Patience a virtue for today's consumers

WHAT do we want? Everything. When do we want it? Now. But not all today's consumers demand instant gratification and are unable to wait for a reward, according to a poll commissioned by Standard Life.

It found that only one in eight of us would choose the instant gratification of a 640 holiday this year, rather than wait five years for a holiday worth 5,000.

So can patience bring its own reward? Five years was how long it took James Dyson to develop his iconic vacuum cleaner, and Mark Zuckerberg to develop Facebook from a small local operation to a social network of 250 million users.

Holidays hit lending

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FIGURES from the Council of Mortgage Lenders reveal that new loans fell to 9.8 billion in April, down 14 per cent from March, and 5 per cent lower than April last year.

However, the Royal Wedding and a string of bank holidays have made it difficult to assess the figures, says the council.

"Statistical noise associated with extended holidays around Easter and the Royal Wedding makes it harder to read the immediate market situation," said the CML's chief economist Bob Pannell.

"This represents an unfortunate temporary loss of signal at a time when it would be useful to gauge the resilience of house purchase demand.

"Levels of activity look set to remain broadly flat over the near term," he added

PPI claims warning

CONSUMER lobby group Which? is warning against using a claims management company to claim compensation if you were wrongly sold payment protection insurance – or lose out on more than 2 billion as these companies swallow a quarter of payouts.

Which? chief executive Peter Vicary-Smith said: "Anyone who thinks they may have been mis-sold PPI should complain directly to whoever sold it to them. By going to a claims management company, you'll pay what could be a lot of money for something you can easily do yourself. If your bank rejects your complaint, always go to the Ombudsman."

VAT cheats crackdown

HMRC plans to launch a new campaign later this summer to crack down on VAT cheats, focusing on individuals and businesses who are trading above the VAT threshold but who have not yet registered for VAT. Once turnover reaches 73,000 you are obliged to register.

Cashback offer for savers

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SCOTTISH Friendly has launched a cashback offer with its Bonus Stocks and Shares with Quidco. Savers will pay an initial charge of 4 per cent on a minimum 1,000 investment but this will be reimbursed in cashback via Quidco after the 30-day cancellation period.

Bonus Isa customers will also receive a 5 cashback when their transaction has been validated to cover the membership paid to join the Quidco website.