Basic Car Tax Information Everyone Should Know

In order to run a registered car or vehicle in the UK you must pay tax. Road Tax greatly depends on the type of car you own, the kind of fuel it uses and the amount of emissions it gives. Throughout this article we will look at the very basic car tax information you should know.

Firstly we will look at the documentation you will need in order to register your car for tax.

• A MOT certificate- if the car is older than 3 years
• A completed V10 or V11 form
• The vehicles registration certificate
• Proof of your insurance policy
• A means of Payment

It is important to make sure that your vehicle registration certificate and MOT certificate are both valid on the date that you wish for your car tax to commence. Failure to ensure the validation of both of these documents will result in you being unable to tax your car.

Car Tax is judged based on the CO2 emissions that your car produces. In the UK there are 13 Tax Bands that your car will fall into, they range from A (The lowest) to M (The Highest). Each band is categorized by the amount of CO2 produced measured by gallon per Kilometre. Smaller, more fuel efficient vehicles will cost less to tax and in some cases may not even cost anything.

Once registered you will be supplied with a car tax disc and must be displayed at all times. The disc should be placed on the passenger’s side of the windscreen and be in full view, without obstruction at all times. Failure to correctly display an in date Tax disc carries a penalty fine of £200.

When selling or scrapping a vehicle you must alert the DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency) as you will still be liable to pay for the vehicles tax. You should send off the appropriate part of your registration certificate to the DVLA at the first instance of your circumstances changing.

Another car tax issue that is often over looked is Company Car Tax. If a company supplies you with a company vehicle you will be liable to pay car tax, or as it is often referred to, benefit-in-kind tax. There are many ways to judge the rate of tax that you will be responsible for paying, but the easiest and most common method is by using a Car Tax Calculator. This feature can be found on many respectable car dealer sites, and will accurately calculate the amount of tax you can expect to pay.

Car Tax is extremely important; failure to tax your vehicle will result in an automatic penalty of £80 as well as a minimum fine of £1000. In addition, your vehicle could be seized, impounded or even destroyed.

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Growing Problem in Real Estate – Mortgage Fraud

Mortgage fraud may continue to plague the real estate industry. Maybe, I am seeing only the 20% Fraud for Property/Housing, as defined by The Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Reasons why mortgage fraud may continue:

1) The escalating cost of housing and the “American Dream” of owning your own home.

2) Licensing for real estate agents and mortgage brokers is much too easy. The requirements for licensing need to require a greater level of education, more than a high school degree as a prerequisite for licensing and harder licensing requirements, such as more pre-licensing education and harder tests. This will result in better people and less people entering the real estate profession.

3) Lenders need to offer less loan programs, for example, stated income loans (some refer to this as inflated income loans) and no doc (no documentation loans).

4) Most lenders require an IRS (Internal Revenue Service) Form 4506 at time of closing. Now, there is something that an underwriter or lender can request information and stop an inflated (aka stated) income mortgage application dead in its tracks. If they lie on their income tax return, is it possible that they would lie on their mortgage application?

5) Lack of educational programs in the real estate profession to identify mortgage fraud – could be wishful thinking, due to the Privacy Act – but at least a start. Where to report suspected mortgage fraud situations to the appropriate law enforcement authorities.

6) The credit reporting and scoring system needs an overhaul. Too often, I find errors on credit reports, where the creditor is not reporting timely or accurately information. For example, a customer settled in full his collection action in the later part of February ’06. The collection agency in the later part of April is still showing a portion of the account as outstanding with a current date. Yes, they reported the payment, but did not remove the negotiated portion of the balance.

7) Lack of control points within the existing system.

What could possibly be done to reduce the mortgage fraud:

1) More checks and balances within the system to identify potential mortgage fraud situations.

2) More education for all real estate professionals – real estate agents, REALTORS, underwriters, lenders, etc.

3) Greater licensing requirements for all. And licensing requirements where no licensing is required at this time.

4) Implementation of a “whistle blower” protection system and telephone hotline.

5) Proactive preventative action on the part of lenders.

