Best money deals this week - August 21st

For one-year cash ISAs...

  • Halifax has increased the rate on its one-year fixed ISA, which now pays 1.60 per cent yearly or 1.59 per cent monthly. Savers aged 16 and over must invest a minimum of £500 to be eligible. Additions are permitted within 60 days of the account opening. Early access is subject to 90 days’ loss of interest and closure of the account. Transfers in are accepted and savers can open and operate the account in branch, by telephone and online.
  • Verdict: This rate rise from Halifax pushes its one-year fixed-rate ISA into the Best Buys, earning an ‘excellent’ rating in the process. Paying 1.60 per cent yearly, this deal will appeal to savers who are looking for a top rate with a recognised high-street band and who want to utilise their tax-free Isa allowance.

For two-year fixed savings...

  • Paragon Bank has launched a new two-year fixed bond, paying 2.25 per cent annually or 2.23 per cent monthly. A minimum of £1,000 must be invested to open the account and a maximum of £100,000 can be invested. Further additions are only permitted within five days of opening the account, but early access is not permitted. Savers must be aged 18 or over to be eligible and open and operate the account online.
  • Verdict: Paragon Bank has firmly established itself in the Best Buys with this latest addition to its fixed range. Paying 2.25 per cent, this new two-year fixed bond joins the competition among other challenger banks and will appeal to savers looking for a straightforward short-term fixed deal.

For 10-year fixed-rate mortgages…

  • Newcastle Building Society has introduced a new 10-year fixed-rate mortgage deal to its range, which is priced at 3.75 per cent until 31.10.25. This deal is for all customers who borrow from £10,000 at 80 per cent loan-to-value. No product fee is payable and an incentive package of free valuation is included. This deal has the added flexibility of allowing borrowers to make regular or lump sum overpayments. Newcastle Building Society’s lending area includes Scotland.
  • Verdict: Borrowers looking to keep upfront costs down will find this latest mortgage deal at 3.75 per cent fixed for 10-years with Newcastle Building Society an enticement. With no upfront fee and the added bonus of a free valuation, it will appeal to those looking for a longer-term fixed deal for the extra security against potential rate rises.

For two-year fixed-rate mortgages

  • Skipton Building Society has made several reductions to its mortgage rates, which includes its two-year fixed-rate deal, newly priced at 2.99 per cent to 30.11.17. This deal is for first and second-time buyers who borrow at 90 per cent loan-to-value. A £955 fee is payable, all of which can be added to the mortgage advance. An incentive package of free valuation is also included. This deal has the added flexibility of allowing borrowers to make overpayments of up to 10 per cent of the outstanding balance and take payment holidays. Skipton Building Society’s lending area includes Scotland.
  • Verdict: House-purchase customers will find this latest deal from Skipton Building Society an attractive option. With a reasonable rate of 2.99 per cent fixed for two years and the option of adding the arrangement fee to the mortgage advance, it will be a great choice for those looking to save on upfront costs. The additional incentive of free valuation as well as flexibility to take payment holidays and make overpayments will further boost its appeal.

For those with students heading off to uni or college..

Student accounts are renowned for their enticing incentives, such as shopping discount cards, railcards or coach cards that save money on journeys. While these can prove useful to those who would frequently utilise the benefits, choosing an account based solely on the incentive can mean being stuck with a less attractive overdraft in the process.

The best interest-free overdraft facility on offer is a whopping £3,000 from HSBC and Halifax, while other accounts will tier the amount lent across the years of study, which can be a more sensible option for some. It's worth keeping in mind that getting a sizeable interest-free overdraft facility is never a guarantee, and as with any bank account, customers will be credit scored.

Verdict: Bank branches on campus may sway students to pick them for their day-to-day banking needs out of convenience, but the digital age means it’s so easy to manage finances on the go, that a nearby bank branch shouldn’t be the final deciding factor. You can compare bank accounts here.

Thanks to Rachel Springall from Moneyfacts.

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