KidStart scheme helps parents save as they shopIt pays into a child's account as you spend online

03 April 2008

Children

A new scheme was launched today to help parents save for their children while spending money.

Under KidStart a contribution will be paid into a designated Child trust fund or children's savings account every time people who have joined the scheme spend money at certain online retailers.

More than 200 online retailers have so far signed up to the scheme, including Mothercare, Marks & Spencer, Waterstones and Expedia.

Lump sum back

Companies taking part offer returns of between 1% and 20% of the amount spent, with others offering lump sums of £50.

The group will also shortly be announcing a number of high street retailers taking part in the scheme.

All people have to do to take part in KidStart is sign up on the group's website, and say which account they want the money they earn paid into.

Shop on high street

They then log on to the website and use links to access the online retailers they want to shop at.

For high street stores, people will have to register their credit card details with KidStart and use the card when they buy things on the high street. Some retailers also have dedicated telephone lines for people who are part of the scheme to use.

Anyone can collect money for a child, including parents, grandparents and friends. People can also register to collect money before a child is born, enabling pregnant women to take advantage of the service.

Savings

Chris Hodgson, co-founder of KidStart, said: 'We are excited to announce the launch of KidStart and give parents the opportunity to make extra savings towards their child's future.

'By offering parents, grandparents and others the opportunity to save money from their everyday spend which will automatically be set aside for their child, KidStart is a simple option for parents and others who want to do a little bit extra for their child or a child they know.'

Online mortgages

An online mortgage service has also been launched which will give consumers up to half of the commission paid by lenders when they take out a mortgage.

Smaart Direct takes borrowers through a simple system to help them find the mortgage that is right for them from the whole market.

The service is aimed at people who are comfortable choosing a mortgage on their own and do not need any advice, although telephone support is available.

A dedicated mortgage arranger will look after the application, and borrowers will be sent updates by email, telephone or text.

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