Best Advice to Small Business Owners
How to choose a bank account for your business
Business accounts include most of the same features as personal current accounts.
The features you should look for depend on the business you run and your banking needs, but they can include:
• An overdraft, which lets you borrow money through your account but can include expensive fees
• Debit cards, which let you and other employees spend in person, online or by phone
• Online banking, which lets you manage your account and make payments through your bank’s website or app
• A cheque book, which comes with most basic business accounts and lets you pay bills to other companies or make one off payments to customers
• Banking in a branch, which lets you pay in cash or cheques, or change notes into coins
• Interest, which you can earn when your account has a positive balance
They also sometimes include other features that only businesses can get like paying in other currencies or receiving card payments from customers.
Check the cost
Most business accounts charge an annual or monthly fee. Some offer free banking, but usually only for a set period after you open the account, like the first two years.
Some banks also charge a set fee every time you:
• Withdraw cash
• Write a cheque
• Pay money in
• Send money by bank transfer
• Use your overdraft
• Receive a payment by card
Checking the fees for the transactions your business uses most can help you pick the cheapest account.
Here is how much a business bank account costs
Compare business accounts
Some accounts only accept:
• Sole traders or partnerships
• Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs)
• Large companies and corporations
Use this comparison to find a bank account for your business. It includes details of each account’s limits on your company’s annual turnover and what types of companies can open them.
Once you have worked out which accounts you are eligible for, find one that offers the features you need. You can then choose the best by checking the fees and if it pays interest on your balance.
What else does your business need?
There are several other products you might need for your business once you have a bank account, including:
• A business loan
• A business credit card
• Business electricity
• Business insurance
Use our comparisons to compare deals and find the right products for your business.
How long does it take to get a business account?
You could open one in minutes if you apply online or in a branch, but it could take longer if the bank needs more documents or have to run any checks.
How do I switch my business account?
Businesses with less than fifty employees can use the Current Account Switch Service. Large businesses can ask their new bank to arrange it.
Can I use my personal account instead?
If you are a sole trader or your business is a partnership, your bank may let you. Incorporated and limited companies can only use business accounts.
How much can I pay into my business account?
Most accounts have a minimum and maximum balance set by the bank. You may be charged a fee if your balance gets too low or high.
Who do we include in this comparison?
We include business current accounts from our panel of UK banks and building societies. They are all regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Here is more information about how our website works.
How do we make money from our comparison?
We have commercial agreements with some of the companies in this comparison and get paid commission if we help you take out one of their products or services. Find out more here.
You do not pay any extra and the deal you get is not affected.