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Top bank accounts for switching

Top bank accounts for switching

Category: Banking

Updated: 02/09/2013
First Published: 02/09/2013

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

In less than two weeks' time switching bank accounts will be simpler and easier than ever before.

The new current account switch service, due to go live on 16 September, will see banks and building societies complete the switching process in under seven days.

Under this new free service, all payments going out, including direct debits, and those coming in, such as your salary, will be moved from the old bank account to the new bank account within seven days. The process can currently take up to 30 working days.

Customers will also now be able to select a convenient switch date with their new bank account provider.

Additionally, the new Current Account Switch Guarantee means that customers will be refunded for any interest or charges on their old or new bank account if anything goes wrong during the switching process.

Below is a list of the top bank accounts for switching, based on in-credit interest rates and cash incentives.

Halifax Reward Current Account

  • Halifax's Reward Current Account offers an upfront £100 switching cash incentive and £5 reward each calendar month for those who can pay a minimum of £750 into the account every month.
  • According to the market research company Consumer Intelligence, this gives eligible customers a £160 return net of basic rate tax in their first year and £60 a year return thereafter as long as the terms and conditions don't change.
  • Customers will also benefit from Halifax's new scheme allowing customers to get up to 15% cashback when shopping at leading retailers within the UK.

Nationwide FlexDirect

  • Nationwide's FlexDirect – Funded bank account offers a whopping 5% interest for 12 months on in-credit balances up to £2,500.
  • Customers will need to pay at least £1,000 per month into this account.
  • Customers will also benefit from 0% interest on an authorised overdraft for the first 12 months.

Santander 123 Current Account

  • For those on a high income, Santander's 123 Current Account pays in-credit interest of 1% for balances over £1,000, 2% on balances between £2,000 and £2,999.99 and 3% on balances between £3,000 and £20,000.
  • Cashback offers: 1% on water & council tax bills, 2% on gas & electricity bills and 3% on communication bills.
  • Consumer Intelligence says this could earn customers net annual returns of almost £450 if they have an average balance of £15,000 and pay large household bills.

First direct 1st Account

  • For a limited time only, first direct will be paying new customers £125 if they use its switching service to open a 1st Account bank account.
  • In order to qualify, customers must be new to the bank and they will need to pay a minimum of £1,000 into the account each month.
  • First direct also offers a satisfaction guarantee, which means that if customers are not completely happy with its service within 12 months of opening a 1st Account, they will be paid £100 as long as a monthly salary or income of £1,000 or more has been paid into that account for at least six months.

What Next?

Bank Account Search - Find the best account for you

How to switch current accounts

Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.