Banking and savings – customer service and reputation forefront in decision-making.


52% of us have moved our savings because we were unhappy with customer service, according to the latest moneyfacts.co.uk user polls. 42% of us have avoided a particular account provider due to a friend†s bad experience.

With bank account providers, 46% of us have moved current account because of bad customer service and 45% have avoided a certain bank because of a friend†s bad experience.

Accessing our banking and savings via the internet is becoming increasingly popular but still many of us prefer to pick up the phone or visit a branch. Our finances are something that we need to take seriously and can cause a lot of stress. This means when we want to discuss them or need help, we need to be treated fairly and receive a good service.

Banks are continually being slated in the press for unfair charges and for things such as going overdrawn. This, along with hearing about people close to us having had a bad experience, would be enough to put many of us off choosing a certain account provider. However important good service is to us, we should still be aware of interest rates being offered by different providers.

The average rate of interest paid on current accounts is 1% gross on a balance of £1. However, current account best buy charts on moneyfacts.co.uk show that rates of over 4% can be earned on these accounts. Banking facilities should also be looked at when choosing your current account. For instance, is it important to have a branch near to you? Do you want to use internet banking?

As well as these things, if you use an overdraft on your current account it is wise to compare rates of interest on these. Moneyfacts†research of overdrafts shows that some providers are charging EARs (Effective Annual Rates) on authorised overdrafts of over 20% and for unauthorised overdrafts over 30%. Again, best buy charts on moneyfacts.co.uk show that better deals are available with rates on authorised overdrafts as low as 0% (introductory) and unauthorised at under 6%.

Rates on savings accounts also vary greatly. On no notice accounts at £1,000 the average rate of interest is around 2%. The savings best buys charts show that rates of over 4.5% can be found. Again, account facilities should be considered.


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