New current account will pay you £185 in a year

Emma Woollacott
Banks - stock
Banks - stock

Halifax is upping its reward to new current account customers with a sweetener of £125.

The deal applies to customers switching from another bank using Halifax's dedicated switching service, and who close their old account held elsewhere. But you'll have to move fast, as the deal closes on 5 April.

Customers get the £125 within three working days of the switch completing. And there's more rewards to be had, too, with the possibility of monthly £5 payments when customers pay in £750, pay out two direct debits and stay in credit.

This compares favourably to First Direct's now-expired £125 incentive, which also required customers to pay in at least £1,000 a month, keep an average balance above £1,000 in the account, or take out another First Direct product such as a savings account, credit card, loan or mortgage.

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In theory, customers can make up to £185 from the Halifax deal during the course of the year. And online and mobile banking customers, says Halifax, can also earn cashback from a range of top retailers.

"Since its introduction our £100 switching offer has remained extremely popular with customers. We are delighted that from today we are increasing this reward for customers to £125 for a limited period," says Anthony Warrington, director of Halifax current accounts.

"Halifax has proven to be the number one choice for one in every four switches across the industry, and with this new offer it means it has never been so easy and rewarding to make that move."

Under the Current Account Switch System (CASS), it's now supposed to be quicker and easier to switch banks. Everything should be done within seven days, and outgoing payments such as direct debits should be transferred automatically.

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And there's a guarantee that if any mistakes are made, your new account provider will refund the full amount.

In the service's first year, according to the Payments Council, there have been more than 1.1 million switches, with 88% of these people saying the service was easy to use.

Banks have been encouraging people to make the move with a range of sweetener deals - although these are not always all that they seem. The Halifax account, for example, may come with a cash payment but has comparatively high overdraft charges.

Recently, financial services firm PwC found that a third of bank customers were unaware of hidden charges such as overdraft charges, penalty fees and uncompetitive or zero rates of interest.

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