Local Eyes For
As someone who regularly browses quite expensive items on eBay and other
person to person sale sites, I’m acutely aware of a big problem – the item for sale might look good,
but it’s too far away to inspect. It’s with this problem in mind that Oklahoma based WeGoLook was formed.
The company have 7,000 freelance inspectors based all over the United States, and for a fee they will go and look
at the item you’re interested in buying, take photo’s/video, see a working demonstration and write a report. The
most common items inspected are cars, property and boats. They even do work with matchmaking services, and as a
sideline, will report back on the condition of graves and holiday homes for absent interested parties.
The UK isn’t as big as the US, but do people really want to travel from Newcastle to Truro to look at the item
they’re interested in? There’s definitely scope for someone to take the hard work and risk out of person to
person transactions in the UK.
If you’ve built up balances on credit cards, you may want to check
to see how these are settled by your payments. You see, it’s common practice for some card providers to use
your monthly payment to pay off the cheapest debts on the card first and the more expensive debts last.
Some providers - American Express, Capital One Bank, MBNA Europe Bank, Nationwide BS, SAGA, Sainsbury's Finance,
The Co-operative Bank and Virgin Money – use your money to settle your most expensive borrowing's first; others do
it the other way round and some financial experts are suggesting clients may be able to claim back some of the
extra interest they’ve paid because of this. More to come on this – we are taking soundings.
Meantime, the good news is that, from 1 January 2011, credit card providers will have to use your payments to clear
the most expensive borrowing's first. So, according to Moneyfacts.co.uk, a borrower with a balance of £3,000 and
repaying £100 per month could see the interest paid over the life of the debt fall by 40 per cent or
The Foreign Office is alerting holiday makers to check they are fully insured when they go skiing. The Foreign
Office states that close to 50 per cent of skiers mistakenly believe the European healthcare card covers ‘just
about everything’ in Europe.
The fact is, it doesn’t. It gives you basic healthcare in the European Economic Area (EU, Iceland, Norway) and
Switzerland but it does not cover the cost of transport off the slope, a helicopter ambulance or repatriation, as
The Foreign Office says, "We strongly advise those hitting the slopes this winter to take out comprehensive travel
insurance. Many skiers will be unaware that their insurance may not cover them if they've been drinking alcohol or
for skiing off-piste. Medical treatment and repatriation can leave you thousands of pounds out of
Incredibly, it’s been 20 months since the base rate reached 0.5 per cent – good news, generally, for borrowers but
not so good for savers. What everyone wants to know is what happens next, when and by how much?
Of course, none of us have a crystal ball but the most recent Reuters poll of economists suggests that the base
rate will stay as it is until late 2011 when it will rise to 1 per cent.
If you share that view then, as a saver, you may want to lock any surplus cash into, say, a one-year savings deal.
If you are a borrower, looking for a new mortgage perhaps, then you may wish to look to lock into a best-buy deal
before that base rate starts top creep back upwards.
The Trading Standards Office are sending out warnings about a new postal scam.
If you receive a card from a company called PDS (Parcel Delivery Service) suggesting they were unable to deliver a
parcel and you need to contact them on 0906 6611911 (a Premium rate line) then please do not call this number. This
is a mail scam originating from Belize and if you call the number and you start to hear a recorded message you will
already have been billed £315 for the phone call. For more information, see the Crime Stoppers website: