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.

Episodes

Money Box Live: Older Workers

The number of people working into their late 60s, their 70s and beyond is rising. In this programme we'll discuss what that means for their employment rights and what it tells us about their finances.Back in the 90s, only around 5% of peopled aged 65 or older were in work. In the early 2000s, that rose to around 6%. But recently released data from the Office for National Statistics shows that today almost 12% of people in that age group are in some form of employment. That's almost one and a half million people.Felicity Hannah is joined by older workers to explore their finances, their struggles and their rights to challenge discrimination. She'll be joined by Dr Emily Andrews, Deputy Director for Work at the Centre for Aging Better, and Sarah Jackman, an employment lawyer at the law firm Dentons.Presented and Produced by Felicity Hannah Studio production: Amber Mehmood Editor: Sara Wadeson(First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 19th June, 2024)
17/07/2428m 16s

Tax and the Election and Help with Bills

Nineteen days to go before your cross on a ballot paper will help decide who runs the country. You have been telling Money Box what matters to you. This week we'll discuss how much tax you already pay and whether that will change after 4th July. The head of the UK payment regulator has rejected calls to delay a new fraud reimbursement plan which is due to begin on 7th October. It will mean that victims of fraud are fully reimbursed for losses up to £415,000. We'll have more on this story.And more than half a million people are now getting help with their finances, often saving substantial sums of money, thanks to something called the Vulnerability Registration Service. What is it and how does it work?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Immie Rhodes and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 15th June, 2024)
13/07/2424m 59s

Cost of Care and Energy Credit

As we continue our series of listener questions ahead of the election, we focus on the Cost of Care and how care later in life should be paid for. Dan Whitworth has been to Shipley to meet Graham, who’s concerned about the cost of his own care – he wants to know what politicians plan to do about it.Energy companies are continuing to hang on to billions of pounds of their customers' money, which has built up as credit on their accounts. The energy regulator Ofgem says that during 2023, the average amount of credit in energy accounts for people who pay for their gas and electricity by fixed direct debit was £3.7 billion pounds. What's behind that?More than half a million people were left without their Child Benefit payment this week, after a technical issue at HMRC. What was done to help them?And this week, new banknotes featuring a portrait of King Charles III came into circulation – how can you get hold of one?Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Jo Krasner and Catherine Lund Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast at 12pm Saturday 8th June, 2024)
06/07/2424m 48s

Pensions and 'drip pricing'

We hear from a pensioner on benefits who tells us she was shocked to find herself having to pay tax on her pension for the first time. With expert help, we explain the so-called ‘triple-lock’ mechanism and why the point at which you can be taxed on your pension has become a big talking point in the election campaign. Also in the programme, sneaky hidden extras on your online shopping have been banned under new laws passed this month. So called ‘drip pricing’ is when consumers are shown an initial price for an item or service, only to find additional fees are added on later at the checkout. We look what the rules are and how they'll work.Every time you use Mastercard or Visa debit or credit card to pay for something – the business you’re buying from has to pay fees. Some of these fees are optional, but many of them are mandatory. But now an interim report by the watchdog - the Payments Systems Regulator – found that these fees charged to shops and other businesses by Visa and Mastercard have been rising much faster than inflation, 30 % faster, but that there is no evidence that the service provided has improvedAnd we look at the scale of fake stamps in the UK. Royal Mail initially responded by charging people a penalty if they received items that were sent with a fake stamp. Although those fines are now ‘paused’, we reveal just how much they amounted to.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Sarah Rogers and Neil Morrow. Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Neil Morrow Editor: Craig Henderson(This programme was first broadcast Saturday June 1, 2024)
29/06/2425m 2s

General Election and Fraud report

What are the financial issues that you will be considering when you decide how to cast your vote in the General Election in July? Research shows that the economy and inflation are two big issues on our minds - we'll hear from some potential voters on what they'd like to see.New figures from UK Finance, which represents banks and other finance firms, revealed that in 2023 a record number of people lost more than £450 million to thieves who tricked them, manipulated them and then drained their bank account. The slightly better news is that more of them got their money back. We'll delve into the details.And almost three quarters of a million tax credit renewal letters are hitting people's doormats over the next few weeks - and thousands of people will need to act or face losing their payments. What should you do if that’s you? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth, Sandra Hardial and Neil Morrow Studio Producer: Craig Henderson Editor: Jess Quayle(This programme was first broadcast Saturday 25th May 2024)
22/06/2426m 11s

Carers Allowance and HMRC helpline

Money Box can reveal that the government is recouping more than £250m pounds from over 100,000 carers who it says broke the earnings rule and should have lost their carer's allowance. The numbers came from a Parliamentary Question this week asked by the chair of the work and pensions select committee, Twice as many women as men are being chased for these overpayments.We hear from a carer who has around £5000 worth of debt as well as finding out more about rights for carers affected.The Department for Work and Pensions told us, “The total amount of Carer’s Allowance overpayments includes historical debts which the department is seeking to recover. In comparison, Carer’s Allowance expenditure is forecast to be £4.2 billion this year alone.” “Carers across the UK are unsung heroes who make a huge difference to someone else’s life, and we have increased Carer's Allowance by almost £1,500 since 2010.” Also on the programme, a report by spending watchdog the National Audit Office has revealed callers to HMRC helplines were on hold for a total of 789 years in 2022/23. Are we saving enough for our retirement? Pensions and investment mutual Royal London gives Money Box exclusive figures.And how do you spend a £50 note? We get to the bottom of what shops are allowed to accept.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Sandra Hardial Researcher: Jo Krasner Editor: Sarah Rogers
15/06/2425m 12s

Money Box Live: How to Increase Your Pay

Do you get as much as you give when it comes to your job? We've had some important jobs numbers this week - with official data showing there are more vacancies than there were before covid but, the number is falling, while unemployment is rising. But alongside that, wages are going up too - by around 6%.In this episode, we ask if you’re getting enough value out of your employer. We hear from listeners on how they asked their bosses for a pay rise, how they dealt with back pay and how they're making use of employee perks.Felicity Hannah is joined by Amanda Arrowsmith, People and Transformation Director for the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development, and James Reed, Chairman and CEO at Reed Recruitment. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Sarah Rogers
12/06/2428m 30s

Pensions Dashboard and Leasehold

The Pension Dashboard is intended to provide an online service to millions of people who have paid into a pension at work by showing all their pots and their value in one place. But the National Audit Office this week revealed a 'digital skills' shortage is behind delays, providers now have until October 2026 to connect to it. The costs of the dashboard are also up by almost a quarter to £279 million. Some people hoping to sell their leasehold homes are being charged large amounts by their freeholder to fill out a simple form which helps the sale to go through smoothly. We hear from 'Harry' who was just days away from exchanging contracts on his two bed flat in London when his sale collapsed because his freeholder wouldn't sign an LPE1 form unless Harry paid more than £20,000. The forms contain information such as ground rent and service charges and rules on pets. Also in the programme we answer listener questions about how to protect your money when banks merge, and applications open on the 12th of May for the next round of government funded childcare. Working parents in England with children aged nine months to under two years can apply for 15 hours of subsidised childcare starting from September. Parents have been encouraged by the Department for Education to act as soon as possible to secure their place. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Jo Krasner Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Sarah RogersThis episode was first broadcast on Saturday the 11th of May.
08/06/2425m 24s

Money Box Live: The Cost of Splitting Up

This week marks two years since the historic reform in family law, known as the 'no fault divorce', was introduced. It was aimed at reducing conflict during separations and meant that couples could divorce without the need to apportion blame for the breakdown of their marriage. This change led to a surge in new applications at the time. Divorce itself hits the bank balance with annual incomes falling by an average of £9,700 in the year after separation, according to Legal & General. From living together to sharing bills, sharing debts and sharing accounts, the financial implications can be significant. In this Money Box episode we're looking at how to separate your finances after a split, and if you are breaking up, at what point should you make up a financial plan?Felicity Hannah is joined by Gary Rycroft, Senior Partner at Joseph A Jones, and Sarah Coles, Head of Personal Finance at Hargreaves Lansdown. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Sarah Rogers(This episode was first broadcast on the 8th May 2024).
05/06/2428m 20s

Digital Exclusion and National Insurance credits

Digitally excluded. An elderly couple have their accounts frozen because their documents were out of date - despite having being customers for their bank for nearly two decades. We hear from Tom and Marian Doughty who say they were left with weeks of sleepless nights.Can you boost your state pension by filling old gaps in your national insurance record? A new online calculator from the Department for Work and Pensions and HMRC aims to answer that. The Treasury says the new service will bring “peace of mind” to people planning for their retirement and could help “thousands” of pensioners. Royal Mail has suspended the £5 penalty it charged people for letters sent with a new barcoded stamp which its machines had identified as fake. And what happens to your home when you break up with someone? Should you make a financial plan when the relationship is going well, in case it doesn't in the future? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth and Jo Krasner Researcher: Sandra Hardial Studio producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Neil Morrow(This episode was first broadcast on the 4th of May, 2024).
01/06/2424m 54s

Money Box Live: The Cost of Caring

Unpaid carers spend at least 35 hours a week looking after someone close to them. That someone may have an illness, a disability, a mental health problem or even an addiction, but what matters is that they cannot cope without that care.There are almost 6 million unpaid carers in the UK with 40% living in poverty according to charity Carers UK. This week we have a special audio diary from one carer trying to hold down a job around those care commitments, we will also hear from those who have given up work to care full time.The Department for Work and Pensions told us; 'We recognise the importance of carers, who play a vital role in our communities. We have increased Carer’s Allowance by almost £1,500 since 2010, with those on low incomes potentially eligible for an extra £2,400 a year.'So if you're unsure about the rules around carers allowance, assessments and where you can get help and support, Felicity Hannah is joined by Emily Holzhausen, Director of Policy and Public Affairs at Carers UK and Caroline Abrahams, Head of Charity at Age UK,Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Sara WadesonThis episode was first broadcast on the 1st May 2024.
29/05/2428m 12s

Carers Allowance and Minimum Payments on Credit Cards

A senior MP has told Money Box that the government must take urgent action to stop carers working up thousands of pounds of debt after unwittingly receiving overpayments of Carer's Allowance. Unpaid carers, who look after a loved one full time, are entitled to nearly £82 per week in Carer's Allowance. On top of that they can earn up to £151 take home pay. But stray above that earnings limit, even by just a few pence, and they lose the full allowance. The Department for Work and Pensions is alerted on a month by month basis when this happens, but in some cases carers were not told of their mistake for years. Labour MP Stephen Timms, Chair of the Work and Pensions Select Committee says it should never have taken so long for carers to be notified. The UK's biggest credit card provider, Barclaycard, is cutting minimum payments on its card to 1% from July. It is not the only credit card provider to allow 1% minimum payments, and Barclaycard says it's made the changes to increase flexibility for customers. We look at what it means in practice for customers, in terms of how much more you'll ultimately pay in interest and how long it'll take to pay off the debt. And we return to the subject of ISAs - Individual Savings Accounts. New changes this month should mean that customers can open multiple ISAs of the same type in the same tax year, and make partial transfers of funds between them. Money Box has learnt that many of the biggest ISA providers in the UK are not yet offering customers these new freedoms, why?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Studio Producer: Craig Henderson Editor: Beatrice Pickup(first broadcast on Saturday 27th April 2024)
25/05/2424m 58s

Money Box Live: What's going on with leasehold?

Around 10 million people across the UK live in a leasehold property. That means they viewed the house or flat, bought it, may be paying off a mortgage to eventually own it outright. However, they are actually tenants of whoever owns the freehold. What they have bought is the right to live in the property for a given amount of time. Sometimes that's for the best part of a thousand years - sometimes it's for much less.In this episode we hear from leaseholders on what some of the issues are, including ground rent and service charges and what can be done about them. We'll also hear from a charity which relies on leasehold revenues.It's a system that even ministers have described as feudal - behind the scenes, work continues on the Leasehold and Freehold Reform Bill, which is being examined by members of the House of Lords this week. The Department for Levelling up, Housing and Communities say; “It is not fair that many leaseholders face unregulated ground rents for no guaranteed service in return."The Residential Freehold Association told us; “The Government’s own report into leaseholder perspectives highlighted that the vast majority of leaseholders are content with the leasehold system." To answer your comments and questions, Felicity Hannah is joined by Matt Lewis, a Consultant Solicitor at Commonhold and Leasehold Experts Limited and Martin Boyd, chair of the government funded Leasehold Advisory Service and also chair of the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership, which supports and campaigns on behalf of leaseholders. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers/Amber Mehmood Editor: Beatrice PickupThis episode was first broadcast on the 24th of April 2024
22/05/2428m 45s

New Fraud Refund Rules and ISA Changes

New regulations aim to ensure that victims of fraud are treated fairly, no matter who they trust with their money. The financial watchdog, the Payment Systems Regulator, says many firms are not doing enough to refund victims of authorised push payment fraud. Currently the majority of high street banks are signed up to a voluntary charter that makes banks liable for customer losses. However many people hold accounts with firms known as Electronic Money Institutions, or EMIs. Such firms are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority but do not have a banking licence. The new rules from the Payment Systems Regulator will be mandatory for both banks and EMIs. When they come into force in October they should cover nearly all payments made by individuals in the UK except international ones and those involving cryptocurrency. We hear from Money Box listener Carol, who had to spend a year fighting to get the money stolen from her refunded. New changes to the way ISAs, Individual Savings Accounts, simpler come in this month. Officially they should mean that savers now have the option to open more than one cash or stocks & shares ISA in the same year. We look at whether providers will be allowing customers to take advantage. And how do you pay for your car insurance? A new report from the consumer organisation Which? found that it can cost much more if you opt for monthly payments. A survey of 39 car insurance providers found an average APR of over 23% was charged for monthly payments, and the highest APR found was over 39%. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Beatrice Pickup(first broadcast Saturday 20th April 2024)
18/05/2425m 15s

Money Box Live: Can you afford your car?

