UK Insider Guide To Car Finance by Graham Hill

Radio 4 Moneybox interview of author Graham Hill about the only guide to car finance available in the UK and how to best finance your next car. The interview shows how a personal loan is not better than HP and how a personal lease can save consumers and small businesses a fortune whilst driving a better car. Go to

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3 Ways We Sabotage Our Journey Toward Adulthood

When we hit a certain point in our late 20s we begin to think were better at adulting than we were in our early 20s. While we most likely have better jobs and are more secure with who we are, there are many situations that remind us just how notadult we stillare.

Whether its the fact that we incessantly fail at maintaining a budget, or that we cant seem to find a steady relationship while were bombarded with engagement and baby announcements from Facebookfriends, theres always something reminding us.

We continue to try and be more adult every day, but we cant help but feel like were not doing something right in one or more areas of our lives. We want to reach adulthoodquick, so we place pressure on ourselves to adult quicker to be better. And this pressure, whether placed by our own minds or by the words of others,is actually detrimental to our well-being.

By placing all this pressure on ourselves we unconsciously stunt our growth. When we become overwhelmed by the various ways were not adult enough we become wrapped up this idea that were failing and then stop ourselves from moving forward. And so, we find ourselves getting stuck in this purgatory between crazy, irresponsible Millennialand real adult.

Below are just three ways in whichwe sabotage our ability to adult better.

1. When We Cant Stick To A Budget

Its a word we all hate: budget. If youve ever evenattempted to make a budget you know the struggle is real. Once we calculate our monthly incomes, subtract our monthly expenses (rent, utilities, life)and student loans, were left with a very sad number.

We convince ourselves we can live off ramen because we did it in college. We cant. A week of eating like a broke college student makes us feel depressed, sad and like wevefailed miserably at adulting.

Speaking of food, we try to be culinary geniuses in the kitchen and create homemade meals like Martha Stewartuntil we realize our job has us out of the house all week. When the hell do we have time to prepare legit food? We need things quick and that costs money. So, down goes our attempt at sticking to a budget.

2. WhenWe Want To Upgrade Our Furniture

If youre anything like me, youre still living with your college furniture. Its so not cute. Thatwine stained futon is no longer acceptable for guests to sit on; its time for an upgrade. The mattress youve had for a decade? Its time to change it up in order to feel like a real adult.

But of course, we run into problem #1, were broke.

3. When We Want To Change Careers

Some of us know exactly what we want to do from a very young age, while others, like me, struggle to find our passion even in our 20s. Were the ones that changed our major more than once, and still graduated with a degree that doesnt fulfill our souls calling.

So,right after college we struggle, hard. And then, sometime in our late 20s, we find ourselves. We get more comfortable with what we like and what were passionate about and we attempt to pursue this new career path.

But stability is more important to us now than it was when we were in our early 20s and in college. Back then we were protected by the college bubble and we could change our minds without any serious repercussions. Now,taking a risk is a lot scarier.We have bills to pay, debt thats through the roof and in some instances other people to provide for.

In these instances its easy to feel like a failure and like youre a terrible person for not having figured your shit out earlier. You begin questioning all your life decisions. Well, look, Im here to remind you that its all good.

As someone who knows the struggle first-hand, it gets better. Will you probably have to take a lower rank position when you change careers? Of course. But you will be able to work your way up. Just be patient, and trust that the universe wont let you down.

All this pressure we place on ourselves isnt good for us. Remember that theres absolutely no time frame to becoming an adult. Everyone develops and grows differently, we cant allow ourselves to compare our lives to those of others.

So, lets all collectively work on easing the pressure we place on ourselves to be adults and instead enjoy how to figure out the ins and outs of adulting.

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Will The Veronica Mars Kickstarter Revolutionize Indie Film?

UPN; Jess Pinkham

It’s been a week since Rob Thomas and Kristen Bell broke the internet with their Kickstarter campaign for a feature film version of Veronica Mars. In less than 24 hours, the film reached its $2 million goal, securing an unprecedented deal with Warner Bros. Digital for distribution, marketing, and promotion. Over the subsequent week, some 56,700 backers have donated a running total of $3.7 million to the effort – a rough average of $65.50 per donation – blasting past the previous Kickstarter record for a feature film project several times over. In just seven days, this plucky teenage gumshoe has managed to rewrite the rules for crowdfunding a movie production budget, causing many professionals in Hollywood to give sites like Kickstarter a serious new look.

The day the Veronica Mars Kickstarter campaign started, television producer Shawn Ryan tweeted, Very interested to see how this Veronica Mars kickstarter goes. Could be a model for a Terriers wrap up film. Zachary Levi told Entertainment Weekly he was already contemplating a Kickstarter campaign for a Chuck feature film. Showrunner Bryan Fuller said to The Hollywood Reporter that he’s now seriously considering discussing with Warner Bros. how he could revive Pushing Daisies as a feature film, despite his reservations about the budget he would need. (On the other hand, Joss Whedon told BuzzFeed that, for now, a crowdfunded Firefly film is a total non-Kickstarter for me.)

With the bright media spotlight so suddenly fixed on crowdfunding, it may surprise observers new to the phenomenon to learn that, before Ms. Mars and her Neptune, California, crew showed up to the party, Kickstarter had already successfully raised nearly $100 million for independent films. About 10% of the films at the Sundance Film Festival in 2012 and 2013 were funded via Kickstarter, as was the 2012 Oscar winner for Best Documentary Short, Inocente. For four years now, crowdfunding sites like Seed & Spark, Fractured Atlas, Indiegogo, and Kickstarter have been helping cash-strapped indie filmmakers build their production budgets, finish the final edits, and screen the finished films at festivals.

Most importantly, they’ve also connected filmmakers with their audiences in a profound way. Almost as important as getting you funds, those sites build a community around your project, says writer-director Jonathan Lisecki, who raised roughly $30,000 for his delightful romantic comedy Gayby via Kickstarter and Fractured Atlas. It creates a level of excitement and anticipation for your film, at least from the people who feel like they are a part of it.

And for many in the indie world, it’s not nearly clear yet how Veronica Mars‘ runaway success with crowdfunding will affect this still-developing economic ecosystem.

Ava DuVernay on the set of Middle of Nowhere.

When I look at [Veronica Mars on Kickstarter], I can only think, Oh, good for them, but it has nothing to do with me, says Ava DuVernay, writer-director of the 2012 indie darling Middle of Nowhere. That’s a show that had huge national exposure on television for however many seasons it was on, week after week. It’s a venture that will eventually be supported by a corporate structure. It’s wonderful that it happened for them, but for me, as an independent filmmaker who literally makes films for less than a half million dollars – my last film [budget] was $200,000 – what’s happening there is outside the context of true independent filmmaking.

Echoes Lisecki, There are hundreds and hundreds of films each year that are asking for, like, 25 grand, 30 grand, 50 grand. I’m not quite sure how many people could pull off $1 million. To wit: Big Gay Love, starring Lisecki and Buffy the Vampire Slayer‘s Nicholas Brendon, just reached its modest $20,000 Kickstarter goal after 27 days of trying. Veronica Mars cleared that bar in a matter of minutes.

The Mars model isn’t a complete outlier, however. Producer Josh Penn – who worked with nonprofits to fund the Oscar-nominated Beasts of the Southern Wild but has turned to Kickstarter to help finance two documentaries – is more sanguine about what Veronica Mars means for crowdfunding. It shows that crowdfunding can work all scales of projects, he says. It really opens up the possibilities of what can be made. These [crowdfunding] tools were being used for much, much smaller projects only. I love the idea that there’s a way to do something totally independently just because people believe it should be made. It’s a whole new model for filmmaking.

For Penn, one of the caveats to Veronica Mars‘ success – that it had a huge built-in audience itching to support it – only proves that established indie filmmakers should consider their own fans when planning their next films. If we had gone out three years ago and said, ‘We want to make Beasts of the Southern Wild on Kickstarter,’ we would not have been able to fund the entire movie, he says. If we went out now and said, ‘We want to make Beasts of the Southern Wild 2‘ – which we don’t want to make, for the record – I think maybe we could. It would be an interesting experiment to see if we could be able to garner enough support to fund an entire film like that.

At the very least, indie filmmakers can be more ambitious with their fundraising goals – but only to a point. The lesson for independent filmmakers here is not that you can go out and raise $3 million, says Josh Welsh, co-president of Film Independent, a non-for-profit organization that helps indie filmmakers (and puts on the annual Indie Spirit Awards). Filmmakers need to have a sense of reality to what’s really feasible to accomplish. At the same time, they should not be too modest in their aspirations. I encounter both of these [issues] with filmmakers.

Welsh says that a smart, focused, energized crowdfunding campaign has the very real potential to make upwards of six figures. If your total budget is $500,000 and you’re able to raise $200,000 on Kickstarter, that’s incredible, he says. Non-refundable money – [where] you don’t have to pay an investor back – is a huge asset to your film. To me, the space where you’re seeing the most impact of Kickstarter right now is in low-budget, quality filmmaking.

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Jonathan Lisecki’s Kickstarter pitch to finish his feature film Gayby.

Ah, but there’s the rub. Veronica Mars‘ success has also called attention to a looming concern with crowdfunding: Backers do not receive any kind of equity in the projects they’re supporting. This is something that folks who’ve been watching [crowdfunding] for a while have always thought about, says DuVernay. What if it’s a hit? If this thing hits number one at the box office or if this starts to become financially viable through all its platforms – DVD, VOD, transactional streaming, international [distribution] – are the people that invested in it worth nothing in terms of being recouped in any way? It’s interesting. I don’t think it’s ever been tackled seriously because nothing’s made that much money to really warrant that kind of question having to be answered.

That’s just the nature of the [site], counters Beasts‘ Penn. People have the choice to not donate. Kickstarter is a tool saying, ‘I believe in this. I want it to get made.’ The return of it, sometimes it’s the prizes, but more and more I think the return on it is that the thing exists. There’s a lot of reasons why people can be excited about things besides just making money.

Very soon, though, that sentiment may be moot. Last April, Congress passed the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act, which, among its provisions, allows for equity-based crowdfunding up to $1 million – meaning, in theory, a grandma who gives $100 to her granddaughter’s documentary could see that money back, and then some, should the film make a profit. The only holdup: Until the S.E.C. rules on how crowd investing could even work, no one can take advantage of it. A ruling, however, is expected soon.

If the S.E.C. says you can raise equity through crowdfunding, says Film Independent’s Welsh, that will open the door for all kinds of filmmakers to raise substantially more money through crowdfunding than they currently do. At that point, you’re essentially going to be able to buy shares in a film through a crowdfunding site. That will be a game changer.

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He Kept Talking About A Strange Project. When He Disappeared, His Family Found This.

In 2013, Bruno Borges from Rio Branco, Brazil, started a mysterious project that he kept completely secret from his family.

When he asked his mother to loan him some money, she said she would do it if he told her what he was working on, but he refused to give her any details other than to say that his project would change humanity for the better. After convincing his cousin to give him over $6,000, he kept his room locked for nearly a month while his parents were away on vacation this year. When they came back, he was gone. He’s been missing since March 27, but that’s only the beginning of his bizarre story.

After getting the police involved, his family opened the room. That’s where they found encrypted language and symbols all over the walls along with 14 handwritten books that couldn’t be deciphered either.

They also found a statue of Giordano Bruno, an Italian Dominican philosopher known for his cosmological theories and insistence that the universe is infinite with no celestial body at its center. It’s worth thousands of dollars and nobody knew it had been delivered there.

Hanging on one wall is a painting of Borges himself with an alien.

Read More: These Stories May Not Be True, But They’re Guaranteed To Send Chills Down Your Spine

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If You Have a Heart, This Boy’s Letter is Going to Obliterate It.

Tobias Bass is only 10 years-old, but he is kind-hearted, selfless and wise beyond his years.

His younger brother has severe cerebral palsy and cannot go outside and play like other children. Because of his pain, Tobias was inspired to do something incredibly selfless. Your heart will be in your throat when you read this letter Tobias wrote for his little brother.

Tobias is only 10, but he has the compassion and wisdom of a saint. He wants to be a pastor when he grows up and he is determined to help his younger brother is cerebral palsy enjoy life.

When his little brother sees children playing outside, he cries since he is unable to go outside. Tobias wanted to change that and help his little brother play outside.

So, he decided to train and push his brother in a 5k. However, he doesn’t have a jogging wheelchair, only a babystroller.

He wrote this letter and sent it to a news station, asking not for money but just for someone to loan him a jogger for one day while he races with his brother.

It’s hard not to read that without getting emotional. Share this brave little boy’s amazing letter.


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Here’s the science behind first impressions – and how to make up for a bad one.

This is Dr. Heidi Grant Halvorson, and she’s going to help us understand why first impressions are so important.

GIFs from Big Think.

Dr. Grant Halvorson is a social psychologist and associate director of the Motivation Science Center at Columbia Business School. In a recent video for Big Think, she took a look at confirmation bias what it is, how it works, and how to overcome it.

Confirmation bias is the brain’s tendency to seek out information that confirms our existing beliefs.

Confirmation bias is something that affects us all. It’s why people typically consume news that reinforces what we already (think we) know. It’s why in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, there are people who believe climate change is a myth or that vaccines cause autism. It’s why we’re so sure that Brad from the finance department is a jerk ugh, Brad.

But it’s the primacy effect that explains why our brains really emphasize the first information we receive about a person or topic.

The primacy effect is kind of like the overzealous sibling of confirmation bias. It’s why our first hunch about someone or something tends to stick with us. Our brains don’t like feeling unsure, so they put a lot of weight on early impressions.

You know how people stress the importance of first impressions?

Here’s why they’re right, according to science: Thanks to the primacy effect and confirmation bias, first impressions get a whole lot of weight when it comes to how we perceive (and are perceived by) other people.

Luckily, there are a couple of ways to overcome a bad first impression.

The first method of overcoming a bad first impression is to prove that impression wrong over an extended time.

It’s not as simple as a one-time friendly encounter. To overcome the bad impression, it could take weeks or even months to override both primacy effect and confirmation bias.

The second method is to find a way to work closely with the person you’ve left a bad first impression with.

Dr. Grant Halvorson suggests finding a way to work with the person for example, working on a group project where all people involved have clear responsibilities and expectations to help override first impressions.

Why? When someone else has a direct impact on our own outcome, our brains will naturally want to make sure the first impression we got was an accurate one rather than simply sticking with that first impression.

Of course, the best route is to put your best foot forward and give an accurate representation of who you are.

While you can’t control how others perceive you, you can make sure you’re offering up a genuine version of yourself to people you meet.

Keep all this in mind the next time you’re meeting with new coworkers, acquaintances, or anyone, really.

We all have biases, but we can fight them by acknowledging and understanding them.

For more on this topic from Dr. Heidi Grant Halvorson, watch the full video below.

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There Is No Such Thing As ‘Adulting’, It’s Literally Just Growing Up

According to Urban Dictionary which is, like, THE ultimate reliable source the word adulting became a verb in the summer of 2014. Definitions vary depending on different users, but overall, it means to do something grown-up and responsible.

Im just waiting for the word to be added to the real dictionary, alongside the other new additions: bling, bromance, chillax and jeggings.

Now that the word adulting has become a thing,any time a 20-something cooks dinner, does laundry or doesnt lose theirhouse keys, theystart bragging about it. They call it adulting, and they want every other 20-something to praise them for doing it.

While most of my peers are great cheerleaders, I dont give a fuck if you work a 9-to-5 or if you managed to eat a whole serving of vegetables, or if you took a spin class or if you didnt drive drunk.

That doesnt make you an adult. And it doesnt deserve praise.

Congratulations on being employed: Youre now just like most other adults in America.

Congratulations on munching on some carrot sticks: Ive been doing that since I was 3 years old.

Congratulations on realizing your metabolism isnt what it once was: Cheers to good health.

Congratulations on requesting an Uber: I know its pretty tough.

When did basic life skills turn into Instagram photo ops, Facebook statuses or tweets? When did growing the fuck up become a reason for a hashtag?

There is even an adulting blog, and a book LITERALLYtitled, Adulting: How to Become a Grown-up in 468 Easy(ish) Steps.

Does it really require over 400 steps? I could probably come up with 10.

But Im not going to. Im not going to come up with 10 or 20 or even 100 steps. And Im not going to tell you what adulting REALLYis outside of its Urban Dictionary definition because theres no such thing.

Dont get me wrong; I get that some things really do represent a transition from dependence to independence. Theyre big steps: things like getting your own apartment or getting your own health and car insurance.

I mean, I felt like a fucking BOSS when I bought my first couch. I felt grown-up as hell in a kitchen full of my very own pots and pans. I dont deny that these things fill you with a sense of self-pride.

But this buzzword makes it all seem like a joke. It makes US seem like a joke.

Our generation is already classified as lazy, ungrateful, entitled, etc. Listen, we allknowwe arent any of those things far from it.

