Saving for your first home is tough, but the government’s ‘Help To Buy ISA’ scheme aims to make it easier for individuals trying to get on the property ladder. Continue Reading…
One of our big indulgences is a good quality scented candle. Cosying up on the couch, reading a book with the warm fragrance of a candle creeping around the room is a wonderful extravagance. But scented candles can be expensive – with a 2.5kg Jo Malone luxury candle retailing at around £300.
Luckily, the high street has come to the rescue and giving the luxury brands a run for their money. We look at some of the best budget copycat versions of fragrant candles on the market.
So, should Jo Malone be worried? Let’s find out!
B&M – Karina Bailey 15cmx15cm
The budget store that you cannot help but love have released their own range, which could give Jo Malone a run for their money. Their line of Karina Bailey candles are available in Cedar & Plum (which is reminiscent of Jo Malone’s English Oak & Redcurrant) and Raspberry & Oud (which is identical to the upmarket brand’s Velvet Rose & Oud), which will fill your home with the most gorgeous of fragrances and retail for £14.99.
Aldi – No.1, No.2 and No.3
Launched amid much fanfare last year, the first round of these candles sold out in Aldi stores in about 7.6 seconds. The supermarket duly responded to demand, and now the candles are regularly stocked in store, together with a reed diffuser line. These candles are an unashamed rip-off of the Jo Malone big three fragrances – Pomegranate Noir, Lime, Basil & Mandarin and Blackberry Bay and at £3.99 – we’re willing customers.
Aldi – Scentcerity Tin Candles
The German supermarket is at it again, this time leaning heavily on the Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery line with its copycat versions of the Lily-Flame tin candles that normally retail from £7 to £20 in shops like John Lewis and Waitrose. The Scentcerity range is a purse-friendly £2.79, however, and are available in Velvet Rose, Autumn Garden and Moonflower.
Moneybright conclusion: While the cheaper versions from B&M and Aldi lack the complexity and intensity of the posher versions, these are incredible value for money. And as we’re sinking into winter, a great day-to-day candle to have on the go when you get back from work. We’re stocking up for the coming season!
With the indomitable rise of Amazon, eBay and other online retailers, the footfall on the traditional high street has significantly reduced. More and more shoppers are turning to their keyboards to find the latest deals, rather than rifle through disordered sale rails.
The ease, convenience and speed of internet shopping has made it the success story of the past decade.
Data released by the Office of National Statistics, (ONS), has revealed online shopping figures for 2017.
While the figures are up, the increase from a decade ago isn’t that drastic. There has been no increase in the past twelve months, and only 24 percentage points up since 2008.
The bottom line shows that this year, 77% of adults in Great Britain have bought goods or services online – and the majority of these consumers are younger. Yet, evidence suggests that older generations are becoming savvier when it comes to buying things over the internet.
According to ONS, the largest growing sector for online shopping is the 55-64 age group, which has grown by 30 percentage points since 2008. In contrast, the age group that shows the slowest growth is the 25-35 year age group, which grew by just 17 percentage points.
Despite this, the 25-35 year age group bought more regularly than any other age group – with 26% using the internet to buy goods eleven times or more over the past three months. Only 7% of the 55-64 year age group matched this frequency.
When it comes to the most popular items to buy, clothing and sports goods are at the top of the list, bought by 56% of adults in 2017. Household goods, including furniture and toys, was the second most popular – and bought by 50% of adults. Holiday accommodation came third.
It’s Fresher’s Week, and the merry-go-round of student unions, halls of residence, making friends, late nights and Freshers’ Fair is in full swing. It’s exciting, it’s raucous and for most of you, it’s your first taste of proper independence.
But with this freedom, is some hefty responsibility. You are now in charge of your own finances, the food in your cupboard and your bank balance.
The plastic might be getting swiped left, right and centre right now, but you’ll need to learn to live within your means very quickly. Here’s a few tips on how to get through the next few years without ending up ringing up the Bank of Mum and Dad.
