worrying evidence that the illegal practice of not paying interns is growing. Thousands of young people are locked out of their Government child trust funds even though they have reached 18. And would you invest in a bond backed by your local council? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Darin Graham Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
12/09/20·30m 20s

MBL: Working From Home

If you’ve replaced the buzz of the office with working at the kitchen table we’d love to hear how it's going. Have your work-life balance, your finances, career and productivity been affected? Does it make a difference to team working if you don't meet your colleagues face to face? What responsibilities do employers and employees need to consider and is working from home the future, or are you desperate to get back to the office? What happens if you’re asked to return to your place of work but you’d like more flexibility? Joining presenter Felicity Hannah to talk it over and discuss this changing world of work are: Alison Loveday, Employment Partner, Kennedys Law Louise Goss, Founder and Editor, David D'Souza, The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development To join the debate e-mail or tweet @moneybox now with your questions, views and ideas. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
09/09/20·30m 22s

The 'lost' Child Trust Funds

From this month, young people turning 18 can access money given them by the Government in a Child Trust Fund. All children born from September 2002 were given vouchers to invest, the idea being to provide children with some savings at the age of 18, to help with the costs of university or living alone for the first time. Initially £250 was put into the account and another £250 was added when he or she reached the age of seven. For lower-income families, the payment was £500. But it's estimated about a third of eligible young people and their families have no idea these funds exist. So how do you go about finding them? The financial regulator is currently consulting on limiting the amount it has to pay out when it fails to operate effectively. Campaigners are concerned it is weakening the current consumer redress. More than two and a half million people have successfully claimed almost £8 billion from the UK government’s Self Employment Income Support Scheme. The scheme was designed to help self employed people whose businesses had suffered because of the economic crisis caused by Covid 19.. We hear from one man who found someone else had claimed his self-employment Government grant - twice! And in our podcast we get a leaseholders response to the news that four of the UK's largest housebuilders are now facing court action after "troubling evidence" was uncovered by the Competition and Markets Authority over the way they sold leaseholds. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher Darin Graham Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
05/09/20·31m 10s

The Money Clinic: Hollie and Jay

Eavesdrop as a couple open up to a relationship counsellor about their personal finances and their feelings. Money worries are known to put a big strain on relationships, and it can be hard to talk openly and honestly without tempers flaring or heads burying deep into the sand. In this episode, we hear Hollie and Jay in conversation with Dee Holmes, a counsellor from the relationship charity Relate. Jay has been on furlough and is now working reduced hours, but he’s still keen to save what little he has spare for a place to live with Hollie. Hollie is also keen on that idea but can’t quite seem to stop dipping into her savings to buy clothes. Can they find common ground? Presenter: Ruth Alexander Producer: Smita Patel
29/08/20·29m 1s

The Money Clinic: Maggie and Declan

Eavesdrop as a couple open up to a relationship counsellor about their personal finances and their feelings. Money worries are known to put a big strain on relationships, and it can be hard to talk openly and honestly without tempers flaring or heads burying deep into the sand. In this episode, Maggie and Declan split their finances 50:50, but have significantly different living costs. Maggie spends generously on Declan and his children, but feels guilty if she spends anything on herself. They sit down with Dee Holmes, a counsellor from the relationship charity Relate, to explore why Maggie feels this anxiety, and what they both might be able to do to ease it. Presenter: Ruth Alexander Producer: Smita Patel
22/08/20·28m 44s

The Money Clinic: Poppy and Cliff

Eavesdrop as a couple open up to a relationship counsellor about their personal finances and feelings. In this episode, cafe owners Poppy and Cliff return to the Money Clinic to talk to Dee Holmes, a counsellor with the relationship charity, Relate. Last summer, the Liverpool cafe owners spoke to Dee about how they could find a middle ground - Cliff’s ‘maverick’ attitude towards money was clashing with Poppy’s intense frugality. Since then, they’ve been forced to close their cafe due to Covid-19 and they want help managing the resulting financial and emotional fallout. Will they be able to get back on an even keel? Presenter: Ruth Alexander Producer: Smita Patel
15/08/20·28m 19s

The Money Clinic: Eve and Nick

Eavesdrop as a couple open up to a relationship counsellor about their personal finances and their feelings. Money worries are known to put a big strain on relationships, and it can be hard to talk openly and honestly without tempers flaring or heads burying deep into the sand. In this episode, newly-weds Eve and Nick have different ideas about how joined up their finances should be. They sit down with Dee Holmes, a counsellor from the relationship charity Relate, to explore their different attitudes to money, and how they were formed. Will this bring the couple and their finances closer together? Presenter: Ruth Alexander Producer: Smita Patel
08/08/20·28m 23s

Coronavirus and holidays

If your holiday plans are affected by coronavirus, what are your rights? Chaos caused by the pandemic has left travellers with many questions - about insurance, refunds and whether they can get away at all. Holidaying in a pandemic isn’t easy but sometimes cancelling isn't either. Our panel of travel experts is ready to answer your Covid-related questions. Email or tweet @moneybox Guests: Rory Boland, Editor of Which? Travel Jill Starley-Grainger, Travel blogger from JetSet Journeys Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sally Abrahams Editor: Hugh Levinson
05/08/20·41m 8s

'We know apprenticeships work'

