Advice about current accounts please

I'm currently in the process of sorting out my debts, been talking to payplan (awaiting their assessment) and debt free direct (who recommended an IVA). I have a current account with natwest that is currently approx £1200 O/D (limit £2500). I have been told I need to open a new current account which I have done with my wife (as she had to also) and opened a nationwide flexaccount. The problem is nationwide aren't giving us a debit card (not sure if that's just because it's us or whether that's standard with new flexaccounts). I can see having no debit card being a major pain in the !!!!!! (can't buy anything online for a start!). It's possible for me to clear the overdraft on my account when I get paid as I won't be paying the loans and credit cards this month (making token payments) and that should allow me to get my current account into the black. All I'd need to do then is get the overdraft facility removed (not even sure if it's possible to do that with a natwest current account). Anyway, I need to decide what I'm going to do about a current account asap really, do I get this months wages paid into the new flexaccount and have the natwest account left as part of whatever debt repayment plan I end up going for or do I try and keep the natwest account (which I've had for 18 years!) which at least has a debit card I can use. Anyone got any thoughts?



  • Xbigman
    Xbigman Posts: 3,884 Forumite
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    First thought is that its a blessing in disguise not to have a debit card for a while. You have to use cash and that can be a great eye opener. Carry a notebook with you and write down everything you spend. Budget for things like food and spending money that you need cash for and pay bills by monthly direct debit. You then only take out the cash you actually need. You can get a debit card later.

    Xbigman's guide to a happy life.

    Eat properly
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    Save some money
  • zAndy1
    zAndy1 Posts: 244 Forumite
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    Yeah I know what you're saying but to be honest once I go down the route of an IVA or DMP is it realistic to expect to be able to get a debit card anyway? It might be years before I can get one again (although I don't know what the problem is with a debit card to be honest, it's not credit after all!). Nationwide have said that after having the flexaccount for 6 months we can apply for a debit card but I'd be very surprised if we get one with the impending doom looming over my credit file! It's ok saying pay cash for everything but that will mean no internet orders whatsoever and that's gonna end up costing me money as the savings on e.g. CDs / DVDs can't be sniffed at. You're probably thinking I'm not taking this seriously and shouldn't be thinking about buying CDs/DVDs under the circumstances anyway but come on everyone needs to be able to treat themselves occasionally or else what's the point of working! Appreciate the advice and I know what you're saying makes sense it just seems a big step giving up this account I've had since I left school (37 now) and with it the debit card which I just think will inevitably come in handy.
  • jonesMUFCforever
    jonesMUFCforever Posts: 28,898 Forumite
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    There is a common misconception about debit cards not being credit but they are!
    If you apply for an IVA then yes you can kiss goodbye to them for many years no matter where you bank.
    The reason I say debit cards = credit is thus: any transaction processed as per the rules by a retailer HAS TO BE debited to the account regardless of whether there is any money in the account to meet them.If there was a way of the bank'bouncing' the transactions then retailers would stop accepting them!
  • topcat0000
    topcat0000 Posts: 32 Forumite
    I got an IVA 6 months ago and I have a VISA Electron card with Alliance and Leicester which I got after getting my IVA. I can use it as a debit card in most shops and have had no problems at all. The only places i have found that dont take it are british rail and clinton cards.... not exactly a disaster!!
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