You might be surprised by what you get when you switch bank accounts from your existing provider to a new one. That’s because not all bank accounts are made the same and when you get the right one for you, it can really help you manage your money.
At the start of the new year lots of people will be taking a look at their finances and seeking ways to make their bank accounts work harder for them.
But lots of people are also put off the idea of switching because they think it’s going to be a real hassle. And, in the past, they might have been right. But these days, banks are going out of their way to make switching easier.
Some banks – such as Halifax – offer specialised switching services, so when you move your current account to them, they do all the hard work for you. There’s no denying there’s a lot to consider – such as moving all your direct debits across and making sure your salary goes into the new account. But with the help of a good switching service, the amount of work a customer has to do is kept to an absolute minimum.
This is good news, because there is a wide variety of bank accounts out there and some will be better suited to you than others. So with a more straightforward switching process, you can cherry pick the best.
With the challenges of life today, we all place a lot of demands on our bank accounts. For instance, many people these days like to do much of their banking online – a service, which didn't exist only a few years ago. And with many people working long hours in this country, the convenience of a bank that’s open during the weekend – for the times they do want to go into branch – can be really valuable.
But it’s possible that you won’t find your existing bank’s online facilities particularly easy to use. Or maybe they don’t work too well from your mobile phone? And perhaps your current bank doesn’t offer the kind of weekend opening hours that suit your lifestyle. Both are good reasons to consider making the switch to another bank. But there are many more such as the overdraft facilities your bank offers – however, remember that overdrafts are subject to status and repayable on demand. And even the location of the branches is important. Being able to pop out from work at lunchtime and get to your bank is a real plus-point for many people.
The choice is yours
Why not take a bit of time in the New Year to think through whether your bank account is really working hard enough for you. And if not, maybe it’s time for you to switch bank accounts to a provider that will suit you better.
Thu, 1st Jan - * Minutes from the latest Bank of England (BoE) Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting have revealed meeting voted unanimously to maintain the interest rate at 0.5 per cent.