One of the best financial savings accounts (February 2022)

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Here are my top places to put your cash.

We’re a long way now from when we could get 5%, with regularly slowly dropping over the last few years. And despite the Bank of England base interest rate increase in late 2021 to 0.25%. that’s not been passed on to most accounts as yet – though we have seen small jumps on some savings products.

You want to make sure you’re getting the best rate on your savings, and this article will take you through the best options right now.

Latest inflation rate

Though it’s not always possible at the moment, your aim should be to ensure you earn more on your savings account than the current rate of inflation. This really is key as anything below that rate is losing value in real terms,

The latest inflation rate (for December 2021) is a huge 5.4% – the highest in 30 years. This rate means it’s impossible to get accounts that beat it. The chart below shows recent changes.


source: tradingeconomics.com

My latest savings update

Every month on my YouTube channel I take you through the latest savings news and chat about some of the accounts featured on this page. Here’s my latest monthly video roundup, or you can read more here.

(This article is updated regularly but check the published date to see when this last happened. New videos are usually at the start of the month.)

Savings account special offers

Some savings account providers will give you a bonus for signing up which can boost your return well above the rate available elsewhere.

Raisin: £50 welcome bonus

If you sign up to the savings platform Raisin and then put £10,000 or more in a savings account via them you’ll get a £50 bonus.

If you put in exactly £10,000, that £50 works out as the equivalent of an extra 0.5% on the interest rate for one year – though obviously if you have more money in there it reduces that impact.

If you open an easy access account then the bonus is only paid if the balance remains about £10,000 for at least six months.

You can only get the bonus once per customer. You’ll also need to claim the bonus – details of how to do this can be found here.

Top Raisin accounts

Make sure you compare these accounts with other interest rates available elsewhere as they won’t always be the best option. However, if you are using the welcome bonus and factor in the equivalent of 0.5%, then it could push these accounts higher.

Chip: £20 welcome bonus

The Autosavings app Chip is offering new customers £20 if they sign up with the code CLEVER20. You’ll need to then save at least £1 by 5 February 2022, and leave it in the account until 6 March 2022 when the bonus will be paid.

To avoid any charges make sure you select the free “Chip” membership tier. This is the default option when you sign up.

You’ll be able to earn 0.61% AER (variable) in the Allica account accessed via the app, and you can save up to £85,000 in there.

You can also get access to the free AI autosaving feature which is a great way to top up your pot without any effort. Here’s my full review.

This code ends 5 February 2022 but will hopefully be replaced by a new one after this date.

Best Regular Savings accounts – up to 3.04%

These accounts are all “Regular” or monthly savers which work differently to normal saving accounts.

For a start, there’s a limit to how much you can save each month, and the interest is calculated on the balance each month. After 12 months the interest is paid and your saver closed. But you can then open up another and begin again.

These are ideal if you only have a certain amount of money to put aside each month, or to move money every month from a lower-paying easy access account. Here’s my full guide to how they work.

You can only open the top accounts if you have or open a current account with these banks – but that’s no reason to put you off.

Sadly the market leading accounts from First Direct, HSBC and M&S Bank all cut rates for new customers to 1% in late November 2020.

Natwest / RBS (3.04%)

Account name Digital Regular Saver
Interest rate 3.04% AER (variable)
Max monthly deposit £50
Min monthly deposit £1
Max amount earn interest on £1,000
Account closes No
Withdrawals Easy access with no penalty
Requirements Must have a Natwest or RBS current account

This account offers a massive rate but with a few restrictions. The biggest is you can only save £50 every month. Not far behind is that interest will only be paid on the first £1,000 saved.

It’s only open to Natwest or RBS customers – though you can have one at each bank. Here’s my review of the account and more information on how it works.

Nationwide (2.5%)

Account name Flex Regular Saver
Interest rate 2.5% AER (variable) From 1 Feb 2022
Max monthly deposit £200
Min monthly deposit £0
Account closes After 12 months
Withdrawals You can make three withdrawals a year without impacting the interest rate. More than this and the rate drops to 0.35% for the rest of the term
Requirements Hold a current account with Nationwide
Online or app only

If you have a Nationwide account then it’s worth looking at this Flex Regular Saver. It pays 2%, but that will increase to 2.5% on 1 February 2022.

TSB (2%)

Account name Monthly Saver
Interest rate 2% AER (fixed)
Max monthly deposit £125
Min monthly deposit £25
Account closes After 12 months
Withdrawals Instant access but you can’t replace the funds
Requirements Hold a current account with TSB

This TSB Monthly Saver (2% fixed) is only for people with a TSB current account. You’ll get 2% fixed for 12 months, though the most you can pay in each month is £125. If you do deposit the max you’ll get £16.20 interest after a year.

If you already have a TSB account it’s worth opening this up, but I wouldn’t bother opening a new one just to get the cash. Focus instead on other current accounts that have better rewards (eg Halifax pays £5 a month) and get their linked regular saver (likely around 1% – more on these below).

