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Notice Savings Accounts

Everything you need to know about notice accounts

Victoria Russell
Written by  Victoria Russell
5 min read
Updated: 04 Mar 2024

Need a high paying savings account but don’t need immediate access to your money? A notice account might suit you. Find out more...

When it comes to saving money, we all want to maximise our returns without compromising on flexibility.

For those who can afford to plan their finances a little ahead, notice savings accounts present a unique opportunity.

These accounts strike a balance between earning a higher interest rate and maintaining access to your funds, albeit with a bit of a wait.

What is a notice savings account?

A notice savings account is a type of savings account that requires you to notify your bank or savings provider in advance of making a withdrawal. This notice period is a key feature of the account and can vary in length.

The idea is that, in return, you get a higher interest rate than you would on a standard easy or instant access savings account. 

The benefit of this arrangement is clear: in exchange for a bit of patience, you're typically rewarded with a more favourable interest rate compared to standard easy or instant access savings accounts.

This can make a significant difference over time, especially if you're looking to grow your savings.

Notice periods can range from as short as 30 days to as long as 180 days, depending on the account. It's important to consider how this fits with your financial plans and how quickly you might need access to your money.

Be aware that some notice accounts may limit the number of withdrawals you can make each year. It's crucial to read the terms and conditions carefully to understand any restrictions that may apply.

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How do notice accounts work?

Notice accounts operate similarly to other easy access savings accounts, but with a twist in the withdrawal process. You choose an account based on the interest rate and notice period that suits you, then deposit your savings as you would with any other account.

When you need to make a withdrawal, you must notify your provider in advance, specifying the amount you wish to withdraw.

After the notice period has elapsed, the funds are typically transferred to your current account. However, if you find yourself needing funds before the notice period ends, be prepared for a penalty, often in the form of forfeited interest.

How long will the notice period be?

The notice period for these accounts can vary significantly from one bank to another, ranging from 30 to 180 days. Some accounts may also impose restrictions on the number of withdrawals you can make annually, so it's worth checking the fine print before you commit.

Will I still earn interest during the notice period?

Yes, generally, your savings will continue to earn interest during the notice period. However, it's always a good idea to confirm this with the specific terms of the account you're considering.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of notice savings accounts?

Notice savings accounts come with their own set of pros and cons that you should weigh before deciding if they're right for you.

Advantages:

  • Higher interest: The main draw is the potential for a higher return on your savings due to the agreement to not withdraw funds instantly

  • Discourages impulse spending: These accounts can help prevent spontaneous withdrawals, which is beneficial for long-term budgeting and saving

  • Ongoing deposits: Unlike some accounts that only accept a single initial deposit, notice accounts allow you to continue adding to your savings

Disadvantages:

  • Introductory rates: Some accounts offer high introductory interest rates that may expire after a set period, such as 12 months

  • Terms and conditions: It's essential to understand the full terms of the account, including any minimum balance requirements or other stipulations

  • Penalties: If you need to access your funds quickly, you may face penalties such as lost interest or even account closure

How do I choose the best notice savings account for me?

Selecting the right notice savings account involves considering several factors:

  • Notice period: Make sure you're comfortable with the notice period required for withdrawals

  • Interest rate comparison: It's wise to compare interest rates with other types of savings accounts to ensure you're getting a competitive deal

  • Fees and charges: Be on the lookout for any penalties for early access and other restrictions like withdrawal limits

  • Minimum initial deposit: Check if there's a minimum deposit required and whether it aligns with your savings goals

  • Online access: Consider if the account offers convenient access and management options, such as online banking

What are the alternatives to a notice account?

If a notice savings account doesn't seem like the right fit, there are several other types of savings accounts to consider:

Easy access:

Easy access savings accounts allow for flexible deposits and withdrawals, although they might offer lower interest rates.

Fixed rate bonds:

With a fixed rate bond, you agree to lock your money away for a set term in exchange for a fixed rate of interest. Similar to notice accounts, early access usually results in a penalty.

Regular savings account:

A regular savings account requires a set monthly deposit for a period, often with competitive interest rates and limited access during the term.

Cash ISA:

A cash ISA is a tax-free savings account in the UK with a yearly limit, offering options like fixed rates and easy access.

Compare Savings Accounts with MoneySuperMarket

MoneySuperMarket can help you compare savings accounts all in one place. You can choose to see all accounts, or easy access, fixed rate or cash ISAs from our panel of leading UK providers.

Accounts are ranked by interest rate, but at a glance you’ll also be able to see the minimum deposit, any notice period you’ll have to give, and how you’ll be able to manage the account.

Once happy with your decision just click through to the provider and open the account online.

Compare savings accounts