MARTIN LEWIS has explained how couples can get up to £340 in FREE cash by switching banks.
If you’re in a couple, you can set up three bank accounts between you – one for you, one for your partner, and a joint account which can be useful for managing household bills.
Martin said in the latest MoneySavingExpert newsletter that swapping banks and making the most of the best switching deals could see couples get up to £340 in cash and freebies.
Banks often flog freebies or deals as an incentive for Brits to switch providers – and get more customers in the process.
Martin explained how switching to First Direct, Virgin Money or Santander could put hundreds back into your pocket.
First Direct is offering £100 to new customers if they switch and open a 1st Account – which is a current account.
To get the cash, you have to put at least £1,000 into the account within the first three months of opening it.
After this, you’ll get the cash within 28 days.
The current account also offers an interest free overdraft up to £250, and you can also have access to a 1% regular saver account too.
You can apply to switch on First Direct's website – but as it's not open to joint accounts, you'll only be able to swap your personal account.
Martin said switching to Virgin Money would also give you 12 bottles of wine for free, plus an extra £50 to be donated to a charity of your choice.
The wine is worth around £140, according to Virgin, and you'll get it if you switch to the M Plus Account, which comes with a linked M Plus Savers account.
But you need to set up at least two direct debits into the current account and put at least £1,000 into the savings account within 31 days of opening it to get the free booze.
You can apply to switch on Virgin Money's website.
Martin added if you apply for a Santander 123 Lite Current account, you can get up to 3% cashback on bills.
The amount of cash back you get depends on what kind of bills you’ve set up.
You’ll get 1% cash back on council tax, mobile and broadband bills, 2% cashback on bills including gas and electricity, and 3% back on water bills.
You have to pay at least £500 into your account per month though, and set up at least two direct debits – which you’ll get the cash back on.
How to switch current accounts
SWITCHING current accounts and seeing what the best deal is can be a bit of a faff.
But if you do your research and take the time to apply, you could pocket cashback and freebies.
A comparison website can be a good place to find the best current account deals rather than contacting each provider separately.
You can search by account type and see the interest rates you could get paid plus any fees.
Most of the main banks and building societies are part of the current account switching service.
This means your new provider will handle all the hassle of your current account switch.
That includes closing your old account and moving your balance, direct debits and standing orders, as well as ensuring your salary goes to the right place.
You don't even have to tell your old bank that you are switching as everything is done automatically.
The switch is usually done within seven working days.
Martin said families with larger household bills could get up to £80 back, after the £2 monthly account fee Santander charges is knocked off.
You can apply to switch your account on Santander's website.
He recommended couples to switch their personal bank accounts to First Direct to get £200 in free cash, and swap their joint account to either Santander or Virgin Money.
However, be warned – switching accounts can be time-consuming and fiddly, so make sure you put aside enough time to sort it out.
Make sure that before you switch, you’re not missing out in other ways – for instance, lower interest, poor customer service or worse savings rates.
And you’ll have to make sure you have enough cash in the bank to qualify for the freebie deals too.
Martin also warned that you should only get a joint bank account if you’re in a “financially-trusting, caring, non-abusive relationship”.
He said: “Don't ever feel pressured by a partner into getting a joint account, it can sadly be a precursor to financial abuse – a form of domestic violence.”
It's not the first time banks have been offering big deals to tempt customers to switch.
Halifax launched a deal in April where new customers could get £100 for free if they swapped banks.
While HSBC was offering a £125 bonus if you switched to its premier account or the advance account in February.
Martin's consumer website MoneySavingExpert also warned this week that card users need to check their personal details – or risk having payments declined.
The consumer whizz also urged Brits to check car insurance ahead of a big rule change on renewal policies.
He reminded married couples to claim a tax break worth up to £1,220.
Source: Read Full Article