This week car insurance bosses, appeared in front of MP's as part of an investigation into the cost of premiums.They're continuing to rise and according to price comparison site Compare the Market are up 46% over the last year, making the typical payment for comprehensive insurance £892 a year. Consumer group Which? say some insurers are charging 'eye-watering' APR rates on those spreading the cost over the course of 12 months.So, we put your questions and comments to the Association of British Insurers who tell us it's been a difficult year for the industry.But it's not just insurance, we're also looking at the cost of fuel, maintenance and of course alternatives to running a car altogether.To answer your questions and comments Felicity Hannah is joined by Rachel Burgess the editor of magazine Auto car and Stuart Masson from online publication, The Car Expert. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess QuayleThis episode was first broadcast on Wed 17th April 2024
15/05/2428m 7s

Carer's Allowance and Car Insurance Costs

Tens of thousands of people who juggle caring for a loved one and having a job may be forced to cut the hours they work, according to the charity Carers UK. In April the National Living Wage was increased to £11.44, but the earnings limit for the Carer's Allowance did not go up by the same amount. The result is that some carers will be limited to working just over 13 hours a week, anything above that and they'll lose the entire benefit. Some carers have also faced demands to repay thousands of pounds that they've mistakenly received in over-payments over multiple years. You've been contacting Money Box about rising car insurance costs. The Association of British Insurers says increases are largely down to above inflation increases to the cost of repairs, thefts and replacement cars. We look at how much premiums have risen by and what, if anything, you can do about it. And employers - take note - new changes to employment law in England, Scotland and Wales this month will impact policies on flexible working, redundancy and paternity pay and leave amongst others. We'll speak to an employment lawyer about what these changes will mean in practice for both employees and employers. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Dan Whitworth(first broadcast Saturday 13th April 2024)
11/05/2425m 1s

Money Box Live: Can you Beat your Bills?

Data from the Financial Conduct Authority suggests fewer of us are struggling to pay our bills compared to last year, but the numbers are still high.The watchdog says more than 7 million people were finding it tough to pay bills and make repayments on borrowing at the start of the year, down from almost 11 million last year. However, despite the drop that's still far higher than before the cost of living pressures really started to bite.Price rises are slowing and energy bills have come down - so this could be a great moment to finally beat your bills back down and build a brilliant budget.In this episode we look at how to save money on your current repayments, budgeting, recovering from debt and hear from a super saver. Felicity Hannah is joined by consumer finance expert Martyn James and Jay Lowe, Head of Money Advice at Citizens Advice Staffordshire North and Stoke On Trent to answer your comments and questions.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Reporter: Neil Morrow Editor: Jess QuayleThis episode was first broadcast on the 10th April 2023.
08/05/2428m 24s

National Insurance Cut and Council Tax Debt

National Insurance - a tax millions of working age people pay on their wages - is being cut this weekend, for the second time this year. The main rate of National Insurance has now fallen by a third - from 12% last year to just 8%. The Treasury says combined with above-inflation increases to personal tax thresholds since 2010, this will save the average earner over £1,500 compared to what they would otherwise have paid. What difference will it make to your pay?The debt charity StepChange has told Money Box a third of people they helped last year were behind on their Council Tax payments with an average debt of more than £1,700. What can you do if you're struggling to pay?Plus, changes to Child Benefit mean it will become available to thousands more families from this weekend - how will that work?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Sarah Rogers and Eimear Devlin Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Producer: Craig Henderson Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 6th April 2024)
04/05/2424m 54s

Money Box Live: Resenting Renting?

April is a big month for our finances, some bills go up and one or two even come down. A big relief for many households will be the that energy prices are dropping, but one bill that is still going up is rent.UK rent prices rose 9% in the 12 months to February.Research shared exclusively with Money Box Live has revealed you're more likely to be in your overdraft if you're a renter compared to people with mortgages. You're also less likely to have savings to fall back on in an emergency.Meanwhile government plans to scrap no fault evictions for tenants in England have been delayed. Neither tenants nor landlords are happy with the current position.Felicity Hannah is joined by Sarah Pennells, Consumer Finance specialist at Royal London, Dan Wilson Craw, Deputy Director at Generation Rent UK, and Richard Donnell, director of research at the property platform Zoopla.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Neil Morrow and Sarah Rogers Reporter: Eimear Devlin Editor: Jess Quayle(This episode was first broadcast on the 3rd April 2024)
01/05/2435m 20s

April Changes: National Living Wage, ISAs and Energy

April brings many changes for our money, and this programme has all you need to know.From Monday 1st, there will be higher pay for people on the various minimum wages. For the first time 21 and 22 year olds join people aged 23 and over in getting what's called the National Living Wage. It's going up to £11.44 an hour, a near 10% rise. 18 to 20 year olds get a bigger boost with minimum wage up nearly 15% to £8.60 an hour, while 16 and 17 year olds and those on apprenticeships get the largest increase of more than 21%, taking their minimum hourly pay to £6.40. On the same day, the Energy Price Cap set by the regulator Ofgem will fall reducing the typical annual bill in England, Scotland, and Wales by 12% to £1,690 per year. That is the lowest it has been for two years. So will it be worth switching suppliers for a new fixed deal?It's 25 years since the introduction of tax-free ISAs. You have just a few days to make use of this year's allowance and there are some big changes next tax year. we’ve got all you need to know.Plus, what’s changing next week for childcare, why some people need to do a meter reading, and how to save money on stamps.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 30th March 2024)
27/04/2424m 59s

Money Box Live: How Do Wills Work?

More than half of adults don't have a Will according to new research from insurance company Canada Life. The main reason people say they haven't sorted one is that they don't think they have enough money to leave behind. So what types of Will are there and what do they mean? We'll be hearing from one man who says he was disinherited over changes to a Mirror Will. We also speak to a mother concerned about digital assets following the death of her son.Plus, what happens if you don't have a Will at all, where will your estate go?Felicity Hannah is joined by Nina Sperring, Partner at Price, Slater, Gawne solicitors and is a member of STEP, the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners which specialises in estates and Wills and Jade Gani, Chief Executive of Circe Law and a Director of The Association of Lifetime Lawyers.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Reporter: Neil Morrow Editor: Jess Quayle(This episode was first broadcast at 3pm Wednesday March 27th 2024)
24/04/2428m 34s

Pension Freedoms and Flee Funds

This week marks 10 years since a landmark shift in the way we could all use our pensions. Back in the Spring of 2014 the then Chancellor George Osborne announced plans for new freedoms, allowing people over the age of 55 to take 25 per cent of their pension tax-free and use the rest as they wished. What impact did that have? Hundreds of survivors of economic and physical domestic abuse have been helped by a new scheme set up by one of the UK's biggest banks. TSB's "Flee Fund" was launched just over a year ago to offer financial help to people trying to escape abusive partners. Dan Whitworth reports from Preston.There was a rare U-turn from HMRC this week. On Tuesday it announced it was planning to close its self-assessment phone helpline for six months of every year. The tax authority said it wanted people to use a chatbot and access its online services instead. Then, just over 24 hours later, HMRC changed its mind and halted those plans. It says its "listened to the feedback and is halting the helpline changes as it recognises more needs to be done to ensure all taxpayers’ needs are met, whilst also encouraging them to transition to online services.” What does that mean?Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Jo Krasner Researchers: Luke Smithurst, Eimear Devlin and Sandra Hardial.(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 23rd March 2024)
20/04/2425m 12s

Money Box Live: Mortgages and Debt

Mortgage customers face rising rates, vanishing deals and latest figures have shown more people are struggling to keep up with their repayments. Mortgage arrears, hit a seven-year high in the final quarter of 2023. So what can you do if that's you? Felicity Hannah is joined by Charlotte Harrison of Skipton Building Society, Sally Mitchell from the Mortgage Mum, and Richard Lane from the debt charity Step Change - to discuss what's going on in the mortgage market and what you need to know.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Neil Morrow Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 20th March, 2024)
17/04/2428m 33s

Crypto-Related Fraud and Mortgage Arrears

The number of people falling victim to fraud involving cryptocurrency has more than doubled between 2020 and 2023 according to Action Fraud. The value of such fraud has also increased. Our reporter Dan Whitworth has met one such victim, an 86 year old in South Wales who lost over £70,000. Following a Money Box investigation she's now had her lost life savings refunded. We've been reporting on difficulties people are having moving from working tax credits to Universal Credit. We hear from a listener who runs an annual skinny dipping event to raise money for charity, she's been told by her work coach that all her fundraising will be considered personal income for the purposes of Universal Credit. In a week that some lenders increase interest rates, figures from the Bank of England show an increase in arrears on mortgage accounts. We hear how people are coping with their mortgage costs and what you can do if you're struggling to pay them. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Beatrice Pickup(First broadcast Saturday 16th March 2024)
13/04/2424m 48s

Money Box Live: childcare

New arrangements for childcare payments come into force in April in England. How will the new arrangements affect parents? Are they going to be better or worse off?The Chancellor Jeremy Hunt announced extended support for parents of pre-school children in 2023. But many parents say the payments are still too low or that there aren’t enough places available. Felicity Hannah is joined by Ellen Broome of the children's charity Coram, and Jonathan Broadbery, Director of Policy at the National Day Nurseries Association.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producers: Will Harris and Neil Morrow Editor: Beatrice Pickup
10/04/2427m 50s

Frozen Tax Thresholds and Bailiffs

The Chancellor has delivered his Spring Budget for 2024 announcing a 2p National Insurance cut for millions of working people under the age of 66. Jeremy Hunt says this will save the average worker £450 a year.But, analysis by the Office for Budget Responsibility says maintaining a freeze on the personal tax allowance - the amount earned before tax is paid - will mean 3.7 million extra people paying income tax by 2028, when the freeze comes to an end. So will you be better or worse off? We'll be looking at the numbers.What would you do if you got a letter through your door asking for almost £2000 owed by a complete stranger? That's what happened to one of our listeners who spent weeks trying to sort it out with a debt recovery company. We hear from a senior MP calling for tougher regulation.And an investigation into car finance agreements taken out before February 2021 could eventually lead to compensation for millions of motorists. Discretionary commission agreements meant some lenders allowed car dealers to adjust interest rates on finance deals. The Finance and Leasing Association told us: "In practice, having discretion to move the interest rate often meant that dealers lowered it to be more competitive."Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Sarah Rogers (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 9th March 2024)
06/04/2424m 56s

Money Box Live: Budget Special

As Chancellor Jeremy Hunt presents his Spring Budget, Money Box Live sifts through the details - and the impact on all our finances.Expectations included a 2p cut in National Insurance contributions but will that look like on your payslip? Money Box reporter Dan Whitworth answers those key questions.Felicity Hannah is joined by Sarah Coles, Head of Personal Finance at Hargreaves Lansdown; Simon Gammon, Managing Partner at the mortgage broker Knight Frank Finance, and Dawn Register, Tax Partner at the accountancy firm BDO.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producers: Craig Henderson, and Kath Paddison Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Eimear Devlin Editor: Sarah Rogers(This episode was first aired on Wednesday the 6th of March at 3pm on Radio 4)
03/04/2428m 37s

The Future of Money and Universal Credit

Money Box gets a special look at a new exhibition at the Bank of England Museum about the future of money. Paul Lewis picks up a gold bar, sees the new King Charles money, and finds out more about the consultation for a new digital pound. The pensioners getting in touch to ask why they’re soon to start paying tax on their pensions. We'll discuss that with the Low Incomes Tax Reform Group.And, there are calls this week for the government to slow down the speed at which its moving existing benefits claimants onto Universal Credit. The Child Poverty Action Group says it is seeing cases of people struggling to claim, or missing the deadline as they are unsure what’s required of them. The Department for Work and Pensions told us the vast majority of Tax Credit claimants have successfully moved to Universal Credit, and that there is a range of support available to help people move. Presenter:: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 2nd March 2024)
30/03/2425m 5s

Hannah and Seagull: Learning Money

How do schools teach children and teenagers about money?Learning about money is part of the curriculum but more than three-quarters of teachers say young people are leaving school without the money skills they need for adulthood. We’re going back to school to hear from pupils at Trinity Academy Cathedral School in Wakefield who are learning about money in special classes. We’ll listen in to find out how the experts teach children about credit cards, pensions, budgeting and more.The government says its reformed the curriculum and invested substantially over £100 million in its Maths Hubs programme.Felicity Hannah presents alongside the broadcaster, maths teacher and University Challenge alumni Bobby Seagull. They’ll be finding out how it all works from the school’s headteacher Anna Gillinder and Stephanie Fitzgerald, Head of Young People Programmes at The Money Charity.Presenters: Felicity Hannah and Bobby Seagull Producers: Kath Paddison and Sarah Rogers Reporters: Tamzin Kraftman Researcher: Eimear Devlin Editor: Jess Quayle(This episode was first broadcast at 3pm on Wednesday 28th February 2024)
27/03/2429m 5s

Energy Debt and Annuities

As many as two million of the poorest households have seen the amount they owe their energy suppliers double over the past year. This new analysis of debt figures has been given to Money Box by the consultancy firm Baringa. It says people who've fallen behind on their payments are now £1,100 in the red, an amount that has doubled in a year. Energy UK, which represents suppliers, say they're doing all they can - and we'll hear more about Ofgem's plans to help tackle debt in the industry.Twenty financial advice firms have been told that they must provide the regulator with details of the services they provide customers when they charge them for what is called “ongoing advice”. The Financial Conduct Authority has written to the companies as part of its enforcement of the new Consumer Duty. What will this mean for consumers?And, an annuity is a contract with an insurance provider which converts your savings or pension pot into a guaranteed income for your retirement. As annuity sales rise, we'll discuss what they are and how they work.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Sarah Rogers Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 24th Feb 2024)
23/03/2424m 55s

Money Box Live: Co-parenting Finances

There are approximately four million children in Great Britain whose parents are separated.When couples break up they cut their finances apart, but for parents there's that ongoing relationship that comes with supporting those children - emotionally but also financially. So how do you manage that?Sometimes, of course, it breaks down and a parent has to ask the state to step in and make their ex pay support. We'll discuss some changes coming to how that's enforced.And we hear from parents who are sharing care and finding ways to make the finances and the new circumstances work. Joining Felicity Hannah is Leah Caldwell who is the Director of Mediation First and treasurer on the board of the Family Mediators Association and also Gemma Hope who is a solicitor at Family Law Partners.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producers: Kath Paddison and Izzy Greenfield Editor: Jess Quayle(This episode was first broadcast at 3pm on Wednesday 21st February 2024)
20/03/2427m 34s

Probate Delays and Pension Charges

When someone dies and leaves a property in their own name, or has significant savings or investments, the executors must apply for probate - a legal document which gives them the right to deal with the dead person's estate and distribute their assets. The Ministry of Justice says probate should be granted within 16 weeks, but some bereaved families have been facing delays of nearly a year. Why is that?A new report shared exclusively with Money Box suggests many of us know very little about the charges being taken out of our pensions. People's Partnership carried out a survey which found that out of a thousand people who'd transferred their pension in the past two years without getting advice beforehand - 72% didn’t know exactly what the fees for their old pensions were, or what they were being charged for their new one. What should you look out for?And for the first time the percentage people in England who're married or in a civil partnership has fallen below 50 percent. If you live with someone and share your money - what do you need to know?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Jo Krasner Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 17th February 2024)
16/03/2424m 26s

Money Box Live: When Can You Retire?

