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  • FIRST POST
    • TheJimster
    • By TheJimster 12th Jun 10, 2:34 PM
    • 387Posts
    • 112Thanks
    TheJimster
    Update! Santander 5% First Home Saver Account: Account no longer available
    • #1
    • 12th Jun 10, 2:34 PM
    Update! Santander 5% First Home Saver Account: Account no longer available 12th Jun 10 at 2:34 PM
    UPDATE: 9 SEPTEMBER 2011
    This account has been withdrawn from the market by Santander and is no longer available for new applications (existing accounts are unaffected). The interest rate is still 5% and will remain so until further notice but is likely to fall steadily. I'll post back here if I notice it dropping.

    Original post follows:

    Further to the discussions (here:
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?p=27583661)

    I have managed to squirrel away about £40k in my Santander First Home Saver account at 5%, despite the fact that you're supposed to be restricted to a £5k initial deposit plus £300/month.

    I did this by opening the account with the minimum deposit of £100, and then towards the end of the month paying in a £40k deposit. For the rest of that month only you get 0.1% (hence paying late in the month) and then 5% interest going forwards.

    This is within the rules, which say that you should save up to £300/month but that any month in which you pay in more than £300 will only get interest at 0.1% for that month only.

    Go here for the account: http://www.santander.co.uk/csgs/Satellite?appID=abbey.internet.Abbeycom&canal=CABB EYCOM&cid=1210611105334&empr=Abbeycom&leng=en_GB&p agename=Abbeycom%2FPage%2FWC_ACOM_TemplateB2

    Note that:
    (i) you are supposed to be a first-time home buyer (but they don't check, other than making you sign a declaration that you don't own a home - but it would almost certainly be fraud to make a false declaration)
    (ii) you can only get the account if you are under 35 at the date of opening (the account doesn't then close when you reach 35, of course)
    (iii) you need to do a 'mortgage interview' before closing the account and withdrawing cash - this just means visiting a branch for a quick chat, no credit search required, and no need to take out a mortgage (just say you're not interested)
    (iv) you cannot make partial withdrawals - to get money out you need to close the account completely and
    (v) Santander say they "may" close the account if you pay in more than £300 in a month (but they haven't with my account!)
    (vi) maximum account balance is £50k (although there is a chance this will not be enforced...)

    *Further edit - 13 November 2010* I can confirm that this loophole still works and is definitely available. The loophole is not really 'in the spirit' of the savings account, but it's definitely within the letter of the rules and in practice it works so if you're under 35 I say go for it.
    Last edited by TheJimster; 09-09-2011 at 12:18 AM.
Page 24
    • ses6jwg
    • By ses6jwg 14th Nov 12, 6:00 PM
    • 5,154 Posts
    • 5,805 Thanks
    ses6jwg
    I opened 1 in 2 1/2 years and it was a branch-only account.

    I would not expect a CSA in a call centre to know anything about this account.

    Yes yes in an ideal world a member of staff should know all their products but if you asked me what the terms and conditions were on an Abbey Platinum Saver account from the year 2002 then I'd have to tell you I'd call you back after digging around in the system archives for 2 hours.
    Last edited by ses6jwg; 14-11-2012 at 6:16 PM.
    • adonis10
    • By adonis10 16th Nov 12, 6:46 AM
    • 956 Posts
    • 101 Thanks
    adonis10
    Now that it's 3%, I shall be using my full isa allowance as my account is currently 3.5% and need to withdraw. It is not online so do I just go in with some ID and ask to withdraw a cheque? Do I need anything else? Also, as the interest is annual, will i face a penalty as it is due in Jan and looking to withdraw today.
  • rb10
    Now that it's 3%, I shall be using my full isa allowance as my account is currently 3.5% and need to withdraw. It is not online so do I just go in with some ID and ask to withdraw a cheque? Do I need anything else? Also, as the interest is annual, will i face a penalty as it is due in Jan and looking to withdraw today.
    Originally posted by adonis10
    I would take a letter/statement from Santander - they sometimes get funny about people having 'proof of account ownership', even if they have ID that clearly shows who they are.

    No penalty for withdrawing early.

