ADVICE; Do You Have a Money Problem? Need Some Advice? Let Lesley Collins Answer Your Money Questions. Lesley Is a Partner with Independent Women Financial Advisers in Edinburgh

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yourquestions

I HAVE been in my first job six months and want to buy a flat. I don't have much in the way of savings, but I understand I can get a 100 per cent mortgage, rather than save for a deposit. Is this advisable, or should I wait until I have saved more?

IN most cases when you take out a 100 per cent loan, you can also arrange to have your legal fees, survey fee and indemnity guarantee fee added on, meaning that you do not have to pay out any lump sums to buy your property. But you could be borrowing more than the place is worth, so you may have to wait for a few years until your property increases before you generate any equity. And because lending all the purchase price is high risk, interest rates will not be as competitive as for a partial loan, and the indemnity guarantee fee will go up.

I HAVE two questions for you, one concerns an insurance policy, the other my pension. Firstly, I am a 50- year-old divorced man and started the policy five years ago to save for my retirement. However, I have only recently discovered that it doesn't end until my 75th birthday. I contacted the insurance firm. They tell me the surrender value is less than I have paid in to the scheme. Secondly, is there anything else can I do to enhance my pension in the short term?

WITHOUT knowing the exact details of your contract, it is difficult to advise you. If the policy was sold to you by an insurance company representative, you should contact them and ask for an explanation of why the term is for 30 years. …