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This comparison simply includes all savings accounts.

HSBC
Advance Current Account HSBC
Open With £1750
Account Type Current Account
Features Get £170 when you Switch

Why we like it: SPECIAL OFFER - Get £170 when you switch to an HSBC Advance Bank Account. Earn 1.00% AER/gross when you save between £25 and £250 per month. Arranged overdraft limit of at least £1,000 on account opening. Money banking app. No monthly account fee. Easy switching with the Current Account Switch Service. Must be 18 or older and be UK resident. Must pay in £1,750 per month or £10,500 over 6 months. Must be approved for an arranged overdraft of £1,000+. For £170 Switch Offer: Switch using Current Account Switching Service with 2+ Direct Debits/standing orders within 30 days and pay £1,500k+ into account within 60 days. Once eligible, HSBC will pay £170 into your account within 30 days. Offer excludes customers who’ve held an HSBC/opened a first direct current account since 1/1/19

Santander
123 Current Account Santander
Open With £500
Account Type Current Account
Features 0.50% AER Interest Up To £20,000

Why we like it: Earn 0.50% AER (variable) interest on balances up to a maximum of £20,000. Up to 3% cashback on household bills - 1% on council tax bills, Mobile and home phone bills, broadband and paid-for TV packages, and Santander monthly mortgage payments. 2% on Gas and electricity bills, Santander Home Insurance premiums and Santander Life Insurance premiums, and 3% on water bills. Monthly fee of £4. Cashback capped at £5 for each cashback tier each month. Must pay in £500 pm. Bank is registered with the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), so any money you keep will be fully protected, up to £85,000.

Starling Bank
Mobile App Bank Account Starling Bank
Open With £0
Account Type Mobile Bank Account
Features Fee FREE Account Pays 0.05% AER

Why we like it: Free current account. Pays 0.05% AER interest on balances up to £85,000. Get set up in minutes. Send money abroad: Fast and secure money transfers to bank accounts in 38 countries worldwide. No fees when you pay with your card abroad or withdraw money. Get a spotlight on your spending: See what you’ve spent instantly with real-time payment notifications. 3 month interest holiday on the first £500 of an arranged overdraft. Voted best British Bank and Best Current Account 2018 - 2021 at the British Bank Awards. Awarded 5 stars by Defaqto. Bank is registered with the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), so any money you keep will be fully protected, up to £85,000

Investec Savings
Fixed Rate Bond Investec Savings
Min deposit £5000
Term 1 Year
Interest AER 2.25%

Why we like it: Interest paid on maturity. Automatic repayment to your linked account. Maximum deposit £250,000. FSCS Protected. Must have a UK residential address and be aged 18 or older. No withdrawals permitted. Can’t have held an Investec Online Flexi Saver or Fixed Rate Saver in the last 12 months

Paragon Bank
Fixed Rate Bond Paragon Bank
Min deposit £1000
Term 2 Years
Interest AER 2.55%

Why we like it: Register for a free Raisin UK Account to apply for product and receive a £25 cash bonus for deposits of £10,000 or more. Interest paid on maturity. Maximum deposit £85,000. FSCS Protected. Must be UK resident and aged 18 or older. No withdrawals permitted

RCI Bank
Freedom Savings Account RCI Bank
Min deposit £100
Term Instant Access
Interest AER 1.10%

Why we like it: Which? Recommended Savings Provider. No notice period. Deposit from £100. Interest paid monthly or annually. Apply in minutes. Your eligible deposits with RCI Bank UK Limited are protected up to a total of £85,000 by the Financial Services. Compensation Scheme (FSCS)

Brown Shipley
Easy Access Account Brown Shipley
Min deposit £1000
Term Instant Access
Interest AER 1.10%

Why we like it: Register for a free Raisin UK Account to apply for product and receive a £30 cash bonus for deposits of £10,000 or more. Interest paid on maturity. Maximum deposit £85,000. FSCS Protected. Must be UK resident and aged 18 or older. No withdrawals permitted

Investec Savings
Online Flexi Saver Investec Savings
Min deposit £5000
Term Instant Access
Interest AER 1.06%