    They may be able to make a faster payment directly to your ISA, save dealing with a cheque.
    • antispam246
    • By antispam246 16th Nov 12, 8:03 AM
    • 875 Posts
    • 725 Thanks
    antispam246
    I called the other day and when I told them I wanted to discuss the Home Saver they transferred me to someone who could manage that account.

    After asking various questions I was told that yes, despite not receiving any letter about the change, the account had changed to 3%, as of the the date mentioned here. No conditions were mentioned for this despite the above mentioned.

    When I asked about it being accessible online. They attempted to see if it was possible to add it online now, which it wasn't. I was then told that;

    On the 30th November 2012. The 3% would end and it would change to a normal saving account with a rate of 0.x% At this point by no later than 5pm the account would then be accessible online automatically, and if it wasn't to call back.

    • Eponym
    • By Eponym 16th Nov 12, 1:48 PM
    • 293 Posts
    • 204 Thanks
    Eponym
    When I asked about it being accessible online. They attempted to see if it was possible to add it online now, which it wasn't. I was then told that;

    On the 30th November 2012. The 3% would end and it would change to a normal saving account with a rate of 0.x% At this point by no later than 5pm the account would then be accessible online automatically, and if it wasn't to call back.
    Originally posted by antispam246
    They have to give 30 days notice of changes to T&Cs I believe so they would have had to tell us already if that were the case.
  • fp04
    Hello Team FHS,

    Just to add my voice to the chorus of 'not-online', I called up to try and add it to my online accounts, but it's not possible. Ho hum.
    • adonis10
    • By adonis10 19th Nov 12, 9:46 AM
    • 956 Posts
    • 101 Thanks
    adonis10
    They have to give 30 days notice of changes to T&Cs I believe so they would have had to tell us already if that were the case.
    Originally posted by Eponym
    Anyone know if this is true? Is it going down to <1%?? If so, I'll be whipping out my cash ASAP!
  • patrickbateman
    Well I never received a letter explaining the changes to this account either.
    I went to my local Santander a few days ago to ask about the account and this is what I have been told.
    • The account is no longer available to new customers
    • The interest rate is currently less than 0.1%
    • Partial withdrawals are not allowed. If i want to take any money out then I need to close the account
    My personnal feelings are that the staff dont know because the company is not giving them access to proper information. The staff member I spoke to was pleasant and quite helpful, he managed to print off details of my account balance and my personnal details from there system, but then couldnt actually find any info about this account. He searched for a good 10 mins whilst I was stood waiting.
    I can't make a reasonable savings decision because I have received no letter, and I do not believe what I have been told in store.
    There is too much misinformation being banded about.
    • tobiascurious
    • By tobiascurious 21st Nov 12, 10:23 PM
    • 544 Posts
    • 134 Thanks
    tobiascurious
    [/LIST]My personnal feelings are that the staff dont know because the company is not giving them access to proper information. The staff member I spoke to was pleasant and quite helpful, he managed to print off details of my account balance and my personnal details from there system, but then couldnt actually find any info about this account. He searched for a good 10 mins whilst I was stood waiting.
    I can't make a reasonable savings decision because I have received no letter, and I do not believe what I have been told in store.
    There is too much misinformation being banded about.
    Originally posted by patrickbateman
    It is a shame that the member of staff could not find the right information, but it's good that he tried. I think you can trust that the letter was correct, and the details of it are shown in this thread.
    • someone
    • By someone 22nd Nov 12, 6:51 AM
    • 628 Posts
    • 274 Thanks
    someone
    I don't think it helps that there is a home saver special issue 1 and a home saver issue 1 !!!
    • beefturnmail
    • By beefturnmail 23rd Nov 12, 4:36 PM
    • 534 Posts
    • 148 Thanks
    beefturnmail
    Hi,

    I want to transfer a lump sum back into this account by internet banking but the trouble is, since I cancelled the Standing order I can't find out the sort code and account number. I have found the earlier quote below and was wondering if someone who had the account still set up as a payee could confirm for me whether this is correct? (Thought this would be easier than asking Santander, who probably wouldn't have a clue with this account....)