But when we get excited for ourselves (and for each other) when we do simple things like going to the grocery store or changing our sheets, we fulfill the stereotype. When we turn a natural and necessary progression into a wayto get attention and praise, we fulfill the stereotype.

And were better than that.

Instead of hashtagging your way to adulthood, actually do adult things.

Read news sources that arent linked to Facebook. Tell your friends whom youre voting for. Discuss the environment.

Volunteer. Travel. Read a fucking book.

Visit your grandparents (and not just because you want a fat check for Christmas). Eat organically (and not just because its trendy).

Pay your bills on time. Dont max out your credit card. File your taxes before theyre due.

Stay on top of your student loans. Get checked for STDs.

These are the things that deserve praise.

You became an adult the moment you turned 18. Remember? You couldnt wait to tell your parents to suck it, even though you were still living under their roof, eating their food and living off their phone plan.

You ARE an adult. Youve BEEN an adult. Act like it.

Shit, if it helps, substitute adult with productive member of society. Then tell me what you think adulting is.

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Guys In Relationships Admit Why They Feel Pressured To Propose ASAP

For some guys, marriage is scarier than speaking in front of a large crowd of strangers, or even being the one who loses fantasy football and has to fork out a load of cash.

It means theyre saying I do to a commitment that pairs them together with another human being for what could (and should) be a lifetime.

But for some guys, marriage is something they want to jump into as soon as they can, because they feel like their internal clock is ticking or like the person theyre dating might leave if they dont.

Wondering what makes a guy feel like they have to shit or get off the pot when it comes to rushing down the aisle?

Here are eight real guys who admit why they felt the urge to pop the question ASAP:

1. Im scared shes going to leave.

My girlfriend keeps dropping hints that if I dont pop the question ASAP, shell be out. Its like every time I talk about moving in together, or taking the next step, she makes it clear that Im dragging my feet and that Im not on the same page as her.

I think she hoped wed be married a year ago since weve been dating for five years now. Shes in a hurry, and because of that now I am too.

Tobin D., 31

2. Imnot getting any younger.

Im at an age where you cant afford to be picky if you want to start a family and catch up to everyone else. I dont think I found the perfect person, but I think I found someone whos perfect for me and the life I want to live. Thats why I want to put a ring on it, because Im ready for a family and Im not getting any younger.

Kyle C., 40

3. Marriageis another checked box.

I feel like I have a kick-ass career and an amazing apartment. I also have money in the bank and traveled a ton in my 20s. Simply put, Ive been super successful at a lot of things.

Im not trying to brag, Im just trying to explain that the one thing I havent done is get married and start a family. Im kind of feeling like Im in a rush to get on that and find someone so that I can check off that box and move on to the next life challenge to conquer.

Don C., 34

4. Ineed the financial security.

To be honest, marriage has its benefits. One of those benefits is combining your finances with someone else. Ive been struggling with my job and my girlfriend keeps climbing the corporate ladder.

A big benefit of us getting married is that well share a bank account and Ill finally feel at ease, financially. She makes way more than me, and has no problem paying for more stuff in our relationship. Marrying her would just make whats hers mine and mine hers even though I get the better deal in all of this.

Miguel C., 29

5. Werewaiting until marriage.

Its simple: Were religious. The second were married we can finally jump into bed together. Can you blame me for wanting to rush down the freaking aisle?

Todd V., 25

Couples Reveal How Many People They’ve Had Sex With To Each Other

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6. Ireally want kids.

More than anything else in my life, one of the main things I want to do is become a dad. Ive always wanted kids and I always wanted to be a young dad.

Ive been dating someone for a year and a half and Im pretty sure shes the one. We got engaged about nine months into the relationship and Im hoping well have kids within the next year and a half.

Corey S., 27

7. I was given an ultimatum.

I didnt have a choice. My girlfriend told me I had two months to propose or she was done. Wed dated for two years and she told me I had to make a decision. Everything from that convo on was a rush.

I got a ring in a week, and planned the engagement in two days. I popped the question because I didnt want to lose her. Were getting married in three months and I dont have an opinion on any of it because its moving so fast.

Nick P., 28

8. Its my only way to know if shes the one.

Every relationship has different stages. You start off with a big crush, then you fall in love and then you see it lasts for longer than you thought.

I guess Im feeling ready to try out this marriage thing with my girlfriend because its the ultimate test to see if shes the one. Im not afraid of divorce if shes not.

Victor M., 30

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