Identifying and describing the main financial service needs for a student starting at university

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One of the most important steps in life as a student is when starting University. A lot of investigating, research, planning and organising is needed to achieve the best option, including financial needs. Here is a list on what the student may need.

> Currents Accounts

> Savings Account

> Credit Card

> Student Loan

> Overdraft Facilities

> Parental Contribution

> Contents (chattels) insurance

Current Accounts

There are a variety of banks and building societies that offer current accounts, but not all are specifically for students.

The Halifax Student Current account offers all the benefits of a Halifax Current Account, but with special overdraft terms. During the first year with Halifax, the students can apply at any branch for an interest free overdraft of up to £750, increasing to £1,000 in the second year and £1,250 in the third. They give a credit interest of 3.00% gross on the account without the need to make a monthly credit of £1.000 to benefit from the full interest as a normal current account holder. A minimum of £50 is required to open the account.

If you pay £1,000 or more into your Current Account per month*

If you pay less than £1,000 a month into your Current Account per month

3.04% AER (3% gross) interest on your full balance

0.25% AER / gross interest on balances up to £500 and 1.76% AER (1.75% gross) over £500

8.9% EAR interest charged on arranged overdrafts of over £100

8.9% EAR interest charged on arranged overdrafts over £100

NO authorised overdraft fee

£5 per month fee if you use more than £100 of your authorised overdraft

A dedicated transfer team to do the hard work for you and keep you informed every step of the way. If you prefer, you can use their online transfer pack to help you move your account to them. A special switcher's overdraft for 120 days of up to £2,500, interest and charge-free. Interest and charge-free arranged overdraft of up to £100. Use of virtually all the cash machines in the UK with no Halifax charge. Switch debit card and cheque book with £100 cheque guarantee facility. Cirrus and Maestro facility on your card which allows you to use cash machines and pay for goods and services abroad.

Halifax has Card cash which is an easy, straightforward alternative to Current Account. You don't need to have a credit rating to open one and it offers:

* Solo debit card and optional cheque book

* 24 hour access to your money at home and abroad

* Use of virtually every cash machine in the UK with no Halifax charge

* Cash withdrawals by ATM of up to £300 a day. Withdrawals of over £300 can be made at any branch counter

* Access to your account through the internet, branches, cash machines, WAP phone, or for customers with a touch tone phone, our automated telephone banking service on 08457 20 30 40

* If you're aged 16 or 17, you only need £10 to open an account and we'll pay you a special rate of interest

* If you're over 18, you can open a Card cash account with just £50

We know it's not easy making ends meet when you're a student. That's why Halifax Student Current Account offers all the benefits of our Current Account, but with an extra-special deal on overdrafts:

* During your first year with us, you can apply at any branch for an interest-free overdraft of up to £750, increasing to £1,000 in your second year and £1,250 in your third year.

Barclays offer an account for Students and Graduates with a minimum opening of £500. It offers an interest free overdraft for the first £1250 but then charges interest of 8.9% for anything up to £3.000. They also offer a credit card the student Barclaycard with a credit limit of up to £600. On opening the account up to £50 worth of vouchers are given for use in Water stone's/HMV.

Lloyds has a Classic Account and Classic Plus but they are not specifically designed for students. They offer and interest on a credit balance of 0.10%. The interest will increase if there is more than £5000 in the account.

Barclays and Halifax offer students reduced prices on Travel Insurance and Commission free traveller's cheques and currency.

All current account cards can be used on ATM machines (Automated Teller machine) and the maximum withdrawal a day is £300.

Internet Banking is available 24 hours a day. This can be used to register accounts and transferring money from one account to another. It is also used for setting up standing orders or paying bills. It is instant access to see information at a glance.

Telephone banking is another option which is similar to internet banking but with more services, such as requesting a new pin or applying for an overdraft.

Current accounts at NATWEST

Current Plus All you need for straightforward banking, with a Cash card or Service card subject to application and a flexible Credit Zone overdraft option.

Student Account Nat west account specially designed for students keeps you in touch with your money from Fresher to finals and beyond.

Graduate Account The current account that helps guide you from student life to work or taking a break, with a Service card and interest-free overdraft or loan options, all subject to application.

Current plus

This is the straightforward bank account for day-to-day access to your money which is convenient for a student

Having Cash card you could get instant access to your money 24 hours a day through their nationwide network of over 30,000 cash machines, and abroad where you see the Cirrus logo. You could use the Cash card as a debit card, to pay for goods and services where you see the Solo logo and abroad where you see the Maestro logo. You could also bank at any time of the day or night, from home, work or abroad, with our 24-hour telephone and Online Banking Service. System updates may mean that the service is unavailable for a brief period during the early hours of the morning.

You could be eligible for Credit Zone Overdraft, they have a flexible overdraft that you can use whenever you need to.

Student accounts

A specialised account for students from Fresher to finals and beyond.

Banking on campus

We have more branches on or near campuses than any other bank or building society, with specially trained teams in 55 branches. You'll find student advisers in all campus branches, to help you manage your money and give you advice on how to stay out of debt. Bank at any time of the day or night, from home, work or abroad, with our 24-hour telephone and On Line Banking services. System updates may mean that the service is unavailable for a brief period during the early hours of the morning. We won't charge account fees, even when you're overdrawn, and all agreed overdrafts are interest-free. This means that we may be able to help you reduce your living costs.