    Thanks

    For paying the standing order from a non-Santander account use Sort Code 090000 Account No. 00050005 and use your Reference No (appears on your paperwork as account number). It consists of a letter of the alphabet followed by 8 digits followed by the first three letters of your surname. eg. If you are called John Smith you might have reference R12345678SMI

    Hope this helps!
    Originally posted by CLONNEN
    • ade1982
    • By ade1982 23rd Nov 12, 4:39 PM
    • 48 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    ade1982
    yes, that's correct. It's a generic account code and then the thing that differentiates it is the payee, which is as you stated. I've done it from my Halifax account.
  • rb10
    yes, that's correct. It's a generic account code and then the thing that differentiates it is the payee, which is as you stated. I've done it from my Halifax account.
    Originally posted by ade1982
    No - it's the reference that identifies your account.

    The payee is a different field altogether!
    • chaotic_j
    • By chaotic_j 23rd Nov 12, 9:32 PM
    • 290 Posts
    • 100 Thanks
    chaotic_j
    All done and dusted for the time being with this account.. I went into branch today, explained to the chap behind the help desk what I wanted to do.. i.e. transfer whole balance except £1 into my Preferred Current Account; told me he would check the account..

    Then proceeded to tell me the rate had actually dropped to 0.1% not 3% - so I told him; you must be looking at the rate for the First Home Saver Issue 1 not First Home Saver Special Issue 1 which is the account I currently hold.

    Then he wanted to know why I was after transferring the money out; I said I could get a higher rate elsewhere and he asked where that was and the rate - Lloyds TSB with Vantage - 4%.

    Then he tried to make me an appointment to see a "savings advisor" and was telling me I could "invest in some low-risk bonds at 7 or 8%" - I told him thanks but I wasn't interested, I didn't want to tie my savings up and I'd already decided what I wanted to do.

    Reluctantly he directed me towards a cashier at the counters as I'd have to do the transfer there. Then when I explained to her she was on about me closing it, but I said I wanted to keep it open, I asked if I could have the interest early which apparently I can't unless I close it.

    Then she wanted to know whether she could just leave the pence in instead of a pound why do the banks always think they know best for me?
    • Wings of Ambition
    • By Wings of Ambition 23rd Nov 12, 11:00 PM
    • 1,648 Posts
    • 1,351 Thanks
    Wings of Ambition
    My folks had the same thing when trying to transfer money out of Santander.... constantly trying to get you to do something else. My Dad said he'll never ever use another Santander product because of how utterly difficult the staff were.
  • pazza2000
    I would like to transfer an amount into my current account, can they do this by EFT or will I be issued a cheque?
    • Eponym
    • By Eponym 25th Nov 12, 3:11 PM
    • 293 Posts
    • 204 Thanks
    Eponym
    I would like to transfer an amount into my current account, can they do this by EFT or will I be issued a cheque?
    Originally posted by pazza2000
    They did it for me in branch, but my current account is with Santander. Not sure how it works if yours isn't.
  • beamer007
    I got same response by secure messaging from Santander.

    Even after the change of type, and big drop in the interest rate, you can still only manage this account through a branch, which was annoying.

    I visited my local branch yesterday and moved all funds bar £1 to an eSaver account I had with them (which can be operated online). As soon as I got home shifted that out to my current account then onto my Nationwide Mysave Plus account @ 3.12 AER for now (ends mid-February - may well end up going back to this account then, judging by the current saving rates on offer from others - hence the leaving £1 rather than closing this account).

    Hello Team FHS,

    Just to add my voice to the chorus of 'not-online', I called up to try and add it to my online accounts, but it's not possible. Ho hum.
    Originally posted by fp04
    • chamelion
    • By chamelion 26th Nov 12, 5:13 PM
    • 94 Posts
    • 27 Thanks
    chamelion
    I'm a little puzzled. Just called up Santander and spoke to a rep who told me I still have my first home regular saver account and as long as I keep depositing via standing order I'll receive interest as before - my account has not been changed to a saver.

    Guessing lady on phone had no clue what she was talking about??
  • alilel
    Even after the change of type, and big drop in the interest rate, you can still only manage this account through a branch, which was annoying.
    Originally posted by beamer007
    I was able to withdraw from my First Home Saver via telephone banking. Not sure if this was only available as I have a current account. The money was available instantly to transfer out the my Lloyds Vantages.
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