When do you think you'll be able to retire?Perhaps you can't wait to pick up your last pay check or maybe you love your job so much you want to work for the rest of your life.For those who do hope to retire, the latest research suggests we'll all need an an extra £8,000 a year for a so-called moderate retirement according to the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association. Meanwhile, the International Longevity Centre reckons we'll need to raise the state pension age to 71 by 2050.On this Money Box Live we're getting to the bottom of how realistic that is and what it all means.We'll hear from someone working well into their 70s as well as a super saver hoping to retire in her 40s! Felicity Hannah is joined by Helen Morrisey, Head of Retirement at financial services company Hargreaves Lansdown and Dr Emily Andrews, Deputy Director for Work at the Centre for Ageing Better charity to answer your questions and comments.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Eimear Devlin Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(This episode was first broadcast at 3pm on Radio 4 on the 14th of February 2023).
13/03/2428m 36s

Citizens Advice Closure and Investment Platforms

Dozens of Citizens Advice centres are at risk of closing because local councils which support them are running out of money. That warning came this week by the senior Labour MP Clive Betts in an exclusive interview with Money Box. He is also the Chair of Parliament's select committee on Levelling Up, Housing and Communities. Dan Whitworth visits one of those citizens advice services at risk in Mansfield. The government says up to £64 billion has been made available to local authorities in England, an increase of 7.5% on the previous year which will allow local authorities to support communities and reform services to help them prepare for the future.The cost of a comfortable retirement in Britain has jumped by nearly £6,000 to just over £43,000 a year for a single person and £59,000 for a couple. Every year the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association publishes figures worked out by Loughborough University for the amount of money you'd need to afford certain lifestyles in retirement. How is it calculated and how can you prepare for your retirement?And, investment platforms and providers of personal pensions, have just a few weeks left to make sure the way they treat customers' cash balances fits in with new rules called their Consumer Duty. In December the Financial Conduct Authority wrote to 42 firms after concerns that some of them were keeping some or all of the interest they earn on customers’ cash balances. And with rates of 4% or more that's meant big returns. If you invest, what might that mean for you?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Sandra Hardial Researcher: Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 10th February 2024)
09/03/2425m 25s

Money Box Live: Are Savers Getting a Good Deal?

Are savers getting a good return on their cash?Although times are tight, we are actually saving slightly more according to the Bank of England. In December, we collectively saved £6bn.But, more than a trillion pounds is sitting in accounts earning around 2% interest - even though the base rate is still at 5.25% - according to analysis by Lightyear of the Bank of England's data.And £250bn is in accounts that are paying no interest at all.So are banks doing enough? UK finance which speaks on their behalf, says many of its members have been contacting their customers to let them know about different savings accounts that are available.As always we've got the experts to answer your savings questions - including where to start as well as some of the many emails you've sent us about when and how to pay tax on your money.Joining Felicity Hannah is Anna Bowes founder of savingschampion.co.uk, banking analyst Frances Coppola and Chris Gray, independent financial advisor with Forester Boyd Wealth management.(This episode was first broadcast on Wednesday the 7th of February 2024).
06/03/2428m 30s

Bereavement Support Deadline and Warm Home Discount

Around twelve thousand unmarried parents with dependent children whose partner has died have just a few days to claim their share of an estimated £175 million in bereavement benefits. The figures came from Freedom of Information Requests to the Department for Work and Pensions. People must claim that money before Thursday 8th February. If you think you, or someone you know, may be eligible check by searching for "bereavement support payment" on the gov.uk website.New figures show £253 billion is sitting in bank accounts which pay no interest at all. Should banks be telling us to move it? The government is sending out the final cost of living payment for low income households this month. It's £299 straight into bank accounts. We've got all the details. And some people who got £150 off their electricity bill last year are discovering they are not entitled this year, because their home isn't hard enough to heat. We'll discuss changes to the Warm Home Discount Scheme.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth, Tamzin Kraftman, Eimear Devlin Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 3rd February 2024)
02/03/2425m 1s

Money Box Live: How to Start a Business

Are you thinking of turning your 'side hustle' into a full time job?Perhaps you want to take the plunge but don't know your sole trader from your limited company.This Money Box Live is a toolkit for anyone planning to start a new business - or those who've started one but might need a helping hand.And we have Dragons' Den star Deborah Meaden on the show to talk about what makes a good idea, the positives of running your own business as well as the pitfalls to look out for.Following the pandemic there was a huge drop in the number of self-employed people but last year more than 100,000 people decided to go it alone and work for themselves compare to the year before - and it's the over 50's taking the lead according to the freelancer organisation IPSE.It's also deadline day to fill out your self assessment tax return - so we'll be answering all your tax questions too.Felicity Hannah is joined by Vicks Rodwell from the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed and Richard Jones from the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm Wednesday January 31st 2024)
28/02/2428m 24s

Fraud Victims Treasury Meeting and Funeral Scams

Campaigners for victims of pension and investment fraud met with the Treasury this week. We'll hear from the Conservative MP who is the co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Investment Fraud, Caroline Nokes, who was at that meeting.What's the latest for working parents of two year olds planning to take advantage of the free 15 hours of childcare in term time which begins in April?Thieves are stealing the identities of bereaved families to try and steal money from friends and relatives of the person who has died. The National Association of Funeral Directors says it has seen a spike of such frauds in the past few weeks in Northern Ireland. What do you need to look out for?And, some new rules started this month for platforms which allow people to sell goods online. We'll clear up some confusion after listeners contacted the programme.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Sarah Rogers Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 27th Jan, 2024)
24/02/2425m 0s

Money Box Live: What's going on with Energy Bills?

How are you dealing with energy costs this winter?Money Box Live has heard some people are skipping meals whilst others in full time employment are turning to warm banks and food hubs to cut costs.The energy price cap, which is now what most of us pay, jumped 5% at the start of the year to £1928 for typical use - but what exactly does that mean and are you a typical user?Meanwhile, the charity Citizens Advice has estimated two million people on prepayment meters could have their gas and electricity cut off because they cannot afford to top up. The Department for Energy Security and Net Zero says its spending an average of £3,700 per household to support families with the cost-of-living. And there is some relief on the way as prices are predicted to fall in the spring.Answering all your questions and comments with Felicity Hannah is Peter Smith, Director of Policy at the charity National Energy Action and Deputy Policy Director Daniel Portis from Energy UK which speaks for the industry.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(This episode was first broadcast oat 3pm Wednesday the 24th of January 2024)
21/02/2428m 27s

Pension Scams & HMRC and Fuel Vouchers

Some people who have been defrauded out of some or all of their pension fund are now being chased by HM Revenue & Customs for tax on money they no longer have. They were persuaded by advisers to cash in their pension and invest it in schemes that promised big returns. In fact they were often fake and some or all of their money disappeared. But HMRC is demanding tax on this missing money because they cashed in their pension too early. A campaign group based in Parliament is calling for a change in the law to protect them from what it calls the largest tax scandal in British history. In response, HMRC told Money Box “We do not tax pension savings lost to fraud. What we do tax are amounts that people release, or attempt to release, from their pensions where not authorised in law. It is our responsibility to collect the tax people legally owe and maintain a fair tax system for all. We sympathise with people who may have lost money by entering such arrangements and handle these situations on a case by case basis. We take the wellbeing of all taxpayers seriously and do everything we can for those who engage with us to get their tax affairs in order, including by offering affordable payment plans.”As temperatures hit a new low this week one charity is nearly doubling the size of the vouchers it gives to those who can't keep warm. We'll speak to the Fuel Bank Foundation which helps people on prepayment meters manage their bills.A record number of people will need to re-mortgage this year - are the choices getting any better?And all you need to know about filing your self assessment form.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Tamzin Kraftman Researcher: Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 20th January 2024)
17/02/2425m 11s

Money Box Live: Flooding and Insurance

Flooding damages property, lives and can be incredibly financially damaging as well.There was £352 million pounds in insurance claims for damaged homes following storms Babet, Ciaran and Debi at the end of last year according to the Association of British Insurers. We don't yet know the financial fall out of January's storm Henk - the eighth named storm of the season - but as the climate changes, insurers expect even more of this kind of weather.So what is flooding costing homeowners and businesses and what is the best advice if you've been affected?Felicity Hannah visits a flat owner in Worcestershire and we hear from the man who spent £80,000 taking matters into his own hands.This week we're joined by Heather Shepherd from the charity the National Flood Forum as well as Laura Hughes, Manager of General Insurance at the Association of British Insurers, which represents the industry.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Sara Wadeson(This episode was first broadcast on Wednesday the 17th of January on Radio 4 at 3pm)
14/02/2428m 26s

Fake Job Offers and Pension Pots

New figures given to Money Box show there has been a big increase in the amount of money being stolen through fake text messages offering people jobs. These recruitment scams are usually sent via text or WhatsApp and offer high pay, easy hours and the chance to work from home. Last year 126 people contacted Action Fraud saying they'd been victims of this type of scam with £977,000 stolen from them. That is 50 times as much as was reported the year before. What do you need to look out for?Storm Henk was the 8th storm of this season and more could well be on the way. As the flooding costs for insurers rise, home insurance premiums move up with them. According to the Consumer Intelligence Home Insurance Price Index they had already risen 36% by last October. We'll explain all you need to know about flood insurance.When you pay into a pension you expect it to be there for you when you retire. We investigate one listener's case who discovered her pension company had taken all her money in charges.And Paul Lewis asks listeners how they buy their music? Email moneybox@bbc.co.ukPresenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Sandra Hardial Researcher: Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 13th January, 2024)
10/02/2424m 21s

Money Box Live: The Childcare Challenge

The price of nursery can be more than a mortgage. In fact, to send a two-year-old to nursery for 50 hours a week, allowing you to work full time, can set you back more than £14,000 a year according to Coram the children's charity.But, from April this year, working parents in England can claim 15 government funded hours for two year olds, instead of waiting for them to turn three to get help. Applications for that support are now open - but there are concerns that not all parents will be be able to get their applications processed in time to use them. We've been investigating that, and what else is available to cut childcare costs for mums and dads.We'll also hear from a nursery owner on the financial pressures of caring for children and talk about the costs of having school age kids.Felicity Hannah is joined by Paul Rhodes from the Money and Pensions Service and Meghan Meek-O'Connor, senior policy adviser on child poverty at Save the Children UK.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(This episode was first broadcast on the 10th of January at 3pm on Radio 4).
07/02/2428m 15s

National Insurance Cut and Fraud Refunds

National Insurance will be cut for millions workers from today. It'll be cut from 12% to 10% - the lowest main rate for more than twenty years. The government says this cut will save an employee on average earnings around £450 a year. However, some experts including the Office for Budget Responsibility say that gain is far less than the cost of freezing personal tax allowances from 2021 while wages rose. What will it mean for you?A new set of regulations designed to help victims of fraud should see up to 90% of them get the money stolen from them refunded by their banks. That's according to Chris Hemsley, who runs the Payment Systems Regulator. He says he hopes the change will encourage the industry to do even more to stop fraud from happening in the first place. HM Revenue and Customs says it will only take what it calls 'priority calls' on its Self Assessment helpline ahead of the 31st January tax deadline - sending everyone else to its online services. How will that work in practice?And what parents of small children need to do to apply for the new 15 hours of free childcare.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth, Sandra Hardial and Eimear Devlin Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm Saturday 6th January 2024)
03/02/2424m 55s

Money Box Live: Financial Resolutions

It can feel like new year, new you, with so much potential for change and improvement, but then reality can kick in. Around 1 in 3 of us will have made a financial resolution this year, but according to Hargreaves Lansdown, almost 20% of us won't even make it to the end of this week.So how do you make them stick? Felicity Hannah is joined by behavioural & data scientist Professor Pragya Agarwal, Laura Suter, Head of Personal Finance at AJ Bell and consumer rights expert Martyn James. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Andrew Strachan Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(This episode was first broadcast on Radio 4, Wednesday the 3rd of January 2024 at 3pm)
31/01/2428m 32s

Money Box Live: Survival Guide

Are you putting down the mince pies and opening your bank statements? Well, you're in the right place as we're dedicating some time to the kinds of money topics that come up between Christmas and New Year. Perhaps you want to know your consumer rights before hitting the sales, what to do with unwanted gifts or maybe you've spent more than you can afford this festive season? If so, then you've come to the right place.We'll hear why for hundreds of thousands of people, their tax return has become a festive tradition. And we'll also look ahead to Summer 2024 and how to get some holiday bargains.Felicity Hannah is joined by, etiquette coach William Hanson, Emma Munbodh, the money news editor at The Telegraph, Anna Hall the head of money and debt operations at the Money and Pensions Service and Rob Staines an independent travel expert.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Luke Smithurst Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(This is a slightly shorter version of an episode was first broadcast on Wednesday the 27th of December 2023 at 3pm on Radio 4)
24/01/2428m 40s

Scottish Budget, Core Maths and Christmas Winners

Higher earners in Scotland are to pay more income tax from April. That was one of the headlines from the Scottish government in its budget on Tuesday. We'll discuss that change and more with Professor Mairi Spowage, director of the Fraser of Allander Institute at the University of Strathclyde.Tens of thousands of teenagers could benefit from studying the subject of core maths once they turn 16. That's according to the charity Maths in Education and Industry. The course was launched in 2014 and currently has around 12,000 teenagers studying it in around 30 per cent of schools across England. However, the MEI says it's vital to get as many students as possible signed up. We have our top three Christmas crackers – tips to save you money in 2024. We also revisit some of the people we've helped this year.Plus, festive music from the City of Lincoln Band.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 23rd December 2023)
20/01/2424m 40s

Money Box Live: The Rising Cost of Rent

A typical rental property gets 25 enquires from people who want to view it, according to the property listings site Rightmove. That high demand also comes alongside high prices. The estate agents Hamptons says tenants have been hit with the biggest rise in rental costs in at least a decade. And it's not just tenants feeling the pinch. We look at the impact rising interest rates have had on those owning the homes people are renting.With Felicity Hannah today to go through your questions and comments we have Richard Blanco from the National Residential Landlords Association, Jasmine Basran - Head of Policy and Campaigns and CRISIS, and Richard Donnell - Head of Research and Insight at Zoopla.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 20th December, 2023)
17/01/2428m 11s

