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Lib Dems would allow councils to double tax on second homes

The Liberal Democrats is to announce plans to give local authorities power to double council tax on second homes. The announcement comes as part of a “Countryside Charter” unveiled today in Cornwall by Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg. The Lib Dems hope that by allowing councils to charge up to 200 per cent council tax, […]

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Tories pledge to extend Right to Buy

Prime Minister David Cameron will announce today that a Conservative government would extend the Right to Buy programme to 1.3m housing association tenants. Some 500,000 housing association tenants can currently purchase their homes under the existing “Right to Acquire” scheme. The Conservatives would also raise the discount offered to housing association tenants to match the […]

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FOS rules against HSBC over rejecting mortgage based on age

The Financial Ombudsman Service has upheld a complaint against HSBC for unfairly rejecting a mortgage application on the grounds of age in the first case of its kind. The Sunday Times reports a couple in their forties, who do not wish to be named, were turned down when applying for a joint £250,000 interest-only loan […]

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DB transfer shouldn’t be all-or-nothing

By Steve Webb, director of policy In my recent discussions with advisers, a hot topic has been the growing number of people interested in transferring their defined benefit pension rights into a defined contribution pension scheme. With many pension schemes offering eye-watering transfer values, this is likely to be an area of increasing interest. Yet […]

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