From now, the over 75s will have to start paying for their TV licences. We speak to the BBC’s Director, Policy Clare Sumner about what the BBC is doing about the 1m pensioners who will receive demands for payment but should be exempt. In his summer statement, the Chancellor Rishi Sunak promised a bonus for employers who hire apprentices over the next six months because “We know apprenticeships work”. But the latest Ofsted figures show that 42% of apprenticeships inspected in England are either inadequate or require improvement - and that they are struggling to inspect at all due to lack of resources. Money Box speaks to the Skills Minister Gllian Keegan MP. And the debt collection firm that is demanding money from people who don’t owe it. What to do if it happens to you. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Kafui Okpattah Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon + Ravin Sampat
01/08/20·34m 11s


Fake emails, bogus calls, spoof texts: Fraudsters are exploiting the pandemic to fleece as many unwitting victims as they can. So how to spot a scam and keep your money safe? Join Felicity Hannah and a panel of experts offering top tips to avoid being scammed. Share your experiences by emailing or tweet @moneybox Guests: Katy Worobec, Managing Director, Economic Crime, UK Finance Detective Sergeant Marc Cananur, Kent Police Richard Emery, bank fraud consultant, 4Keys International Producer: Sally Abrahams Editor: Emma Rippon
29/07/20·36m 39s

'Forced' back to work with no childcare

During the health pandemic a fraud epidemic has been growing. The latest official crime survey found fraud accounts for a third of all crime in England and Wales. It costs the UK economy tens of billions of pounds and very often individuals many thousands of pounds. But the cost is much more than just financial. It can be emotionally and mentally devastating. Money Box has been given access to a rare recording of fraud in progress. An expert assesses what made it so believable and one of the most senior fraud investigators in the UK tells us what he's doing about this kind of financial crime. Also on the programme, the car finance customers stuck with a vehicle they cannot use and no longer own but they still have to tax and insure it. As government advice changes and people are asked to go back to work, many childcare providers remain closed. So do employers need to make any allowances? And in the podcast, will house prices go up or fall - a listener asks should he buy now or wait? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Lizzy McNeil Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
25/07/20·35m 21s

MBL: Coronavirus and Universal Credit

If you're claiming benefits for the first time because of coronavirus, what’s your experience? Millions of people who have lost their jobs or their income since lockdown, are having to apply for Universal Credit for the first time to help meet basic living costs. But how much do you get and how long before the money comes through? Join Paul Lewis and a panel of benefits experts offering advice on how to claim, what you might get and how to avoid pitfalls. Email your questions and stories to or tweet @moneybox Guests: Anna Stevenson, Welfare benefits expert, Turn2Us Will Hadwen, Working Families Gary Martin, Welfare benefits specialist at Brixton Advice Centre Producer: Sally Abrahams Editor: Emma Rippon
22/07/20·37m 15s

Massive increase predicted in need for debt advice

The organisation charged by the government to provide debt advice says it expects the number of people in financial difficulties to soar by 60% as the economic crisis begins to hit home. By late 2021 it expects that eight million people will have not been able to pay at least three bills in a six month period. And there are growing concerns that people with severe debt are being exploited by firms selling Individual Voluntary Agreements - a formal debt solution to pay back debts - which the firms make money from. Saving, if you can afford it. With interest rates at record lows, what is the motivation to save? Some community schemes think they have the answer. And Ofcom say it's concerned 'some customers are not being treated fairly' when it comes to being charged for keeping email addresses after switching provider - available to listen to in our podcast edition. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Lizzy McNeil Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
18/07/20·32m 53s

MBL: Coronavirus and Childcare

Schools partially closed, nurseries struggling to reopen, grandparents shielding, childminders grappling with social distancing and a lack of au pairs because of travel restrictions. Arguably the UK faces a childcare crisis. At the same time, lockdown is being lifted, the Job Retention Scheme is being wound down, and the government is urging us all back to work to rebuild our shattered economy. But how can parents work without affordable, quality childcare? And how can childcare providers deliver if they don't have the cash coming in? What help is available if you’re income’s dried up, but you still have fees to pay or overheads to settle? Louise Cooper and a panel of experts are here to answer your childcare questions. Email or tweet @moneybox Guests: Purnima Tanuku, CEO, National Day Nurseries Association Will Hadwen, Benefits adviser from Working Families Megan Jarvie, Head of Family and Childcare at Coram Producer: Sally Abrahams Editor: Emma Rippon
15/07/20·37m 54s

How much of the Chancellor’s giveaway will come your way?

As quarantine is lifted and airports get ready for summer flights, are some airlines taking advantage of people who are being offered the opportunity to rebook their flights? Earlier this week Chancellor Rishi Sunak outlined how he planned to get the economy up and running again following the harm done by coronavirus. Front and centre was a £2bn "kick-start' scheme to create more jobs for young people. But does it go far enough? Poppy and Ataysha - two young people who could be helped - tell us what they think. With Sam Windett, Chair of the Youth Employment Group. There were also big announcements on the coronavirus job retention scheme with £1000 promised for every person firms bring back to work after being put on furlough. But we hear about the furlough scheme sums that were just too tricky for one employment agency. With Lucy McLynn, Partner and Head of Employment at BatesWells. Plus stampduty, VAT and eating out. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Lizzy McNeill Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
11/07/20·29m 42s

MBL: Coronavirus: Should I go to university this year?

Online lectures yet full tuition fees; socialising at a distance and virtual fresher's events - all because of the pandemic. So is it financially worthwhile going to uni this year, if you won't be getting the university experience you’d hoped for or dreamed of? How valuable is a degree for your future earnings? Is it better to do an apprenticeship, to earn as you learn? Or ditch higher education altogether and dive into the uncertain jobs market? We'll be taking questions and hearing the dilemmas of school leavers across the across the UK as they decide what to do next. Join Adam Shaw and a panel of guests - and share your views and experiences. Email or tweet @moneybox Guests: Dr Maria Neophytou, acting CEO of Impetus Paul Johnson, Director, Institute for Fiscal Studies Sophie Graham, a National Careers adviser Producer: Sally Abrahams Editor: Emma Rippon
08/07/20·40m 27s

Children duped by 'loot boxes'

Just days after a damning House of Lords report, Money Box can reveal that loot boxes in some games aimed at children have win rates of as little as 0.01%. Experts are worried this could get children hooked on gambling. The courts have ordered changes in the way income is calculated which will mean more money for thousands of people on Universal Credit. And we hear from one listener who got his money back for a cancelled holiday through his debit card but now the company is trying to take it back. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Daniel Whitworth Researcher: Lizzy McNeill Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
04/07/20·35m 23s

Bounce Back Loans

The government-backed loans designed to give small firms quick and easy access to cash during the coronavirus crisis. If you've applied for one, what's your experience? Has it saved your business from collapse? Many listeners have contacted us, angry and frustrated at the time it's taking to get the loans approved. For some, time is running out. Without income, how can they pay the bills, never mind adapt to the new phase of lockdown? Unless they get this emergency cash, they're worried they won't survive. Money Box Live wants to hear your questions, stories and successes. Email or tweet @moneybox Guests: Stephen Pegge, Managing Director of Commercial Finance, UK Finance Craig Beaumont, Chief of External Affairs, Federation of Small Businesses Presenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Sally Abrahams Editor: Emma Rippon
01/07/20·34m 15s

Paying to access your holiday refund

Listeners whose holidays have been cancelled are telling us that they are having to pay to get their money back off their credit card. With Helen Saxon, Banking Editor at MoneySavingExpert. Thousands of parents are using lockdown as an excuse not to pay maintenance for their children. Single parent charity Gingerbread say that Covid-19 is making things worse and that the official service that should make them pay is not checking what they say. The face masks that cost $10 to buy but $109 to deliver - and still don’t arrive. The dangers of believing ads on Instagram and social media. Presenter: Paul Lewis Researcher: Lizzy McNeil Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
27/06/20·29m 34s

MBL: Redundancy

Are you worried you’re about to lose your job because of the coronavirus crisis? Has the job retention scheme kept you afloat since lockdown – but now your boss wants to let you go? If you’re facing redundancy, it's important to know your rights. How many days’ notice should you get and how much pay? If you're an employer, do you understand your obligations if you have to reduce your workforce? Millions of workers are at risk of redundancy in the coming months as the government furlough scheme starts to be phased out from August. So now is the time to get your redundancy queries answered. Paul Lewis and a panel of experts are here with knowledge and advice. Email your questions to Guests: Merrill April, Partner at CM Murray, specialist employment lawyers Susan Raftery, Senior adviser at Acas, the conciliation and advice service for employees and employers Minesh Patel, Welfare policy manager, Citizens Advice Producer: Sally Abrahams Editor: Emma Rippon
24/06/20·36m 35s

Thieves stole my identity

There's been a sharp rise in the number of people whose identity was stolen last year - up by almost 20% on the year before. It can have a devastating effect on your financial life. One listener tells us how it took months to restore her good name and cost her £10,000. Young people are inevitably hit badly by a major financial crisis like the one we are living through. Figures out this week show that the number of young unemployed people is growing by more than 4000 every single day. One charity has told the BBC Three reporter Harvey Day that the number of people in their twenties applying for emergency help has soared. And can National Savings and Investments keep up with the demands of being at the top of the best buy tables? Email Presenter Paul Lewis Researcher: Lizzy McNeil Producers: Alex Lewis and Paul Waters Editor: Emma Rippon
20/06/20·28m 54s

MBL: Broadband during lockdown

What’s the best way to get fast, reliable and affordable broadband during lockdown? With millions of us now working from home due to Covid-19, and children relying on the internet for online schooling, decent broadband is more important than ever. So how to be sure you're getting the right deal? What offers are available? How easy is it to move to a new provider - and what can you do if your current deal is about to end and you can't get through to your provider? We'll also have top tips on how to make the most of your existing broadband. Our panel of experts is ready to answer your questions and offer their advice. Email us with your broadband woes and wins: Guests: Adam French, Senior Consumer Rights Editor at Which? Selina Chadha, Director of Consumer Policy at Ofcom Producer: Sally Abrahams Editor: Emma Rippon
17/06/20·39m 39s

Motor insurance in lockdown

Money Box listeners tell us that their requests for refunds on their motor insurance are being refused despite using their cars less during lockdown. The regulator has recently called on firms to review the value of their policies in light of the lockdown but critics say they let car insurers 'off the hook'. Google is still allowing crooks to advertise dodgy investments and websites, despite telling this programme earlier in the year it was working with the Financial Conduct Authority to offer consumers better protection. We hear from one woman who had almost £30,000 stolen after clicking on a paid for advert that fraudsters had placed. And this week we learnt that the UK economy had shrunk by a fifth in a month - an unheard of decline - showing the difficulties that many firms are experiencing. More than a million have been kept afloat by the Coronavirus job retention scheme. From August all firms will have to start paying towards the costs of furloughing staff. How will they cope and what rights do furloughed employees have if they are facing redundancy? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Lizzy McNeil Producers: Alex Lewis and Charmaine Cozier Editor: Emma Rippon
13/06/20·29m 1s

MBL: How to make your money grow

Adam Shaw and guests discuss how you can make a return on your money in turbulent economic times. With saving rates low and stock markets volatile what should your strategy be, even if you only have a small amount to invest? Panel: Anna Bowes, co-founder of Savings Champion Felix Milton, financial planner at Philip J Milton Email your questions to Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Emma Rippon
10/06/20·35m 51s

NHS re-joiners targeted by promoters of tax avoidance schemes

Key workers who are returning to the NHS to help it cope during the coronavirus pandemic are being targeted by promoters of tax avoidance schemes, a Money Box investigation has found. Adverts posted on social media are designed to push key workers towards umbrella companies operating on the fringes of the law which, alongside standard ones, act as employers for freelance contractors. Posing as a health care worker, our reporter was told how she could legally hide a large chunk of salary from the taxman saving thousands of pounds. Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is warning people not to sign up to what it describes as these "unscrupulous companies", saying some people could end up with large, unexpected tax bills. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Anna Meisel Editor: Emma Rippon
06/06/20·27m 55s

MBL: Single Parents

There are nearly three million single parent families in the UK, which is 15% of all families. Their finances are often tight and they face a particularly high risk of poverty compared with other households. Louise Cooper and guests talk to single parents about the financial challenges brought about by coronavirus and we have experts on hand to offer advice and answer questions. Panel: Victoria Benson, CEO of Gingerbread, the charity for single parent families. Lee Healey, founder of Income Max, an organisation that helps maximise family incomes through a service that guides access to unclaimed benefits Email your experiences and questions to Presenter: Louise Cooper Producers: Ben Carter and Eleanor Layhe Editor: Emma Rippon
03/06/20·32m 43s

Self-employed grant extended

Over 2 million people have received a grant from the government’s self-employment income support scheme. This week Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced that it will be extended to pay out another lump sum worth 70% of average monthly trading profits, capped at £6,570. Guest: Andy Chamberlain, Director of Policy for the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed. It's been more than a month since a ban on using credit cards as a source of funds for gambling came into force. Reporter Dan Whitworth unearths a major loophole in those rules. Guest: Carolyn Harris MP and Chair of the all-party parliamentary group on gambling related harm. University students applying for maintenance loans who have experienced household loss of income of 15 percent or more, due to coronavirus, could be eligible for a higher amount. Guest: Tom Allingham from Save the Student Presenter Paul Lewis Reporter Dan Whitworth Producer Charmaine Cozier Editor Richard Vadon
30/05/20·25m 47s

MBL: Furlough problems

A quarter of British employees have been furloughed since the Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s announcement in March. Under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme workers are entitled to receive 80% of their pay up to a maximum of £2500 a month but they’re not allowed to do any work for their employer while on furlough. Earlier this month the scheme was extended until October - but from August the government will expect employers to contribute to the huge ongoing costs - estimated at between £10-£15 billion a month. Furloughing is working well for the majority of people but it is causing a number of different problems for some - both employees and employers. Paul and guests talk to some of them. Panel: Susie Al-Qassab, employment partner at Hodge, Jones and Allen Sarah Chilton, employment partner at CM Murray Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Ravin Sampat
27/05/20·42m 1s

Festival goers refund woes

Festival goers are trying to get their money back from the organisers of Afro Nation but are being told that Portuguese law means they’re not entitled to a refund – what can they do? Lenders are cutting credit card limits and that could affect your credit rating... but not in the way you might think. Former pensions minister Steve Webb tells us that tens of thousands of older married women pensioners are being paid up to £80 a week too little - how do you go about seeing if you're missing out and how can you claim if you are? Mortgage repayment holidays have helped ease the finances of millions of struggling home owners during coronavirus but how much will the delay in paying cost in the long run? Check out if you are owed pension money here Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Ben Carter Reporters: Felicity Hannah and Kafui Okpattah Editor: Emma Rippon
23/05/20·33m 1s

Finding a mortgage during Coronavirus

Your questions on the challenges of getting and holding on to a mortgage or re-mortgage during coronavirus. How does being furloughed affect your prospects? Are some job sectors now less desirable to mortgage providers? What if pandemic-related delays in conveyancing are pushing you close to the expiry of your existing mortgage offer? Should fears of a market dip make you reconsider and sit tight where you are - or is it time to reduce your offer? Why are interest rates rising for some types of mortgages and falling for others? We hear what's happening in the mortgage and re-mortgage market from experts Jane King, independent mortgage advisor with Ash Ridge Private Finance - and from Martin Stewart, director of the independent mortgage broker, London Money. Email Money Box Presenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Paul Waters
20/05/20·30m 42s

