It is often a good idea to switch current account to get the best deal on the market, but it is something that a lot of people are worried about. Here is a brief guide on how to switch your current account.
Choose a better account
The first step involves sitting down and looking at your existing current account and comparing it to rival offers.
There is a large amount of choice from a wide range of banks and building societies and the best accounts will deliver both good customer service and some special extras that mean they are worth switching to.
Things to consider include whether the account pays any interest, or offers any reward; does it offer an overdraft and what is the interest rate; what are the charges if you go into an unauthorised overdraft, and; does the account bring deals on other products such as mortgages, savings and insurance.
Check you qualify for another current account
Some current accounts will carry qualifying criteria. Other accounts may require you to pay in a certain amount to qualify for particular features and rewards. You may find your new bank is not willing to offer you the same size overdraft. If you regularly use this buffer and want to have the same facility at your potential new bank, make sure that they are happy to offer this. Any overdraft you are offered will depend on your personal financial circumstances at the time.
Ask your new bank to start the switch
Moving bank accounts is a much easier process nowadays that it once was. Most banks and building societies will offer a switching service that does the vast majority of the work for you. The switching service should move across all of your direct debits and standing orders for bills and these will continue to be paid. Ideally, you should be sent a list of these so that you can confirm they are correct and should move over.
It is a good move to keep an eye on your new and existing accounts, to make sure everything is going fine and that you can spot any problems. Once everything is complete your new current account provider will let you know and you should be able to sit back and enjoy a better financial life.
Know your rights
If your current account is not switched within ten working days of the date the application is approved, ask your new bank to chase it up for you. If anything goes wrong with the switch you should tell the new bank as soon as possible. It should refund any charges and fees paid on a current account because of the delay in making the switch. You can find out more on the FCA website.