6) Enforcement of Section IX – “ACKNOWLEDGEMENT AND AGREEMENT” located on page 3 of the Uniform Residential Loan Application (FNMA 1003): “Each of the undersigned specifically represents to Lender and to Lender’s actual or potential agents, brokers, processors, attorneys, insurers, servicers, successors and assigns and agrees and acknowledges that: (1) the information provided in this application is true and correct as of the date set forth opposite my signature and that any intentional or negligent misrepresentation of this information contained in this application may result in civil liability, including monetary damages, to any person who may suffer any loss due to reliance upon any misrepresentation that I have made on this application, and/or in criminal penalties including, but not limited to, fine or imprisonment or both under the provisions of Title 18, United States Code, Sec. 1001, et seq.;…7) the Lender and its agents, brokers, insurers, servicers, successors and assigns may continuously rely on the information contained in the application, and I am obligated to amend and/or supplement the information provided in this application if any of the material facts that I have represented herein should change prior to closing of the Loan;…”

7) Enforcement of the paragraphs from the typical mortgage, which reference the borrower’s loan application and acceleration clauses: Borrower’s Loan Application. Borrower shall be in default if, during the Loan application process, Borrower or any persons or entities acting at the direction of the Borrower or with Borrower’s knowledge or consent gave materially false, misleading, or inaccurate information or statements to the Lender (or failed to provide Lender with material information) in connection with the Loan. Material representations include, but are not limited to, representations concerning Borrower’s occupancy of the Property as Borrower’s principal residence. Acceleration; Remedies. Lender shall give notice to Borrower prior to acceleration following Borrower’s breach of any covenant or agreement in this Security Instrument…(d) that failure to cure the default on or before the date specified in the notice may result in acceleration of the sums secured by this Security Instrument, foreclosure by judicial proceeding and sale of the Property.

8) Better and possibly required education of prospective borrowers, so they can recognize the impact and identify situations.

Implementation of number 6 above will send shock waves into the communities and cause the less desirable professionals out of business and awareness to borrowers. Many may argue that this will be costly to the overall economy or lenders if foreclosure proceedings are needed, but in the long run there could considerable savings for all.

In summary, mortgage fraud may continue, until such time that the losses reach greater levels unless there is a proactive preventative overall program to curb it. Old country saying “you don’t close the gate after the horse leaves the corral.”

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Turn Leads Into Sales With a 6-Step Marketing Strategy

The phones are ringing, web traffic is up, and the sales manager is telling everyone you’re a marketing genius. Your business-to-business lead generation campaign is a success!

But before you break out the bubbly, remember that getting prospects to express interest in a product or service can be the easy part of business-to-business marketing. Converting those leads to sales is often a lengthy and complex process.

Here’s how to build a smart marketing strategy that engages B-to-B prospects and helps persuade them to say “yes.”

6 Steps for Successful Lead Conversion

Business purchases typically involve multiple decision-makers who can take weeks or even months to select a vendor. Since leads may need to be nurtured over time, you need to build a relationship with these prospects.

Your sales team will make frequent contact with prospects during the sales process, but marketing can play a pivotal role, too. Following these six steps can help you create a successful lead conversion marketing strategy.

1. Capture Contact Data to Facilitate a Dialogue

During lead qualification, capture the contact data needed for an ongoing sales dialogue, especially e-mail addresses and permission to send e-mails. One way to get this data is to require it for fulfillment of your original direct mail offer, such as a product sample, free trial of your product or service, or a premium.

It’s also a good idea to ask prospects to help you identify other team members who will have a role in the purchasing decision, so you can reach out to influencers, authorizers, and end-users.

2. Develop a Data-Driven Contact Management Plan

Use prospect data to build a contact management program, a carefully planned series of regular touches with prospects to keep them interested, keep your product and company top of mind, and create additional opportunities to generate a response.

Use data such as company size, NAICS code, industry, geography, or future revenue potential to group prospects with similar characteristics into segments. Then, develop a marketing communications plan for each segment that regularly delivers information tailored to prospects’ interests.

Most B-to-B marketers try to reach prospects at least quarterly. For others, a bimonthly or monthly contact is appropriate. A mix of tactics and channels, such as direct mail plus e-mail, can help you keep in touch with hard-to-reach business executives.

3. Send Information that Helps Prospects Make the Buying Decision

Your goal is to persuade prospects to make the buying decision. Send information that facilitates that decision, such as:

– Product samples;
– Newsletters about industry trends or product usage, such as new applications, peripherals, upgrades, or enhancements;
– Case studies showing how others are using your product or service;
– Customer testimonials about your company.