Coventry Building Society (1.05%)

Account name Regular Saver
Interest rate 1.05% AER (variable)
Max monthly deposit £500
Min monthly deposit £0
Account closes After 12 months
Withdrawals 30 days interest penalty for early withdrawals
Requirements None

This regular saver from Coventry Building Society doesn’t require a current account so anyone can open it. The rate is variable so it can change at any time (and dropped mid-Feb from 1.3%). You can however pay in a decent £500 a month. 

Other monthly savers (1%)

There’s is a 3.5% rate for existing Skipton Building Society members who joined prior to 16 August 2021, but that’s not going to be any good for most people.

These first accounts are only open to current account customers, new and old. Though a long way from their previous high rates, they are still among the highest paying. However, I wouldn’t bother opening one of these specifically to access the monthly savers.

There are also these accounts which don’t require a current account. Ecology BS is a decent ethical option.

It’s also worth checking your local building society to see if they offer a better regular saver for those who live nearly and can go into a branch to open an account.

Best high-interest current accounts & apps – up to 5.02%

Some of the next best rates are in current accounts. All of these accounts can be opened by anyone, though you will be credit checked. You can access your money at any time, however, the amount of money you can earn interest on is limited.

Virgin Money M Plus (2.02% + 3% bonus for some)

Account name M Plus Current Account
Interest rate 2.02% AER (variable)
Extra 3% AER for switching (fixed for one year)
Max savings interest paid on £1,000
Withdrawals Easy access
Multiple accounts Yes
Requirements Online only

This account from Virgin Money will pay 2.02% on up to £1,000. You can also have more than one account and earn interest on the money there too. There’s no limit to how many you can have, though of course Virgin Money doesn’t have to accept you for each new application.

If you are new to Virgin Money and haven’t had a switching bonus from them before, you’ll currently also get an extra 3% interest on top, totalling 5.02%. This is still only on the first £1,000 saved. More details here.

You can also get a linked 0.35% savings account which isn’t too much lower than the best easy access accounts (more on these below).

If you switch into a new M Plus account you can also get a £150 Virgin Experience voucher as a switching bonus. More details in my full review of this Virgin Money current account.

Claro (2%)

Account name Claro
Interest rate 2% variable
Max savings interest paid on £3,000
Withdrawals Easy access (can take 48 hours)
Multiple accounts No
Requirements Via Claro app only

Claro is a new financial coaching and tracking app that is tempting new customers with 2% interest on up to £3,000 saved. The interest is paid quarterly.

The app normally operates on a subscription system but it’s currently free for the first year. Sadly it’s iOS only, so Android phone users can’t currently get the account.

  • Update – hidden in the small print it’s mentioned that you need to book a free coaching call to get access as a free user to the app. However I’ve been told by Claro that this is not a requirement

The bonus is paid quarterly and you must have at least £100 in the account. Right now the app is free, but if that changes it’ll probably be a sign to move your money.

I’ve looked in more detail on how this works in October 2021’s savings update.

Nationwide FlexDirect (2%)

Account name FlexDirect Current Account
Interest rate 2% AER (fixed for one year)
0.25% AER (variable after year one)
Max savings interest paid on £1,500
Withdrawals Easy access
Multiple accounts Yes (one personal and one joint)
Requirements None

You can get 2% for one year on a balance of up to £1,500 with the FlexDirect account. You do need to pay in £1,000 a month to account in order to get this rate.

After the first year it will drop to 0.25%, but you can always switch away when that happens (and hopefully get a nice cash bonus for doing so).

It’s worth noting that you only get this interest rate when you first open the account. This means if Nationwide were to bring back referral offers or increase the rate you’d miss out. On that basis I’d say give this account a miss for now as you’re not missing out too much. Here’s more in my full review of the FlexDirect account.

You’re able to get the 2% on both a solo account and a joint account, so it’s worth opening a joint account too if you’re in a relationship (though watch this video first).

You can also open a 1% monthly savings account.

Halifax Reward (1.2% equivalent)

Account name Reward current account
Interest rate 1.2% AER equivalent
Max savings interest paid on £5,000
Withdrawals Easy access
Multiple accounts No
Requirements £5,000 must stay in the account every day of the month
Pay in £1,500 a month to the account

The Halifax Reward account gives account holders get £5 a month as a “reward”. There are two ways to get this.

One is spending £500 on your debit card, or you can get if there is £5,000 in your account every day of the month.

If you do this every day of the year, you’ll get £60, which though it’s not interest, is the equivalent of 1.2%.

However, have less in the account for just one day of a month and you get nothing. And £5k is a lot of money for most people, especially as you can get better rates elsewhere

So it’s better to use the debit card option and see it as cashback rather than a savings option. Here’s my rundown of how this Rewards account works.