There's no annual fee if you get a Student Master card and no commission to pay on travellers' cheques or foreign money. We'll even give you a discount on our travel insurance range. Our optional Student Belongings Insurance Protects your personal belongings and your landlord's property, whether you live in Halls, rented or shared accommodation, at specially negotiated rates. To apply, you must be studying full-time at a university or college of higher education in the United Kingdom. Your course must be at least two years long, or a postgraduate course.

Graduate Account

A current account to help you through the transition from student life as you begin work or take a break. You can apply for an interest-free overdraft, or an interest-free loan to pay off an existing overdraft, of up to £2,000 in the first year after you graduate, £1,000 in the second, and £500 in the third, with preferential rates if you borrow more and no account fees. You can use your Service card to get instant access to your money 24 hours a day through Nat west nationwide network of over 30,000 cash machines and abroad where you see the Cirrus or Maestro logos. If you apply for a Master card and take advantage of a preferential introductory interest rate and no annual fee. You can bank at any time of the day or night, from home, work or abroad, with our 24-hour telephone and Online Banking services. System updates may mean that the service is unavailable for a brief period during the early hours of the morning.

Borrow more. Pay less

Take out a Graduate Loan and borrow between £1,000 and £15,000, with preferential rates and no arrangement fee, to fund a new job, take a break, furnish a new place or buy a car.

Help with finding a job

Nat west Graduate Job-Finding Service includes access to a national job database, and advice on CV preparation and interview technique. Also Graduate Travel Club offers discounts on package holidays and flights, and you'll pay no commission when you buy travellers' cheques or currency from us. You can also get a 10% discount on Nat West Single Trip and Long Stay Travel Insurance. Graduate Home-Finding Service (provided through Property World) and search on-line for properties for sale or rent throughout the UK.

Nat west also offer a fixed rate mortgage with a preferential rate and no deposit to pay, plus a £1 valuation fee, £200 cash back and no reservation fee, and a discounted rate mortgage with a preferential rate and with no valuation fee or deposit to pay. If you need contents and possessions cover, our specially negotiated Graduate Insurance has optional extra cover for computers and personal possessions

Current account rates and charges

Interest we pay if you are in credit

Gross rate p.a.%

AER (%)

Net rate p.a.%

Advantage Gold




Current Plus




Card Plus








Step Account




Interest you pay if you are overdrawn

Advantage Premier

If you use your agreed overdraft by up to £250 you will not be charged any interest. If you overdraw more that £250 within your agreed limit you will pay the following rate of interest. Save for the subscription, there are no arrangement or usage fees.

Monthly rate

Nominal annual rate


Advantage Premier




Compared Rates with different Banks

When you're in credit

When you're overdrawn


3.04% AER/ 3% gross

8.9% EAR

Royal Bank of Scotland

0.1% AER/gross

7.9% EAR


0.1% AER/gross

5.6% EAR

Nat West

0.1% AER/gross

7.8% EAR


0.1% AER/gross

4.8% EAR

Savings Account

It is unlikely that a student at university have a great deal of money left over to save, However the first part of the student loan comes through, it is advisable to dump it as soon as possible.

The sort of savings account that might be recommended could be from simple choices as follows:




Nat west




Halifax ISA



Tax free savings such as ISA's. These are Government Schemes that allow each person to have only one Tax free saving. You can invest a maximum of £3000 per tax year in a Mini ISA or £7000 per tax year in a Maxi ISA; you can only have one or the other and only at one bank or building society. This is an on going scheme set up by the Government to encourage people to save more money without being taxed and is up to the year 2006. After this it will be £1000 in each tax year. Interest rates vary from bank to bank so shopping around is advisable. Other savings accounts are available with different amounts to open and different rates of interest. I have looked at leaflets from, Halifax and Nat West. I have set out a table showing the different types of saving accounts.

ISA at Halifax



GROSS p.a.
















You can open an ISA Account with a minimum opening balance of £1. Tax free interest paid annually every April. Interest rate will be no lower than 2% below base rate. Minimum amount for withdrawal is £10. Halifax ISA Saver meets the Governments 'CAT' Standards (charges, access and terms). However, this does not necessarily mean that the ISA is appropriate for you. Halifax ISA saver also offers fixed interest rates for terms of up to 5 years.

E-Savings at Nat west

Save using the Internet and benefit from their highest interest rates. Start saving with £50, you can open an e-savings account with as little as £50, and save regularly by standing order. On-line only savings, The e-savings account is operated entirely through Nat West Online Banking - their Internet banking service. Higher rates than branch-based saving, because you don't deal with a branch, they can offer higher rates of interest. The more you save, the higher the rate you can benefit from.
Join now!

Direct access to your account, You can access your account directly on-line and make same-day transfers between your Nat West accounts before 6:30pm on weekdays. Interest paid monthly, they pay your interest monthly so you can earn more as your savings grow. If you are a non-taxpayer, you can have interest paid gross. Stay in touch with your money every 6 months, To keep you in total control of your savings, they will send you a statement twice a year.

Credit Cards


There's no annual fee for having a Natwest Credit Card, and they ...

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