Furlough scheme abuse

Money Box has been hearing from furloughed workers who say their employers are abusing the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. It allows staff to be put on leave while the government pays 80 per cent of their wages up to £2500 a month. One worker says he’s being forced to keep working and another says she’s been furloughed but isn’t being paid. Guest Sarah Chilton, partner with employment law specialists CM Murray We hear from Endija who bought her two-bedroom home after viewing it through a virtual tour. Guest Mark Hayward, chief executive of the National Association of Estate Agents And the programme looks at the latest measures to help insurance customers with financial difficulties caused by coronavirus. Email with any questions for the programme. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Charmaine Cozier Reporter: Dan Whitworth Editor: Emma Rippon
16/05/20·37m 47s

MBL: Starting a business during lockdown

Felicity Hannah and guests talk to young entrepreneurs who've started businesses during the lockdown. She'll hear about the successes and challenges they encountered along the way. Guests: Emma Jones, founder of Enterprise Nation Zara Khalique, creator of Keep It Bright Email or tweet @Moneybox with stories, experiences or questions for the panel. Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Emma Rippon
13/05/20·34m 3s

Can I get a mortgage on furlough?

Pandemic-related salary cuts and being furloughed could affect your ability to get a mortgage. What will mortgage providers take into account - your previous normal salary or your 80% rate? And will job types in sectors hit badly by the coronavirus now be deemed less desirable by lenders? We hear your stories and get advice from Martin Stewart, Director of the independent mortgage broker, London Money. Millions of self-employed workers are being offered help through the government's new Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS). But Money Box listeners say they've experienced problems with the SEISS online checker and complain they've been wrongly rejected. We discover what's going on with the scheme and hear from the chief executive of HMRC, Jim Harra - the man in charge. Many of us are being forced to work from home during the pandemic and that can means extra costs for the employee. We find out from Heather Self, Tax Director at Blick Rothenberg, how your employer can offset your extra costs and what you can claim against tax. Good news for some Virgin Money customers who had their credit cards frozen this week and there's a cancelled holiday chargeback success story in the Money Box podcast. Email or tweet @Moneybox with any personal finance questions or queries. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Editor: Emma Rippon Reporter: Ben Carter
09/05/20·31m 3s

Young workers affected by coronavirus

Graduates and young workers face huge challenges getting and staying in a job as coronavirus changes the employment picture. Louise Cooper discusses the consequences and solutions. Guests: Laura Gardiner, Research Director at the Resolution Foundation Michele Farmer, Regional Director at the Prince's Trust Email questions and experiences to Reporter: Kafui Okpattah Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Emma Rippon
06/05/20·31m 11s

Furlough problems and obtaining cash refunds

On this week’s Money Box we hear from people who’ve been furloughed by their employer but are being pressured into working anyway - something very much against the rules of the Job Retention Scheme. And can an employer force those people still working to take a pay cut? Paul talks through the legal implications with Susie Al-Qassab, partner at Hodge, Jones and Allen Solicitors. As the consumer watchdog threatens legal action against companies refusing to refund customers during the coronavirus pandemic, we hear about the struggles some listeners have been having with various companies. Gary Rycroft, partner at Joseph A Jones Solicitors, and consumer rights champion Helen Dewdney from The Complaining Cow website talk through the issues. And we have exclusive figures from the National Gambling Helpline about a sharp drop in callers and how it’s worried about what that might mean for 100,000s of problem gamblers during lockdown. Paul talks to one of the problem gamblers affected and speaks to Anna Hemmings, CEO at Gamcare. Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Emma Rippon
02/05/20·34m 21s

MBL: Coronavirus and claiming benefits

Many people are having to claim benefits for the first time due to coronavirus. Paul Lewis and guests find out how some people have found this experience. Was it clear how to claim? Did you find the rules easy to understand? Have you got your money yet? Is it enough? What other help is out there? Guests: Victoria Todd from Low Income Tax Reform Group and Will Hadwen, a welfare rights advisor with Working Families. Email: Producer: Alex Lewis and Ben Carter Editor: Emma Rippon
29/04/20·35m 14s

Umbrella companies and the contractors “left in limbo”

650,000 people work as contractors in a wide range of jobs across the UK – supply teachers, IT engineers, health care workers. But some of them have told Money Box they’ve been left in limbo by umbrella companies who say they need more clarity from the government before they can decide to furlough them or not. Issues about how much the contractors would get, how much holiday pay they’d be owed and what the industry will do if they don’t get any more guidance from the government means huge financial stress and worry for all those involved. Guest: Julia Kermode, Chief Executive, The Freelancer & Contractor Services Association. There's a glimmer of hope for cash savers as NS&I abandons plans for major interest rate cuts to its variable rate savings products which were due to happen on May 1. Anna Bowes Co-Founder of Savings Champion also rounds up what’s happening elsewhere in the cash savings market. We look at ways to safely access cash for people who are self-isolating and relying on relatives or volunteers to do their shopping for them. Guest: Helen Saxon, Banking Editor MoneySavingExpert Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Charmaine Cozier Editor: Emma Rippon
25/04/20·33m 16s

Car Finance

On our programme last Saturday we looked at the new Financial Conduct Authority guidance for people with car finance who are struggling to pay it due to coronavirus. 80% of all private new car buyers take out finance at the dealership and there’s £110bn worth of debt outstanding. We get lots of questions from listeners about how car finance actually works so for this special podcast extra we’ve got Stuart Masson, editor of to explain. He’ll also talk about the FCA guidance in more detail. Reporter and Producer: Ben Carter
24/04/20·26m 9s

