Basic accounts

If you are looking for a bank account that is easy to use, look no further! Here you can find all the information you need to know to help you choose the account that is best for you. Here you can take a look at our comparison chart, to help you make an informed decision.

How to choose the best Basic Account for you

A basic bank account is all it claims to be: an account that you can use to manage only the standard fundamentals for your day to day finance needs. A basic bank account comes with a debit card, direct debit and standing order facilities, and access to mobile and online banking. There may be restrictions on how you can use your account, such as the amount you can withdraw and the number of daily transactions that can be made.

Compare your options

Although similar, each basic bank account will have different eligibility criteria available. Know what your options are before applying for a basic bank account to ensure that you both match the eligibility criteria and find an account that suits your basic banking needs.

Can I open a basic bank account?

Basic bank accounts have the most basic eligibility criteria of any bank account. So here’s what you need to know:

  • You must be aged 16 or over to open a basic bank account, though check with each provider, because sometimes the minimum age can be 18.
  • You must be able to provide a proof of identity, such as a passport or a driving licence, and a proof of address in order to open a basic bank account. This will be required by all banks and building societies.
  • You can apply in person, by post, over the phone, or online.
  • A bad credit history is not relevant as a basic bank account does not allow you to be overdrawn; though the provider may still run credit checks on you. In fact, a basic bank account may be a good way for you to improve your credit score.

Why should I choose a basic bank account?

If you want simplicity with your banking, then a basic bank account is perfect, being similar to a standard bank account. A basic bank account differs from the standard bank account only by it being unlikely that you will receive an overdraft or any credit capability. However, you will receive a debit card, and though the bank may place restrictions on how much you can withdraw, and how many times a day you may use your card, you can use it in shops, and you can withdraw money from an ATM. Some banks will also permit you to set up standing orders with a basic bank account.

Refusal to open a basic bank account

The bank or building society may refuse to open a basic bank account if any of the following apply:

  • You cannot present ID or proof of address
  • Although you do not need to pass a credit check you may be refused a basic bank account if you do not agree to be credit checked
  • The bank has reason to suspect you may use the account for fraud or other illegal activities
  • You qualify for a current account

You are allowed to contest any of the above accusations if you believe you have been wrongly assessed.

Closure of your basic bank account

The bank or building society may terminate your account for any of the following reasons:

  • You misrepresented your identity in the application process
  • You have violated the terms and conditions of the account
  • You have used the account for fraud or other illegal activities
  • Your account has remained inactive for over 2 years
  • You open another bank account in the UK