What to read right now…

The number of buy to let companies have soared in the last year – but it’s not as straightforward as simply an increase in popularity.

A government-backed 1% deposit mortgage is apparently being considered for the next Budget. The probability of it actually being introduced seems pretty low in my opinion.

You’re paying way above the odds if you pay monthly rather than annually for your car insurance.

Those pesky hidden fees for online shopping that only appear when you check out will be banned under new legislation.

And finally, if you buy expensive items from Amazon, beware of this scam.

The deal that’s a steal…

Groupon* has a great deal for Vue cinemas right now where you can get 10 tickets for £40, or £4 a ticket.

You are basically buying vouchers that can be redeemed online for cinema tickets. 

However, they have cinemas around the country and the vouchers are even valid in London.

There are restrictions on the types of tickets you can redeem the vouchers against though.

For most venues you can only use the vouchers for super saver tickets although some will also let you use them for standard tickets. You also need to use them by 31 March 2024.

And an actual freebie…

Having issues with your car or haven’t driven it for a while?

You can book a free five-point health check for it at Halfords.

It includes a headlight and brake light check, wiper blade condition check, battery health check and windscreen chip check.

Think of it as a mini MOT, except you don’t have to pay for it.

If you only do one thing…

Check if you need to do a tax self assessment.

The deadline is of course 31 January for both filing your tax return and paying any outstanding charges.

You may need to file a return even if you’re an employee so do double check – especially when some benefits can only be claimed via a tax self assessment.

And if it’s your first tax self assessment, here are some things you should know.