nigel woollsey

Nigel Woollsey

Online Writer
Published: 16/07/2019

Every month, two lucky Premium Bond holders scoop a £1 million jackpot from NS&I, and thousands of others win smaller amounts ranging from £25 to £100,000. Are you one of them? Find out now!

July’s Premium Bond prize winners

The first of July's jackpot winners comes from East Sussex (with the winning bond number 209CR931692), while the second comes from County Durham (bond number 290BG876230), both of whom have had a fantastic start to the month and become the latest Premium Bond millionaires.

The East Sussex winner has £25,001 invested in Premium Bonds, while the County Durham winner has £25,350 invested, but it isn't all about the big prizes – and you don't even need to have the full amount invested to win a substantial sum.

For example, this month also saw a £3,050 bond-holder scoop one of the £50,000 prizes, while someone with just £1,200 will find themselves £25,000 richer. One of the best returns on their investment is the £1,000 premium bond winner from Cornwall who holds just £225 worth of bonds – showing that everyone's got a chance to win big.

This month, the total prize fund stood at over £95 million, with more than 3.3 million prizes awarded to lucky bond-holders. Just click here to discover if you're one of them.

Looking for a guaranteed return? Check out our best savings rate comparison charts instead!

Have you lost your premium bonds?

You may be reading this and wondering whether or not you've got some Premium Bonds squirrelled away somewhere. Perhaps you've got a vague recollection of being given some as a child or are pretty sure you invested at some stage but have no idea where the details are. Well, fear not – there are ways to track them down!

The key thing you need to do is contact NS&I, who have a tracing service designed for this very purpose. Go here to download a tracing form. Hopefully, by giving enough information, they'll be able to track down your bonds and reunite you with them, and you may even have been lucky enough to win big in the interim!

Find out more about how to find lost Premium Bonds.

If, on the other hand, you know exactly where your bonds are, but your details have changed, you need to contact NS&I to update them. There'd be nothing worse than moving home or changing email address and realising you can't be contacted, and with so many prizes remaining unclaimed, you wouldn't want to miss out.

According to NS&I, there are over 1.5 million unclaimed Premium Bonds prizes worth £61 million, all waiting to be reunited with their rightful owners. There's no time limit on unclaimed funds so you needn't worry about losing your prizes – just get in touch with NS&I and keep them informed.

What are the alternatives to Premium Bonds?

Premium Bonds may give you the chance to win big, but there's no guarantee. The odds of winning for each £1 bond number are currently 24,500 to 1, and although the annual prize fund interest rate is 1.40% – which means someone with average luck could expect to win prizes equating to interest of 1.40% each year – the reality is often far different.

As such, you may want to look elsewhere to ensure you'll generate a return. This is where savings accounts come in, all of which guarantee you'll earn some form of interest on your investment.

Premium Bonds vs. savings accounts

  • Easy access accounts could be your first choice, as they're the most flexible type of account, the best of which pay interest rates comparable to or over Premium Bonds' annual prize fund rate of 1.40%. This includes the current market-leading return of 1.50% on offer from Cynergy Bank, Marcus by Goldman Sachs® and Virgin Money.
  • Fixed rate bonds are arguably similar to Premium Bonds in that they're designed for longer-term saving to stand the best chance of winning a prize and you typically lose access to your funds for a set period of time. Here, some of the top rates available include expected returns of 2.85% on offer from Bank of London and The Middle East (BLME), though you'll need to tie up your funds for at least seven years. Or, for shorter-term deals, you may want to consider the 18-month version of BLME’s Premier Deposit Account offering an expected profit rate of 2.32% or its 12-month deal paying 2.20%.
  • High interest current accounts could be the best of the bunch for a small savings pot, with rates of up to 5% on offer, such as with the FlexDirect account from Nationwide. Just bear in mind that you'll normally only be able to earn the headline rate on relatively low balances (in the case of Nationwide it's on balances of up to £2,500 for the first 12 months), but for the best cash savings rates available, they could be worth considering.

 

Of course, a good compromise could be to split your savings between several different pots – you may want a high interest current account for the highest interest rates, an easy access deal for flexibility, a fixed rate bond for a more substantial savings pot, and Premium Bonds for money you don't mind investing in more of a lottery-style product. That way, you can get the best of all worlds – and you never know, you could be a winner!

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.

ns&i logo over premium savings bond

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