4. Tailor the Marketing to the Prospect

Nothing turns off a prospect faster than feeling like you don’t know them. Thus, it’s vital that your lead conversion marketing campaigns reflect your prior contact and the budding relationship.

A data-driven sales/CRM system can help you track contact with prospects and tailor future initiatives to each individual. It’s also smart to customize communications to various individuals within a company according to their level of authority and their role in the buying process.

5. Treat Top Prospects Like They’re Already Customers

Even among qualified prospects, all are not equal. Move your very best leads – those with the greatest likelihood of converting to a sale or offering the highest potential revenue – into a preferred contact queue that treats them like they’re already customers.

Send these prospects higher-end, highly personalized direct mail and consider offering them, for a limited time, select advantages only your customers receive, such as special offers, preferred pricing, new product previews, or private invitations to customer-only events.

6. Create Opportunities for a Face-to-Face Dialogue

The Holy Grail for most business-to-business sales reps is an in-person meeting with the prospect. Identify potential opportunities for face-to-face contact and use direct marketing to promote them. Invite prospects to events, seminars, or educational programs, or encourage them to meet with you or attend activities you sponsor at trade shows.

When They Still Haven’t Said “Yes”

Be realistic about the timeframe for B-to-B lead conversion. What seems like a long time to you can seem perfectly appropriate to the prospect. Keep your best prospects on your contact list, be sure to keep the list current, and continue sending marketing messages to prospects that clearly have a need for what you sell. Communicate regularly, stay on the prospect’s radar screen, and your next marketing initiative could be the one that finally results in the sale.

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Why a Home Equity Loan for Bad Credit Is the Perfect Loan Option

The hardest part of sourcing large loans is the collateral usually needed to convince lenders to approve the application. Small personal loans offer little trouble, but when $75,000 or more is needed, it is a different story. But there is a solution for homeowners, with home equity loans for bad credit and debt management easily accessible.

For those who may be unaware, home equity refers to the value of the home that is not covered by the mortgage. From the viewpoint of the lender, home equity is a highly prized form of security, but from the viewpoint of the borrower, low interest loans are equally prized. This is where home equity loans satisfy both parties.

Of course, there are issues that need to consider before applying for these loans. Knowing the conditions, terms and any hidden charges that might exist, is crucial.

How Equity Loans Work

The mechanics of a home equity loan for bad credit management is not very complicated at all. The purpose of this kind of loan is to convert the value of a home into hard cash, which then can be used to clear existing debts.

Equity refers to the value of a property that is essentially free from the mortgage. There are a number of ways in which equity can be secured or increased, but the most common is by simply making your mortgage payments each month. As the mortgage balance lowers, the equity balance increases until finally, the mortgage is paid off completely, and the equity is at 100%.

The great advantage with using such assured security is that low interest loans are practically guaranteed. This is because the risk of losing money on the deal is removed, so lenders can afford to charge a low interest rate. So, with home equity loans everyone wins.

Why Lenders Prefer Equity

The fact is that lenders prefer to receive repayments on time above everything else. But equity offers a stable form of collateral that is highly attractive to lenders. For this reason, a home equity loan, for bad credit borrowers especially, is the best option when large sums of money are required.

The bottom line is that the equity on a home is always likely to be safe. The market value of the home usually increases, while the mortgage balance decreases. This means that the equity is always growing. So, even if the borrower gets into some difficulty a few years down the line, there is security available to help deal with the problem. So, with no risk involved, they are the safest low interest loans.

For lenders, there are clear benefits too. In the unlikely event that the borrower does default, a home equity loan ensures part of a home is handed over in compensation. So, the chances of getting a return on their money are extremely good.

The Role of Credit Scores

The benefits of a home equity loan for bad credit borrowers are pretty clear, offering the best chance possible of securing significant funds. But that is not to say that their low credit rating is completely ignored. While it is safe to consider them as low interest loans, equity loans can still be affected by extremely low scores, with interest rates rising in accordance.

However, the influence is relatively small when compared to the impact that the same score would have had on a general personal loan. The fact is, home equity loans are proportionately amongst the most affordable loans available.

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