Statistics show that you’re more likely to get divorced than you are to change your current account, but thanks to the Current Account Switching Service it is easier than ever to go somewhere new.
The five providers below rank highly on the ethical stakes.
Britain’s latest mutual offers a competitive package for those who switch their current accounts. If you already have a friend with an account you can share £200 for the switch if you are referred, and you can then pass on the favour to other friends as well.
The bank’s FlexPlus offers five per cent interest on a balance of up to £2,500 for the first twelve months that you hold the account, as well as a linked savings account offering 5 per cent interest, allowing you to save £250 a month.
Ethical bank Triodos has just launched a current account in line with its values, which includes a contactless card made of ‘natural plastic’. Triodos believes that banks should be an active source for good and will lend your money to organisations committed to making a positive social, environmental or cultural impact.
The bank is charging £3 a month for the account, but has lower overdraft charges than rivals (18 per cent). You can sign up for an invitation to open an account on its website, with the first accounts opened in June 2017. Triodos does not hold a UK banking licence, so current account holders assets are protected under the European passport scheme up to Eu100,000 per person.
Get £125 when you switch to the Co-operative Bank’s current account, with another £25 going to homelessness charity Centrepoint. There’s no interest on your account but you will also receive up to £5.50 a month if you sign up to its Everyday Rewards scheme, which pays out for paying in a certain amount of cash each month, staying in credit and paying out direct debits.
Despite questions over the Co-operative Bank’s ownership, it continues to stick to an ethical policy that is independently audited each year.
For those who want to support local credit unions, the Engage current account acts like a bank account, but is run by credit unions, supporting local communities and those who might otherwise be unable to open a bank account. There are some fees on the account, but no overdraft facility and the scheme offers cashback on spending. While funds are segregated, they aren’t part of the UK compensation scheme.
Highly rated by Move Your Money, which looks at the ethical credentials of banks, challenger Metro lacks the legacy issues of its bigger rivals. The current account offers no interest, but is great for those using debit cards abroad, with low fees around the world and none in Europe. The bank is highly rated for technology and ease of use (it can print your debit card for you in-store), and is also pet friendly, if free dog biscuits are your thing.
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