Happy Easter everybody!

I'm taking a week's break for Easter. Hope you all enjoy the holidays and that the Easter Bunny brings you lots of treats! My next blog will be Tuesday 30 April. See you then!
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How safe is your cash Isa?

How secure are my savings inside a cash Isa? Most people assume their nest-egg is safe as houses because cash is risk-free. For those Isas which are invested in cash, this is true. But what if, in fact, your cash Isa is invested in something else altogether? There is a certain sort of Isa on the mar...
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Second-hand or fake for designer brands: which is best?

Just back from a weekend in London where I was thrilled to pick up a pair of Tory Burch Minnie Ballet Flats for £70. That’s just less than a third of their normal price of £215. I have coveted a pair of these shoes for several years now but, strangely enough, could never seem to find the money to pa...
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Win a year’s worth of discounts on cinema, restaurants and family days out

To celebrate the Easter school holidays, we’ve teamed up with Kids Pass, the UK’s No.1 family discounts app for your chance to win a FREE Kids Pass annual membership. The Kids Pass app gives you instant access to thousands of offers, including up to 40% off cinemas nationwide (seven days a week, adu...
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How to save on your broadband costs

Last year I wrote about the terrible broadband service  I was getting from BT. In a nutshell, I was paying £42.99 a month, including line rental, for a speed of 50 MBS when I was actually getting 25 MBS. Since then, BT have made some improvements to the cabinet at the top of Minted Avenue. When...
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Car servicing: what really needs to be done?

I had a narrow miss with the car servicing last week. The Minted-mobile (our trusty Ford S-max) was due for its annual check and I readied myself for a massive bill. I know that I should find a more economic mechanic than the Ford specialist garage. I also know that I can’t rely on that old adage th...
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Isas and Brexit: three solutions for getting tax perks without withdrawal symptoms

This year’s tax-free allowances in Isa and pension contributions are still up for grabs but only until 5 April. All the Brexit nonsense has put many people off committing money this year, understandably. However, there are ways to get your tax perks without getting caught in any Brexit blowout. Here...
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Will I need an international driving licence in Europe after Brexit?

As the Brexit juggernaut rumbles along, I’m starting to worry about my Mallorca mini-break in May. Team Minted will need to hire a car and, the way it’s looking, the driver could need an international driving permit (IDP). It all depends on whether the UK leaves Europe with a deal or not. At the mom...
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Where to invest outside the UK in 2019

Last week I wrote about investing in the UK and sensible places to put your money. This week I’m looking at areas outside the UK where Brexit-fearers might feel more confident about investing. It’s a good idea to make up your mind soon. You can stash up to £20,000 this year in either cash or investm...
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Cash Isas – where is the best rate?

Virgin Money emailed me last week to tell me my cash Isa was maturing. They’ve paid me a not-that-exciting 1.3% on my £5,000 over the past year. I decided it was time to look around for something better. One option was to stay with Virgin and transfer into a follow-on cash Isa. The suggested product...
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Where should you invest this year?

If you’re brave enough to overcome fears of Brexit and a global slowdown, where should you invest this year? You can squirrel away up to £20,000 this year in the tax perk Isa account but you must do it by the end of the tax year (5 April) or lose the allowance entirely. Of course you can have the mo...
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Car rental rip-offs abroad and how to dodge-em

Hiring a car abroad this Easter? One of the easiest pitfalls to avoid – and there are many – is being forced into buying overpriced insurance at the rental desk when you pick up the car. Basic cover is included in the rental price but usually it doesn’t include damage to tyres, windows, the interior...
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Start your journey as an investment wonder woman here

Having your own money is a crucial step on the way to empowerment for a woman, or in fact as an individual of any gender. Making sure your nest-egg is growing at its optimum rate is key, yet many women shun investing in favour of ‘safer’ cash savings. Being cautious is one thing, but depriving yours...
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Are you being fleeced for paper phone bills?

I was horrified to find out last week that I am paying £3 extra every time BT sends me a paper bill in the post for my second landline. As they do it every month, that’s a whole £36 a year on top of the iniquitous rental charge of £19.99 a month. It’s not often you have the Daily Mail to thank for a...
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Should I invest ahead of Brexit?

Avoiding the stock market because of the looming spectre of Brexit is a pretty decent excuse for not investing your Isa allowance this year. But is it valid in reality? This tax year, you can put away up to £20,000 in an Isa and shelter it from further income or capital gains tax. It’s a really quit...
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Cheap prom dresses: how to be a budget belle of the ball

Shopping for prom dresses, not skiing, was how I spent the half-term holiday. I was hoping for a lovely bonding experience with Dear Daughter of trying on wonderful creations. Instead it was a horrible slog of ghastly backless bling and, in one specialist shop, the most barefaced, hard-sell tactics ...
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How you can help teenagers remember their bank passwords

Another half-term, another banking crisis. This time Darling Son has managed to screw up his login details for his mobile Lloyds app. Don’t ask me how, something to do with the fingerprint opening of the smart phone.  The solution apparently is to delete the app and start again. But guess what,...
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Five last-minute half-term fun ideas

We’re only at the start of half-term and the mini-Minteds are already driving each other crazy. As usual, it’s up to Mother to find entertainment. I’ve been too busy to book anything in advance so I’ve been having a look around to see what’s on now. I suspect all the big London museums and attractio...
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Should you ditch the Woodford Equity Income investment fund?

Is it time to sell my investment in the Woodford Equity Income fund? Breaking up is hard to do – especially on Valentine’s Day. I’ve had a particularly long relationship with the manager of this fund, Neil Woodford. Back in the early years of his career at Invesco Perpetual, our partnership was bene...
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Cheapest and quickest way to renew your passport

If your passport needs renewing this year, it might be best to sort it sooner rather than later because of – you guessed it – Brexit. If we leave without a deal, the UK could end up as a so-called third country within the EU’s free-roaming Schengen zone. This could mean you’ll need six months left t...
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