The outlook for your savings
The savings market didn't provide any surprises in 2012 and is unlikely to for 2013 either.
Last year, more people looked to put extra money away and this trend is expected to continue throughout next year. However, savers should not expect a totally smooth ride. Our banking expert at MoneySupermarket, Kevin Mountford, said: "Even though inflation has fallen, savings rates have started to drop at a faster rate. There is no sign that the Bank of England Base Rate will increase in 2013 and as such it will make it difficult to secure the kind of rates that we have experienced over the last couple of years." Kevin Mountford believes switching current accounts should be a priority for savers over the next 12 month, as many savers currently earn even less than the 0.5% base rate. The outlook for your bank account
According to statistics, people in Britain are more likely to get divorced than change their current account. But Kevin Mountford believes this will all change in 2013, as the process becomes even clearer and easier than it is already. He said: "This year sees new switching rules come into force, forcing banks to switch their customer's accounts within seven days and automatically re-direct any direct debits and standing orders for a period of 13 months after the move to another bank."
Kevin Mountford also forecasts a heavier focus on fee-based packaged accounts such as the Halifax Ultimate Reward Account and the Santander 123 current account in the coming year. The outlook for your credit cards
The credit card market is set to continue at a steady pace for the next year but, if consumer confidence returns and retail spending picks up, they'll be an influx of purchase and cashback cards on the market according to Kevin Mountford.
There is also an expectation that new technology will play a huge part in the development and progression of credit cards over the next 12 months. If you need to transfer debt then the Barclaycard Platinum credit card with Extended Balance Transfer offers 0% interest on balance transfers for 24 months, subject to a 3.2% transfer fee, as well as 0% on purchases for three months. Once these interest-free periods are up, the representative APR is 17.9% (variable). The Barclaycard Balance Transfer Card could also be a good option as, although it comes with a low rate of just 4.9% instead of an interest-free period, this offer runs for 36 months and there are no balance transfer fees involved. Once this introductory period is over then the representative APR comes in at 18.9% (variable). The outlook for your mortgage
Site editor at MoneySupermarket, Clare Francis, believes that 2013 could bring about significant changes in the mortgage world, most noticeably the return of deals that require a low deposit.
She said: "With the government's Funding for Lending Scheme (FLS) continuing throughout the year, I'd expect to see the impact filter through further to the residential mortgage market - and that will hopefully mean more lenders offering competitive 90% mortgage deals." But those looking to remortgage or step into the mortgage market for the first time need to be on the lookout for more than just interest rates - as Clare Francis believes mortgage charges are only set to rise in the next 12 months. "While mortgage rates look set to remain low in 2013, and could nudge even lower because of the availability of cheap funding via the FLS, I think the trend for higher fees will continue." With so many mortgages to choose from it's a good idea to search around. Visit our mortgage channel to make a start. The outlook for loans and debt
The Funding for Lending Scheme will also help those looking to take out loans with more attractive loan interest rates on offer for 2013. Tim Moss, head of loans and debt at MoneySupermarket says: "As result of the FLS, we will still see these remarkably low headline rates remain during 2013." Rates have already gone down to 5.2% with Tesco Bank for loans of between £7,500 and £15,000.
Visit our loans channel to see what's on offer. However, Tim Moss also highlights the difficulties applicants will face if they don't have a perfect credit score. This could lead to an increasing popularity of payday loans next year, although this surge might be stunted by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) which is set to bring in tighter regulations for lenders. The outlook for your car insurance
The car insurance market is set to be rocked by the
ECJ gender ruling that came into play on 21 December 2012, although the impact will only be seen after the New Year. Peter Harrison, insurance expert at MoneySupermarket, urges motorists to shop around and not just accept their renewal quote: "Changes in the market will make it more important than ever to shop around and not just accept your renewal price from your existing insurer." Visit our motor insurance channel here to see how much you could save. The outlook for your home insurance
The home insurance market will quite literally be drowning in flood claims this year according to Hannah Jones, head of home insurance at MoneySupermarket. She highlights the end of the agreement between trade body, the Association of British Insurers (ABI) and the government to guarantee cover for at-risk properties on 30 June 2013, as a major turning point: "With over 200,000 homes at risk of having no insurance as a result, the government and insurance industry need to agree on a replacement as a matter of urgency."
However, insurance companies are expected to grace the market in the next 12 months which could see greater competition and price drops. But as ever, make sure you shop around for the best home insurance deal which could make you an immediate saving. The outlook for your life insurance
Emma Walker, head of life insurance at MoneySupermarket, believes the previously-mentioned gender ruling will impact the cost of life insurance premiums this year and, as a result, the popularity and uptake of certain products will change.
It's also thought the Retail Distribution Review (RDR) will increase the role of comparison websites as the impact spreads through the financial advice market. Click here for a personalised life insurance quote and find out how much you can save. The outlook for your energy bills
Unfortunately, the outlook for energy this year is rather bleak. All consumers can look to do is protect themselves as much as possible from the inevitable price hikes, warns our site editor Clare Francis. And
switching to a fixed rate tariff and making your home energy efficient will be your best bets. In the longer term, there is likely to be increased interest from government and the industry in light of the 2012 Energy Bill as politicians and providers seek to encourage us to use less gas and electricity, says Clare Francis.
Please note: Any rates or deals mentioned in this article were available at the time of writing. Click on a highlighted product and apply direct.
Rate This Article
Click on a star to rate this article.