Right to flexible working expanded

Business Secretary John Hutton, following the recommendations of an independent review, has expanded the right to request flexible working to reach parents with children up the age of 16. This means that more than eight million parents will be allowed to ask for the opportunity to work from home or to reduce their hours during the week.

However, you must have been in the job for six months.

The new rules are likely to take effect from April 2009.

Everyone has individual financial challenges that they need to deal with. Thankfully Moneybasics has put together resources for parents who, as well as managing their time effectively, have to manage the finances and raise children. Click here for more information on managing finance as a parent.

Please read on for this week’s (starting 12th May 2008) top two personal finances news stories.

Tuesday 13th May

Sense of humour more valuable than money – In a survey by HSBC, reaching 21,000 people across 21 countries, it was found that most people would rather their outlook on life and their sense of humour was passed on to the next generation than their money or their property.

It is an interesting finding in a world where many people appear to have the accumulation of wealth as one of their top, if not the first, priorities. Right now you may be wondering why this story has been included in the top money stories for the week, perhaps rightly so. However, we at Moneybasics believe that this story serves as a helpful reminder that it is not material possessions and objects that bring us the most joy. In other words, there is no reason to borrow to buy our ‘wants’, up and above our ‘needs’, as these are unlikely to bring us real joy in the long-term. The non-essentials of life are great if they can be afforded, but as this story shows, they are not what we really value, even if at the time they seem really important.

House price falls continue – The latest figures for the month of April from The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors showed that house prices fell in every region of Britain. With the turmoil in the financial markets likely to develop further for the foreseeable future, it is important to plan effectively if you are considering Buying a Property.

Prepared for Moneybasics by Jason Taylor, Advocacy Officer (Credit Action).