Inflation, Gift Cards and Energy Deals

The Office for National Statistics has published the first of a new quarterly set of figures designed to reflect how inflation is experienced by households. They are called the Household Costs Indices and include things like mortgage costs, interest and insurance. It showed that overall UK household costs rose by 8.2% in the 12 months to September. How does it compare to other measures and what impact could it have? Are you thinking of buying a gift card as a present for Christmas? There's a warning that people looking to use gift cards this Christmas need to be on the look out for scams and fraud. And from 1st January the cost of heating and lighting your home and cooking your food will rise in England, Scotland, and Wales. The average increase in energy bills will be just over 5% adding £94 a year to the typical bill. As some suppliers begin offering deals to fix your costs we'll ask what should you do?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Eimear Devlin and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 16th December 2023)
13/01/2424m 48s

Money Box Live: Christmas Spending and Scams

This week we're tackling the cost of the festive season and looking at how to avoid scams. The cost of Christmas is up almost a quarter over the last three years according to the The Centre for Economics and Business Research. What can you do to keep costs down?And as figures from UK Finance, the trade body for banks, suggest nearly £100m will be stolen from around 200,000 people through fraud and scams over the Christmas period we'll discuss what you can do to avoid them.With Felicity Hannah today to go through your questions and comments we have Sarah Pennells, consumer finance specialist at Royal London and Professor Sharon Collard, Research Director at the University of Bristol's Personal Finance Research Centre.We'll also be hearing from Paul Askew a chef and the owner of the Art School restaurant in Liverpool and he'll be giving us some tips on how to cut the cost of Christmas Dinner.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Kath Paddison Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 13th December, 2023)
10/01/2428m 1s

Teenage Scam Ads and Mortgage Overpayments

Teenagers are being bombarded on social media with promotions for financial products they might not understand and that are usually too risky or dangerous for them to invest in. The MP Robin Walker, who chairs the Commons Education Select Committee, wants to see financial education for 16-18 year olds strengthened. The Department for Education told us "Financial literacy within citizenship is compulsory for 11-16-year-olds in the national curriculum, so young people are taught about the importance of personal budgeting, savings, money management and calculating interest.”Figures indicate an increasing number of homeowners are making overpayments on their mortgages, to take the sting out of new interest rates. More than £21.3 billion was overpaid in the first ten months of this year - up more than 14% from the same period last year. But how much do you need to overpay, to make a difference?The new project where people can get loans at zero interest to help with the cost of electricity, gas, and heating oil. We visit Ballyhackamore Credit Union in East Belfast to see how it works.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth, Sandra Hardial and Eimear Devlin Researcher: Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 9th Dec 2023)
06/01/2424m 44s

Money Box Live: Banking

This is a transformative time for banking. The last decade has seen an incredibly fast-paced increase in the use of technology and also a rapid decrease in the use of cash. High Street banks, where most of us have our money, have adapted. From branch closures to online accounts, we'll discuss how banking is changing.We look back at the history of banking with Cambridge University Economic Historian Dr Victoria Batemen. We’ll also speak to Dave Fishwick whose life story became a movie after he set up his own bank in his community. And Felicity Hannah is joined by independent banking analyst Frances Coppola and Cat Farrow, Chief Operating Officer at Cash Access UKPresenter: Felicity Hannah Producers: Sarah Rogers and Kath Paddison Reporter: Eimear Devlin Editor: Jess Quayle (This programme was first broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on Wednesday the 6th of December at 3pm)
03/01/2428m 58s

Cyber-Attack Hits Home Sales and Charity Bank Accounts

Property buyers have said their home completions are being left in limbo after a company providing IT services to law firms was hit by a cyber incident. Money Box has found some of the UK's largest lenders have begun extending mortgage offers for those affected. A national debt charity is calling on lenders to improve the way they identify customers who're getting into problem debt. StepChange says its recent research shows almost half of people with credit debt are experiencing difficulty with household bills and 1 in 6 adults are using credit to make ends meet. UK Finance which represents banks and credit card companies says lenders are committed to lending responsibly.Charities are facing weeks or even months unable to access their own money thanks to the unexpected closures of their bank accounts. We've been getting emails about accounts being closed without people being given any reason or warning. UK Finance says banks will only take a decision to close an account after an extensive review and analysis. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 2nd December 2023)
30/12/2325m 9s

Money Box Live: Power of Attorney

This week on Money Box Live we're talking about Power of Attorney. What it means, who needs one and some of the pros and pitfalls.Presenter and Strictly Come Dancing star, Angela Rippon shares her experiences with the programme and Felicity Hannah is joined by a panel of experts to answer your comments and questions.Solicitor Gary Rycroft helps clients set up and manage the legal side of Power of Attorneys and Sandra McDonald is former Public Guardian for Scotland and author of 'Power of Attorney: All you need to know: granting, it, using it or relying on it.'Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Luke Smithurst Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(This programme was first broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on Wednesday the 29th of November at 3pm).
27/12/2328m 27s

Tax Cuts, Housing Costs and Paying at the Pump

We'll take a closer look at what the Autumn Statement means for your personal finances. On Wednesday the Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt, made announcements about tax, pensions and benefits. With his top takeaways, Paul Lewis talks tax cuts and the unfreezing of the local housing allowance.A listener went into a filling station to put just enough petrol in her car to leave her enough money to buy food for the family dinner. Then, the petrol station ringfenced the cost of a full tank and although she spent a fraction of that, the rest was not released for two days. Why did that happen and what can she do?And the new global report from the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners which says reports of financial abuse of vulnerable clients is increasing. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Sandra Hardial Researcher: Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast, 12noon Saturday 25th November 2023)
23/12/2324m 54s

Money Box Live: Autumn Statement Special

The Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt has opened the red briefcase once again to deliver the Autumn Statement in the Commons.But what does it mean for you and your money? Felicity Hannah will be looking at how today's announcements impact your personal finances - from pensions, to taxes and benefits.Joining her to answer your questions and comments are, Alice Haine, Personal Finance Analyst at BestInvest, Dawn Register, Partner at the accountancy firm BDO and Sangita Chawla, Managing Director for Standard Life.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Paul Ruddick Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(This episode was first broadcast at 3pm, Wednesday the 22nd November, 2023).
20/12/2328m 23s

QR Code Scams and Bank Account Access

The number of reported scams involving QR codes has nearly quadrupled in less than three years according to figures seen by Money Box. The data was revealed by City of London Police and gathered from reports made to Action Fraud. The Charted Institute of Trading Standards is warning those reports are likely to be just the tip of the iceberg. We'll hear the story of one woman who was scammed after using a QR code in a car park.The government's cost of living support payments to help people on low incomes cope with rising bills have not been enough to meet the scale of the problem. That's the warning from Parliament's Work and Pensions Committee which this week called on the government to consider widening the eligibility for future payments. The Department for Work and Pensions says the payments have provided a significant financial boost to millions of households and are just one part of the record £94 billion support package - which includes a 10.1% rise to benefits earlier this year and a more than £2 billion Household Support Fund to help with the cost of household essentials.A young disabled man was denied access to a high interest savings account - after his parents, who have a court order to deal with his finances, tried to open the account. How common is this and what can you do? And what can you expect from the Autumn Statement?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Joanna Morris and Jo Krasner Producer: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 18th November 2023)
16/12/2324m 36s

Money Box Live: How to Save for Children

Most people would like to save for their children but it's not always straightforward. There are questions about the best accounts, about how much you can afford - and about what those children might decide to spend the money on once they hit 18!According to Standard Life 7 out of 10 parents are worried they're not saving enough for their youngsters' futures.Felicity Hannah is joined by Kirsty Stone, a Chartered Financial Planner at the financial adviser The Private Office and Stephanie Fitzgerald, Head of Young People Programmes at The Money Charity to answer your comments and questions.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Reporter: Eimear Devlin Editor: Jess Quayle(This programme was first broadcast on Wednesday the 15th of November at 3pm).
13/12/2328m 4s

Help for people in mortgage arrears and deferring your state pension.

As the number of homeowners behind on their mortgage jumps we look at a scheme in Wales trying to help people stay in their homes.Also on the programme we speak to experts who weigh up the pros and cons of deferring your state pension and hear about the complications one woman had in getting the money she was owed.We'll tell you if you're eligible for the winter fuel payment and, as the cost of living continues to bite, we visit a baby bank in Perth and Kinross to meet the volunteers who run it to speak to them about the increasing demand for help in providing everything from nappies to milk powder to wipes and toys.
09/12/2324m 48s

Money Box Live: Love and Money

This week we are talking all things love and money and what co-habiting, marriage and divorce mean for your finances.Do you split the bills evenly or have a complicated spreadsheet to work out who pays what? It comes as recent research published by the University of Bristol revealed 100,000 couples divorce in England and Wales every year - but only a third of them use the legal system to sort out their finances - the majority negotiate their own arrangements or in the worst cases, reach no settlement at all.So, Felicity Hannah will cover everything from how to have those tricky money conversations with each other to how couples split their finances. This week to answer your questions and comments, we're joined by Laura Suter, Head of Personal Finance at AJ Bell and Nigel Shepherd, specialist family lawyer and consultant with Mills & Reeve.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producers: Sarah Rogers Editor: Dan Whitworth (This episode was first broadcast on Wednesday the 8th of November).
06/12/2328m 23s

Fraud Refunds Report and Savings Tax

For the first time we know the record of individual banks on reimbursing victims of fraud. The Payment Systems Regulator published figures this week which show, bank by bank, what proportion of the victims were reimbursed and what proportion of their money they got back. Millions of people, some with quite modest savings, now face the prospect of paying tax on the interest those savings earn. Who does it affect and what do you need to do about it?We'll discuss a new report from the University of Bristol about finances and divorce.And as recent research suggests two out of three British adults have told a 'financial fib' by lying about their earnings or what something cost, we want to know your financial fibs - email moneybox@bbc.co.ukPresenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 4th November, 2023)
02/12/2325m 23s

Lancaster Live: Can You Afford Your Home?

This week the team is live at a community centre in Lancaster to look at all things housing.It's one of the biggest financial stories of the year. Rising interest rates led to hundreds of mortgage deals being pulled earlier this year before being replaced by costlier versions. This week the Bank of England will decide where they'll go next.Exclusive figures for Money Box have revealed a third of people with a mortgages are overdrawn or have to borrow at the end of the month, meanwhile monthly rents average £1,304 a month.To answer your comments and questions, Felicity Hannah will be joined by Sarah Pennells, Consumer Finance Specialist at Royal London, Dr Hilary Ingham, Professor of Economics at Lancaster University and Kim Howarth, Branch Manager of Entwistle Green estate agents in Lancaster.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Produced by: Sarah Rogers & Kath Paddison Editor: Jess Quayle(This episode was first broadcast 3pm Wednesday the 1st of November, 2023)
29/11/2328m 48s

Loan Sharks and Car Insurance

The official body which tackles loan sharks tells Money Box that for the first time in its almost 20 year history it is seeing people turn to loan sharks to pay for essentials like food and fuel. The England Illegal Money Lending Team investigates and prosecutes loan sharks and supports those threatened by them. We report from Blackpool and visit a credit union - CLEVR Money - where people can borrow money legally and at reasonable cost.Why some pensioners may have to pay tax next year on their state pension even if they have no other income.A cost of living payment of £300 will drop into the bank accounts of people on means-tested benefits from Tuesday - find out who's eligible.And what's driving a rise in the cost of car insurance?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Sarah Rogers Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 28th October, 2023)
25/11/2325m 1s

Money Box Live: Fighting Back Against Fraud

More than £500m was stolen by fraudsters in the first half of 2023, according to figures from UK Finance. This is less than the same period in 2022, but Authorised Push Payment (APP) scams, where people are tricked into transferring money to thieves, are on the rise.We ask what can be done to fight back against the fraudsters, both on a personal and industry-wide level?Joining Felicity Hannah are Ben Donaldson, Director of Economic Crime at UK Finance, TSB’s Manager of Fraud Operations, Paul Davis and Kathryn Westmore, Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Financial Crime and Security at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) think tank.Plus Dan Whitworth goes behind the scenes at TSB’s Fraud Prevention Centre in Sunderland. And we hear from case studies who’ve lost money, managed to get it back – but been left devastated by being scammed.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producers: Sam Clack and Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 25th October, 2023)
22/11/2328m 16s

£1.6m fraud investigation and Help to Buy

We investigate the case of Kent Brushes, a hairbrush company founded in 1777, which has had £1.6m stolen by thieves. The money was transferred in 40 separate transactions, all to new payees, in less than 20 minutes. Dan Whitworth reports.And - the difficulties facing people in England who used the government’s Help To Buy loan scheme to get on the property ladder. What advice is there for those affected?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Jo Krasner and Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 21st October, 2023)
18/11/2325m 0s

Money Box Live: Digital Divide

Just how much does technology impact your finances? Do you search for the best deals on your laptop or phone? Perhaps you keep track of your money through online banking.As many as 40% of people in the UK feel they cannot keep up with newer technology according to the charity the Good Things Foundation.And not being online can cost you money, over £1,000 a year, according to Hargreaves Lansdown.This week we've been out to meet people learning how to take on tech for the first time and Felicity Hannah is joined by Helen Milner, CEO of Good Things Foundation and Sarah Coles, head of personal finance at Hargreaves Lansdown to answer your calls and questions. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(This episode was first broadcast 3pm on Wednesday the 18th of October, 2023)
15/11/2328m 5s

Energy debt and Pension Withdrawals

This week, the energy watchdog Ofgem released data showing energy debts reached £2.6 billion between April and June. It says the rise in debt was due to both the increase in wholesale energy prices and wider cost of living pressures. We'll get reaction to that figure from Octopus Energy, one of the UK's biggest suppliers.More and more people are taking money out of their private pensions. Between April and June, 4 billion pounds was withdrawn from pensions by more than 500,000 people - 15% more than a year ago. What should you consider before you take money out of your pension? And, two weeks before the deadline to get your paper tax return in, HMRC says it will take three weeks to post the form to you. What are your options if you still need to send one?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast, 12pm Saturday 14th October, 2023)
11/11/2324m 43s

Money Box Live: Saving for Your Send Off

A lot of us like to save up for special occasions - a holiday, some home improvements - but, as we grow older, more of us think about saving for the costs that come after we die.In fact, 69% of people make some sort of provision to help with the cost of their funeral, according to the financial services firm Sunlife.And it's a big bill - more than £9,000 if you want a funeral and a wake or even a party afterwards. Today on Money Box Live, we'll be talking about what kind of send off you might want from, woodland burials to tradition services as well as how to pay for it.This week Felicity Hannah is joined by solicitor Gary Rycroft and Julian Ferguson from the Association of Green Funeral Directors.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Researcher: Eimear Devlin Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 11th October, 2023)
08/11/2328m 43s

