44 episodes

I’m Heather.
A massive personal finance fanatic.
I love to answer people's questions on getting rid of debt, saving, stock market investing, property and retirement.
Subscribe to this podcast if you want to: earn more, save more, invest more and have fun! No episodes in April, August and December - #SchoolHolidays #MumPodcast

The Money Spot™ - UK Personal Finance Heather Katsonga-Woodward

    • Education
    • 4.9 • 18 Ratings

I’m Heather.
A massive personal finance fanatic.
I love to answer people's questions on getting rid of debt, saving, stock market investing, property and retirement.
Subscribe to this podcast if you want to: earn more, save more, invest more and have fun! No episodes in April, August and December - #SchoolHolidays #MumPodcast

    #44 Pension SoS for women and the self-employed

    #44 Pension SoS for women and the self-employed

    I always say that if you get nothing else right in your financial life, at least own where you live outright by the time you hit retirement and ideally much earlier. Well that’s not quite right, the other thing you need to make sure of, is that you qualify for the full UK state pension.

    Currently, when I am 68, for so long as I have 35 qualifying years, I will get £185/week in state pension until my dying day. That’s about £800/month or £9,620/year. This is not an insignificant amount and if you live with someone, i.e. your partner, a sibling or friend, it’s double that as you would each qualify separately.

    My calculations suggest that if you’re living on your own, that amount of state pension would at least cover all basic utilities (water, energy, council tax) and food.

    You can check how many qualifying years you have and whether you can boost them here: https://www.gov.uk/check-state-pension

    If you’re self-employed, to qualify for the full state pension later on, make sure you’re signed up to pay Class 2 national insurance and if there are any gaps in your national insurance record, pay for them asap as you can only fill gaps going back 6 years:
    https://www.gov.uk/national-insurance/national-insurance-classes

    As the state pension is unlikely to be enough, it’s helpful to contribute towards a personal pension (aka a self-invested personal pension or SIPP) as pension contributions get tax relief such taht every £240/month contribution equates to £300/month into your pension pot.

    Based on a 7% gross growth rate of your pension pot (and keeping in mind the historic average return of the S&P 500 is 10%)
    • if you contribute £240 into your SIPP from age 20, you would have £1.6m at age 65.
    • if you contribute £240 into your SIPP from age 25, you would have £1.1m at age 65.
    • if you contribute £240 into your SIPP from age 30, you would have £790k at age 65.
    • if you contribute £240 into your SIPP from age 40, you would have £370k at age 65.
    • if you contribute £240 into your SIPP from age 50, you would have £155k at age 65.

    RESOURCES

    Call me: https://clarity.fm/heather

    B School for Kids and other books:
    https://www.katsonga.com/mybooks.html

    Ask me a question: https://www.katsonga.com/coach.html

    Support the podcast:
    In $: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/TheMoneySpot
    In £: https://www.patreon.com/TheMoneySpot
    Your way: https://www.paypal.me/katsonga

    Related post on my website: https://www.katsonga.com/wealthblog/pension-sos-for-women-and-the-self-employed

    • 10 min
    #43 How we upsized from a £385k home to a £1.1m home

    #43 How we upsized from a £385k home to a £1.1m home

    When you’re at one point in your life it’s often nearly impossible to imagine having much more than what you’ve got – or maybe that’s just my lack of imagination – anyhow, in this podcast I recount the steps we went through to move from our £385,000 beautiful terraced home to a £1.1m detached bungalow in the same neighbourhood.

    We did all this in 2020 but, even as recently as in 2017, when I walked past the homes on the street where we now live, I thought actually living in one of them was pure fantasy for us and at that point, it was.

    It took getting a proper second income, a stamp-duty holiday and an all-time low 5-year fixed interest rate of 1% to achieve this, oh, and a few consumer loans for a short period.

    Was it worth it, 100%.

    One thing I forget to mention in the episode is that one of the key drivers was I saw already expensive properties getting more expensive and mid-priced (like our terrace) to low-priced properties appreciating very little in value or even falling in price – how does that work? I am not sure but I figured there was some kind of bifurcation in the property market with average incomes driving prices on the lower end and something bigger at play with bigger, more expensive properties – they tended to be owned by business people not restricted by average incomes, some people with inheritances and hence large sums to play with and people with much larger incomes…whatever it was, I wanted in.

