The new switch service allows you to switch from one current bank account to another within 7 days, with minimal stress. Once you have applied for an account with your new bank and passed all of their ID checks and eligibility criteria checks, then the switching process begins, with all of your incoming payments and outgoing payments being switched over as well; this includes any pre-existing standing orders and direct debits.
Why would I want to switch accounts?
Many banks now offer cash rewards of up to £200 for switching over, and now with the switch service, this has become much easier and more convincing. You may also want to switch accounts if you want to minimise the interest charged on your overdraft, if you want to find a bank which has a better customer service standard, or for many other reasons. Either way, switching accounts can both save and earn you some money.
What do I have to do?
The switch service is very simple: all you need is to choose which account you would like to switch to, and then fill in an application form either online, or in person. As part of the application you will be credit checked and will have to submit evidence of address and ID.
Once your application has been accepted there will be a few more forms for you to fill into open your new account and close your old account. After this, it should take 7 days (not including weekends) for your switch to be completed.
What’s the catch?
If you continue to switch accounts to pick up the cash rewards, this may negatively affect your credit file, especially if you only stay with each bank account for a short time. However, these applications only stay on your credit file for approximately a year, so, as long as you are not planning on applying for a mortgage or a loan in the near future, then it should not negatively affect your finances too much.