Funeral Plans and Energy Credit

A funeral plan company with more than 13,000 customers has gone bust leaving thousands of people without the plan they paid for. One Life Funeral Planning Limited was just 1 of around 40 firms which were not approved by the Financial Conduct Authority in July 2022 when it took over regulation of funeral planners. Attempts to find a regulated firm to take over its customers failed and last November its directors put it into administration. What can its customers do?Christine Farnish, a former non-executive director at the energy regulator Ofgem, has told Money Box the amount of credit held by energy companies is a "real problem" that needs looking at. It comes after we revealed last week that suppliers held more than £8bn of customers' money in the form of credit on their accounts in the first three months of this year. Ofgem said protecting customers is its top priority and that it encourages suppliers to help customers spread the cost of winter over a full year to help them manage their bills. Previously Energy UK have told us told us at the time this £8.1bn was being held as credit prices were extremely volatile and the level of government help was unknown.Nearly half a million new 18 year olds have not claimed hundreds even thousands of pounds waiting for them in child trust funds the govt and parents set aside for them. Check here: findctf.sharefound.org And is there a way to tell if you really are investing ethically? A new database may be a step towards that. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast, 12pm Saturday 7th October, 2023)
04/11/2325m 1s

Money Box Live: Cutting Energy Costs this Winter

Money Box Live is looking at how to prepare for the cold nights ahead this winter following a year of high energy costs.The Ofgem energy price cap has fallen by 7% to just over £1900. The price cap is the maximum amount your provider can charge per unit of gas and electricity. It is the amount a typical home in England, Scotland and Wales will pay a year, but if you use more, you will pay more.Last year, there was government support to the tune of £400 to help households with rising costs. That isn't coming this year, and standing charges have gone up. It means people may end up paying more this Winter.So, this week on Money Box Live, we're looking at how what you're doing to keep costs down as well as tips from our experts ranging from how thick your insulation should be to exactly how much it costs to put the oven on.Matthew Cole, head of the Fuel Bank Foundation, and Madeleine Gabriel, Director of Sustainability at charity Nesta, join Felicity Hannah for this week's programme.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Researcher: Eimear Devlin Editor: Jess Quayle
01/11/2328m 20s

Energy Credit and Bereavement Support

Energy companies are holding on to too much of their customers' money in the form of credit on their accounts. That's according to Angus MacNeil, Chair of the House of Commons Energy Security and Net Zero committee. Money Box has uncovered the total amount of credit being held in the first three months of this year was £8.1 billion. Those figures are from the regulator, Ofgem. Energy UK, which represents energy companies says suppliers are obligated to set direct debits that are, over a 12 month period, estimated to result in a balanced account. It also told us at the time this £8.1bn was being held as credit prices were extremely volatile and the level of government help was unknown. It also said it's not meaningful to compare credit and debt.Charities say new figures obtained by Money Box show that less than 1 in 4 bereaved parents who were not married have claimed a support payment they became entitled to in February. That was when the government changed the law to give cohabiting parents equal rights with parents who were married or in a civil partnership. The Department for Work and Pensions say it's telling bereaved parents about the backdated benefit via stakeholders, charities and a targeted media and social media campaign. More information on who can claim is available at: www.childhoodbereavementnetwork.org.uk/cohabitingWhat you need to know about the self-assessment tax deadline on 5th October.And, we'll also run through the changes to energy bills coming in on 1st October.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Luke Smithurst Editor: Jess QuayleEnergy Credit 00:00 Bereavement Support 08:43 Tax Deadline 14:49 Energy Bills 16:32(First broadcast, 12pm Saturday 30th September, 2023)
28/10/2325m 6s

Mortgages and Part-time Work for Students

The Bank of England has held interest rates at 5.25%, ending a run of 14 consecutive increases. What does that mean for mortgages? We'll also look back one year on from the mini-budget. Hear from Clare Beardmore the Director of the Mortgage Club at Legal and General and Nimesh Shah the CEO of Blick Rothenberg.Nearly half of our universities are now encouraging students to work part time by promoting it on their websites. The Higher Education Policy Institute, which carried out the research, has described it as a major change in the attitude of universities. Dan Whitworth reports from St. Andrews.And what does the rates freeze mean for savers - we'll speak to Anna Bowes the founder of SavingsChampion.co.uk.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Sam Clack Researchers: Luke Smithurst and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess QuayleMortgages 00:00 Students and Part-time Work 10:26 Energy Report 18:35 Savings and Best Rates 19:29(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 23rd September, 2023)
21/10/2325m 33s

Money Box Live: The Battle Against Rising Bills

Inflation has dropped to 6.7% but that doesn't mean our bills will be coming down anytime soon.The news offers a small amount of welcome relief as the dip means prices are rising slower than they have been. But inflation is still way off the Bank of England's target of 2%.This week on Money Box Live we're looking at how to try and lower your personal rate of inflation and cut costs.Felicity Hannah is joined by Christopher Jenkins a Senior Inflation Statistician from the Office For National Statistics as well as personal finance journalist Martyn James and Lisa Webb from consumer group Which?Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Researcher: Luke Smithurst Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast, 3pm Wednesday September 20th, 2023)
18/10/2328m 34s

Rationing to pay debts and Bank Account Closures

Exclusive data for Money Box suggest that 1 in 5 UK adults have had to ration things like heating or electricity to keep up with their debt repayments. 1 in 8 have changed the food they eat for less healthy options. The survey, carried out by debt charity StepChange, found a third of adults say they are in financial difficulties, but half would be reluctant to contact their lenders to try to sort things out. We'll speak to the CEO of StepChange Vikki Brownridge.Listeners who run community groups battle their banks over unexplained account closures. What are your rights?Millions of pounds of Pension Credit has been claimed by thousands of people in London who didn't know they were eligible. A recent campaign saw 8,200 older households in 17 London boroughs receive targeted letters to make them aware that they might be able to get the benefit. As a result there were more than 2,000 successful claims, worth just under £8.4 million. Plus, Money Box journalism leads to questions being asked in parliament over an energy scheme that thousands of people missed out on.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 16th Sept, 2023)00:00 Rationing to pay debts 08:40 Bank Account Closures 14:44 Energy Bills 16:59 Pension Credit
14/10/2325m 5s

Money Box Live: Pensions, Actually

This week we're talking about pensions for the next generation and taking your questions and comments.Writer and director Richard Curtis is with us to consider why green investments could be the key better engagement when it comes to young people.Also joining us, Sophie Smith, News Editor of Pensions Age and Helen Morrisey, Head of Retirement Analysis from Hargreaves Lansdown.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Researcher: Luke Smithurst Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast, 3pm on the 13th September, 2023)
11/10/2328m 26s

Saving for Retirement and Hollywood Strikes

This week there have been warnings that millions of people aren't saving enough for retirement and calls for pension contributions to be increased. One thinktank - New Financial - released a report saying that despite the success of auto-enrolment nearly a third of the UK workforce are not saving for a pension at all. Most aren't saving enough and will have smaller pensions in future. The government says auto-enrolment means billions more is being saved into pensions. If you are one of the millions of people who own shares directly in a UK company then you may have to give them up. There are just two weeks left to have your say about the future of how those shares are held. It's because paper share certificates are on the way out to be replaced by digital versions. We'll discuss what this means. If want to have your say email "digitisationtaskforce@hmtreasury.gov.uk".If you're wondering where your favourite show on Netflix or Paramount has gone it might be a victim of the strikes in Hollywood where 11,000 writers and more than 150,000 actors have been on strike for the last few months. It means a large number of productions being filmed or produced in the UK have been put on hold, leaving the mainly self-employed crew members with no work and no financial support. We'll hear from those affected.Plus Royal Mail has announced that the price of posting a letter will rise in October for the second time this year. We'll have the details on that.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Sarah Rogers Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 9th September 2023)
07/10/2323m 50s

Money Box Live: How to Handle Debt

15 million adults in the UK feel financially insecure as a result of the rising cost of living. And almost 1 in 10 say they have debt they don’t know how they will repay – that’s according to the charity Christians Against Poverty.Felicity Hannah and a panel of experts answer your questions on everything debt related - from the cost of childcare, bankruptcy and support if you have been the victim of financial abuse.Featuring, Alice Haine, Personal Finance Analyst at Bestinvest and Richard Lane from the debt charity StepChange.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Researcher: Luke Smithurst Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 6th September, 2023)
04/10/2328m 26s

Buy Now, Pay Later and Accessible Homes

New research has found that one in five people are paying for essentials - like food and household bills - by borrowing on Buy Now, Pay Later. A report from The Money and Pensions Service says more than ten million people now use it and claims around 40% of people they surveyed were managing their repayments badly including turning to credit cards, savings or overdrafts to pay it back.Millions of pounds could be saved every year by building more homes that are accessible to people in wheelchairs - that's the conclusion of a report by the London School of Economics and the Housing Association, Habinteg. It looked into the financial costs and benefits of building more accessible homes for people who need them. The number of wheelchair users living in unsuitable homes across the UK is estimated to be more than 400,000. Dan Whitworth visits Kenilworth to meet Georgia and her family for a tour of their partly accessible home. The government is currently considering ways it could change pensions in the UK to drive better outcomes for savers. Part of this includes a call for evidence looking at how defined benefit schemes might be invested differently. One idea is to make it easier for private sector employers to access tens of billions of pounds of surplus funds that have built up in their pension schemes. The Department for Work and Pensions says "the direction of future policy is not yet decided.” Tom Selby from AJ Bell explores this idea.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Sarah Rogers Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 2nd September)00:00 Introduction 00:41 Buy Now Pay Later 07:25 Accessible Homes 15:41 Self-Assessment Tax Helpline 17:02 Defined Benefit Pensions
30/09/2324m 43s

Money Box Live from Leeds: Student Finance

Felicity Hannah and the team broadcast live from Leeds University as students from England face a massive overhaul to their finances. It's the biggest change in more than a decade.Previously, student loans were written off after 30 years, but under a new scheme called 'Plan 5' it's 40 years. Graduates will also have to start paying money back when they earn £25,000, the threshold has been lowered this year from £27,295.So, this week we're looking at how much a really degree costs as well as taking your questions and comments.On the programme we have money guru Martin Lewis to explain exactly what the changes mean as well as Louise Banahene, Leeds University Engagement Officer, Bethan Corner, who is the Education Officer at the Student Union, and Tom Allingham from student finance website, Save the Student.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast, 3pm, Wednesday 27th September 2023)
27/09/2328m 32s

Surviving to Thriving? The High Street

High streets have a double challenge; they need to cope with their own rising costs and keeping hard pressed customers spending. We hear how Barnsley’s sellers are adapting to tricky times. Is anyone able to see a path through to a thriving business?Felicity Hannah meets traders in The Glassworks, home to the town’s new redeveloped undercover market. Here she’s made a special coffee by Dave in his new café which is thriving; Katy, who’s side hustle is making candle melts to sell at the young traders monthly market & David, a butcher who’s been selling meat here for over 30 years. The programme also talks to Dr Jackie Mulligan founder & CEO, ShopAppy.com & a member of High Streets Task Force, who explains how high street businesses are fairing across the UK. Series Producer Smita Patel Editor Clare Fordham Studio Engineer by Rod Farquhar
23/09/2328m 14s

Surviving or Thriving? School

Schools are dealing with their own rising costs, but they are also coping with the impact of the cost-of-living on their pupils and their families. One primary school tells us how they’re facing up to the challenge. Can they thrive in tricky economic times? Felicity Hannah spends a day at school with Sally Herbert, Principal at Oasis Academy Harpur Mount, primary school in Manchester. She meets staff, parents and pupils to hear how the cost of living is impacting on their children’s education. The Programme also talks to education expert Laura McInErney, co-founder of Teacher Tapp, to ask what does the future look like for schools. Series Producer Smita Patel Editor Clare Fordham Studio mixed by Rod Farquhar
16/09/2328m 12s

Surviving or Thriving? Farms

Rising costs are having an impact on almost everyone, but that impact is very different for different sections of the economy. Rising food production costs are pushing up everyone’s grocery bills, and squeezing farmers’ profit margins. How are farms adapting to survive difficult times? Are any of them finding new ways to thrive?Felicity Hannah travels to South Wales to meet two farmers, both running family businesses. Kevin and Sian, who, since covid, have diversified their 200 acre mixed farm into a profit making business. And Abi who works alongside her parents and uncle on a 700 acres mixed farm of dairy, sheep, arable, and beef has seen costs spiral but has long term financial solutions for her family business to thrive again. The programme also talks to Minette Batters, president of the National Farmers’ Union which represents 47,000 farming businesses across England and Wales, to ask what does the future look like for farmers. Series Producer Smita Patel Editor Clare Fordham Studio Engineer Rod Farquhar
09/09/2328m 38s

Money Box: Surviving or Thriving? Households

Rising costs are having an impact on almost everyone, but that impact is very different for different social groups. Is anyone managing to make a difference to their own budget, however small? Whether they be high earners or low income households, how are people taking control of their finances? Felicity Hannah meets Peter who lives alone in a rented flat in Stoke and has a disability that prevents him from working; Hollie, a new mum, living with her fiancé in Wigan, who’s trying to juggle money while on maternity leave with the rising costs of having a small baby. And Kishan, one of many people being bitten by monthly mortgage rate hikes. He lives in London and has three mortgages; his own plus two buy to lets. The programme also talks to Dr Gemma Tetlow Chief Economist at the Institute for Government to ask what does Peter, Hollie and Kishan’s experience tell us about the cost of living crisis across the nation. Are households surviving or thriving? Series Producer Smita Patel Editor Clare Fordham Studio Engineer Rod Farquhar
02/09/2328m 21s

Money Box Live: The Mortgage Dilemma

The Bank of England is expected to raise interest rates again this week, for the fourteenth consecutive time. The increase will hike the monthly repayments for anyone on a variable rate mortgage, for those trying to re-mortgage after coming off a fixed-rate and for first time buyers with new home loans. In this podcast we look at the dilemmas created by high borrowing rates. The experts in this podcast are Sonya Matharu, Senior Mortgage Broker at The Mortgage Mum and Tom Bill, Head of UK Residential Research at Knight Frank. Presenter: Sam Fenwick Producer: Amber Mehmood Researcher: Luke Smithurst Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 2nd August, 2023)
30/08/2328m 55s

Care Homes, Consumer Duty and Stamps

Care home leaders are the latest group criticising the Government for failing to get £400 of winter fuel help to the people entitled to it. The Energy Bill Support Scheme Alternative Fund was supposed to help nearly one million households who don't pay an energy supplier directly. 20,000 households in care homes got this money, but according to new BBC Verify analysis for this programme that suggests 1 in 7 who were eligible, didn't. The government says it spent billions of pounds helping millions of households last winter with their energy bills, covering nearly half the cost of a typical household's bill. On Monday major changes begin in the way we are sold financial products and services by regulated firms like banks, insurers, advisers. Not only will they have to stick to the 20 year old rules about treating customers fairly. They will be subject to a new Consumer Duty. What is it and what does it mean? A scheme which offers debt advice and help with money problems through doctors’ surgeries, is being extended thanks to some new funding. We first reported on the trial two years ago. Since then the Centre for Responsible Credit which runs the scheme says hundreds of people have been helped to access hundreds of thousands of pounds in support.Plus, from 1st August most old first and second class stamps without barcodes are no longer valid. What should you do if you still have any old stamps?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast, 12pm Saturday 29th July, 2023)
26/08/2324m 46s