    The funny thing is, if we sold our new house right now, we would be in a position to buy our old house mortgage-free AND still have £200,000 to £300,000 in change ALTHOUGH our old house has gone up by about £30-40k!

    Listen to the episode and let me know if you have questions.

    My property course on Udemy: https://bit.ly/3OPLebT

    RESOURCES

    Call me: https://clarity.fm/heather

    B School for Kids and other books:
    https://www.katsonga.com/mybooks.html

    Ask me a question: https://www.katsonga.com/coach.html

    Support the podcast:
    In $: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/TheMoneySpot
    In £: https://www.patreon.com/TheMoneySpot
    Your way: https://www.paypal.me/katsonga

    • 37 min
    #42 How you and your partner can split bills without arguing

    #42 How you and your partner can split bills without arguing

    If you’re looking for ideas on how you and your partner can split the household bills without arguing about it, I have a few ideas for you.

    Obviously what you ultimately go for depends on your own specific circumstances, e.g. whether you’re married or in a civil partnership or not in either, employment status, differences in income and personal beliefs, however, you can either:

    1. Split bills fairly – this can mean equally, i.e. 50-50; or in proportion to your incomes.
    2. Approach finances with unity – i.e. all money earned belongs to the household regardless of who earned it and is managed in a unified way. This can work whether your salaries are paid into personal accounts or a single joint account.

    This is all food for thought, not advice, if you want advice based on your own circumstances, speak to a personal financial advisor.

    RESOURCES

    Call me: https://clarity.fm/heather

    B School for Kids and other books:
    https://www.katsonga.com/mybooks.html

    Ask me a question: https://www.katsonga.com/coach.html

    Support the podcast:
    In $: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/TheMoneySpot
    In £: https://www.patreon.com/TheMoneySpot
    Your way: https://www.paypal.me/katsonga

    • 10 min
    #41 Equity release will rob your kids of their inheritance & you of peace of mind!

    #41 Equity release will rob your kids of their inheritance & you of peace of mind!

    If you’re over 55 and own your home outright or have significant equity, banks target you for equity release schemes. There are two types: lifetime mortgages and home reversion schemes.

    With a lifetime mortgage you generally get a loan based on the value of your house and your age – the higher your home’s value and the older you are the bigger the loan you can get. Then, rather than pay interest monthly, compound interest is charged and accumulates without payment until your death at which point your house is sold to pay off the borrowed money and accumulated interest. Most lifetime mortgages have a ‘no negative equity’ clause which means you can lose the full value of your home if you live long enough but no more – there’s a sexy deal if I ever saw one!

    With home reversion you part-sell your home with a right to stay in it until you die or move to a car home. Typically, the loan is worth far less than the actual value of your home. So, if you own a £100k home you might be offered £30k for half ownership. Any increase in value is also shared 50-50.

    In this example, if the house doubles in value from £100k to £200k you’re only entitled to half, i.e. £100k.

    Most people who enter into these schemes are not fully aware of the risks and I don’t believe financial advisors and banks market them in an appropriate way.

    My personal opinion is that to go from owning your home outright to releasing equity, you introduce a potential stressor to your life that you previously didn’t have. Getting lodgers or letting rooms on AirBnb or even getting a part time job may well be able to address your financial issues more efficiently than releasing equity.

    Anyhow, in this episode, I talk about equity release. This is all information and not advice. If you need advice on specifics, speak to a personal financial advisor.

    RESOURCES

    Call me: https://clarity.fm/heather

    B School for Kids and other books:
    https://www.katsonga.com/mybooks.html

    Ask me a question: https://www.katsonga.com/coach.html

    Support the podcast:
    In $: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/TheMoneySpot
    In £: https://www.patreon.com/TheMoneySpot
    Your way: https://www.paypal.me/katsonga

    • 16 min
    #40 A student loan is a form of debt, period! Why I disagree with Martin Lewis...

    #40 A student loan is a form of debt, period! Why I disagree with Martin Lewis...