Club Lloyds (0.78% equivalent)

Account name Club Lloyds current account
Interest rate 0.6% AER (£0.01 to £3,999)
1.5% AER (£4,000 to £5,000)
Max savings interest paid on £5,000
Withdrawals Easy access
Multiple accounts Yes (one personal and one joint)
Requirements Pay in £1,500 a month to the account
Pay out two Direct Debits each month

With all the recent rate cuts, this current account has suddenly become a lot more appealing for savings. As long as you have two direct debits going out, you’ll get 0.6% on balances up to £3,999 and then 1.5% between £4,000 and £5,000. So that’s the equivalent to 0.78% if you have the full £5.000 saved.

You also get access to the above mentioned 1% regular saver, and there are freebies with the account such as monthly movie rentals or a magazine subscription. Make sure you pay in £1,500 a month to avoid a £3 monthly fee. Here’s my review.

Best fixed savings accounts – up to 1.4%

The above accounts all have caps on how much you can save, though a mix of some or all of them would cover a large chunk of the money you’d need in cash savings. You could also look at Premium Bonds.

But what should you do with any additional money? You can still beat most standard savings or current accounts where you’re likely to get less than the base rate of 0.1%.

You can also fix your savings for a year or longer and get a slightly better rate in return. However, you need to be sure you won’t need access to that cash over that time. The longer you fix, the greater the risk you’ll lose out if rates were to rise. But at the same time, they’re protected if rates were to continue to fall.

With £50 bonus (read more about Raisin above):

Best notice account – up to 1.08%

A notice account means you have to request to get your money and interest, which will be released after a set time. They often have a variable rate but if there’s a cut you’ll normally have notice.

Best easy access savings accounts – up to 0.71%

Rates are incredibly poor for these accounts but have started to get slightly better.

  • Investec (0.71% AER variable): min £5,000 / max £250,000
  • Cynergy Bank (0.7% AER variable): min £1 / max £1m
  • Shawbrook Bank (0.67% AER variable): min £1,000, max £85,000 (phone banking available)
  • Atom Bank (0.65% AER variable): min £0 / max £
  • Chip (0.61% AER variable): min £1 / max £85,000. (App based bank. Get free £20 when joining with code CLEVER20 – see top of article for details)

Best Cash ISA – up to 0.65%

Though most of us don’t need the tax-free “wrapper” offered by an ISA, if you are wanting to use one then the same goes in terms of finding the best rate.

You can’t pay in more than £20,000 each financial year into any combination if ISAs, and you can only pay money into one Cash ISA.

Flexible ISAs allow you to withdraw money and pay it back in without impacting your annual allowance. Look for ones that allow transfers in if you have money from previous tax years you want to move.

  • Cynergy Bank (0.65% AER variable) – transfers in allowed / not flexible
  • Shawbrook Bank (0.61% variable): min £1,000 / max £85,000
  • Marcus (0.6% AER variable) – no transfers / not flexible

Premium Bonds

Read my article looking at how Premium Bonds compare to other savings accounts.

Broadly, if you have £10,000 saved you’ll likely win £75 in a year, the equivalent to 0.75%, increasing to above 0.9% the more saved.

Best children’s savings account

I’ve written in more detail about the different savings accounts for kids, so do check that article out.

Halifax Kids’ Monthly Saver (2.5%)

You can save between £10 and £100 a month into this regular saver with Halifax and earn 2.5% AER (Fixed) for 12 months.

Various Building Society Junior ISA (2.5%)

The best rate on a Junior ISA is with Bath BS or Darlington BS.

HSBC MySavings (2.5%)

The MySavings account from HSBC pays 2.5% AER (variable) on up to £3,000 saved. Above this amount you’ll only get 0.25%. There’s a minimum deposit of £10.

Best ethical savings account

The money you hold in your savings is used by the banks to invest and lend money. This could mean it’s used for things you might disagree with, such as fracking, tobacco or arms manufacturing.

There are banks with ethical policies such as Triodos, while building societies must lend 75% of their funds to home buyers, meaning they don’t have the cash to invest elsewhere. Sharia accounts can’t be used for things against Islamic law, like tobacco or gambling and I’ve listed the top ones further down the article.

Nationwide FlexDirect (Current account) – 2%

This current account gives 2% on up to £1,500. It’s fixed for one year. You can also open the 1% Start to Save regular saver. Read more about these above.

Ecology Building Society (Regular saver) – 0.8%

This is a variable rate regular saver from Ecology paying 0.8% with a minimum of £25 and a maximum of £250 a month.

Tandem (easy access) – 0.55%

This Instant Access Saver offers 0.55% from Tandem. The bank says it will support green lending initiatives. You can only open it via the Tandem app.

Nationwide (triple access) – 0.45%

You can only make three withdrawals a year, but you can be assured your money in this Nationwide is better invested than with the other major lenders.

Top Sharia savings accounts – up to 1.31%

Paying interest isn’t allowed in Islam, so a Sharia-compliant savings account instead promises a return on the money saved – an expected profit rate. Though technically this means the rate isn’t guaranteed, it’s not happened yet. They’re open to everyone, not just Muslims.

Finding the latest savings rates

I’ll update this page regularly (check the published date to see when it last happened), but if you find a rate has been cut or isn’t available, you can check the Savers Friend website.

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