Pounds to Pocket withdraws birthday celebration loan promotions

http://images.cdn.fotopedia.com/flickr-5045502202-hd.jpg
http://images.cdn.fotopedia.com/flickr-5045502202-hd.jpg

There has been enough news in the payday loans industry of late to wrap the entire quantity of fish and chips consumed in the UK over the summer. That’s not a fact of course, merely a guess, and chip shops aren’t allowed to wrap their wares in newspaper any more because all those inky fishcakes, so it’s all completely by the by.

The latest news story emanating from the payday lenders industry to receive widespread news coverage is the withdrawal of an email sent by the payday lender Pounds to Pocket, currently one of the larger firms in an industry in which Wongaleads the way.

The email sent by Pounds to Pocket – owned by CashEuroNetUK – arrived in prospective and past customers’ inboxes containing the subject line: “We’d like to wish you the best on your special day! Now you can apply for the money you need to enjoy your birthday worry-free.”

Those payday lenders working hard to clean up the reputation of the industry and adhere to the tough new rules imposed by industry regulator the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) must have been exasperated by the use of such a class advertising stunt by a lender that’s big enough to know better.

Widespread criticism of the ad

The Citizens Advice charity was quick to draw the attention to the email, complaining about the casual “worry-free” attitude it endorsed and encouraged. Not only did it underplay the serious nature of a short-term loan, it also encouraged prospective borrowers to use the money irresponsibly to fund birthday parties and treats.

CashEuroNetUK responded to the complaints by acknowledging that a short-term loan was a serious consideration. It also explained that it went to “great lengths” to ensure its emails were not sent to groups for whom the ad could be inappropriate or detrimental.

In this case, it actually beggars belief that a lender would be as stupid as to send out emails that were obviously going to fly so close to the wire and attract negative attention. Perhaps Pounds to Pocket was of the view that any press is good press, after all, given the crackdown it does seem unlikely that such an email could be sent without expectations of reprisals further down the line.

The Advertising Standards Authority’s response

Upon further investigation, the Advertising Standards Authority(ASA) found that a 20 percent discount was offered on the first scheduled payment to any borrower who applied for a loan on the day the email was received. If approved for a loan, the customer would then have to wait just ten minutes for the funds to appear in their account.

In its ruling on the email, the ASA said: “While possibly desirable, having money to spend on birthday celebrations was unlikely to be seen as essential, and by encouraging recipients to take advantage of the service through a special offer discount for immediate application, Pounds to Pocket had urged a decision, thereby limiting the amount of time those interested in a loan were able to give to proper consideration.

“We concluded that the email was irresponsible because it encouraged taking a short-term loan for frivolous spending and promoted the process of borrowing as trivial and without responsibility.”

 

In response, Pound to Pocket has removed the email from circulation.

 

What next for the payday lenders?

The recent cleanup of the payday loan industry following new regulations introduced on 1 July and the proposed cost caps has resulted in over a third of UK payday lenders exiting the industry. Those that are left must now be committed to delivering a customer driven service and banishing such murky practices firmly to the past.

Should Pounds to Pocket be fined for issuing such an irresponsible advertising campaign? Have you ever received questionable marketing communications from a payday lender? We’d love to hear from you on this issue, so please leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

 

AUTHOR BIO

 

Caitlin Hope is a UK based freelance writer and finance blogger who busies herself by writing editorials for some of the UK’s most authoritative sites. When she’s not busy writing, Caitlin likes dancing, cooking and sashaying around her basement flat.

Problems and Solutions for Selling Your Home Today

Selling your home in today’s climate is by no means an easy task. With the majority of Western economies still in a state of slow recovery, most prospective buyers are understandably cautious about any investment in the property market. Whilst we can’t control the economy, we can help to highlight a couple of other common problems that stand in the way of that final sale. Read on for some top tips.

Lack of Repairs or Maintenance

Appearance is paramount when it comes to selling your home. So it is absolutely essential that you take care of all basic or major repair and maintenance issues before putting your home on the market. Remember that buyers are incredibly picky. Whilst they know full well that they’re not buying a new house, they’ll still expect it to look as close to new as possible. In this respect, things like stained sinks, or worn floorboards really do make a difference. So do as much as you can to restore your home to its former glory before letting buyers through the door. And finally, don’t forget your front garden. Being that this is the first thing buyers will see upon arrival, it’s important to make a good impression, even if it means shelling out a few extra pennies in order to bring it up to par.

Garish or Unpleasant Color Schemes

Thankfully, the vast majority of homeowners will have the good sense to repaint their house before selling it. Some however, forget that they are no longer decorating for themselves, but for the general public; the people you hope to sell your property to. In this respect, it’s advisable to throw your own aesthetic persuasions out the window (particularly if they look anything like this) and instead go for simple, neutral colors. Simple colours allow the house to speak for itself. Garish ones only draw unwanted attention, and deter serious buyers.

Half-Way Towards That Sale

Implementing the advice given here will give you a much better chance of selling your home. The next step? Find the best possible estate agent. And these days, that means bypassing the conventional big name agents, and going to a professional online estate agent instead. Companies like these (for example, House Network) will provide you with selling packages and options which are infinitely more flexible than your conventional agent. With a top online estate agent and the advice given above, you’re already half-way towards that sale.

Essentials for Every Property Flipping Businesses

Property flipping became incredibly popular in the 2000s. So popular in fact, that anyone with even the vaguest understanding of real estate thought that they could make some fast cash. Of course, they were completely wrong. Property flipping is by no means a simple affair. And if it is to be undertaken as a serious business, there are some key characteristics that the business owner must possess.

Managing Money

Real estate may be a potentially lucrative business venture, but is also very expensive. To start with, you’ll need to be able to fund the purchase of your first property. Whilst you can do this through a loan, it’s highly advisable not to. In the long term, the interest paid on loans simply eats away at your potential profits. So if you are going to be serious about making good returns through property flipping, there is no substitute for cold, hard cash.

Time Constraints

Don’t expect to be flipping houses in a matter of weeks. Renovating and flipping property is time consuming. Firstly, it can take months before you even find the right property. And naturally, once you’ve made the purchase, you’ll want to spend a decent amount of time fixing the property up for resale. Once you’re happy with the renovations, you’ll need to schedule inspections to ensure that the property complies to all the applicable building codes. And finally, you’ll need to invest a massive amount of your time in order to sell the property as well. The basis message? Don’t commit to property flipping unless you can also commit a good deal of your time to the venture.

Skills You Will Need

The people who make the most money through property flipping do so because they’re able to undertake most of the renovations themselves. Professional builders and other skilled professionals have the knowledge and expertise to both find houses and fix them in order to turn a decent profit. And whilst it’s not impossible to make money on a property if you hire professionals to do the renovations, you stand to make far greater returns if you have the skills to get the job done yourself.

Making It in the Real Estate Game

The reality is that, if you’re to turn house flipping into a profitable business, you’ll have to compete with the big boys like House Buyer Bureau. And whilst you’re up against some heavy competition, with the skills listed here you still have every chance of making it in the real estate.