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Money Masterclass

Money Masterclass

Category: Money

Updated: 14/12/2012
First Published: 14/01/2011

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 It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

Welcome to the Money Masterclass, your one-stop-shop for the best new personal finance products on the market.

This week we look at three new savings accounts, two new mortgages, and a personal loan to complete the review.

As usual, products are broken up into technical details and impartial product analysis, so you can be sure the information is 100% reliable.


ING Direct (UK)

ING Direct (UK) has increased its Savings Account rate for new customers to:

  • 2.76%, including a bonus of 2.26% for 12 months.
  • The rate reverts to 0.50% after the 12 month period. Existing customers will receive a rate of 0.50%.
  • Investments range between £1 and £50,000.
  • No notice is required to access funds, although all withdrawals must be made via a nominated account.
  • The account is available to savers aged 18 and over and can be operated by telephone or online.

An increase of 0.09% sees the Savings Account rate for new customers boosted to 2.76% with an introductory bonus of 2.26% for 12 months. This new rate is certainly competitive when compared to similar no notice accounts with a short term introductory offer and appears just below the market leading no notice account. New customers must be prepared to review the position at the end of the introductory 12 month period when the rate will fall dramatically.

Chelsea Building Society

A new 3 Year Fixed Rate (e) ISA and 3 Year Fixed Rate ISA have been launched paying:

  • An annual rate of 4.00%.
  • Savers can invest a minimum of £1,000 and further additions can be made whilst the issue remains open.
  • Early access is allowed, subject to 180 days' loss of interest.
  • Transfers in are accepted. Upon maturity, the 3 Year Fixed Rate (e) ISA will revert to the Online Variable Rate ISA, while the 3 Year Fixed Rate ISA will switch to the Branch Instant Cash ISA. Both accounts are available to savers aged 16 and over.

This latest review by Chelsea Building Society has seen the launch of a fixed rate cash ISA offering clients an investment period of just over three years. With a rate of 4.00% it is a market leader when compared to products with a similar term and should attract interest from savers looking to either transfer previous years' ISA allowances or invest this year's subscription.

Cheltenham & Gloucester

The Young Investor rate has increased by:

  • 1.95% to 2.00%. The gross rate is guaranteed to be no more than 1.00% below bank base rate and savers can access funds without advance notice or penalty.
  • A money box and savings certificate are awarded to savers when they open this branch-based account.
  • The maximum age for savers is 15 years, although the account must be operated by an adult.
  • The deal will revert to the Cheltenham Gold account when savers reach 16 years old.

Parents looking for a suitable account for their youngsters' savings will be pleased with this new rate. At 2.00% it is one of the market's best children's accounts offered by a high street provider. The account has no minimum or maximum investment amounts and no restrictions on the number of withdrawals permitted, which heightens its appeal.

Find the best savings rates for you - Compare savings accounts


Hanley Economic Building Society

Hanley Economic Building Society has unveiled its new two year fixed rate mortgage offering borrowers in England and Wales a rate of:

  • 3.45% to 30.4.13. The maximum loan-to-value is 80% and customers can borrow between £30,000 and £500,000.
  • A fee of £499 is payable. The product offers all borrowers incentives of a free valuation and free valuation fees for properties valued up to £250,000 and a £250 rebate, while remortgage customers can enjoy free legal fees.
  • Customers also have the flexibility to make overpayments of up to 10% of the outstanding balance.

This new two year fixed rate from Hanley Economic Building Society is the lowest rate at the 80% loan-to-value tier. A reasonable fee of £499 and a host of generous incentives for first, second time and remortgage borrowers should certainly help to boost this deal's appeal further.

Leek United Building Society

This new discounted variable rate mortgage of:

  • 2.75% for three years has secured itself a place amongst the market leaders for this period.
  • Customers can borrow up to 75% of the property value and between £30,000 and £500,000.
  • A fee of £495 is payable. The product offers all borrowers incentives of a £250 rebate on completion and a refund on valuation fees for properties valued up to £500,000, whilst there is also the option to make overpayments of up to 10% of the mortgage advance.

Leek United Building Society has launched its new discounted variable rate deal for three years. Offering borrowers in England and Wales a rate of 2.75%, this product appears amongst some of the best discounted deals in the market and offers a great package overall.

Find the best mortgage rate - Compare best selling mortgages

Personal loans

Tesco Bank

  • Tesco Bank has amended selected rates for its new and existing customers by up to 0.2% APR.
  • New customers looking to borrow between £7,500 and £14,999, which continues to be the main concentration for re-prices, will be charged a typical APR of 7.4%.
  • Existing Tesco Bank customers looking borrow within these amounts will be charged a lower rate of 7.3%.

Tesco Bank has amended its unsecured loan range, mostly benefiting customers looking to borrow between £7,500 and £14,999. The lender is rewarding customer loyalty by offering a lower rate for existing Tesco loan customers. New customers borrowing between £7,500 and £14,999 can also enjoy a new revised rate of 7.4%.

Find the best loan for you - compare loans

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.