Interest rates on savings accounts are always changing, so it can feel overwhelming when you try to find the best deal.
The market has also shifted dramatically in the past 12 months, with interest rates rising by more than 400% compared to last year. This means that if your savings are in a low interest account, you could be missing out on earning some extra cash.
If this sounds familiar, now is a good time to explore the best savings accounts in the market - and you might even find a suitable account close to home.
When we look at the top interest rates, we normally filter our data to exclude deals for existing customers, as we don’t want to alienate a segment of our customers. Instead, we opt to showcase the deals that anyone can apply for.
However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t explore what your current bank is offering as some existing customer deals are beating the rest of the market.
The top rate for a regular saver is from First Direct at a mighty 7%, but this is only available for existing customers. The interest is fixed for 12 months and you can save between £25 and £300 a month, so it’s perfect if you would like to save little and often.
Alternatively, if you have a TSB current account, you can save into its monthly savings account with a fixed interest rate of 5% for one year. This regular saver requires you to save between £25 and £250 a month by standing order and you can access the money whenever you wish.
The good news is that these rates are comparable to what banks are offering new customers. Yes, they might not reach the heights of First Direct’s 7%, but some come close. For example, Natwest Digital Regular Saver has an interest rate of 6.17% on your first £5,000. This account allows you to save between £1 and £150 a month - so not as much as the previous accounts - but still worth a look if you want to get into the habit of saving.
Halifax’s regular saver beats TSB at 5.5% and you can save a similar amount with between £25 and £250 deposited into the account each month.
Next up are easy and instant access accounts, and there are some more great deals for existing customers. Barclays Rainy Day Saver is a good option if you are a member of Barclays Blue Rewards as it has an interest rate of 5.12% on balances up to £5,000. It also gives you instant access to your money and you can manage the account using its app, online banking, by phone or in a branch. The only snag is the limit of £5,000, as if you have more money to save there might be better options in the market.
If you have a Private Current Account or Current Account Tracker with Virgin Money, then you can open a Private Savings Account which has a variable rate of 4.06% to 4.58% depending on how much you can save. Bear in the mind that to unlock the top interest rate you’ll need a balance of more than £1,000,000, but you can still get a rate of 4.06% on balances from £0 to £499,999. Withdrawals are also allowed and no notice is required.
In comparison, Chip is currently offering an instant access account which is open to anyone at 3.71%. You can save up to £250,000 and the money can be accessed at any time, so there’s no worries about withdrawal fees.
Elsewhere, Yorkshire Building Society Rainy Day Account is an easy access account open to all with an interest rate of 3.6% on balances of £1 up to £5,000. If your balance is more than £5,000 then the interest decreases to 3.1%. It also has less flexibility as it only allows withdrawals on two days per account year.
Although there are some market-leading interest rates for existing customers looking for a regular saver or instant access savings account, you won’t find better rates in fixed-rate bonds as the top deals are open to everyone.
For example, Raisin UK Isbank UK’s one-year fixed term deposit is at 5% with a minimum deposit of £1,000 and no withdrawals before the end of the term. This is currently a market-leading rate if you are prepared to lock away your money for a year.
My Community Bank’s one-year fixed term deposit is also close behind at 4.87% and you can also open it with a deposit of £1,000, but no withdrawals are allowed until the fixed term ends.
Overall, there are some fantastic deals available to existing customers, so it’s always worthwhile exploring what your bank is currently offering. But remember, if their savings accounts don’t fit the bill, don’t hesitate to look elsewhere as providers are constantly battling to get your attention.
As a trained journalist, Lucinda has spent the past 10 years writing and editing content for regional and national titles, including The Mirror, WalesOnline and Manchester Evening News. She is now a personal finance editor and specialises in savings, helping people to make confident financial decisions so they can save for what matters most.