Blog – McCarthy & Associates – Galway Talks, 06/08/2015

Issue: New survey highlights savings to be made by switching your mortgage.
Comment: The Central Bank recently announced the results of a survey they conducted into the benefits of switching your mortgage from one institution to another. The findings suggested that considerable sums can be saved by moving. The problem here is most people are not in a position to be able to do so, due to their credit history or the size of the mortgage etc and therefore this option is closed to them.
There is no doubt, that if you are in a strong position financially, where switching is an option for you, assuming that you are on a variable rate only, then you should look at shopping around.

Question: I have some money on deposit and as interest rates are so low I am looking at other options. What is your opinion about buying Prize Bonds or investing in Gold?
Answer: Some people have an idea that investing in Gold protects your money. This is a myth as Gold is a commodity like any other and fluctuates in value.
For example, at its peak Gold touched nearly $1900 an ounce and is now less than $1100.
Anyone who had this view of Gold before as a safe home has been seriously disappointed.
With regard to Prize Bonds, this is something you do with a small proportion of your money where you want the option of an unexpected windfall! However, I would never recommend anybody to consider Prize Bonds as an investment.

Question: I have a life policy attached to my mortgage which I feel is expensive. I purchased it through the bank that I got my loan from. Should I consider shopping around for a better deal?
Comment: You have no obligation to maintain or buy a life policy from the lender that you are with. I would therefore suggest that you shop around and see if you could get a cheaper alternative.