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All overdrafts are subject to the applicant’s status. You may not be offered credit. All rates and fees are subject to change without notice. Please check all rates and terms before borrowing.
18th August 2022
Virgin Money launched its new current account switching incentive today, which includes 25% cashback on UK supermarket and fuel spend. This comes at a time when food and fuel prices have driven inflation to a 40-year high.
Virgin Money launched its new current account switching incentive today, which includes 25% cashback on UK supermarket and fuel spend.
25th July 2022
Student account packages are showing mixed results this year. As some deals improve, others have worsened. As time moves on towards the new academic year, our latest analysis reveals a selection of noteworthy cost-saving perks.
Student account packages are showing mixed results this year. Read on to find out more.
30th May 2022
If you are a business owner in today’s world, it is likely you are searching for ways to reduce costs. Since early 2020, businesses have weathered many storms – the COVID-19 lockdowns and supply chain issues being just two. Fortunately, there is one under-used yet effective way for both businesses and employees to save money, and that is through “salary exchange”.
If you are a business owner in today’s world, it is likely you are looking for ways to cut costs. Fortunately, there is the option “salary exchange”.
17th May 2022
Lloyds Bank will incentivise any customers switching from another bank to its Club Lloyds or Club Lloyds Platinum Account with a £125 cash bonus. The offer is available with immediate effect and is only available through the Current Account Switch Service (CASS) until 27 June.
Lloyds Bank will incentivise any customers switching from another bank to its Club Lloyds or Club Lloyds Platinum Account with a £125 cash bonus.
A current account lets you keep your money in a safe place while still allowing you to spend it, transfer it, use it to pay bills and have more added to it. Current accounts usually come with a cash or debit card, which you can use to make purchases or withdraw money from your account. They may also have an agreed overdraft facility (essentially a form of credit should you need it).
The different account types of current accounts that are available to adults are:
Standard current accounts, which offers you all the 'standard' account features, but nothing extra. These accounts may or may not charge a monthly or annual fee.
High interest current accounts offer you a competitive interest rate on funds up to a certain balance and/or monthly cashback for keeping your account in credit. These accounts may come with monthly fees, and will likely require a certain income and number of standing orders or direct debits, but could offer you some extra cash on a monthly basis if you use them well.
These accounts while accessible, may charge certain fees either as a regular charge and/or for transactions.
Current accounts with overdrafts include a facility to borrow money in the short term from your bank. If you use your overdraft then you will normally be charged interest on the amount used. You should agree an overdraft arrangement with your bank before going overdrawn.
Some current accounts won't charge you a monthly fee although they are likely to still charge fees and/or interest for overdrafts. These may also offer interest on credit balances and may also have funding requirements.
A packaged bank account is a current account that includes additional products and services – such as breakdown cover, mobile phone insurance, travel insurance, home emergency cover – exclusive access to other products from the bank, for example an exclusive rate of interest on a savings account and retailer offers and discounts. These accounts usually charge a monthly fee. Read our guide to packaged bank accounts to learn more.
As an alternative to packaged bank accounts, you may want to organise insurance and breakdown cover individually. Discover the best UK policies with the help of Moneyfacts.co.uk. Learn more and apply direct today.
Designed to meeting the financial needs of students, student bank accounts tend to offer the same features as standard bank accounts alongside interest-free overdrafts and student incentives such as discounted rail travel.
Most banks and building societies allow you to open a bank account in a branch, online, by phone or by post. The channel to open a bank account is dependent on the bank or building society and can be restricted for certain brands and products. For example, some of the challenger banks will only let you open an account using their mobile app and some bank accounts are only available online. Here are our seven steps to opening a bank account:
You can use our charts to compare different types of current accounts including those that specifically offer current account switching incentives. Our charts help you to compare interest rates, fees and features of different current accounts, including if they offer protection under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.
If you are over 18 and have lived at the same address (and been on the electoral roll) for a number of years, it is likely that you will be able to open a bank account online without the need to write or send anything such as an application form or identification in the post.
Find out more in our guide how to open a bank account.
Each bank account will have a required minimum age, place of residence (some accounts are only available in Northern Ireland or Scotland for example) and some accounts may have minimum salary requirements too.
Some banks may accept you if you are struggling to prove your address, find out more in our guide.
Most standard current accounts will require a credit check - if you are worried about being accepted you can check your credit score, in some cases for free - find the best credit check deals.
If you know you have a bad credit score then there are dedicated accounts that help those with bad credit. Find out more about opening a current account with bad credit.
Many of the best current account switching deals are only available if you use the Current Account Switching Service. This service makes sure all of your regular payments, such as direct debits and standing orders are moved to your new bank. They also ensure that you won't miss any of your regular payments, making this a highly convenient way to switch your bank account.
