When will Interest Rates rise?

When will interest rates rise?British savers have already had to endure over four years of minimal interest rates.  Forward guidance by the Bank of England in August signalled that we would have to wait another three years for an improvement.  However, the economy recovery has since strengthened, will this affect interest rates?

The UK Office for National Statistics confirmed on 25th October that gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 0.8% between July and September.  This was the fastest growth in output since spring 2010, and follows on from 0.7% growth in the second quarter and 0.4% in the first.

UK Taxman Targets Rental Income

UK Taxman Targets Rental IncomeAs tax authorities everywhere look to increase tax revenue, rental income is coming under closer scrutiny.  If you rent out property, whether in Portugal, the UK or elsewhere, you need to be sure that you are paying tax correctly. 

It is quite easy to make mistakes, especially if the property is located in one country and you are resident in another.

The Future of the banking sector in Cyprus

The Final Report  and Recommendations of the Independent Commission on the Future of the Cyprus Banking SectorThe Final Report  and Recommendations of the Independent Commission on the Future of the Cyprus Banking Sector.

CLICK HERE to read the report.


Bank accused of 'unjust enrichment' in landmark mortgage ruling


Following court rulings in Spain, where the handing over of  mortgaged property was deemed sufficient repayment of the loan, Espirito Santo Investment Bank has lost a landmark case in Portalegre on the same point of law.

Espírito Santo Investment Bank, believes that the decision of the Court of Portalegre, on the liquidation of a housing loan by the delivery of the property to the bank, will have "at this time, a limited impact Portuguese banks.” They wish, as this ruling could end the fundamental unfairness of the Portuguese system.

Portalegre mortgage ruling may become law

LawThe Portalegre ruling, that a property returned to a bank will wipe clean the mortgage debt, has delighted consumer groups, and has worried banks.

A working group from the Ministries of Finance, Economy, Justice, and the Bank of Portugal, is reviewing the decision of the court in Portalegre.

Don't lose out on your UK pension or benefit payments

Don't lose out on your UK pension or benefit paymentsBritish expatriates who receive UK pensions and benefits may soon be contacted by the Department of Work & Pensions to confirm their international bank details.
From 31st January 2014, the Department for Work & Pensions will need an International Bank Account Number (IBAN) and Bank Identification Code (BIC) in order to make payments to accounts in Portugal and other Eurozone countries.

Golden visas, cheap at twice the price

Golden visa scheme under Len Port's spotlightTHE STORY SO FAR: The Portuguese government introduced a ‘Golden Visa’ program this year to attract wealthy non-EU foreigners.

Anyone investing a mere €500,000 in property is eligible for a visa that allows them to take up residence, saves them the inconvenience of paying tax on foreign-earned income and gives the right to unrestricted travel within the Schengen zone.

The government is declaring the Golden Visa scheme a roaring success with the biggest number of recipients coming from Russia, China, Angola and Colombia.

IMI payment date delays

IMI payment delaysDo not worry if you are due to make a second IMI payment in September and have not yet been able to make the payment, because in 2013 the dates for payment of your IMI tax (council tax) have been changed.

When the amount of your tax is under 250 euros, the payment is done in one instalment only in April, but when the amount due is between 250 and 500 euros, the payment is done in two instalments, one in April as before, and the second has been moved to November instead of September.