When it comes to choosing a bank account, your options can seem endless. But if you’re confused about which one to choose – TotallyMoney.com can answer your questions and help find the right bank account for you.
A bank account is a secure and convenient place to keep your money. You can access your account wherever and whenever you want via internet banking – and pay your bills automatically using direct debits or standing orders. Some accounts also let you earn interest on the money you put in, so you can make money without lifting a finger!
You can choose from several different types of bank account, but the main ones are:
- Basic account
- Current account
- Savings account
Find out more about these accounts on our definitions
To open a bank account you usually have to fill in an application form – either in a branch or online. You will also need to provide (usually two) forms of identification such as a passport, driving licence or recent bill. However, a bank does not have to accept your application – and they do not have to give a reason for this.
Before making a choice – think about what kind of person you are and what you want from your bank account. For example, are you always in credit? Or always overdrawn? Or a bit of both? Choose your account accordingly.
A direct debit is a way of automatically paying bills from your account. You can set one up by signing a form which will allow a company to take a certain amount of money directly from your account, usually monthly.A standing order acts in the same way as direct debit but it usually takes three days to transfer the money into the recipient’s bank account – whereas, with a direct debit, this is instant.
Companies tend to favour direct debits as they are cheaper. Some business even offer discounts to customers who pay in this way. Plus they offer protection for customers as, if the wrong amount is debited from your account, then you can contact your bank and have the money refunded.
Most banks will do a credit check before accepting you for a current account. But, even if you are rejected by one bank you could still be accepted by another one.