Coping with debt and accessing credit

Adam Shaw and guests talk to people struggling with bills and finding it hard to access credit. They offer practical advice about how to stay on top of your finances. Guests: Richard Lane from StepChange and Sara Williams from Debt Camel. Email: Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Emma Rippon
22/04/20·32m 20s

Wage support changes and debt help

Action to protect workers who would otherwise face redundancy due to the coronavirus outbreak was brought in by the government last month. Known as the Job Retention Scheme it pays 80 per cent of wages for people kept on by their employer up to a maximum of £2,500 a month. At the time there was disappointment from those who missed out because they didn’t start their job before the scheme’s cut-off date of February 28th. This week that date was extended to the 19th of March. The Treasury says the date change is “expected to benefit over 200,000 employees” - but will it? Guest: Heather Self, Tax Partner, Blick Rothenberg. Plans to refund the victims of fraud isn’t "working as well as hoped" according to financial watchdog the Payment Systems Regulator. Data gathered by the PSR shows that two high street banks who promised to refund victims refused to do so in 96% of cases. Money Box hears from the PSR Managing Director Chris Hemsley to find out what his organisation is doing about it, what action it wants to see from the banks… and why it isn’t taking tougher action already. Money Box also hears from the son of one victim whose bank initially refused to refund him after criminals used his bank details to steal his life savings of £90k. The FCA announced more plans to support households struggling to pay bills due to the impact of coronavirus on incomes. They include a three month payment freeze for car loans and a one month interest-free halt on high-cost short-term credit payments like payday loans. The FCA hopes to finalise the proposals by Friday 24 April and expect them to happen shortly afterwards. A three month credit card payment holiday for people with cash problems caused by coronavirus came into force this week. Guests: Sara Williams debt campaigner and founder of the Debt Camel blog and Stuart Masson Editor for Presenter: Paul Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon Producer: Charmaine Cozier
18/04/20·25m 8s

Student Finance

How are student finances being affected by coronavirus? Louise Cooper is joined by Tom Allingham from Save The Student and Hayley Borrett from The National Association of Student Money Advisers. They'll hear from students with concerns about paying fees, meeting rent obligations, making student loan payments and much more. Email with questions and experiences or tweet @Moneybox Producer: Ben Carter Researcher: Kafui Okpattah Editor: Emma Rippon
15/04/20·31m 16s

Coping with ‘income shock’

Millions of people are still facing huge financial pressure despite government measures to help them deal with the fallout from coronavirus. Some estimates show that up to half of the 5m people who are self employed won’t be helped by the support package that the government has announced. Many thousands more, who are employees, are not eligible for the job retention furlough arrangements. Unsurprisingly the benefits system has seen an unprecedented number of new applications for Universal credit. We’re hearing of a back log of many weeks as the Department for Work and Pensions tries to work through more than a million new cases. So if you are one of the millions of people affected by a huge and sudden loss in income, what can you do to survive? Paul Lewis and guests discuss their top tips for surviving financial shock. Joining Paul are: - Nick Hill - money expert, Money And Pensions Service - Laura Peters - from Mental Health and Money Advice - Anna Stevenson - welfare benefit expert at charity Turn2us Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
11/04/20·28m 36s

Tenants and landlords rights

Louise Cooper and guests discuss how government rules help tenants and landlords affected by coronavirus. Guests: Henry Pryor - Buying agent and property expert Anny Cullum - National organiser for Acorn, a community and tenants union John Stewart - Policy manager at the National Residential Landlords Association Email questions to Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Emma Rippon
08/04/20·35m 40s

New starters and the furloughed worker scheme

People who have recently begun new jobs say that the government’s plan to help businesses hit by coronavirus may treat them unfairly. Under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, a business can choose to furlough workers – that is, keep them on the books but not working and at home. The government will pay 80 per cent of their wages up to £2,500 per month. Companies may choose to top up furloughed employee wages to 100 per cent. However, to be eligible for furloughing, workers have to have been in employment with the company on February 28th, 2020. New starters say that unfairly leaves out people who happened to be between jobs on that date. It also means that people who have changed jobs since then cannot ask to be furloughed by their new employer. We hear the experiences and concerns of new starters and employers, alongside Edwin Morgan, director of policy at the Institute of Directors, and employment lawyer Amy Wren of Farrer and Co. Then we put your points to Harriet Baldwin, MP - a Conservative member of the Treasury Select Committee and former economic secretary to the Treasury. There's an update on the Financial Conduct Authority's proposals for new rules on lending. And on the podcast, happy news from a Money Box-inspired wedding. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Paul Waters Editor: Hugh Levinson
04/04/20·30m 9s

Coronavirus: Your travel queries answered

In recent weeks the Money Box inbox has been inundated with your queries and questions about travel and holiday issues. So we invited Simon Calder, travel editor at The Independent, to shed some light on some of the most common problems people are facing.
02/04/20·26m 2s

Covid19 - Will insurance cover it?

