Santander won awards for ‘Best Current Account Product Provider’ and ‘Best Overall Current Account Provider.’
The bank’s 123 account has proved hugely popular in 2014, offering rates up to 3% AER when you’re in credit (up to £20,000) AND paying cashback on your everyday spending.
TSB and Halifax were highly commended in the ‘Best Current Account Product Provider’ category. The TSB current account pays a generous 5% interest (up to £2,000) and without charging a monthly fee.
Rather than paying interest, the Halifax Reward current account pays you £5 every month. To qualify for the payment, you must pay at least £750 a month into your account and never go overdrawn.
The ‘Best Current Account Service Provider’ award, as it did last year, went to First Direct. Customer service awards were based on a survey completed by MoneySuperMarket customers.
It’s a tough market for savings but Nationwide Building Society is still faring well. It was one of the big winners of the night, taking home no less than five separate awards overall, including ‘Best ISA Provider’ and ‘Best Overall Savings Provider.’ Nationwide has offered consistently competitive rates over the past 12 months, and scored highly for customer service too.
Halifax won ‘Best Savings Account Provider’ though. The bank’s offers a range of tax-free, fixed interest, regular savings and variable rate accounts, many of which pay generous rates of interest.
As well as for savings, Nationwide dominated the podium for the mortgage awards, scooping both ‘Best First-Time buyer Mortgage Provider’ and ‘Best Overall Mortgage Provider’ awards. Judges were impressed by the Society’s ‘Save to Buy’ scheme, where you are offered a dedicated savings account to help you save towards a deposit and then a competitive interest rate on your mortgage when you’re ready to buy.
HSBC took home the award for ‘Best Mortgage Provider for Remortgages’, with its wide range of competitive deals for consumers with varying amounts of equity in their homes.
Credit Cards and loans
American Express dominated the field in the credit card awards, winning both the ‘Best for Credit Card Rewards’ and ‘Best Overall Credit Card Provider’. Its current offerings include the Platinum Cashback Credit Card, which pays 5% cashback on up to £2,500 of purchases in the first three months. The cards has a representative annual percentage rate (APR) of 18.7% (variable) and there is a £25 annual fee.
M&S Bank was highly commended in both the above categories. Its card offers an introductory 0% on purchases for 19 months and on balance transfer for 15 months, with a 2.9% balance transfer fee. The bank is currently offering a £30 M&S food and wine voucher to customers who apply for its credit card through MoneySuperMarket by February 28.
Nationwide won the ‘Best for Credit Card Borrowers’ Award. Barclaycard was highly commended in this category, having offered lengthy balance transfer deals throughout the year.
The award for ‘Best loans provider’ went to Sainsbury’s Bank, which often tops the best buy tables for its low loan rates, with Hitachi Personal Finance highly commended.
Santander beat off stiff competition to scoop the top prize of Best Overall Provider this year.
The bank, which offers the innovative 123 current account and 123 credit card, was judged by 2,000 MoneySuperMarket customers and leading independent experts to have offered the best range of products and services overall last year.
Kevin Mountford, head of banking at MoneySuperMarket, said:
“Santander retains its crown as the Best Overall Provider as it continued to offer innovative deals designed for long-term relationships with its customers, not for short-term quick wins. Its customer service is also continuing to improve.”
Please note: any rates or deals mentioned in this article were available at the time of writing. Click on a highlighted product and apply direct.