Money Box Live: Your Rental Rights

An average of 20 potential tenants request to view each available rental home, more than triple the amount in 2019, according to data commissioned by the BBC. The queue to view is even longer in some regions, reaching 30 in the North West of England, according to the property portal Rightmove.From facing tough competition for a home to receiving a section 21 notice of eviction, we hear what renters are experiencing in the current market and we offer advice on what their rights are. The experts on the panel are Nyree Applegarth, Partner at Higgs LLP, Tim Bannister, Director at Rightmove and Ben Beadle, Chief Executive at National Residential Landlords Association.For tips on how to get ahead in the race to secure a rental property and information on your rights as a tenant go to the Tackling it Together section on the front page of the BBC News website.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Reporter: Sam Gruet Researcher: Luke Smithurst Editor: Jess Quayle(First Broadcast at 3pm, Wednesday 26th July, 2023)
23/08/2328m 21s

NHS Prescriptions and Banks Defy Customers to Stop Fraud

Sick people in England are being caught out by the complex rules which exempt some from NHS prescription charges. The Patients Association says the rules surrounding the £9.65 per item levy should be simplified. The call comes after Money Box listeners told us how they struggled to navigate the rules. The NHS Business Services Authority which runs the system told us "Patients can check they are eligible for free NHS prescriptions before claiming by using the free eligibility checker at www.nhsbsa.nhs.uk/check. It takes just three minutes".Money Box can exclusively reveal that £55 million of fraud was prevented last year by bank and building society employees deliberately ignoring customers' instructions to transfer their money to thieves. They're allowed to do that in a branch because of what is called the banking protocol - a UK-wide law that allows staff in the branch to stop transfers and ask customers what they're doing with their money and why. We'll hear from Sophie who saved one of her customers £90,000.And, what does this week's fall in inflation really mean for your personal finances?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 22nd July, 2023)
19/08/2324m 15s

Money Box Live: Can you afford to retire?

The UK government has announced a package of reforms designed to boost pensions and increase investment in British businesses. A panel of experts explore the impact of this on your pots and what it could mean for your retirement.The experts in this podcast are Nigel Peaple, Director of Policy and Research at the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) and Alice Guy, Head of Pensions and Savings at Interactive Investor.Presenter: Adam Shaw Reporter: Luke Smithurst Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 19th July, 2023)
16/08/2329m 11s

Call to Reopen Energy Support Scheme

A “staggering failure” is how one senior MP has described a government scheme designed to help nearly a million households with their energy bills last winter. Former SNP and now independent MP Angus MacNeil, who's Chair of Parliament’s Energy Security and Net Zero committee, has called on the government to reopen the scheme after a Money Box investigation reported that 750,000 eligible households have not received the £400 to help with their fuel costs and can't now apply for it. The Energy Bill Support Scheme Alternative Funding was launched in February to give the £400 to people who live in park homes, on narrow boats, in care homes, and travellers who had not automatically had the £400 which was sent to households with an electricity meter. In response, a government spokesperson said: "We spent billions to protect families when prices rose over winter, covering nearly half a typical household's energy bill – this includes more than £50m supporting 130,000 households without a domestic energy supplier".What do the government’s new proposals for pensions mean for the millions of people with money invested and how risky are the plans?There's a warning about mortgage scams where people are being tricked into giving away personal details by phishing emails and texts.And will government plans to reform consumer credit law strengthen or weaken our rights? Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 15th July, 2023)
12/08/2325m 6s

Money Box Live: Your Travel Rights

Millions of people are booking their holidays right now, but with hundreds of flights already cancelled and the threat of air traffic control strikes looming, how do you fight for your rights if your travel plans get disrupted? What's the best way to manage your money overseas? And how is the cost of living impacting people's plans if you are lucky enough to be getting away?The experts in this podcast are: Cathy Adams, Senior Content Editor (Travel) at The Times and Sunday Times, Alan Dean, Managing Director at CoverForYou and Cedar Tree, and Sean Tipton, Media Relations Manager at the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA).Presenter: Dan Whitworth Reporter: Sarah Rogers Researcher: Luke Smithurst Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Elisabeth Mahy(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 12th July, 2023)
09/08/2328m 39s

Energy Bill Support and AI in Banking

New data shows more than 700,000 households across Great Britain have missed out on £300 million worth of support with their energy bills. The government said in February 900,000 households were eligible to apply for a one-off £400 payment because they did not have an energy supplier that would apply it automatically. The government said it had spent more than £50m 'supporting households without a domestic energy supplier', but this data suggests just over £300 million of the possible £360 million in Great Britain had not been claimed before the deadline. The big high street banks have been told to be more open with their customers about savings rates - what will that mean in practice?And could Artificial Intelligence transform how banks decide whether to lend us money?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Sarah Rogers Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 8th July, 2023)
05/08/2328m 40s

Money Box Live: Making Sense of Savings

Bank bosses are being asked to explain why interest rates on savings aren't keeping up with the rising cost of borrowing. The heads of Lloyds, HSBC, NatWest and Barclays banks will meet the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) on Thursday.Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has already stepped in to tell banks to put up rates for savers.At the moment the Bank of England base rate is 5 per cent, following last months 13th consecutive rise. UK Finance who speak for banks say "savings rates are driven by a number of factors," not just the base rate.Laura Suter, head of Personal Finance at AJ Bell and Kirsty Stone, Chartered Financial Planner at The Private Office, are here to help make sense of your savings.Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 5th July, 2023)
02/08/2328m 45s

Saving Rates and Pension Helpline Problems

The Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has stepped in to tell banks to put up the rates paid to savers after the Bank of England raised the official Bank Rate to 5%. Many mortgage rates went up at once and more have been increased this week, but the rates paid on savings by the banks have not followed them. The gap between the two has almost doubled from December 2021. We hear from Gillian who runs a business in Bromsgrove and ask how banks make decisions on savings rates.More than two million calls to a helpline for people wanting to boost their state pension have been blocked by the Department for Work and Pensions. The Minister in charge of what is called the Future Pension Centre, Laura Trott, has admitted that in the first five months of the year more than two million calls were cut off without even being allowed to join the call waiting queue. A new energy price cap comes into effect today. This will see households pay an average of 2,074 pounds a year. This is lower than the level at which government subsidies kept bills but still 800 pounds more than two years ago. We'll also look at how smart meter data is being used to research fuel poverty. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Felicity Hannah Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 1st July, 2023)
29/07/2324m 48s

Money Box Live: Finance for the under 30s

Amidst a cost of living crisis, almost 9 in 10 young adults say that simply having enough money to cover their basic needs is classed as aspirational, according to a survey by the children's charity Barnardo's. We hear about some of the financial pressures burdening young people - from renting, to food costs and car expenses. In this podcast, BBC Newsbeat's Cost of Living Reporter, Sam Gruet, joins Felicity Hannah and Alice Haine, Personal Finance Analyst at Bestinvest.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood and Sarah Rogers Reporter: Sam Gruet (Newsbeat Cost of Living Reporter) Editor: Beatrice Pickup(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 28th June, 2023)
26/07/2328m 45s

Rising Mortgage Costs and Young People's Finances

Rising interest rates are putting pressure on those homeowners with variable mortgages, or with fixed terms due to end this year. The Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has met with the big banks to discuss the forbearance options lenders can offer to customers in difficulty. We discuss the long term financial implications of options such as payment deferrals, extending the length of the mortgage or switching to interest only with Sarah Coles, Head of Personal Finance at Hargreaves Lansdown.The children's charity Barnardos is concerned about the impact of rising living costs on young people aged 18-25. The charity worked with the Co-op to survey 2,500 people in that age bracket. Almost 9 in 10 responded that having enough money to cover basic needs was considered 'aspirational', and more than half had worried about whether they could afford things in the last six months. We speak to a 20 year old care leaver about their relationship with money. And what should you do to protect large sums of money from fraud? We've been contacted by listeners in the process of buying and selling a house, wondering where to keep large sums safe until they're ready to make their purchase. Reporter Dan Whitworth has the answers. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Beatrice Pickup
22/07/2324m 20s

Money Box Live: Mortgage Affordability

The average interest rate charged by mortgage lenders is now much higher than many homeowners have been used to.So what can those struggling to make repayments do - and what if any help should lenders provide?The experts in this podcast are Charles Roe, Director of Mortgages at UK Finance, Andrew Wishart, Senior Economist at Capital Economist and Rita Kohli, Managing Director at The Mortgage Stop. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Beatrice Pickup(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 21st June, 2023)
19/07/2328m 37s

HMRC Helpline Closure and Insurance Costs

On June 12th, HMRC closed its self assessment tax helpline - a helpline that last summer people tried to call over a million times. Instead, it's directing people who want advice or who need help with their online self assessments to its digital services. HMRC says this is a pilot for a new seasonal model and that it will reopen in September. It says the plan will free up staff time to deal with urgent queries. The decision has prompted criticism from tax groups who say that the closure is extremely disappointing, that it's ill thought out and that its a clear indication that HMRC can't cope with demand. Angela McDonald the Deputy CEO and Second Permanent Secretary at HMRC speaks to Felicity Hannah live.MPs have questioned insurances bosses over high premiums. The Treasury Committee called executives in to answer questions about potential profiteering during the cost of living crisis. Dan Whitworth reports on that hearing.More on plans to make sure banks give innocent victims of push payment fraud the refunds that they are supposed to.And what do you need to think about when it comes to money and travel abroad? From currency to travel and health insurance, not to mention mobile phone roaming charges, there are lots of ways to make sure you're not losing out or paying over the odds. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Eimear Devlin and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 17th June, 2023)
16/07/2324m 58s

Money Box Live: How to protect your data

A prolific cyber crime gang has stolen personal data belonging to more than 100,000 employees. It's a mass hack which has impacted organisations globally. In the hands of criminals, your personal data can be used to make cloned credit cards, buy phone plans, falsely claim government benefits and even take out a mortgage, for which you can become liable. In this podcast, we discuss how you can try and prevent this from happening and what you can do if you are a victim. The experts on the panel are Sarah Lyons, from the National Cyber Security Centre and Matt Cooke, Cyber Security Strategist at Proofpoint - which helps protect businesses and employees online.Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Amber Mehmood and Clare Worden Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 14th June, 2023)
12/07/2329m 0s

Child Trust Funds and Data Breaches

Changes to how families of disabled children can access UK government-backed trust funds have been announced. Currently, parents and carers of 18-year-olds who lack mental capacity have to apply to the Court of Protection to access the money. The Ministry of Justice says claims will now be dealt with in eight weeks - rather than six months. We'll hear from Mike Freer the Minister for Courts and Legal Services and from a campaigner who says the changes don't go far enough.Hundreds of thousands of people have had their personal information stolen by hackers. We'll ask what you can do now to stay safe.We'll discuss a new report calling for banks and other financial institutions to do more to improve services for people with hearing difficulties. The report is from the Lending Standards Board which is calling for greater inclusion. UK Finance, which represents the banking and finance sectors, told us it's committed to supporting customers and do offer extra support including British Sign Language translations in branches, longer appointments and quiet rooms.Help To Save, a savings scheme for people on low incomes, has been extended. We've got the details.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Team: Dan Whitworth, Sandra Hardial, Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 10th June, 2023)
08/07/2324m 55s

Money Box Live: The Cost of Owning a House

House prices have fallen by 1% compared with a year ago – the first drop since 2012 (Halifax) and as inflation remains high, lenders are increasing the cost of mortgage borrowing.But what do these changes in the housing market mean for anyone who dreams of owning their own home, for people trying to move up the ladder or those thinking about equity release?The experts in this podcast are Tim Bannister, Director of Property Science at Rightmove and Clare Beardmore, Director of Mortgages at Legal & General. Presenter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Sara Wadeson(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 7th June, 2023)
05/07/2327m 38s

Mortgages, Tax Free Childcare and Funeral plans

Mortgages are back in the headlines this week, with the news that hundreds of deals are being pulled from the market. Since the start of last week, the total number of mortgage products on the market has fallen by 11.3% according to new figures from Money Facts. We'll discuss this with Sonya Matharu, Senior Mortgage Broker with The Mortgage Mum.There are calls to simplify and reform the tax free childcare system. The charity Coram says many families don't even know they are eligible because the system is so difficult to manage. HMRC says Tax-Free Childcare is quick and easy to claim and that it can be a real boost to the household budget of working families. Adding that families can choose the financial support that best suits their needs. It recommends that parents use the Childcare Choices website (https://www.childcarechoices.gov.uk/) to find the right childcare offer for them.We'll discuss what the latest updates are for funeral plan holders with companies which have gone out of business - following a major shake up of the industry. We'll speak to one of the providers which has taken on customers of failed firms and to James Daley from Fairer Finance. And the listener who manages his mum's finances but was told he couldn't switch her to a more competitive savings account.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 3rd June, 2023)
01/07/2326m 13s

Money Box Live: Investing

The Financial Conduct Authority is concerned that young people in particular are turning to bloggers and influencers for investing advice - without fully understanding the risks. Scammers are also using social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and TikTok to target people, as the cost of living pushes people to look for high return investments.In this podcast, we discuss what red flags to watch out for and how easy it can be to end up parted from your money. The experts on the panel are Giles Mason, Director of Campaigns at UK Finance, Laura Suter, Head of Personal Finance at AJ Bell and Sharon Davies, CEO of Young Enterprise. Presenter: Ruth Alexander Producer: Amber Mehmood Reporter: Sandra Hardial Editor: Elisabeth MahyIf you have been affected by the issues covered in this podcast, visit BBC Action Line for advice or support: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/375cB1pZ3FwFRQMh9zLxZhb/information-and-support-fraud(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 21st May 2023)
28/06/2330m 26s

Buy Now Pay Later and Mortgage Prisoners

The Chief Executive of the Association of British Credit Unions has told Money Box his members are seeing more people applying for borrowing who already have multiple buy now, pay later loans. We'll hear from a young woman who got into debt that way and get a response from the industry.Mortgage costs will go up again this week. That's going to put the squeeze on many households but it's especially bad news for the tens of thousands of people who are trapped paying unaffordable mortgages. We'll speak to Martin Lewis, who's campaigning for change, and get a response from the Treasury.The Financial Conduct Authority is concerned that younger investors are using social media platforms for investing advice - without fully understanding the risks and how much money they might lose. We'll speak to their Director of Consumer Investments, hear from some young people and from the platforms themselves.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 27th May 2023)
24/06/2325m 28s