Wedding plans in ruins, holidays cancelled, business on hold and landlords unable to rent out their properties. This is exactly the kind of unexpected scenario we buy insurance policies for, but are they written to cover once in a century events like the coronavirus outbreak? Our panel of experts answer your questions on insurance policies and claims.
01/04/20·35m 47s

Assistance for the self-employed

This week the Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced the Government’s much anticipated help package for the self employed. Only about two thirds of an estimated 6m workforce will gain anything, leaving over a million people without help. We look at the package in more detail, including the changes to benefits and hear top tips for getting paid in a timely manner. And the banks were quick to promise support for customers in need but are they actually delivering? Money Box listeners tell us their experiences. Presenter Felicity Hannah Reporter: Ben Carter Researcher: Darin Graham Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
28/03/20·32m 14s

Help for small businesses and the self employed

Announcements from the Government are coming thick and fast about the help available for small business in these difficult times. An expert panel joins Adam Shaw to discuss and answer your questions on what assistance might be on offer. We also look at issues facing the self-employed and discuss what support is currently out there for them. Get in touch by email: or tweet: @moneybox. Joining Adam: Will Hadwen - rights adviser from Working Families Sonali Parekh - Head of Policy at the Federation for Small Businesses Alasdair Hutchison - Policy Development Manager from the Association of Independent Professionals and Self Employed Producer: Darin Graham Editor: Emma Rippon
25/03/20·41m 34s

The Coronavirus Effect

Money Box unpicks the Chancellor's announcement on support for wages and rents. Investments have taken a massive hit over the last few weeks as the stock market has dived. We speak to one Money Box listener who thought his fund, which was nearing maturity, had been moved to a 'safer' account - only to discover it hadn't. And the latest fraud statistics show that in 2019 fraud increased by 45%. We speak to Katy Worobec, Managing Director of Economic Crime at UK Finance, the collective voice of the banking industry. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Darin Graham Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
21/03/20·24m 30s

MBL: Travel and coronavirus

The UK government has urged Britons to avoid non-essential travel to anywhere in the world for 30 days to tackle the spread of coronavirus. Where does that leave people and their holiday plans? And what about future holidays? Joining presenter Louise Cooper to share their views: Simon Calder, Travel Editor at The Independent. Charlie Campbell, Senior Policy Adviser at the Association of British Insurers. Gary Rycroft, solicitor at Joseph A Jones & Co LLP. Email questions to Producer: Darin Graham Editor: Richard Vadon
18/03/20·28m 44s

Corona Virus - the financial fallout

The financial fallout from the Corona Virus pandemic. Making sense of the help available. And the Chief Financial Ombudsman, Caroline Wayman, tells us that the banks warnings are not good enough and that they need to do much to stop people becoming victims of so-called "push payment fraud". We report on a "never seen before" fraud that lead to a ninety-one year old losing his life's savings. The criminals used the victim's driving licence to set up an account in his name, but under their control. They stole £90,000 over five months. When he became suspicious he contacted his bank but they refused to refund him. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Darin Graham Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
14/03/20·31m 1s

MBL: The Budget Special

Whether you're young or old, rich or poor, how will the Budget affect your personal finances? Paul Lewis and a panel of experts give their opinions on how it will affect your wallet and take your calls. Our panel this week; Anita Monteith – Institute of Chartered Accountants Heather Self- Blick Rothenberg Accountants Tina Riches – Tax Aid Call 03700 100 444. Lines are open from 1pm on Wednesday 11 March. You can also email or tweet @moneybox
11/03/20·38m 3s

TikTok - time for change?

TikTok has been downloaded over 1.6 billion times and most of its users are young. They share videos and stream their activities live. The site allows people who have over 1000 followers to be given presents by other users in exchange for giving their account a 'shout out'. To give money you should be over eighteen. So how did a 9 year old girl gift thousands of pounds from her dad's bank account? It will be at least another two years before estate agents and the property business will be regulated - that estimate from the man the government asked to propose reforms. And why do student loan repayments take more from people who work and earn irregularly than if they had a steady salaried job? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Daniel Whitworth Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
07/03/20·30m 51s

MBL - The future of giving

The traditional model of giving is in decline, no longer do people have a charity for life. Now the sector is coping with huge changes in the way people give from card payments, crowdfunding to adventure fundraising. Is sponsored skydiving becoming the raffle of the 21st Century? Technology offers huge opportunities as well as challenges, with new software making fundraising easier as well as connecting charities to donors across the world. But how can smaller charities tap into this potential?Louise Cooper and her panel of guests ask whether charities are ready for these changes and what they mean for donors. Joining Louise are- Kelly Southcott from charity consultancy Kivo Joe Saxton from charity research firm NPF Synergy Email: with questions and experiences for the panel.
04/03/20·35m 8s

New hope for leaseholders

People who bought leasehold homes from developers were "misled". That is the damning verdict of a report by the Competition and Markets Authority. They say its findings support calls for a change in the law in this area and that they are ready to take this fight to the courts to force developers to change their ways bringing new hope to leaseholders. Young savers in the government-backed pension scheme called NEST see their money grow more slowly than older people because their contributions are automatically put into a low risk, lower return fund. And after years where hundreds of thousands of students have overpaid their student loans by hundreds of millions of pounds, the Student Loans Company is starting to trial a system to automatically refund customers who have over-paid on their student loan repayments. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
29/02/20·29m 28s

Discrimination and housing benefit

Landlords and letting agencies who advertise property with a ban on renting benefits claimants - so-called "No DSS" clauses - risk legal action under anti-discrimination laws. So why do such restrictions persist? What can prospective tenants on benefits do about it? And what legal and financial risks are being run by landlords who display "No DSS" restrictions? Money Box Live takes your calls and hears from Polly Neate, the chief executive of the homelessness and housing advice charity, Shelter. And from John Stewart, policy manager of the Residential Landlords Association. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producers Paul Waters & Jordan Dunbar Email- Twitter - @moneybox
26/02/20·31m 56s

Savings - are they drowning not waving?

A Money Box investigation has found that two of the biggest broadband providers are charging people up to £90 a year to keep their email address if they switch to another supplier. The regulator Ofcom has told Money Box that it has written to the firms and may take further action. Nearly two million savers will miss out on more than £100 million a year income following the announcement this week of cuts to National Savings and Investments interest rates. Is this the end of savings? From April the liability for any underpaid tax shifts from the contractor - IT expert, business consultant or indeed a care worker - to the firm that wants the work done. The result is that many big firms including banks are refusing to take on contractors unless they become employees for the short period they work there. The contractors say that cuts the fees they are paid, increases their costs, and removes their flexibility. Campaigners say contractors are leaving the UK and want the changes to be delayed. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Richard Vadon
22/02/20·29m 26s

MBL: In-game purchases

Unexpected bills from video games and apps? The online world of video games and apps can be financially treacherous, filled with loot boxes and micro-transactions. They can mean large, unexpected bills through the relatively new phenomenon of in-game purchases. Louise Cooper and guests discuss what your consumer rights are if things go wrong. Guests: Dr Jo Twist, CEO at The Association for UK Interactive Entertainment (UKIE) Alex Neill, CEO at Resolver David McClelland, technology journalist Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Hugh Levinson
19/02/20·33m 21s

Bereavement Support Payment

Should the unwed lose out on a benefit paid to married people? Bereavement Support Payment is available to the widows, widowers or surviving civil partners of people who died on or after 6 April 2017. There's additional money if they have children. A recent High Court judgement held that the Pensions Act, by excluding bereaved unmarried partners from claiming Bereavement Support Payment, contravened the human rights of any children they might have. This week, Prime Minister Boris Johnson told parliament that he would look into what he described as an "injustice". Guest: Alison Penny, director of the Childhood Bereavement Network. Richard is 20 and earns £18,000 a year. He applied online for a credit card. When this was approved he was shocked to find he had an £8,000 credit limit. Guest: Peter Tutton, head of policy, StepChange debt charity. If you missed the January self-assessment tax deadline, picked up a £100 penalty and still haven't filed, there's another deadline. It's March 1st and if you have tax to pay the penalties for missing it could cost you a great deal more. How can you track down old pensions from past jobs? When you find them, will you be able to you lump them together? Guest: Claire Trott, head of pension strategy for Technical Connections. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Charmaine Cozier Editor: Emma Rippon
15/02/20·25m 28s

MBL: Getting the best broadband deals

This week Louise Cooper asks how you can negotiate the best broadband deal. How do you know if you’re paying too much? What’s the best way of securing a better deal? What are your rights if you’ve been overpaying? What are the best deals available at the moment? Guests: Selina Chadha: Director of Consumer Policy at Ofcom Adam French: Consumer Rights Editor at Which? Guy Anker: Deputy Editor at Money Saving Expert Email questions for the panel or top tips to Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Emma Rippon
12/02/20·34m 2s

Leap in Under 30s taken to court for debts

Money Box has found that there has been a big increase in the number of young adults being taken to court for unpaid debts. Court records show that last year around 160,000 people in their twenties were given County Court Judgments in England and Wales - a rise of 30 per cent from the year before. How a £3 month long trial for a dating website ended up costing one user £300. And Jon Douglas visits a bank that’s swimming against the tide by opening branches in rural locations. Presenter: Louise Cooper Researcher: Darin Graham Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
08/02/20·31m 3s

MBL: Dream weddings on tight budgets

Wedding planning can be stressful and expensive. Venue, catering, flowers...the list goes on. Charmaine Cozier and guests talk through the best ways to budget and negotiate on price. Guests: Lisa Garwood-Cross, Living Thrifty Eve Obasuyi, Money Medics Ruby Norris, Wedding Ideas Magazine Gary Rycroft, Joseph A Jones Solicitors Email questions and experiences to Producer: Ben Carter Editor Emma Rippon
05/02/20·34m 13s

Brexit and benefits

One of the most important rights that Europe gave us was the freedom to live and work in EU countries and retire there. About a quarter of a million UK pensioners live in the EU and draw their UK pensions and, in most countries, still get the winter fuel payment. But will that continue post - Brexit? A Money Box investigation by Dan Whitworth has found more than 1000 people making the most serious complaints about maladministration at the Department for Work and Pensions face waiting 18 months before their case is even opened. And the campaigner trying to get Google to take action on adverts for unregulated investments. Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Emma Rippon
01/02/20·29m 33s

MBL: Your rights when a dream holiday becomes a nightmare experience

What are your rights when that dream holiday you've saved up for gets cancelled or you experience problems during the holiday itself? Paul Lewis and guests answer your calls and emails. Guests: the travel journalist Simon Calder and consumer champion Helen Dewdney. Email: Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Emma Rippon
29/01/20·31m 25s
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