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Vinyl Renaissance

They say everything comes back around again if you wait long enough, and the success of 'Underwood Stories In Sound' seems to bear this out. The company publish short stories read by their authors, and published on….Vinyl.! In the age of the podcast, ebook and other forms of instant delivery, it seems almost incomprehensible that something as slow, and cumbersome as vinyl could have a place in the market.

What’s the secret? Well the packaging and cover art is very attractive, and the collectibility is enhanced by just 1,000 of each recording being made. Add in a premium price of £25 and it looks quite a success story.

According to publisher Nathan Dunn, another aspect of the appeal is the experience, “Records are all about the experience. You’ve got to lay them down on the turntable, drop the needle, and then change the side when it’s done. A record makes you slow down, sit back and listen to the words.”

Another factor has to be the novelty value (for people too young to remember vinyl the first time around) and nostalgia (for those who are not too young.)

There are myriad lessons, ideas and spin-offs associated with this story which we don’t have space to go into here. Here’s a few questions to ask yourself though:

  1. What other product might be due for a renaissance?
  2. Would a premium priced limited edition of your product work?
  3. What else might sell on vinyl?
  4. What outdated product might find a new young audience?
  5. What other product might succumb to an ‘experience over function’ sales pitch.
  6. Could repackaging resurrect an old product or lift it to a new level?

Definitely questions for you to think about and see what comes to mind.

BTL Mortgage Deal 

Leeds Building Society has a new, two-year buy-to-let deal at 4.29 per cent for up to 65 per cent loan to value (LTV). It’s out today.
There is also a mortgage at 4.89 per cent for up to 70 per cent LTV and tapered early repayment charges of 3 per cent if redeemed in the first year or the second year. A £199 booking fee applies.
If you are interested in buy-to-let, do drop us a line as we have one or two introductory how-to features you will find useful and can also put you in touch with an online mortgage broker, Dixie Walker, who can provide free advice. 

Best-Buy Car Locations 

We bought a new mini for my wife last year and by trawling for best prices across the country and presenting the best price (from Grimsby) to our local dealer we managed to cut the best part of £2,000 off the price.
As I am now looking for a cut-price, nearly-new upmarket car for myself I was interested in new research from Gumtree which reveals the top 10 places for the cheapest cars.
They are, from one to ten, Leeds, Glasgow, Coventry, Ipswich, Birmingham, Bath, Manchester, Brighton, Middlesborough and Exeter. I’ve always worked on the basis that, when buying a car, it’s worth getting prices from what might be perceived to be poorer areas and it’s a good way to bag a bargain.  

Mortgage Buying Service 

Which? has just launched a new mortgage service for Which? members and their family and friends following Financial Services Authority (FSA) approval earlier this month.
Which? Mortgage Advisers is a telephone-based service from a team of qualified mortgage advisers. What’s good about the service is that, unlike most mortgage brokers, Which? employees are on a salary rather than commission. Go to
As someone with a property portfolio, I am on many mortgage brokers’ lists and it is amazing how recommendations for certain mortgage products rocket when high commissions are involved. We have one or two articles on choosing a mortgage broker available on request.