As a school, we feel strongly that signposting students towards the support and advice required in today’s world for some of the topics below is extremely important.
Feedback from the students suggested that they would appreciate a specific part of the school website where they could visit for more information:
What are interest rates?
Interest is the cost of borrowing money typically expressed as an annual percentage of the loan.
For savers, it is effectively the rate that your Bank or Building Society will pay you for investing with them.
What is a Bank Rate?
‘Bank Rate’ is the single most important interest rate in the UK. We decide this interest rate and explain the reasons behind our decision.
In the news, this is referred to as ‘Bank of England Base Rate’ or ‘Interest Rate’.
We use the Bank Rate in our dealings with other financial institutions. This influences lots of other interest rates in the economy. This includes the various lending and savings rates offered by high street banks and building societies.
Still not sure?
Have a look at this:
What is budgeting?
Budgeting is the process of creating a plan to spend your money. This spending plan is called a budget. Creating this spending plan allows you to determine in advance whether you will have enough money to do the things you need to do or would like to do.
Have a go yourself:
Budgeting is really important in today’s world. Being able to budget will help you to avoid getting into debt, how to save money and also accumulate wealth.
Here is one you can download from Martin Lewis (Money saving expert):
Who can I go to for financial advice and support?
Throughout your life you’re likely to need different financial products. A financial adviser can help you make the right decision about the best product for you.
This website will help support you in choosing the right financial advisor:
This is a great website that will support you in getting the most out of a financial advisor and how they can support you.
What are my consumer rights?
Whenever you buy something, be it a product or a service, on the high street or online, you have rights. Knowing your rights can help if what you have paid for does not meet your expectations or is faulty.
This website details the various consumer rights you have:
What options are available for borrowing money?
The first thing to ask yourself, is do you actually need to borrow money? This question is essential when working out how much you need to borrow, how much you can afford to repay and what you need the loan for?
This is an excellent website that will talk you through the different stages of borrowing money and what your options are:
Whats the best way to save money?
There are many ways to save money, but these depend on your personal circumstances, such as your job, lifestyle, responsibilities, credit history, dependencies’ and many other factors. Sometimes the best thing to do is to consider all of the options and decide which one better suits your personal circumstances:
How do I compare financial products?
Websites that allow you to compare multiple products have become extremely popular in recent years. Try having a go at ‘Go Compare’ to see what you think. Be prepared though, as they can take up quite a bit of time. All of these website’s will require quite a lot of information on your personal circumstances before showing you the best products to consider.
How can I avoid identity theft and fraud?
Identity theft happens when a person steals your personal information to use it for illegal activities. This mostly happens electronically, however it also happens through methods as simple as stealing sensitive mail out of your mailbox (bank statements etc..), or someone breaking into your home.
There are many things that you can do to prevent identity theft and fraud:
- Protect Your Passwords- Use a different password for each online account. Keep them protected using an online password manager. The most secure passwords contain at least 8 characters and a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols.
- Use Cash- Debit and credit card information is always being stolen. I prefer to use cash for most of my transactions. Cash is king!
- Never Give Information to Unsolicited Callers- Although there are some legitimate businesses that sell over the phone, many aren’t.
- Keep Your Smartphone Protected- Use an antivirus app. Also use a password lock and a data deleting app that you can access from a computer if your phone is stolen. Only download apps from a trusted app store.
- Secure Your WiFi at Home- Use secure encryption on your home network so that it can’t be easily hacked.
- Don’t Click the Links- If an email is suspicious, don’t click any links. If you do click a link, run a full scan with your antivirus software ASAP.
- Keep Your Operating System Up to Date- Keep your Operating System and web browser up to date. Enabling automatic updates in your settings achieves this very well without having to constantly do it yourself.
- Use a Firewall and Antivirus Software- You can also set these up for automatic scans to consistently keep your computer clean from viruses and other problems.
- Check Your Bank Accounts Frequently- The more often you check your accounts, the more likely you are to spot suspicious activity.
- Only Buy From Online Retailers You Trust- There are tons of scam sites out there offering incredibly low prices on desirable items. If the price sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
- Never Use a Public Network When Accessing Sensitive Information- Wait to get onto a secure network before checking your bank account or accessing other private information.
- Use an Identity Protection Service- Services such as Life Lock and Identity Guard can provide constant monitoring and keep you protected if your identity is compromised.
What is insurance? Is it important?
Insurance safeguards against things going wrong, breaking down, accidents and health issues. You have to pay a premium fee but you can be covered for thousands and thousands of pounds should the worst happen. There are different types of insurance.
These are the most common:
- Home insurance
- Car insurance
- Travel insurance
- Life insurance, critical illness, income protection and payment protection
- Private medical and dental insurance
- Pet insurance
If you click any of the above they will take you to the Money Advice Service website which is an excellent source of guidance and information and can talk you through what it covers and whether you need it or not.
What is a payslip and deductions?
A payslip can be quite confusing at first glance. There are multiple numbers on there and your final pay may be a little less than you were expecting! It’s really important that you understand how much you are being paid and how / what deductions you have had before your final pay figure is calculated.
Here is a labelled example to take a look at. Please remember that each company has slightly different payslips and layouts, that being said, a lot of the headings etc will be the same, just in a different place.
This video will show you what deductions you may incur and what they mean: