Building associations launch better-paying savings accounts in branches

High Street austerity comeback: Builders’ Associations launch wave of better paying branch bills

Savers who are wary of managing their accounts online have been given a glimmer of hope.

Building societies have launched a range of higher paying branch accounts that give you easy access to your money.

None can match inflation, which rose to 2.5 percent in June. But they offer a much better chance of protecting your money from rising prices than the miserly 0.01 percent paid by traditional High Street banks.

On the High Street: Building societies have launched a wave of better-paying branch savings accounts that give you easy access to your money

The catch is that they limit the number of times you withdraw money from your account each year. You must therefore ensure that the conditions suit your wishes.

But they can appeal to those who have built up large deposits and want to earn a higher interest on their money from a High Street provider without committing it to a fixed rate bond.

Coventry, the second largest construction company, has a new Limited Access Saver, available through its affiliates and by post.

It pays 0.5 percent on £1 or more. But it limits you to withdrawing money up to six times a year.

If you want to withdraw even more money, you pay a fee equal to 50 days’ interest on the extra you withdraw – or about 70 cents for every £1,000.

Leeds BS has a similar new offer with its Double Access account and also pays 0.5 percent. But it’s more restrictive because you can only do two withdrawals per year.

If you want to withdraw more cash, you pay the equivalent of 30 days of interest – or 41 cents for each additional £1,000 withdrawn.

In addition, you must have a minimum of £5,000 in the account or the rate will drop to a pitiful 0.05 percent.

Nationwide’s One Year Triple Access Saver pays 0.45 percent. But the account is only available online.

And after 12 months your money will be transferred to a lower paying account. The society does have two accounts with affiliates, but those are no longer open to new depositors — and they’re paying terrible rates.

The Limited Access Saver pays 0.05 percent, as long as you don’t make more than five withdrawals. Any more and the rate drops to 0.01 percent.

The Triple Access Saver pays 0.1 percent if you limit your withdrawals to three per year. This rate also drops to 0.01 percent if you earn more.

Savers who like to go online would do better if Marcus pays 0.5 percent at Goldman Sachs, with no withdrawal limits of £1 or more.

Charter Savings Bank also pays 0.5 percent online or by post, but the minimum to open an account is £5,000.

Marcus increased his rate last month by 0.4 percent by adding a 0.1 percent bonus to his rate, payable for 12 months.

But the 0.5 percent is only automatically available to new savers. Those who are already in the account must claim the bonus.