HSBC launches £200 current account switch offer - but you need £21k to get it
Current account users who switch to HSBC’s Advance or Premier accounts by 10 July can bag £200 cashback, but there is a catch.
To get the accounts, you need to pay in at least £1,750 a month or a minimum of £10,500 every six months (not including internal transfers) – which equates to a whopping £21,000 a year.
In addition, Premier customers need to have savings or investments of at least £50,000 with HSBC in the UK; or have an individual annual income of at least £100,000 and either a HSBC mortgage or a HSBC investment, life insurance or protection product.
If you think this offer is for you and you haven’t been a HSBC current account customer in the last six months, you also need to switch using the seven-day Current Account Switch Service, transfer two direct debits or standing orders.
Do this, and you’ll get the first £150 within 70 days of the account opening.
The remaining £50 will be paid once you’ve held the account for 12 months, on the condition that you register for mobile or online banking within the first 60 days of the account opening, and you meet the eligibility requirements above for nine of the 12 months.
You also get an unlimited interest free overdraft for the first six months, although the rate jumps to 17.9% EAR (equivalent annual rate) for Advance customers and to 11.9% EAR for Premier customers, although these customers will get a £500 0% overdraft.
Both accounts also give savers access to HSBC’s regular saver, which pays 6% AER (annual equivalent rate), while Premier customers under 70 also get free worldwide travel insurance.
- See this week’s Best savings rates.
£200 is the biggest switching incentive offered by the major banks and building societies, but you need at least £21,000 per year to pay in, which is a hefty sum.
For those with less upfront cash, the Co-operative Bank pays £150 to new switchers who transfer over at least four direct debits and pay in at least £800 per month (£9,600), M&S gives a £100 gift card to those who transfer over at least two direct debits, while First Direct pays £100 to switchers who deposit at least £1,000 during the first three months.
Also consider if you could earn more from an account that pays in-credit interest as opposed to a switching bonus; see our Current Account Best Buys for the top deals.
When it comes to customer service First Direct, which is a subsidiary of HSBC, won the ‘Most Trusted Financial Provider’ Award in our 2015 Customer Service Awards.
An overdraft is an agreement with your bank that authorises you to withdraw more funds from your account than you have deposited in it. Many banks charge for this privilege either as a fixed fee or charge interest on the money overdrawn at a special high rate. Some banks charge a fee and interest. And other banks offer a free overdraft but impose very high charges for exceeding the agreed limit of your overdraft.
Generally thought of as being interchangeable with life assurance, but isn’t. Life insurance insures you for a specific period of time, at a premium fixed by your age, health and the amount the life is insured for. If you die while the policy is in force, the insurance company pays the claim. However, if you survive to the end of the term or cease paying the premiums, the policy is finished and has no remaining value whatsoever as it only has any value if you have a claim. For this reason, life insurance is much cheaper than life assurance (also called whole of life).
An account opened with a clearing bank (few building societies offer current accounts) that provides the ability to draw cash (usually via a debit card) or cheques from the account. Some pay fairly minimal rates of interest if the account is in credit. Most current accounts insist your monthly income (salary or pension) is paid directly in each month and they offer a number of optional services – such as overdrafts and charge cards – which are negotiable but will incur fees.
Where APR is the rate charged for money borrowed, Annual equivalent rate is how interest is calculated on money saved. The AER takes into account the frequency the product pays interest and how that interest compounds. So, if two savings products pay the same rate of interest but one pays interest more frequently, that account compounds the interest more frequently and will have a higher AER.