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Student Banking

How to look after your money when starting university

A worrying number of students are unaware of some very important money facts studies have revealed. This could lead to them paying a heavy price. If you are heading off to university this month do your research before you go to avoid the pitfalls.

Compare Student Current Accounts 2017

Have a look at these accounts currently available at the major banks

CompanyAccount NameInterest Free Overdraft LimitSpecial OfferMore Info
Santander123 Student AccountUp to £15004year 16-25 RailcardMore Info
HSBCStudent AccountUp to £3000£60 Amazon Giftcard plus a year of Prime StudentMore Info
NationwideStudent AccountUp to £3000NoneMore Info
HalifaxStudent AccountSubject to status and on requestNoneMore Info
TSBStudent AccountUp to £1500NoneMore Info
RBSStudent AccountUp to £20004year National Express Coach Card for fares within the UKMore Info
BarclaysStudent AccountUp to £3000NoneMore Info
NatWestStudent AccountUp to £20004 year Young Persons National Express Coach CardMore Info
LLoydsStudent AccountUp to £1500Free NUS Extra CardMore Info
Ulster BankStudent AccountUp to £1500Commission Free Travel MoneyMore Info

Choosing an Account

  • Bear in mind overdraft limits are 'up to' an amount. It does not guarantee that you will be given the full amount

  • Some limits may be extended over your period of study. For example £500 in the first year, £1000 in your second year and £3000 in your third year.

  • Beware that, if you exceed your interest-free overdraft limit, it can be very expensive. If you are getting near your limit, speak to the bank before it gets any worse.

  • There may be special requirements for having an overdraft which could include paying in a minimum amount every month or signing up to internet banking.

  • Don't just be blinded by the upfront special offers. Work out what will benefit you in the longer term.

  • Know the terms of your account. When will you have to pay back an overdraft? What happens to the account when you graduate?

  • A local bank can be really useful if you need to take documents in but, with ATMs everywhere and Internet Banking, it is not always necessary to go for the nearest.

To open an account you will need...

  • ID such as a passport or driving licence
  • Proof of your address
  • Proof you are a student

Credit cards can be very useful but they need to be used sensibly. Low income credit cards are available.

"Student Money Advisers see the consequences of poor financial capability every day, for example: many students end up working too many hours to get out of the situation and then get behind with course work - and so the spiral continues," said Lynne Condell, National Association of Student Money Advisers chair.

"Student Loans aside many students spend years paying off credit cards and store cards that they could easily have done without but made some poor decisions due to being ill-equipped when they started university."

This content was last reviewed on 14/07/2017

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