Your current account should include a debit card to allow you to make contactless payments, buy goods online, pay for items in shops and to withdraw cash from a cash machine. These can take up to two weeks to arrive, with the best banks manging to do this in three days on average.
If you open a bank account and have bad credit you may receive a prepaid card instead.
Most current accounts now come with access to banking services through the bank's secure website or via an App on mobile devices. You should receive full instructions as part of the current account opening process.
The world of banking has evolved with different types of current accounts designed to suit the needs of different types of people. For example those with a poor credit history can now open an account with a range of banking services, such as accepting direct debits and includes a card to make online and instore payments. Those looking for the best perks and incentives will now find it easier to switch current accounts and can do this in seven days thanks to the Current Account Switching Guarantee.
Now that you've got some idea of what current accounts there are to choose from, you'll have to determine which is the best current account for you. This will of course depend on your personal circumstances. If you're often overdrawn, you'll likely be drawn to an account with overdraft facilities. If you never go overdrawn, on the other hand, you might want to take advantage of a high interest current account instead.
If you're looking for the best current account that gives you something back, a switching incentive might lure you in with some offering up to £125 to switch. However, a little bit extra every month might work out as more lucrative over the long run, so you may want to consider a cashback or interest-paying current account instead. Regardless, remember that a lot of incentives will require you to close your old account, so you can't just open an extra account for a cash offer.
Whatever you are after, make sure to compare current accounts on all their features, not just their benefits, otherwise you might find that a cashback offer is undone by a high account or overdraft fee. Once you've made your choice, it's easy to switch bank accounts, especially thanks to the Current Account Switch Service and its accompanying guarantee. Read our current account switching guide to find out which providers offer it – you'll find that almost all do nowadays.
Some types of bank account charge fees, for example a packaged bank account has a monthly fee to offset the cost of additional products and services bundled with the account. You should consider if you will use the add-ons included in a packaged account and if so if it is good value to pay the monthly fee.
Those bank accounts designed for those with bad credit may also charge fees, often a monthly fee and some transaction fees. In this case, the account provider is looking to cover its operating costs and generate profit.
There are current accounts that don't charge fees, but they may require you to deposit a specific sum of money each month to qualify.
You may be required to pay in a minimum amount of money per month. Usually, this restriction is applied to high interest current accounts, which offer a decent in-credit interest rate in exchange for your commitment and regular income. Aside from a minimum monthly funding amount, these accounts may require you to hold several direct debits on it, to make sure your account with them is your main banking product.
If you are likely to have a credit balance then a high interest current account may be better for you. These current accounts usually offer a higher rate of interest than standard current accounts usually up to a set balance. Above this, interest may not be paid at all, or at a very low rate, so you may want to maximise your returns by placing any money above this amount in a separate savings account. Note that these accounts do tend to come with high overdraft rates, so you should only consider an account that offers credit interest if you’re not someone who regularly goes overdrawn.
If you are likely to dip into the red on your current account, you should consider one that charges a low rate for arranged overdrafts or offers you an interest-free tier before you get charged. This can prove to be very valuable if your income and outgoings are nearly the same and your account balance goes near or below zero on a regular basis.
Current accounts from challenger banks are usually only accessible by an app or the internet. Some bank accounts will also offer access to your account through retail locations such as the Post Office, this is handy if you need to pay cash into your account.
Most high street current accounts can be operated across a range of channels including phone, branch, online and app.
If you need to withdraw cash from cash machines you should also check the cost to do this. You can also find cash machines near to you using the LINK ATM locator.
If you’re sending a payment to someone else, you need to check that the bank account you’re sending it to is valid. This is in order to prevent fraud and ensure your money doesn’t end up somewhere it shouldn’t. Your bank may run its own checks, but it is best not to rely on these and to closely double check the details you are using. You may want to send a small payment first to make sure it arrives with the recipient. The main banks are now required to check that the account name and number match up together before allowing a payment to be made to it, to reduce payment fraud.
If you need to send money abroad you may be better off using an international money transfer service instead. Find out more about how to send money abroad.
There is a different purpose for a savings account to a current account. A current account has more functions than a savings account, designed to facilitate your day to day needs to pay bills and pay for goods and services. Whereas a savings account is designed to help you build deposits over time and reward your efforts in interest.
The Current Account Switch Guarantee Service facilitates the moving of regular payment such as standing orders and direct debits to your new bank account. The service should take care of doing this for you and if something goes missing you should be protected. The switching service will not set up paperless statements or your account’s marketing preferences. You will still need to do this. You should also check that you have enough direct debits, etc in place to meet any criteria required for your bank account. Read our guide on the switching service to learn more.
You can open multiple current accounts with a number of different banks. Remember though that if these each need a credit check, your credit score may be affected by multiple applications in quick succession.