- Don’t get excited when your loan/grant comes in
It may look like a sizeable amount in your bank account, but this has got to get you through the next few months. While it may be tempting to go on a celebratory bender or a massive extravagant food shop at Waitrose, it’s all about pacing yourself. Work out a weekly budget and stick to it.
- Reward yourself
There are ways to reward yourself while living frugally, though. If you’re saving up for festival tickets, or a trip to Europe, you can put aside a little money every week. By not buying Starbucks, or not going to the Student Union every night, you’ll feel better because your good behaviour is being rewarded. While you miss out on a night out, it’s all good, because you’ll be going on holiday while will be a hundred times more fun than drinking cheap cider from a plastic pint pot at the same place you go every week!
- Separate budgets
That money in your bank account will be spent on different things, so work out how much you’re going to put aside for food/entertainment/bills/savings each week. There are some brilliant apps which are available to download for free, like DailyBudget, which can help you divide your money up to give more order to your finances.
- Come to terms with your balance
Checking your balance can terrify people who haven’t got control over their finances. While nights out and shopping sprees are fun, the fear of checking your balance the next day and trying to budget around it, is not. Make it a habit to check your balance everyday, that way you get to see the impact of buying those trainers on a whim, or stopping off at that deli for a nice lunch.
- Get a job during the holidays
Make sure you get a job at half term and holidays, the wages will come in very handy. Check in at pubs and cafes, anywhere that can takes on casual staff. And don’t think that because you’re earning, you can be frivolous. This is the real world now – all that money has to be put aside for when you will really need it!
A recent report in ThisisMoney has looked at some data released by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) regarding house prices in the UK.Continue Reading…
We’ve all been there – desperately needing our phone after it has ran out of battery.
There’s nothing more infuriating than needing to use our phone in a place where there’s no clear means of charging up the battery.
However, one video suggests a DIY lifesaver hack that could help us out in emergencies.
The YouTube video has gone viral showing viewers how to construct a DIY phone charger when the normal methods of powering a phone are unavailable.
However, is it as safe as it looks?
The method requires a 9v battery, a coiled spring from a pen, a car charger and a phone.
To generate power, connect the metal point on the car charger to one of your battery’s sprockets.
Then connect one end of the coiled spring to the second sprocket of the battery, and then connect the spring’s other end to the metal piece on the side of the car charger.
Next, connect your cable to the phone and the USB port of the charger as normal.
Reviews across the internet have been mixed with some critics saying this could be dangerous to overall function of your phone.
However, it may help some people in emergency situations.
Matthieu Dubarry, an electrochemist at the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute who is an expert in batteries, speaking to DailyMail.com has claimed that trying to charge a phone with a 9V battery ‘is certainly not a good idea because of the voltage.’
‘You don’t want to put anything past 4.5 volts.’
‘That’s really really bad,’ he echoed, emphasising that no batteries, even lower than 9V, should be used.
If you attempt this for too long and the battery gets too hot, the phone can explode.
Sometimes this can happen right away and other times it can take two or three days.
Ikea has launched its new solar battery unit which has come with the claim that it could DOUBLE solar panel savings.Continue Reading…
When did you get to grips with money? From an early age, or the hard way, by getting stranded penniless at university or abroad?
Education and financial experts believe that teaching children at an early age about the value of money is key to greater financial literacy later in life.
There has been a greater focus on children learning about money recently – something that isn’t a part of the current national curriculum.Continue Reading…
Watching programmes like the Antiques Roadshow, you might dream of uncovering a dusty Monet up in the attic. But according to antiques expert Tracy Martin, you could be sat on a goldmine – for the most surprising items.
Many modern objects are amassing huge value – and you might well have one or more of these items tucked away somewhere in your home. Time to uncover the potential treasure!Continue Reading…
Crisp manufacturers Walkers are threatening to bin some of its most popular flavours – and the UK is in uproar.