Mortgage Rate Changes

The good news for first time buyers is that several providers have dropped their fixed rate mortgages for first time buyers with the market leading rate being offered by Permanent TSB at 3.29%.

However several of the lenders are now only offering the lower rates if first time buyers are able to come up with a bigger deposit.

The market leading rate is only being offered to first time buyers who can come up with a deposit of at least 20% of the house value. While the next best rate being offered is by KBC at 3.3% with first time buyers only required to come up with a deposit of 10%.

Compare mortgage rates on the Irish market at

Credit Cards – how do you use yours?

When comparing credit cards the starting point is to consider how you use your credit cards at the moment and how you intend on using the new credit card.

Which of the below uses do you intend on using the credit card for?

1. Emergencies and Online Purchases only
If you are like many who only use their credit cards for emergencies or buying online and you intend on paying off the balance in full before the grace period runs out, then you should consider credit cards which provide rewards for spending.
One of the best cards on the market to suit this use is KBC’s credit card on which you can earn up to 4% on purchases which can really add up over a year of use.

2. Once Off Purchases
If your aim is to use a credit card for once off purchases such as a holiday or Christmas expenses and then pay off over an extended period of time then the most important element to consider is the APR charged on purchases.
At the moment the best deal is AIB CLICK Visa Credit Card which charges 13.60% on purchases, a whopping 9.1% less in interest than the most expensive deals on the market.
On a once off purchase €3,000 paid off over a year this would mean over €270 less in interest charges.

3. Clearing Existing Balances
If you currently have a large outstanding balance on your credit card which you are trying to clear it is important to consider if you can save money by transferring the balance to another provider who is offering a lower introductory rate on balances transferred.
At the moment there are 4 providers (Permanent TSB,Tesco,KBC,BOI) in Ireland offering introductory rates of 0% for 6 and even 7 months.
If for example you have an existing balance of €3,000 on the most expensive card in the market and are paying 22.70% by transferring the balance to a provider with an introductory rate of 0% you could save over €300 in interest charges.

Always compare the market and make sure you are not paying more interest than necessary!! Use the credit card page to compare the market