Everything you need to know about money, all in one place.
We’ve pulled together a directory of the best financial services, information and support available, to help you get the most from your money.
Basic bank accounts
Most banks now offer a basic bank account within which you can make the most of your money. You’ll get a debit card and be able to pay rent and other bills by direct debit. You can also set up online banking and manage your money any time convenient to you. To open a basic bank account you’ll need a form of ID.
There are a number of advantages in having a bank account:
- It’s safer – your money is protected from fire and theft
- It’s cheaper – Having a bank account and paying by direct debit can save you £250 and more per year on energy bills
- It’s convenient – You can access cash at a cash point or transfer money from your account using online banking
- You can have your salary and/or benefits paid into it
Some services such as internet at home or will require you to have a bank account.
You can find more information about basic bank accounts on the Money Advice Service website.
Spending and borrowing
Budgeting and planning for the future can be the best way to keep on top of your finances and make your money go further.
Below are the details of some great online resources that bring together the latest deals and vouchers, and the best accounts and product reviews.
- Money Advice Service - Unbiased and impartial money advice, budget planner tool, benefits information and access to free financial advisors.
- Money Saving Expert - The latest money saving tips, best deals and general financial advice.
- Which - Product reviews, the best bargains and spending tips.
Credit union loans
Credit unions offer low cost affordable loans and simple ways to save. Saving with them is as safe as with a bank, and you may also get access to competitive loans and special schemes that banks would not offer you.
Even if you haven’t been able to get credit through high street or online banks and building societies, a credit union will consider helping you. They can also give you support and guidance to make sure your repayments are affordable.
Credit unions are a much better alternative to illegal money lenders, doorstep lending companies and payday loans which often charge very high rates of interest.
Find your nearest credit union
Running your home
Covering the costs of running your home can be hard to keep up with. Here are some resources that can help you to manage household outgoings and make savings.
My Home Energy Switch is an energy supply service from the National Housing Federation. This service is completely free to all tenants, is impartial and can help you reduce your home energy bills. All you need is your postcode and a current energy bill to compare and switch online. Or you can call 0800 001 4706 and The My Home Energy Switch team will do the rest.
USwitch - Compare and switch gas and electricity suppliers, broadband deals, mobile phone deals, car and home insurance. Speak to an advisor to make the switch and save money.
Energy Saving Trust - Energy advice from a government funded organisation, including tips, information and details of grants and offers.
WaterSure - If you have a water meter and are receiving certain benefits, you could be eligible for a special low cost tariff as part of the WaterSure scheme.
Food Banks - Find a food bank near you to request support or make a donation.
Reduce food waste - Top tips on recipes, using leftovers and more. It’s estimated the average household throws away around £400 worth of food a year.
Home contents insurance
Should the worst happen Sovereign will support you and repair your property, but you are responsible for insuring the contents of your home and replacing items if they’re damaged or stolen.
Home insurance is a wise investment, and packages can start from as little as £4 a month. Shop around for the best quotes or call My Home on the number below to talk to an advisor.
My Home - Special scheme for people living in social housing or affordable accommodation, including shared owners and leaseholders.
0845 337 2463