Charlie Weston is the Personal Finance Editor of the Irish Independent.He campaigns on consumer issues, with a focus on variable mortgage rates, credit unions and high motor insurance premiums. He was first to expose the tracker mortgage scandal.Charlie was honoured with an Outstanding Achievement Award at the annual Business Journalists’ Association and Smurfit Business School journalism awards in 2016. He was chosen as Campaigning Journalist of the Year in 2018 and he has won numerous other journalism awards.The country’s foremost personal finance journalist, he features weekly on ‘The Last Word’ on Today FM, and is a regular contributor on RTE radio, Newstalk and regional radio stations.
People in deep mortgage arrears are not putting themselves forward for a State-backed scheme that allows them to stay in their homes as renters – because they are getting away with paying nothing, it is claimed.
Q I recently received my tax-free, lump sum from my pension. I would like to give my children some of it to help them towards buying a house. What is the best way to do this and are there tax implications to giving money to an adult child? I am aware you can give €3,000 tax free per year, however, I was thinking of a larger sum.
Q I want to switch my fixed-rate mortgage to a lower cost, variable rate. I have approximately €265,000 outstanding on my 30-year mortgage on a house worth €380,000. I am looking at a couple of offers on variable rates, one of which offers 4.2pc, with a cash-back offer of 2pc of the sum borrowed, and another with a lower rate of 2.95pc, but no cash-back offer. Which would be the cheaper option over the full term?
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