Yes, there are free current accounts available. Just select 'Free in the relevant search box and all current accounts that come without monthly or annual fees will be selected. These accounts will still charge fees for overdrafts and for some other types of transactions.
The column 'Overdraft Rate' will show you the rate that you are charged if you go into an arranged overdraft. Unarranged overdrafts must not be charged at a higher rate than arranged overdrafts. You can find both the arranged and unarranged overdraft charges for each account by clicking on 'Further Details'. Your overdraft limit will be determined by your credit history – your provider may change it depending on whether and how you use it. Read our guide to current account overdrafts to learn more.
While providers use the funds in bank accounts to lend to others in the form of loans and overdrafts, gaining interest (and therefore money) in return, if a good rate of interest is offered on the account, they naturally make less money from it. That’s why these accounts tend to come with fees and/or high charges, such as for overdrafts or bounced cheques.
They also take a cut of each debit card payment made (called the interchange fee) and make money from fees and charges for things like overdrafts, refusing a payment due to a lack of funds in the account or using a debit card abroad, where they may charge a fee and make a profit on any currency exchange rate they offer.
Since some banking providers are more keen to gain custom than others, there can be huge differences in the benefits versus charges on offer across the market. That’s why it’s always a good idea to compare deals to find the best account for you – and to review your account occasionally. As bank account providers change their deals quite often, usually without adjusting the deal their current customers are getting, it pays to keep a weather eye on the market.
There are a growing number of online-only banks; some of these are challenger banks such as Atom, Starling and Monzo, while others such as Bo are brands that are part of a larger banking group. There are also fintechs that offer banking type services but are in fact a payment services provider rather than a bank. These online banks and services do not have any branches. Find out more about how online and digital banking apps work and how safe they are.
Typically speaking, yes, you’ll be able to open a bank account online. The vast majority of banks offer the convenience of online applications, though some will still insist that you bring your ID into a branch for them to make copies. However there are some digital-only banks – such as Starling and Monzo – that operate entirely online and/or via mobile app, so if online capability is important to you, they could be well worth considering. Find out more about the best digital-only banks.
The best way to find the bank account that’s going to meet your needs is to compare the options. You’ll need to consider which kind of account you’re looking for – for example, do you want an account that comes with an overdraft, a packaged account, one with high rates of in-credit interest, or perhaps a basic bank account if your credit history is lacking? – and from there you’ll need to consider the options available. Our charts can be one of the best ways to compare current accounts, so should always be the first port of call.
Find out how to send money abroad easily, securely and quickly using an international money transfer specialist. Our guide explains how it works and the costs involved.
Equity release can be a good way of releasing money built up in a home’s equity. So for those who have an interest-only mortgage and are thinking about using equity release to pay off an interest-only mortgage, we’ve looked at whether this is possible.
Is equity release a good way to pay off an interest-only mortgage
While equity release can be a good way for older homeowners to tap into the wealth they have built up within their homes, many will have concerns about how it will impact the inheritance they leave behind.
Many homeowners will have concerns about how equity release impacts the inheritance they leave behind.
Some children turning 18 this year will have access to hundreds or even thousands of pounds if they hold a Child Trust Fund (CTF). Over six million CTF accounts were opened before 2011, when the Government scheme was replaced by Junior ISAs.
Some children turning 18 this year will have access to hundreds or even thousands of pounds if they hold a Child Trust Fund (CTF).
Deciding whether to increase your mortgage payments or pension contribution can have a significant effect on your finances. As a starting point, our preferred independent financial adviser company Kellands encourages consumers to align their mortgage term with their preferred retirement date.
Deciding whether to increase your mortgage payments or pension contribution can have a significant effect on your finances.
For those looking for a second home, a holiday property could be the ideal investment. However, like all investments, it does come with costs. While not mandatory, insurance expenses should be considered, or you could be left with serious costs if something goes wrong.
For those looking for a second home, a holiday property or Airbnb could be the ideal investment. So how can you insure your property?
When shopping around for your best insurance policy it is best to consider the excess you will need to pay. Below we have explained what insurance excess means, how to use it responsibly to lower your insurance premium, and whether excess protection is worthwhile.
When shopping around for your best insurance policy it is best to consider the excess you will need to pay. Below we have explained what insurance excess means.
When comparing two insurance policies, one of the first things to look for is the quoted premium. Below we have explained what an insurance premium is, how it is calculated and taxed.
When comparing two insurance policies, one of the first things to look for is the quoted premium.
In 2021 approximately 2.3 million Brits held some form of cryptocurrency, up 400,000 holders when compared to the previous year according to the FCA. So what are cryptocurrencies, and given they are prone to crashes in value, what does the future hold for this form of investment?
What are cryptocurrencies, and given they are prone to crashes in value, what does the future hold for this form of investment?