Money Box Live: Being Widowed

When your spouse dies your world changes, from admin to organising a funeral, new widows are hit with a slew of tasks amid dealing with grief.As well as those challenges, losing a husband, wife or partner can mean significant changes to your finances. In this podcast we discuss what the death of your partner can mean for your money. What challenges are there and where can you find help and support.The experts on the panel are, Emma Gray, Ambassador at WAY Widowed & Young and Jane Hodges, Chartered Financial Planner at Money Honey Financial Planning.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle (First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 24th May, 2023)
21/06/2331m 48s

Mobile Phone Scams and Scottish Widows

Criminals are targeting victims more effectively and exploiting banking apps on phones to steal thousands of pounds. That's the warning from one of the UK's most senior fraud officers, Detective Superintendent John Roch, who runs the Economic Crime Unit for London's Metropolitan Police. He's been speaking exclusively to Money Box - and you can hear that interview in full.The Financial Conduct Authority has told this programme it has been speaking to Scottish Widows about concerns over the company's poor customer service. For the past year Money Box has been investigating complaints about the insurance and pensions firm. Customers have been contacting us to say they have faced lengthy delays when they have tried to get hold of their money. We'll hear from some of those listeners and get a response from Scottish Widows which says its overall service levels are getting back to normal as it continues to work hard behind the scenes. It says it has significantly increased the number of colleagues answering calls and dealing with customer requests.Long-awaited plans to shake up the private rented sector in England were finally released this week. The Renters’ Reform Bill includes some very significant changes, including abolishing section 21 or so-called "no-fault" evictions and preventing landlords from banning tenants who claim benefits or have children. We'll discuss what this means for renters' rights.And war widows who were forced to forfeit their pensions will receive a lump sum payment after a long running campaign. How will it work and who's eligible?Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 20th May 2023)
17/06/2324m 52s

Money Box Live: Fighting Fraud

The UK is the fraud capital of the world with hundreds of thousands of victims and billions of pounds stolen every year. Every minute of 2022, thieves stole £2300 from bank and credit card accounts. They took a total of 1.2 billion from nearly 3 million people. In this podcast, we discuss these figures by the banking trade body, UK Finance, and we speak to victims of fraud about the impact it’s had on them and the steps you can take to protect yourself.On the panel are experts Kathryn Westmore, Senior Research Fellow at the Centre of Financial Crime and Security at RUSI, and Andy Donald, Director of Communications at UK Finance.We'll also hear from an ex-fraudster about how criminals manipulate their victims intro transferring thousands of pounds.Presenter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Amber Mehmood Reporter: Sarah Rogers Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast, 3pm Wednesday 17th May, 2023)
14/06/2328m 3s

Fraud and Food Prices

The banking trade body UK Finance says that every minute of 2022 thieves stole £2,300 from bank and credit card accounts. In total they took £1.2 billion from nearly 3 million people. These figures were released this week in its Annual Fraud Report. We'll discuss the figures and get reaction from Arun Chauhan, a solicitor at Tenet Law, who specialises in fraud and financial crime.There were new warnings about inflation this week. The Bank of England said that headline rate would soon fall, though not quite so much as it had predicted earlier this year. The Chief Economist at the Office for National Statistics answers your questions and talks about the new ONS comparison tool where you can check prices. As HMRC stops sending paper tax returns out to under 70s – what does this mean for the 3 million over 55s who don’t have a digital presence?And how to make sure you get a new Cost of Living payment if you're entitled to it.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Eimear Devlin and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 13th May 2023)
10/06/2325m 40s

Money Box Live: Making Sense of Mortgages

The Bank of England is expected to hike interest rates for the 12th month in a row this week and deposit-free mortgages are back after a 15-year-long absence from the market that stretches back to the financial crisis. We find out how they’ll really work, who can benefit from them and what interest rates mean for you whether you’re a renter, homeowner or prospective new buyer. The experts in this podcast are, Nick Mendes, Mortgage Technical Manager at John Charcol, Charles Roe, Director of Mortgages at UK Finance and Rachel Springall, Finance Expert at Money Facts.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 10th May, 2023)
07/06/2331m 54s

Money Box Live: The King's Cash

To mark the Coronation of King Charles III our presenter Adam Shaw gets exclusive access to the Royal Mint to witness how new £2 commemorative coins are produced and to see its extensive archives. In this programme, we discuss how different monarchs have affected our money and what the future might hold for the physical cash that we carry in our pockets. To help explore the Crown and our currency, Adam is joined be a panel of experts, Dominic Chorney, an Ancient Coin Specialist at Baldwin's, Catherine Schenk, Professor of Economic and Social History at the University of Oxford and Jennifer Adam, Curator at the Bank of England Museum. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Amber Mehmood Researcher: Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 3rd May, 2023)
31/05/2328m 52s

Pensions and the Coronation

The prospects for many current employees hoping for a comfortable retirement looks "risky at best". That's the warning from the Institute for Fiscal Studies, which has started a major review of pensions together with Financial Fairness Trust, a charity funded by the investment firm Abrdn. We'll speak to the IFS and answer your questions on pensions.The listener who had to remortgage but was turned down because he had a Ukrainian family living in part of his home. Are you going to Europe this summer? If so, have you got your GHIC card which can give you cheap or free medical care in some countries? We'll explain how it works.And next Saturday is the Coronation of Charles III. He and his wife, Camilla will be crowned King and Queen of the United Kingdom and 14 other Commonwealth countries. It is nearly 70 years since the last coronation in June 1953 when Charles's mother was crowned Queen Elizabeth II but what has changed in our personal finance since then? Paul Lewis speaks to Dr. Duncan Needham, Director of the Centre of Financial History at Cambridge University.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Justin Bones(First broadcast, 12noon Saturday 29th April, 2023)
27/05/2325m 2s

Money Box Live: Small Businesses

Small businesses represent as much as 99% of UK companies, according to government figures. They employ about half of the workforce and often contribute a vital service to local communities. The small business sector has been facing significant challenges - higher inflation, more expensive business loans and uncertain markets. In this podcast, we look at both the challenges and the opportunities for small businesses. The experts on the panel are:Charlotte Thomason, Head of Policy and Government Relations at Enterprise Nation, an organisation which helps advise small businesses on how to set-up and grow. Andy Chamberlain, Director of Policy at IPSE - The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed. Adnan Sajjad, an accountant specialising in helping small businesses.Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Amber Mehmood Researcher: Catherine Lund Editor: Beatrice Pickup
24/05/2328m 50s

Self Employment and Scam Texts

This week, the Office for National Statistics employment data showed that one reason behind the increase in the number of people in work is the growth in self-employment. Though the total numbers are still below pre-pandemic levels, more people are now starting a new business. We'll hear from four entrepreneurs about their experiences and have some advice for anyone thinking about doing so. Money Box has learned more than 1,100 people have reported having had a total of £1.3m stolen from them in the last year by criminals using so called "hi mum" or "hi dad" scam messages. The figures from Action Fraud peaked in the run up to Christmas but the scam is still very active with hundreds of thousands of pounds being stolen in the first three months of this year alone. What should you look out for?We often talk about the cost of living and the effect of rising inflation on lower income households, but this week there is new evidence of how it is hitting people earning between £40,000 and £80,000. We'll hear from Royal London whose research found over a third of people had gone overdrawn or borrowed in other ways - some even taking out expensive payday loans.And a new report suggests tens of millions of pounds belonging to about 80,000 young people without mental capacity to make financial decisions could be locked in trust funds. What does that mean for families and what is the government's response?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12noon Saturday 22nd April, 2023)
20/05/2324m 55s

Money Box Live: Babies and Toddlers

Raising children is expensive. It’s estimated that it costs over £200,000 to raise a child from birth to 18 in the UK. In this podcast we hear from parents about how they're managing these costs from new-born baby necessities to nursery fees.The experts on the panel are, Anna Stevenson, Senior Welfare Benefits Specialist at the Charity Turn2Us, and Tara Spence, the CEO of Homestart Suffolk, a community network of trained volunteers that helps families with young children. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Researcher: Catherine Lund Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast, 3pm Wednesday 19th April, 2023)
17/05/2328m 28s

Healthy Start and Digital Memories

It's estimated that more than 200 thousand low income parents --in England, Wales and Northern Ireland -- are missing out on government assistance to help them buy food for their children. The Healthy Start Scheme offers money for milk, fruit and vegetables - but uptake is well below the government's target. In response Department of Health says uptake is increasing and it's committed to promoting a healthy diet for children.The high-cost lender Amigo has said it will halt all lending and wind down its business after failing to raise extra funds from investors. What does this mean for thousands of who’ve applied for compensation believing they were mis-sold loans?State benefits and pensions paid to tens of millions of people went up this week by 10.1% - almost the current rate of inflation. When can you expect your increased payment?And what you should do to protect your digital memories after you’ve died?Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Sarah Rogers Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast, 12pm Saturday 15th April, 2023)
13/05/2325m 17s

Money Box Live: Learning Disability and Neurodiversity

Trying to understand interest rates, credit card changes and mortgage deals is an effort for most of us, so how do you manage if you have a learning disability?Dan Pepper, a former Paralympian joins presenter, Ruth Alexander, to talk about how he manages his money, and what challenges he faces.We'll also be talking about how ADHD and other neuro differences can affect your personal finances.On hand to answer listener questions: Tony Lloyd, CEO of the ADHD Foundation, The Neurodiversity Charity, and Phillipa Gould, Financial Advocacy Manager at Dosh, a not-for-profit organisation. Presenter: Ruth Alexander Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 12th April, 2023)
10/05/2328m 35s

How to grow an entrepreneur

What are your children up to this weekend? Many will be busy eating chocolate eggs and enjoying their Easter break from school. Some youngsters are out there running businesses, balancing their books and even turning a profit. In this Money Box Easter special, we meet some of those remarkable kids and ask how we can help children learn entrepreneurial skills - and whether they should be? Featuring: Precisa, Max and Louis Plus, Julian Hall, CEO of Ultra Education, and Zoe Bennet, Managing Director at Training Personified.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 8th April 2023)
06/05/2324m 41s

Money Box Live: New Financial Year

From 6th April, there's set to be a host of financial changes. From household bills, changes to pensions, national insurance and help for energy bills. Almost every household will be affected in some way.We breakdown the main things that you need to know and put your questions to a panel of experts - Helen Thornley, from The Association of Tax Technicians and Sam Richardson, Deputy Editor at Which? Money Magazine.Presenter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Amber Mehmood Reporter: Hannah Mullane Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 5th April, 2023)
03/05/2328m 20s

Your Household Bills: Lincoln Live

In this special extended programme broadcast live from Lincoln, the Money Box team covers all you need to know as the financial year comes to an end and a new one begins. For many household bills are going up, from broadband costs and water bills to council tax - but what can you do if you're struggling? The team are joined by organisations who're supporting people every day, to find out what help is out there.We're in Skegness to find out how local people and businesses are coping with energy costs.We'll discuss what tax changes are coming in from April, and what allowances you're entitled to. Plus we'll mark 50 years since the introduction of VAT - Value Added Tax.Don't miss music from the City of Lincoln Band and a special introduction from the Official Town Crier of Lincoln City too.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 1130am on Saturday 1st April, 2023)
29/04/2324m 0s

Money Box Live: Rental Health Special

Felicity Hannah and Winifred Robinson take questions on the legal rights of renters with experts Jasmine Basran from the housing and homelessness charity Crisis and Tessa Shepperson founder of the The Landlord Law Services she advises landlords of their legal rights and responsibilities.The number of people renting across England, Wales and Scotland has more than doubled in the last decade.The picture in Northern Ireland is similar with the numbers of people renting is up by nearly 2 thirds in the last 20 years. Producer: Catherine Lund Studio Manager: Mitch Goodall Editor: Clare Worden
26/04/2328m 55s

Rental Health: Housing benefits frozen as rents rise

Felicity Hannah starts a week of BBC coverage on the theme of Rental Health. For Money Box she examines the 3 year freeze in Local Housing Allowance (the portion of Universal Credit designed to cover housing) is leaving some on low incomes struggling to afford rental properties.Also on this episode as NatWest become the latest bank to impose restrictions on how much their customers can spend on crypto platforms and exchanges we ask if it’s ever a good idea to invest in this area.And we'll have advice for you if you've lost money through a push payment scam. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Clare Worden
22/04/2329m 8s

Money Box Live: First-Time Buyers

In this podcast we hear from prospective and recent first-time buyers about the challenges, opportunities and top tips on taking the first steps into the housing market. The experts on the panel are, Ray Boulger, Senior Mortgage Technical Manager at John Charcol and Aneisha Beveridge, Head of Research at the estate and letting agents, Hamptons. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Clare Worden
19/04/2328m 50s

Romance scam refund and prepayment meter penalty

A Money Box investigation has resulted in a £150,000 refund for a vulnerable romance fraud victim, after their bank initially refused to reimburse. The victim's family were told that a voluntary code, known as the Contingent Reimbursement Model or CRM, designed to protect victims of fraud would not apply in their case, because the payments had been made to an international bank account. We look at what, if anything, banks can do to prevent payments to criminal accounts overseas.In the Spring Budget the Chancellor promised to end the so-called prepayment meter penalty, where customers currently pay an extra £45 compared to direct debit customers. We look at how the new policy will work, and if it's feasible to level the playing field between pre-payment meter customers and direct debit customers long term. And where does this leave customers who pay by cash or cheque?The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has announced another extension to the Help to Buy Equity loan scheme. For many buyers this extension came at the last possible moment, the previous deadline was the 31st March and some stood to lose their sales. Other buyers had already received their deposits back and won't benefit from the two-month extension. We hear from a buyer and a conveyancing solicitor. Presenter: Dan Whitworth Reporter: Aruna Iyengar and Dan Whitworth Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Beatrice Pickup
15/04/2324m 47s

Money Box Live: Budget Day Special

In this podcast we breakdown what was in the Spring 2023 budget and how the chancellor’s announcements impact your finances. The experts on the panel are:Laura Suter, Head of Personal Finance at AJ Bell Dawn Register, Head of Tax Dispute Resolution at BDO Matt Copeland, Head of Policy and Public Affairs at National Energy Action Subrahmanian Krishnan Harihara, Head of Research at the Greater Manchester Chamber of CommercePresenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Beatrice Pickup
12/04/2328m 31s

