A number of bank and building societies offer generous cashback or rewards if you transfer your current account to them. So why not see if you can get something for nothing by switching your account now?
Reward and Cashback accounts
What is a cashback account?
A cashback account is an account which gives you a cash bonus or reward when you switch to it. The cash is offered as an incentive by banks and building societies to persuade people to move their money across from another provider. Sometimes however, the reward may take a different form. For example, if the account is a packaged account with a monthly fee, the fees may be waived for a set period of time. Most of the accounts that offer cash incentives or rewards are current accounts.
Who do they suit?
Reward current accounts that pay a cash bonus when you switch often come with strings attached, or may not always necessarily offer the most competitive rates of credit or overdraft interest, which will mean they won’t be suitable for everyone.
You should always check whether the account is appropriate for your needs before moving, otherwise the benefit of the cash bonus or reward could be cancelled out. For example, if you tend to be overdrawn frequently and switch to a reward bank account purely because it is offering cashback, but it has expensive overdraft charges, you might be better off with an account with no cash bonus, but low overdraft fees.
The benefits of this type of cash back current account are clear – a cash lump sum or other reward when you switch your account over. Given today’s low interest rate environment and how difficult it can be to earn decent returns, this kind of incentive can be extremely valuable when it comes to giving your savings an extra boost. You usually get paid the cash back within three months of moving your account across to the new provider.
It’s easy to be tempted by cash back current accounts while ignoring what else the account is actually offering. Remember that if you go overdrawn regularly, you should check the overdraft charges, or if you tend to keep a large balance in your current account, you must find out how much interest you will earn if you are in credit.
You may be required to pay in a minimum amount each month to qualify for the switching incentive offered by the reward account. Bear in mind too that if you don’t meet this minimum deposit, in some cases you may be changed a monthly fee, which would soon wipe out the benefit of a cash bonus for switching. Some banks require that you pay in your salary each month, so always read the small print carefully first.
If you can’t pay in a certain amount each month and therefore won’t qualify for a cash reward, then choose a current account that doesn’t require regular monthly deposits. There are plenty to pick from, so you should choose one that is appropriate for your needs – think about how you run your current account before moving, so that you know whether an account with high interest when you’re in credit or an account with low overdraft charges will suit you best.