    Now, I disagree with Martin Lewis (the founder of moneysavingexpert.com) on many issues related to debt but on no issue are we more at logger heads than on student loans!

    Martin Lewis is of the view that UK student loans are not really loans but a form of tax, a graduate tax, in his view…his reasons for thinking this way are based on the way student loans are currently structured. I disagree because viewing UK student loans as a just another tax ignores the following critical issues which are explained in the podcast:

    1. UK student loans are not interest free;
    2. The repayment threshold can change, so: caveat emptor;
    3. Student loans might not be forgiven in the future;
    4. Student loans reduce the rate at which you can save, invest and jump onto the property ladder…

    In the ideal world, student loans wouldn’t exist and everyone could get a tertiary education for free. However, student loans do exist and I think it is helpful to view them as loans and to either avoid them or use them wisely as elaborated in this podcast.

    RESOURCES

    B School for Kids: https://www.katsonga.com/mybooks.html

    Ask me a question: https://www.katsonga.com/coach.html

    Choose a book: https://www.katsonga.com/mybooks.html

    Support the podcast:
    In $: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/TheMoneySpot
    In £: https://www.patreon.com/TheMoneySpot
    Your way: https://www.paypal.me/katsonga

    • 15 min
    #39 Don't Go Henry, Go Cash, First - rushing kids onto bank cards could ruin their financial future

    #39 Don't Go Henry, Go Cash, First - rushing kids onto bank cards could ruin their financial future

    There are a lot of apps out there right now purporting they’re the divine intervention you’ve been waiting for to turn your kids into personal finance ninjas…news flash: you can’t delegate teaching your kids about money to an app.

    The app may be able to relay some basic knowledge but ultimately the best builders of wealth need to only master one thing: their emotions.

    And, like as not, all the behaviours around money in your house – and yes, not talking about money at all counts as ‘a behaviour’ are all adding up towards what your children will ultimately believe about money and how it ought to function in their lives.

    This is what financial psychologist Brad Klontz calls money scripts.

    In addition, we humans are hard wired with certain biases: loss aversion, optimism or confidence bias, the pull of instant gratification, action bias and a bias towards earning rather than saving, to name a few.

    The money scripts you pass on to your children interact with these biases to determine their future responses, fears, anxities and attitude to their financial affairs.

    So, now that I have scared the bejesus out of you, what can you do to pass on a more rational approach to money.

    Well, before you expose them to cash cards or debit cards give them cash – I’m a supporter of making them earn it – then see what they instinctively want to do with it and capitalise on the teaching moments that will bring, and there will be many.

    My son’s basic knowledge of money acquired through our going through stage 1 of B.School for Money-wise, Wealth-bound kids means we are now having really good discussions about money and his reactions to it.

    And having heard Brad Klontz on Paula Pant’s Afford Anything and now on Hidden Brain I have bought Money Mammoth (Amazon USA, Amazon UK) and if I enjoy that I will read more of his books.

    Are you consciously thinking about how your household’s behaviours around money are impacting your impressionable little ones?

    RESOURCES

    B School for Kids: https://www.katsonga.com/mybooks.html
    Money Mammoth by Brad Klontz
    Amazon USA: https://amzn.to/3KLjmTK
    Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/3vL7Vrg

    Ask me a question: https://www.katsonga.com/coach.html

    Choose a book: https://www.katsonga.com/mybooks.html

    Support the podcast:
    In $: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/TheMoneySpot
    In £: https://www.patreon.com/TheMoneySpot
    Your way: https://www.paypal.me/katsonga

    • 26 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
18 Ratings

18 Ratings

Ladylocs62 ,

The Moneyspot - Heather

This podcast is fantastic. I’m in my late 50’s and wish I had known a lot of what Heather has talked about before my husband and I had children. It’s so enlightening, refreshing and I’m learning a lot. Thank you Heather and please continue.

bukkyea ,

Truly brilliant and very informative!

Heather is fantastic and really someone to listen to about all things personal finance.

fgatyhrFnTnTnTnAXxsv ,

Brilliant podcast

I was searching for money and finance podcasts in the UK and this one is just brilliant. Thanks Heather for your helpful information. I’ve learned so much just from listening to few episodes.

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