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HSBC increasing charges, suggestions for an alternative?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Small Biz & Charities' MoneySaving
100 replies 15.8K views
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Replies

  • Savvy_SueSavvy_Sue Forumite
    41.4K posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper I'm a Volunteer Board Guide
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    Obviously you get more with the FSB than JUST free banking, but you'd need to check out what they're offering and whether it's worth it for you. See here.
    Still knitting!
    Completed: TWO adult cardigans, 3 baby jumpers, 3 shawls, 1 sweat band, 3 pairs baby bootees, 2 sets of handwarmers, 1 Wise Man Knitivity figure + 1 sheep, 2 pairs socks, 3 balaclavas, multiple hats and poppies, 3 peony flowers, 4 butterflies ...
    Current projects: pink balaclava (for myself), seaman's hat, about to start another cardigan!
  • I don't really know why but when we took out a mortgage with Hsbc to help pay for a rental property we were given a free business account. All that happens is that rent is paid in once a month and the mortgage is paid back to Hsbc once a month. Surely I don't need a business account for that. Do you think I could just exchange account for ordinary current account?
  • InsideInsuranceInsideInsurance Forumite
    22.5K posts
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    Wywth wrote: »
    Be prepared for £5.50 per month charge, and 80p per cheque in charge wef September!

    Yes, I am however preparing to switch banks instead.
  • darrinm81darrinm81 Forumite
    78 posts
    I also received a letter from HSBC. Given I may perform one or two online transactions every quarter it seems madness to pay £5.50 account maintenance. Especially considering no additional benefits are included in the fee (such as insurance cover) and the online banking offering is average.

    I did not get any offer to switch to an 'Electronic Banking Tariff'. When I checked the HSBC notice document, it shows the Business Direct account being renamed to Electronic Banking with the charge going from free to £5.50 per month?

    Currently looking at Metro Bank (£2k minimum balance) or Carter Allen (£5k minimum balance).

    All of the other high street banks seem to charge a fee. The free banking period seems to only apply from incorporation date, rather than when you opened an account. The way this is marketed on their websites is (borderline) misleading.

    If the free period starts from account opening I would happily jump ship to another high street brand.

    Odd that HSBC would want to shakeout customers. It wouldn't be the first time they have applied a monthly fee on customers by mistake. A few months ago they started charging an international fee.
  • mf78mf78 Forumite
    117 posts
    They used to charge a monthly fee years ago, then switched to the current model. Though then it was 10 free cheques per month before you paid. Sometime between then and now it was cut to 5. They obviously think they need more money out of their business customers. Perhaps they think most will stay as moving is too much bother? I'm off to chat to the other banks business managers today to see if they'll offer me a free banking period for switching.
  • WywthWywth Forumite
    5.1K posts
    Yes, I am however preparing to switch banks instead.

    Me too! Who are you thinking of going with?
    (I think that was the purpose of this thread :))

    RBS was my suggestion (until I saw Atidi's post)
    Metro bank looks a good alternative if you are are around London anytime to actually apply.
  • WywthWywth Forumite
    5.1K posts
    darrinm81 wrote: »
    ...All of the other high street banks seem to charge a fee. The free banking period seems to only apply from incorporation date, rather than when you opened an account. The way this is marketed on their websites is (borderline) misleading.

    If the free period starts from account opening I would happily jump ship to another high street brand.
    ...

    Most high street banks offer a switcher account which gives free business banking. It may not last quitre as long as a new start, but most seem to offer a period of free banking.

    Trouble is, when that ends, you are back to square one ... or perhaps even worse off as the HSBC Business Direct/'Electronic Banking tariff will still be quite competitive amongst the high street banks despite the monthly fee.
  • WywthWywth Forumite
    5.1K posts
    starlights wrote: »
    I don't really know why but when we took out a mortgage with Hsbc to help pay for a rental property we were given a free business account. All that happens is that rent is paid in once a month and the mortgage is paid back to Hsbc once a month. Surely I don't need a business account for that. Do you think I could just exchange account for ordinary current account?

    You don't really need a business account for that.
    Whether HSBC would agree now they managed to sell you a business account, I don't know. You can but ask.

    If they won't provide you a personal account for that, then I suggest you vote with your feet and open an account with another bank instead.:)
  • I thought i'd try calling HSBC to discuss any fee free alternatives (e.g. will they waive the fee in any circumstances) and they said there are absolutely no exceptions except for new start-ups. I told them I was definitely going to close my account then, and they didn't care at all. Bit shocked about it considering I have been a personal and business customer with them for ages. Hopefully I can move to Metro Bank, i'll have to go chat with them (thanks for the suggestion).
  • SlinkySlinky Forumite
    6.7K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts
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    Atidi wrote: »
    I liked that RBS suggestion, Wywth, so I thought I'd give them a try.

    Next she oddly said to me that her division were going to be sold off very soon, within the next 2-3 years but was not permitted to say to whom. I asked if she meant RBS or NatWest. She said neither, just the direct business arm.

    The reason she can't say who the business arm is going to, is they probably don't know yet! It was due to be sold last year (to Lloyds IIRC but could be wrong), but it all fell through so they've had to start looking again for a buyer. I think the Government are wanting/forcing the sale.

    I've had an RBS Business Banking Direct account for about 6 years and never paid any charges except the odd £4 if a customer bounces a cheque on me. Can't pay cash in, but I work around that.
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