Is the era of free banking officially over?
Last week's announcement by Lloyds Bank would appear to have sounded the death knell for free banking in the UK with customers now being charged a monthly fee to have in place overdraft facilities. While the issue of "free banking" has been something of a myth in all honesty, it does look as though officially more and more customers will be charged a monthly fee to obtain access to banking facilities.
Many experts believed that the era of free banking ended many years ago with the vast array of UK banks bringing in additional charges for various services. When you compare the cost of banking today compared to the cost of banking 20 years ago there is no real comparison. When you also take into account that banks have been using your savings and your money to finance their own businesses then effectively you have actually been "charged" for banking services for many years.
While officially the banks will argue that you are only being charged for additional services there is no doubt that free banking is coming to an end. So now is the time to shop around for the best deals for you and pull away from the historic trend which many UK consumers have been involved in, i.e. staying with the same banking institution for years and years.
Defaqto points out variation in packaged account charges
Some packaged bank accounts are not good value for money, Defaqto suggested today.The data firm also released new analysis of the market, which showed that monthly charges for these "added value" accounts vary from £3 to £25.Among the "extras" offered by banks in their packaged accounts is travel insurance, card protection and preferential rates on loans.According to Defaqto, each service costs...Read More
IVA providers to meet with banks
Insolvency practitioners and banks are meeting later today in a bid to reach agreement on contentious areas surrounding individual voluntary arrangements (IVAs).IVAs have become a popular way of managing debt problems thanks to the huge growth in personal debt in the UK. They are legal contracts between borrowers and lenders which allow people to pay off a proportion of their debt and write off th...Read More
Gordon Brown faces grilling by senior MPs
The timing of Sir James Crosby's departure could not have been worse with Gordon Brown set to meet with the chairman of various House of Commons committees in his twice annual grilling. The subject of Sir James Crosby and the whistleblower from HBOS is splashed across the financial press today and is sure to be the focal point of what could be a very stormy debate.
During his time a...
When did you last change your bank account?
Despite the fact that the UK banking sector is one of the most competitive in the world it would appear that very few people in the UK would actively consider changing their banking arrangements to take advantage of better deals elsewhere. Surveys have shown that the vast majority of people in the UK are very happy to remain with one bank for their whole of their working life despite the fact they...Read More
Santander launches fee-free bank account
Santander, the Spanish financial giant which owns the likes of Abbey and Alliance & Leicester, has today announced plans for a fee-free bank account which will go on general release in the UK in 2010. Under the terms of the account, holders will not be charged any fees on authorised or unauthorised overdrafts although they will still incur a pre-agreed interest rate which will start at 12.9%. Even...Read More