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Money Masterclass

Money Masterclass

Category: Money

Updated: 17/03/2011
First Published: 17/03/2011

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

Money Masterclass

Welcome to your weekly dose of the best new products to hit the personal finance market.

This week, we showcase a couple of savings accounts that should appeal to both serious and casual savers, while there are a couple of mortgages for buyers with a 25% deposit.

As usual, we've broken the products down into technical details and unbiased analysis, so you know exactly what you're getting.


ING Direct - Product analysis

  • ING Direct has increased its Cash ISA rate by 0.29% to 2.76%, including a 1.76% bonus for 12 months.
  • The AER is guaranteed to be 2.80% for 12 months.
  • Savers can invest a minimum of £1.
  • No advance notice is required to access funds.
  • Transfers in are not accepted.
  • The account can be operated by savers aged 18 and over by telephone or online. analysis
The latest ISA review from ING Direct has seen an increase of 0.29% to its Cash ISA rate, pushing it further towards the current market leaders. This deal should appeal to savers looking for short term access to their money, although all withdrawals must be made via BACS to a nominated account or transferred to an ING Direct savings account.

First Save - Product analysis

  • FirstSave has launched a new 6 Month Fixed Rate Bond paying an annual rate of 3.00%.
  • A monthly interest option is available paying 2.96%.
  • Savers can invest between £1,000 and £2m.
  • Further additions and early access are not permitted.
  • Savers must be aged 18 and over to operate this online-only account. analysis
FirstSave's latest product review sees its portfolio expanding with the launch of a new six month bond paying 3.00%. Fixed for just six months, this online-only account should appeal to investors who wish to lock money away whilst anticipating imminent interest rate increases. Those looking for an income from their investment can also choose the monthly interest option at 2.96%.

Find the best savings rates for you - Compare savings accounts


Manchester Building Society - Product analysis

  • Manchester Building Society has launched a new fixed rate mortgage especially for remortgage customers.
  • The deal offers a rate of 2.99% for two years, with a maximum loan-to-value of 75%.
  • Customers can borrow between £50,000 and £200,000.
  • An arrangement fee of £999 is payable.
  • Borrowers can also enjoy incentives of free legal fees and a free valuation. analysis
Manchester BS has added to its mortgage range with a two year fixed rate remortgage deal priced at 2.99%. The fee of £999 is reasonable and comparable to the fees on its competitors' products. Flexible features of overpayments and payment holidays help to boost this deal's appeal further.

Halifax - Product analysis

  • Halifax has updated its mortgage range with a new two year fixed rate deal at 3.59% to 31.5.13.
  • Available to purchase customers only, this product has a maximum loan-to-value of 75% and customers can borrow up to £1m.
  • An arrangement fee of £995 plus a completion fee of £245 is payable.
  • The deal also offers flexible features of overpayments, underpayments and the option to take payment holidays. analysis
Available to purchase customers on a repayment basis only, this new deal from Halifax offers a reasonably competitive rate of 3.59% to 31.5.13. Customers can borrow up to 75% of the property value and a combined fee of £1,240 is payable. A host of flexible features boost this product's appeal further. Customers can make overpayments up to 10% of the outstanding balance, underpayments and take payment holidays subject to the lender's approval.

Find the best mortgage rate - Compare best selling mortgages

Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.