Pay Off Your Mortgage in 2 Years: Review

I mentioned BBC2’s new money programme, Pay Off Your Mortgage In 2 Years the other day, and I managed to catch the first episode yesterday.

The concept is simple: each of the 8 programmes will feature an individual or couple who has agreed to take part in the experiment of paying off the remainder of their mortgage in 2 years. It seems that we are currently only half way through the experiment.

Last night’s first show featured 2 bank workers looking to pay the remaining £85,000 off their mortgage in 2 years, and hoping to pay off their mortgage so that they could afford to go and live in the U.S.. Although the pair were bringing in reasonable money between them, they first decided to use their showbiz talents to bring in extra cash – they had met at a talent contest; he was a stage hypnotist and comedian, she was a singer.

Although this enabled them to up their income by a fair bit, she was not really happy with her singing, and he decided he could make more money by going into Neural Linguistic Programming, for which he duly signed up for a course.

Along the way they are mentored by the show’s presenter (I’ve forgotten his name), Rene Carayol, a financial expert who has advised the government about saving money in the past.

The show was fairly interesting, but what disappointed me was the lack of detail when it came to saving money and investing it for growth. There was some advice as to how they could cut down on outgoings (such as cutting down on their frivolous spending and by taking sandwiches to work), but there was no talk about where their extra money should be invested to get the best rate of return. The show was more concentrated on what they could do to earn extra money, and this is where the presenter could really help by pointing out a few ideas and motivating them along the way.

Perhaps the task in hand meant that the show had to be like this, but I would have liked a bit more of the Martin Lewis approach, showing the couple how to get the best deal on things, like shaving pounds off their mortgage or reducing their household outgoings.

There were a few tantrums and arguments along the way – let’s face it, raising an extra £40,000 a year is never going to be easy, but the couple managed to save £14,000 in their first year. Unfortunately, we must now wait another year to see if they manage it. It’s looking a bit unlikely at the moment.

Although there wasn’t that much of interest to take from the show, it still made for quite enjoyable watching, and it will be interesting to compare how the different people get on in reaching their targets in the next few shows.

Unsurprisingly, there’s also a book that accompanies the series, which you can buy at Amazon. Written by Graham Hooper, the book has a forword by the Pay Off’s… prensenter, Rene Carayol.

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