Love Finance: housing, fintech and healthcare

By Teamspirit on Friday, 20 March 2015

What makes us love finance so much this week?

Well, we love that more new housing is being built, that fintech has the attention of Silicon Valley, and that it’s also helping people speak to a GP.

Adviser comms on pension freedoms are falling short

Advisers are still in the dark on pension freedoms pricing, reports FT Adviser. With less than two months to go until the huge reform coming into place, advisers are still none the wiser as to the new cost structure.

Providers are pointing at the end of February or the beginning of March, which must be putting a considerable amount of pressure on advisers who are still without the ability to plan properly.

We love that what this provides, outside the obvious higher stress levels of intermediaries, is an opportunity for providers to step forward and provide advisers with the best tools to bring clients through the changes of the reforms.

Silicon Valley sees the promise of focusing on fintech

Silicon Valley, the legendary American hub of tech startups, has begun to look towards fintech as the next great adventure.

TCV, the Silicon Valley venture capital firm, are leading a $100m funding round for the money-transfer startup WorldRemit. This brings WorldRemit in line with TCV’s previous investments, such as Spotify, Netflix and Facebook - impressive company to be in given these companies operate on a global scale.

We love that Silicon Valley’s attention could bring a huge amount of funding and technical expertise into fintech, helping it to rapidly expand and develop as the mainstream press take an increasing amount of notice.

Virtual GPs and the PMI process

Last week, Fiona Murphy laid out her thinking regarding what impact virtual GP services could have on the PMI market.

Insurers are tapping into the trend of taking the GP process virtual - hugely useful for people who need consultation at their own convenience. It may also end up taking some of the pressure off of the NHS, with packed A&E departments and long GP queues a frustration that the UK has been familiar with for many years.

But what of the impact of these new services? The benefits, it seems, are that it benefits those in areas with low GP accessibility, and those working long commutes. Others with repeat prescriptions or long-term chronic conditions may also benefit.

However, the limitations are clear - in-person appointments are required. Additionally, user experience will be a big part of whether or not this works.

We love that there are alternatives to going to a physical, in-person appointment, but it’ll be interesting to see what technology is put in place to make it as accessible and supportive as possible.

10% more houses built in England in 2014 than in the previous year

England saw a significant rise in the number of houses built, with 137,000 of them being constructed in 2014. This is a rise of ten percent, reports the Department of Communities and Local Government.

While it is still short of what England needs to meet demand, the rise is notable, and has been welcomed. However, the statistic is also creating valuable conversation about not only home ownership, but the demand for new property.

We love that more housing is being built in England, but it’s important that incentives for housing development appear in order to allow supply to meet demand. Affordable housing is also a major part of ensuring this process works - 10% more unaffordable houses is as effective as zero.

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