Friday, 13 May 2016

Everything To Consider When Choosing A Personal Bank Account


When you’re running a household and juggling family life, it gets hard to be able to manage your money. It becomes even harder to try and save money, which is why doing both things at once is ideal.

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Source // Flickr

But how do you go about this? By choosing the correct bank account, that’s how. The amount of times I’ve been stuck with a provider with poor customer service and a dire interest rate is shocking. The higher your interest rate, the more money you’ll accrue over the year, so don’t neglect it.

If you’ve been stuck with one provider for years, it’s about time you considered switching. Long-standing customers typically don’t receive any sort of special treatment. It’s the introductory offers that hold the big rewards. So when you’re shopping for a new home for your cash, consider these essential areas first.

What’s the interest rate like?

And more importantly, does it fluctuate? A few years back, I opened a savings account with Halifax with an interest rate of 1.2%. Not too bad to start off with, but sadly, this dropped to 0.60% after my first year. This means that it’s best for you to take a new bank account for a year, then switch when that year’s up. This way, you can keep interest rates as high as possible.

What’s the customer support like?

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been trawling through Google, attempting to find the right phone number. More often than not, my searches yielded poor results. Some banks have better customer support than others, so take a look around.

For example, the RBS contact number is readily available and easy to find. Other banks like Santander have much more complicated customer service programs in place, which makes it hard to get help. Check if the bank is on social media - and active - as this is a quick way to reach them.

Are there any introductory offers?

Halifax recently offered £125 for any person who switched a current account to them, which was great. Other banks will have similar introductory offers, too. In my student days, opening a Santander student account came with a free 16-25 railcard. Take a look at what that account can offer you in the short-term. There may be a 6-month interest bonus, free cash, or even free insurance.

Are there any monthly rewards?

Some accounts don’t provide interest altogether. Instead, they pay you a small amount each month if you meet certain criteria, like staying in credit. There are other monthly rewards too, like cash back on mortgages and utility bills. In some cases, you will have to pay a monthly fee for these, but it can all add up. These rewards fluctuate from provider to provider and are subject to change, so if you see a good one move fast!

So, that just about does it! Hopefully, this post helped you out somewhat. Juggling family life and finances isn’t easy, but it’s possible to improve things drastically.


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