If your credit score is less than ideal, there are still ways to open UK bank accounts and keep your money in the country. These include basic and guaranteed bank accounts.
These accounts are offered from both mainstream high street banks and building societies as well as digital-only challenger banks. Opening an account is free, with minimal or no fees attached.
Basic bank accounts
UK banks offer basic bank accounts that are easy to open with bad credit history. These accounts are perfect for people with limited financial stability who may have been denied a standard current account in the past.
Barclays, Santander, Royal Bank of Scotland (including NatWest), HSBC, Nationwide, Co-operative Bank, Lloyds (including Halifax and Bank of Scotland), TSB and Virgin Money (Clydesdale & Yorkshire Bank included) all provide these types of bank accounts.
These accounts are more cost-effective than other options and don’t need a credit check other than to verify your identity. Plus, there’s no charge for running the account or for services like direct debits or standing orders that fail.
Business bank accounts
Business bank accounts are essential for small businesses in the UK, particularly limited companies. Not only do they help you keep track of your company’s finances and make payments easier, but they’re also easy to open with bad credit.
Most banks perform a credit check before approving your application, which can be an obstacle for small businesses. Fortunately, there are many online and challenger banks that do not conduct credit checks so it is possible to open a business bank account even with poor credit history.
You may be able to find a business bank account with attractive introductory offers, such as bonus cash for opening an account and lower fees for new customers. Be sure to thoroughly compare the terms and conditions of each account before signing up, however.
Business current accounts
Opening a business current account can help organise your transactions and keep track of all cash flow. It makes it simpler to calculate tax liabilities and pay bills quickly and conveniently.
No matter if you have bad credit or not, it is essential to understand your options when opening a business bank account. Your credit score and banking history are two major factors that determine whether or not an application for a chequeing account will be approved.
ChexSystems reports can also prevent you from opening a business account. However, many banks don’t use ChexSystems so it may still be possible to find an institution that will approve you even with negative items on your report.
Personal current accounts
With bad credit, opening a standard bank account may seem impossible. But with some creative approaches – especially if you’re self-employed or in school – there are ways to get one.
Some UK banks provide basic bank accounts that enable you to deposit and spend money, pay bills and use online banking – even with poor or no credit history. They can be an affordable way of accessing some of the essentials of banking without incurring the same monthly fees as a current account.
You must demonstrate your identity and show proof of address and income. This could include a recent bill or letter from an authoritative figure such as your doctor or teacher.