Nine out of 10 UK current accounts are not free

Piggy BankNine in every 10 current accounts available in the UK charge set fees, either for account management or for using an overdraft, according to new findings.

Of the 80 options available, 72 charge set fees for account management or overdraft usage, according to Moneyfacts.co.uk.

The specialist website said while most people belief that their bank account is free, Rachel Springall, a finance expert at Moneyfacts.co.uk, explained: “It’s clear why consumers should question whether they can acquire a ‘free’ bank account these days, with free banking becoming a bit of a myth.”

Those paying a regular management fee may find themselves shelling out around £147 a year on average, it said.

Of those who are paying management fees, 77 per cent will still be charged for arranged overdrafts, while 60 per cent will be charged for unarranged overdrafts.

This compares to accounts without regular fees, where 58 per cent charge for authorised overdrafts and 66 per cent charge fees for unauthorised borrowing.

Moneyfacts also noted that customers who do not pay a regular management fee are not necessarily better off – and may find themselves being hit when they slip into the red.

More than half of current accounts without a regular fee (58 per cent) charge an authorised overdraft usage fee and two-thirds 66 per cent will charge an unauthorised usage fee.

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