Why we like it: Instant access to your savings. Unlimited deposits and withdrawals. Interest paid monthly, either to a linked current account, or adding it to your Online Flexi Saver account. Easy application process, you just need a UK mobile phone and UK driving licence or passport. Manage account online. Maximum balance £250,000. Must be aged 18 or older and have a UK address. Must have a linked UK current account. Your eligible deposits with Investec Bank are protected up to a total of £85,000 by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS)

Nationwide
1 Year Triple Access Online Saver Nationwide
Min deposit £1
Term Easy Access or up to 1 Year
Interest AER 1.00%

Why we like it: Make up to three withdrawals during the 12-month term of this account. Open with £1. Manage your account online. Interest paid at maturity. FSCS Protected. Must be UK resident and aged 16 or older. Make more than three withdrawals and the rate drops to 0.01% AER/gross p.a. (variable). Not available in branch

Yorkshire Building Society
Internet Saver Plus Yorkshire Building Society
Min deposit £10000
Term Instant Access
Interest AER 0.77%

Why we like it: Tiered interest: £1 to £10,000 – 0.60% Gross/AER, £10,001 to £50,000 – 0.77% Gross/AER, £50,001 to £500,000 – 0.82% Gross/AER. Unlimited payments and withdrawals. Interest paid annually. Open in a single or a joint name. Maximum deposit £500,000. Open and manage account online. FSCS Protected. Must be UK resident. Must be aged 16 or older

Leeds Building Society
Online Easy Access Account Leeds Building Society
Min deposit £1000
Term Instant Access
Interest AER 0.71%

Why we like it: Interest paid annually. Unlimited deposits and withdrawals. Open and manage online. FSCS Protected. Must be UK resident and be aged 18 or older

Nationwide
1 Year Triple Access Online ISA Nationwide
Min deposit £1
Term Easy Access or up to 1 Year
Interest AER 1.00%

Why we like it: Make up to three withdrawals during the 12-month term of this account. Open with £1. Manage your account online. Interest paid at maturity. FSCS Protected. Must be UK resident and aged 16 or older. Make more than three withdrawals and the rate drops to 0.01% AER/gross p.a. (variable). Not available in branch

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Can you get a bank account if you have bad credit?

If you have a poor credit history, you may be left wondering if it will be possible to open a current account. Thankfully, there are options available to you even if you are struggling with bad credit. No matter how bad your credit history is, you should be able to open at least a basic bank account that lets you store and manage your money.

Will the bank run a credit check when I try to open an account?

Most banks do run credit checks when you apply for accounts with them. The reason for this is that many accounts come with overdraft facilities. If you apply for an account with an arranged overdraft, the bank will need to see if you are a suitable candidate for credit.

However, if you’re applying for a basic bank account with no credit facilities, it’s unlikely that a credit check will be run. This is because the bank won’t be lending you any money. Even if a check is run and a poor credit history is detected, you’ll normally be permitted to open a basic account. Unemployment shouldn’t usually stop you from opening a basic account either.

Why do I need a bank account?

Today, the vast majority of people get their wages paid into bank accounts. Contactless transactions are on the rise too, and you need a bank account to buy products and services without physical cash. You will normally need a bank account if you want to wish to purchase products and services online. Life without a bank account would be very challenging in 2021.

Are basic bank accounts widely available?

Most banks and credit unions in the UK offer basic accounts. You don’t normally need to pay a monthly fee to open a basic bank account, and you’ll be given a debit card so you can make purchases both online and offline. You’ll usually get access to online and mobile banking facilities too so you can manage your money, set up direct debits and check your balance.

Could my application be refused?

If your application for a basic bank account is refused, this won’t normally be due to bad credit. You’re more likely to be declined if you don’t have satisfactory ID including proof of address or if you fail a fraud check. Make sure the documents you use to open your account are valid and not out-of-date to gain approval.

What can I do with a basic bank account?

Though you can’t get an overdraft with a basic bank account, you can still use it to carry out many financial transactions. These include paying bills via direct debits and standing orders and buying products and services with your debit card. You can check your balance through online banking, at a cash machine and in a branch if the bank has a physical presence. You can also withdraw cash at post offices and cash machines.

Can a basic bank account improve my credit rating?

If you pay your bills on time and don’t miss direct debits, a basic account may help you build your credit score back up and gain access to more financial services. Keeping your contact details up to date with the bank can also help.

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Over 5.1 million UK bank and building society customers have switched their bank accounts using the free (and guaranteed) current account switching service which simplifies the process for customers. Read More »

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