| 10.7°C Dublin

Sterling bank accounts

Whisper it. The euro is looking a bit ropy. The latest "solution" is probably just a bit of sticking plaster. The euro has tumbled against the dollar and the pound in recent months and it doesn't look like picking up anytime soon... unless some brilliant wheeze is unveiled to fix the mess. Any smart punter will diversify the risk in case the whole house of cards comes tumbling down. Foreign currency accounts can be really high-risk stuff but in these unprecedented times, anything is possible. So it's a thumbs up for warm beer, football hooligans and Princess Kate as sterling looks a safer refuge. For €50,000 on deposit in sterling for a year.

Best: Investec 1.80 per cent

Avoid: Ulster Bank 0 per cent

Saving: €900

Contact www.investec.ie or 01 4210000

Apartment contents cover

Most apartments have some form of insurance if the whole things crumbles into dust. But not all, so have a squint at your lease. But the contents of your pad -- televisions, iPads, furniture and whatnot aren't included. Cover of €60,000 for a two-bed apartment in Smithfield, Dublin 7, with no claims, no accidental damage and an excess of €300 for a 30-year-old chap with a tattoo.

Best: Chrome Insurance €116

Avoid Zurich €420

Saving €304 a year

Contact www.chromeinsurance.ie or 1890 247 663


We haven't covered mortgages in this column for absolutely ages because the banks have stopped lending. But apparently someone got a loan a couple of weeks ago. It's probably the first one since 2007. We're pricing up a €140,000 loan over 30 years for a house valued at €220,000, with repayment numbers from the National Consumer Agency. The loan is fixed for five years and then things get scary. These figures are largely representative, as there's not much of a chance that the bank will hand over the money.

Best: Ulster Bank €738.77 per month

Avoid: ICS €802.83

Saving: €768.72 in first year

contact: www.ulsterbank.ie or local branch

Sunday Indo Business