HMRC National Insurance deadline extended

Felicity Hannah hears how HMRC have extended the National Insurance top up deadline after a surge in calls plus a listener asks if a drop in house prices means they should worry about negative equity?Presenter: Felicity Hannah Editor: Clare Worden Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Eimear Devlin Studio Manager: Olivia Miceli
08/04/2324m 38s

Money Box Live: Cost of Food

Grocery prices have increased by 17.1% in the four weeks to 19th February, meaning it’s at the highest level they’ve ever been recorded. This could mean households see over £800 extra on their annual food shop (Kantar). With grocery inflation being the second most important financial issue for the public, behind energy costs, we speak to shopper’s about how their household budgets are being affected. The experts on the panel are, Kris Hamer, Director of Insights at the British Retail Consortium, Sabine Goodwin, Coordinator at the Independent Food Aid Network and Lisa Webb, consumer expert at Which. Presenter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Clare Worden
05/04/2327m 58s

Rising Rents and Energy Bills

The BBC understands that the Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt, is expected to extend the Energy Price Guarantee at current levels for a further three months- but what does that mean for your energy bills?One of the UK's biggest flat share websites has told Money Box that rents are rising very fast: up almost 13% last year. In January 2022, the average UK monthly rent listed on SpareRoom was just over £650. By January this year it had risen to almost £750 pounds a month. We'll hear from them and also speak to a renter and landlord.And, as food inflation rises, we'll also look at what kind of impact that's having on household finances? Dan Whitworth speaks to supermarket shoppers in Halifax.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Reporters: Dan Whitworth and Star MacFarlane Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm Saturday 4th March, 2023)
01/04/2325m 17s

Money Box Live: Working Over 50

The Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt, is expected to introduce measures in his March Budget to encourage people who have retired early to return to work in-order to help revive the economy. In this podcast, we speak to people who are retired, people who are over 50 and looking for a new job, and some who are continuing to work after 70. With them, we identify what the barriers are keeping them out of work, and what the incentives are to keep them in the workforce. The experts on the panel are, Kim Chaplain, specialist advisor for work at the Centre for Ageing Better, and Adrian Adair, chief operating officer at Morson Group. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Researcher: Dan Bater Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 1st March, 2023)
29/03/2328m 33s

Over 50s Workers and Faulty Prepayment Meters

The Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt, is expected to use his Budget on March 15th to introduce measures to to encourage people over 50 to return to work. Since 2019 there has been a rise in the number of people defined as economically inactive. That means they are not working, self-employed, or looking for work to claim benefits. The number rose by 830,000 between 2019 and 2022, with three quarters of that increase among those aged 50 and over. The Department for Work and Pensions has a programme to encourage people over 50 back into work by offering help with health support, pension planning and flexible working opportunities. Clare Worden visits Shrewsbury Job Centre to find out more.Some energy customers are being left for months with faulty prepayment meters. Several people have told Money Box that although their electricity has not been disconnected the screens showing their credit has been blank since Christmas and they cannot top up, so they have no idea how much electricity they're using or what it is costing them. The law says suppliers should take 'appropriate action' within hours - arranging to fix or replace the meter. Or at the least to arrange an appointment. We'll get reaction from their suppliers and talk to Matt Cole from the Fuel Bank Foundation.And where should you put your money to make the most out of it? We'll talk savings with Anna Bowes from Savings Champion.Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Clare Worden Researchers: Sandra Hardial and Jo Krasner Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 25th February, 2023)
25/03/2325m 44s

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)
22/03/2328m 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)
18/03/2325m 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)
15/03/2328m 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 gov.uk, over the phone or using a paper application form. More details here: www.gov.uk/bereavement-support-payment and from the charities Child Bereavement Network (https://childhoodbereavementnetwork.org.uk/) and Widowed and Young (https://www.widowedandyoung.org.uk/).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)
11/03/2325m 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
08/03/2328m 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.
04/03/2331m 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
01/03/2333m 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)
25/02/2326m 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)
22/02/2328m 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 mortgageWhen 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)
18/02/2324m 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)
15/02/2328m 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)
11/02/2324m 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)
08/02/2331m 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)
04/02/2325m 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)
01/02/2328m 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)
25/01/2328m 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)
21/01/2325m 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)
18/01/2328m 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)
14/01/2324m 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)
11/01/2328m 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 https://www.warmwelcome.uk/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)
07/01/2324m 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)
04/01/2328m 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.
31/12/2225m 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 countryIf 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
28/12/2228m 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?
24/12/2224m 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
21/12/2228m 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)
17/12/2226m 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)
14/12/2228m 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)
10/12/2230m 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)
07/12/2228m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.ukPresenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Sandra Hardial Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 12pm, Saturday 5th November, 2022)
03/12/2227m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.ukFeaturing, 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)
30/11/2228m 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)
26/11/2225m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.ukPresenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Amber Mehmood Researcher: Star McFarlane Editor: Justin Bones(First broadcast 3pm, Wednesday 26th October, 2022)
23/11/2229m 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)
19/11/2228m 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)
16/11/2229m 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)
12/11/2229m 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)
09/11/2228m 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)
05/11/2227m 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)
02/11/2228m 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)
28/10/2251m 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
25/10/2228m 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)
22/10/2226m 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
18/10/2228m 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)
15/10/2223m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk.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)
08/10/2224m 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)
05/10/2227m 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)
01/10/2224m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.ukPresenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Amber Mehmood Editor: Jess Quayle(First broadcast 3pm Wednesday 31st August, 2022)
28/09/2228m 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)
24/09/2225m 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)
15/09/2228m 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 ExpertBilly McGranaghan – Founder of Dad’s HouseJonathan Sharples – Community Support WorkerReporter: Dan WhitworthProducer: Amber MehmoodEditor: Elisabeth Mahy
24/08/2228m 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)
20/08/2229m 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 – TransActualCleo Madeleine – Spokesperson – Gendered Intelligence More info:https://genderedintelligence.co.uk/ https://www.transactual.org.uk/
17/08/2228m 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)
13/08/2224m 44s

Holidays

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 journalistLisa Minot - travel editor - The SunProducer: Drew Hyndman and Di RichardsonEditor: Richard Fenton-Smith
10/08/2238m 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)
06/08/2225m 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 - MacmillanProducer: Drew Hyndman and Amber Mehmood Editor: Beatrice Pickup
03/08/2229m 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)
30/07/2225m 7s

Fraud

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 WhitworthProducer: Drew HyndmanEditor: Justin Bones and Elisabeth Mahy
27/07/2233m 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)
23/07/2224m 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 AuthorsAdam Croft - Author of The Rutland Crime series.Producer: Paul Waters and Drew HyndmanEditor: Beatrice Pickup and Justin Bones
20/07/2228m 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
13/07/2228m 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)
09/07/2225m 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 - ScopeHelen Undy - Chief Executive - Money and Mental HealthListen to the Access All podcast: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/series/p02r6yqwProducer: Drew HyndmanEditor: Emma Rippon
06/07/2234m 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)
02/07/2227m 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 BankJulie Flynn - Independent Financial Adviser and Chartered Financial Coach - Bree WealthProducer: Drew HyndmanEditor: Jon Bithrey
29/06/2229m 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)
25/06/2225m 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 ActivitySteven Scales - Director of Membership and Sector Development – UK ActiveTo share your experiences or to ask a question email moneybox@bbc.co.uk Producer: Drew Miller Hyndman
22/06/2229m 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)
18/06/2228m 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
15/06/2229m 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)
11/06/2225m 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 & TrainerMore information:https://longcovidwork.co.uk/Presenter: Seb ChoudhuryProducer: Drew HyndmanEditor: Maggie Latham
08/06/2228m 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
04/06/2225m 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 FarmerRussell Attwood – The National Allotment Society
01/06/2228m 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
28/05/2225m 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 FoundationKayleigh Hartigan – Founder – Fertility MapperKatherine O’Brien - Associate Director of Communications and Campaigns – British Pregnancy Advisory Service
25/05/2228m 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
21/05/2227m 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
14/05/2227m 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 FinanceDr Roger Barker - Director of Policy and Corporate Governance - Institute of DirectorsGary Rycroft - Partner - Joseph A. Jones & Co.
11/05/2229m 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
07/05/2226m 9s

06/04/2022

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 panelDhara Vyas - Policy, Advocacy & Campaigns Energy UK Abby Jitendra - Principal Policy Manager on Energy, Citizens Advice
04/05/2229m 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
30/04/2226m 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
27/04/2229m 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
23/04/2224m 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 RothenbergMike Brewer, Chief Economist, The Resolution FoundationLaura Suter, Head of Personal Finance, A J BellPresenter: Paul LewisProducer: Drew HyndmanEditor: Emma Rippon
20/04/2229m 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 SavingsChampion.co.ukPresenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Louise Clarke-Rowbotham Editor: Richard Vadon
16/04/2225m 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 managementBecky O’Connor, Head of Pensions and Savings at Interactive InvestorFind out more: https://makemymoneymatter.co.uk/Producer: Drew HyndmanEditor: Maggie Latham
13/04/2228m 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)
09/04/2229m 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: https://www.nrla.org.uk/ https://www.shelter.org.uk/Producer: Drew Hyndman Editor: Emma Rippon
06/04/2228m 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)
05/04/2226m 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)
02/04/2225m 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: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/ https://www.bolasol.co.uk/Producers: Drew Hyndman and Sylvie Carlos Editor: Emma Rippon
30/03/2232m 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 bbc.co.uk/sounds.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.
03/03/221m 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 https://www.jobsaware.co.uk/workersProducer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
23/02/2227m 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 - moneyhelper.org.uk/en/money-troubles/dealing-with-debt# Citizens Advice - citizensadvice.org.uk/debt-and-money/ Step Change - stepchange.org National Debtline - nationaldebtline.org Advice NI - adviceni.net Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Paul Waters Reporters: Dan Whitworth & Athar Ahmad Researcher: Marianna Brain Editor: Emma Rippon
19/02/2225m 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: https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/the-modern-dating-economy/id1539621613 https://www.johemmings.co.uk/Producer Smita Patel Editor Rosamund Jones
16/02/2236m 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
15/02/2229m 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
12/02/2229m 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 OfgemThey 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: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/ https://www.energy-uk.org.uk/ Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
09/02/2239m 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
05/02/2225m 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 servicesFor more information about fostering, including the finances of looking after children, you can access the following: https://fosterwales.gov.wales/ https://www.nafp.org.uk/ https://www.thefosteringnetwork.org.uk/And you can listen to an earlier edition of Money Box Live about Carer Leaver finances here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m00139kmProducer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
02/02/2234m 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 RipponEmail story ideas and questions to moneybox@bbc.co.uk or tweet @Moneybox
29/01/2229m 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 https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/get-more-help/if-you-need-more-help-about-a-consumer-issueProducer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
26/01/2225m 24s

NFTs

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
24/01/2234m 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
22/01/2225m 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: www.citizensadvice.org.uk/housing/renting-a-home/using-a-guarantor www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk/consumers/complaints-can-help/credit-borrowing-money/guarantor-loansProducer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
19/01/2232m 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
15/01/2231m 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. www.becomecharity.org.uk - helpline 0800 023 2033 or advice@becomecharity.org.ukwww.careleavers.comProducer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
12/01/2230m 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 StaplesEmail moneybox@bbc.co.uk or tweet @Moneybox with questions for the team.
08/01/2224m 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
06/01/2225m 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.
01/01/2224m 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
29/12/2128m 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
18/12/2125m 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
11/12/2128m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk to share an experience or with a question for the panel.Producer Smita Patel Editor Emma Rippon
08/12/2128m 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
04/12/2125m 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
01/12/2128m 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
27/11/2129m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk now and please include a phone number if you'd like to join in.Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
25/11/2135m 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
13/11/2130m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk nowPresenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
11/11/2135m 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
06/11/2127m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk and remember to include a phone number if you'd like to take part.Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
03/11/2133m 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
30/10/2133m 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, ICAEWTweet @Moneybox or e-mail moneybox@bbc.co.uk and remember to include a phone number if you'd like to take part.Presenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Rosamund Jones
27/10/2127m 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
23/10/2128m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk 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
20/10/2133m 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
16/10/2125m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk with your ideas and experiences.Presenter: Joice Etutu Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
13/10/2132m 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
09/10/2129m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk 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
06/10/2137m 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
02/10/2126m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk 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 LawPresenter: Paul Lewis Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
29/09/2128m 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
25/09/2125m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk 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 MoneyfactsPresenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
22/09/2128m 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
18/09/2124m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk or Tweet @moneyboxPresenter: Joice Etutu Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
15/09/2126m 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
11/09/2125m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk 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
08/09/2131m 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
04/09/2124m 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
28/08/2124m 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
21/08/2128m 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
14/08/2128m 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
07/08/2128m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk now.On the panel:Laura Johnston, Adviser, UK International Consumer Centre Paul Gardner Bougaard, Chief Exec, Resort Development OrganisationPresenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Sally Abrahams Editor: Alex Lewis
06/08/2128m 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
31/07/2127m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk 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 ForumPresenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Alex Lewis
28/07/2128m 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 GroupPresenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
24/07/2125m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk 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
21/07/2134m 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 campaignerPresenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
17/07/2124m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk to join the conversation.On the panel are:• Ros Bever, Family Lawyer, Irwin Mitchell • Victoria Benson, CEO, Gingerbread • Phil Agulnik, Director of benefits checker entitledtoPresenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Alex Lewis
14/07/2131m 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 InvestorsPresenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
10/07/2133m 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: moneybox@bbc.co.ukPresenter 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 GodmotherPresenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Diane Richardson Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Alex Lewis
07/07/2127m 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
03/07/2129m 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 PeopleIf you've a story or view to share we’d love to hear from you, e-mail moneybox@bbc.co.ukPresenter: Adam Shaw Producers: Diane Richardson and Paul Waters Editor: Alex Lewis
30/06/2135m 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 bbc.co.uk/actionlineGUESTS: 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
26/06/2124m 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
23/06/2129m 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
19/06/2125m 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: moneybox@bbc.co.uk.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
16/06/2127m 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
12/06/2127m 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: moneybox@bbc.co.ukIn 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 DevelopmentPresenter: Louise Cooper Researcher: Anita Langary Producer: Rumella Dasgupta Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Alex Lewis
09/06/2129m 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
05/06/2125m 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
02/06/2128m 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
29/05/2125m 13s

Apprenticeships

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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk now.Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
29/05/2127m 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 electrifying.com, 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
26/05/2128m 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
22/05/2133m 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
19/05/2129m 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
15/05/2127m 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
12/05/2129m 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
08/05/2130m 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 moneybox@bbc.co.uk 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
05/05/2132m 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
01/05/2132m 55s