While living costs remain high, easy access savings accounts have been growing in demand as they’ve not only been offering some of the highest interest rates seen in decades, but they also give savers the flexibility to dip into savings without facing a penalty. However, interest rates have been fluctuating in recent weeks, making it key for people to keep an eye on the market to ensure they’re investing in the most lucrative accounts.
Commenting on the market, Rachel Springall, finance expert at moneyfactscompare.co.uk, said: “Savers may be pleased to know that all variable rates (easy access, notice and ISA equivalents) rose for the thirteenth consecutive month, thanks to competition and back-to-back Bank of England Base Rate rises.”
However, she noted that it is “imperative” that consumers take time to check any variable rates they have against the top rates, especially as the average easy access rate is 1.6 percent higher than a year ago.
Ms Springall continued: “There will be accounts out there that have not received the full benefits of Base Rate rises and it is down to savers to compare and switch. Growing choice in the market means it is more important than ever for savers to consider both unfamiliar and household names, as there are now more overall savings deals on the market since October 2022.”
While there are no accounts currently offering an interest rate that beats the UK’s staggering 10.1 percent inflation rate, some are offering particularly competitive returns. Money comparison site Moneyfactscompare.co.uk has pulled together the top 10 available right now.
Top 10 easy access savings accounts
Ranking top of the list is Chip’s Instant Access Account with an Annual Equivalent Rate (AER) of 3.4 percent.
The account can be opened online with just £1 and up to £250,000 can be invested. Instant withdrawals are permitted and interest can be paid away or compounded.
Yorkshire Building Society’s Rainy Day Account (Issue 2) places second with an AER of 3.35 percent.
This account offers a competitive, two-tiered variable interest rate and savers can get started with as little as £1. The 3.35 percent rate is applied to balances up to £5,000, while a 2.85 percent rate is applied to balances over £5,000.01.
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Withdrawals are permitted on two days per year based on the anniversary of account opening, plus closure at any time.
Placing third is Zopa’s Smart Saver with an AER of 3.34 percent.
The account can be opened with £1 and interest is applied monthly. Zopa allows customers to open personalised pots however, a maximum of £85,000 can be deposited to the account in total before account holders are no longer allowed to submit any more cash.
Coventry Building Society’s Limited Access Saver (Online) (Issue 8) places fourth with an AER of 3.3 percent.
The account can be opened with a minimum deposit of £1 and interest is calculated daily and applied annually or monthly.
As it’s a limited-access account, up to six withdrawals can be made without facing a penalty. From the seventh withdrawal onwards (which can include closure), a charge equal to 50 days’ interest will be applied based on the amount being withdrawn.
In fifth place is Secure Trust Bank’s Access Account with an AER of 3.3 percent.
The account can be opened with a minimum deposit of £1,000 and interest is paid monthly. Up to £1million can be invested overall and withdrawals are free of charge.
Placing sixth is Al Rayan Bank’s Everyday Saver (Issue 3), with an expected profit rate of 3.3 percent.
The bank operates under Shariah principles, which means people earn profit rather than interest on their savings.
The account requires a minimum deposit of £5,000 to open and profit is calculated and credited on the last working day of each calendar month. Unlimited withdrawals are also permitted without penalty
The Family Building society’s Online Saver (5) places seventh with an AER of 3.26 percent.
The account can be opened with a minimum deposit of £100 and interest is calculated daily and paid annually on January 31. The minimum withdrawal is £100, and the maximum is £25,000.
In eighth place is Shawbrook Bank’s Easy Access Account (Issue 54) with an AER of 3.26 percent.
The account can be opened with a minimum deposit of £1,000 and interest is calculated daily and paid on the anniversary of the first deposit. The minimum account withdrawal amount is £500 and funds of up to £85,000 can be invested in a sole account.
Placing ninth is Investec Bank Plc’s Online Flexi Saver with an AER of 3.26 percent.
The account can be opened with a minimum deposit of £5,000 and interest is calculated daily and applied monthly on the first. Withdrawals are permitted at any time, free of charge.
Finally, in tenth place is HSBC’s Online Bonus Saver with an AER of 3.25 percent, calculated daily and applied to the balance monthly.
The three percent rate is awarded on up to £10,000 of the balance every month a withdrawal is not made, while 1.75 percent AER will apply to figures over £10,000.
While this is an easy access account, meaning savings can be withdrawn, it isn’t flexible and on the occasion that a withdrawal is made, a 1.2 percent standard rate will be applied to that month instead.
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