Here is our guide to the best savings accounts.
Who can open a savings account?
Almost everyone can open a savings account, providing they’re a UK resident with a fixed address.
Most savings accounts are designed for adults, but there is also a selection of accounts for children under 16, including Junior ISAs.
How much money do you need to open a savings account?
The amount you need to start saving with a financial provider depends on the account you choose. Some banks and building societies require a minimum opening deposit, typically of between £50 and £1,000, but many accounts can be opened with as little as £1.
What are the different types of savings accounts?
There are several types of savings accounts, all with different ways for you to pay in your money and withdraw it . However, the most common options are as follows:
- Instant access: an account that lets you add money and take it out at any time
- Notice account: you have to give notice to withdraw money (such as 60 days), or pay a penalty. These accounts usually let you pay in at any time.
- Regular saver: an account that requires you to save up to a set amount each month, which is ideal if you do not have a lump sum to save.
- Fixed bond: an account that locks your money away for a fixed term, such as one year. These accounts usually come with fixed interest rates for the whole term as you put the whole amount to be saved in when you open it.
Each of these account types is also available when you save using an ISA.
Can you save in your current account?
You can save with a current account, but only consider doing so if you find one that pays more interest than savings accounts offer, and you can remain disciplined not to take your money out.
How safe is your money?
When you save your money through a bank or building society you should check if they are protected under the government's Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).
This scheme covers your savings up to £85,000 (£170,000 for joint savings accounts). This means you would get your money back if your bank or building society collapsed.
If you want to save more than £85,000, think about spreading your savings across more than one bank or building society. These need to be independent of each other as the compensation scheme will consider two sister banks as being parts of a single entity.
How do you start saving?
Most savings accounts can be opened in a branch, online or through the post.
To help you figure out which savings account to open, read these pages, which explore how each type works in more detail:
If you want to skip straight to figuring out which account is right for you, read this guide.