Hot money deals, 30 August 2012Which? experts round up the best money deals

30 August 2012

A group of students looking shocked at the cost of calling revenue-sharing numbers

This week, we track down the best savings accounts and cash Isas, as well as the leading credit card and loan deals. We also provide an essential guide to student and graduate bank accounts.

Best Rate savings accounts

  • Instant access savings: The Derbyshire Building Society's NetSaver account tops the instant-access savings table at 3.06% from initial balances of £1,000.
  • One-year fixed-rate savings: FirstSave and United Bank UK offer the top-paying one-year fixed-rate savings rates at 3.45%. The FirstSave account can be operated via the internet only.
  • Three-year fixed-rate savings: The AA offers the best three-year fixed-rate savings deal at 4.00% from just £1.
  • Five-year fixed-rate savings: Halifax currently leads our five-year fixed-rate savings account table, paying 4.00% on balances of at least £500.

Best Rate cash Isas

  • Instant access cash Isa: Manchester Building Society leads our table for instant-access cash Isa deals, paying 3.06% (including a 1.05% bonus payable for a year). This account can be operated at branch or by post.
  • One-year fixed-rate cash Isa: Julian Hodge Bank offers the top one-year fixed-rate cash Isa account at 3.35% from balances of at least £5,100. This account can be operated by post only.
  • Three-year fixed-rate cash Isa: Saga currently tops our three-year fixed-rate cash Isa table, paying 3.70%. This account is available to people aged over 50 only.
  • Five-year fixed-rate cash Isa: BM Savings currently leads our five-year fixed-rate cash Isa table, paying 4.05% from initial balances of £500.

Best 0%-on-purchases credit cards

These cards won't charge you interest on your shopping for up to 16 months. Make sure you make the minimum payment each month or you'll lose the deal.

  • Tesco Clubcard MasterCard currently offer the longest deal on the market with 16 months interest-free. The card also comes with a reward scheme.
  • The Marks & Spencer MasterCard and Halifax All in One MasterCard offer the next best deals with 15 months interest-free.
  • NatWest/RBS YourPoints World MasterCard offers 13 months 0% purchases. The card also comes with a loyalty scheme. Points can be redeemed against flights and other travel products or for goods at some popular high street names.  
  • The Bank of Scotland MasterCard offers 13 months on both purchases and balance transfers with 3% handling fee of the amount transferred onto the card.

Take a look at our 0%-on-purchases credit card table for more great 0% deals.

The cheapest unsecured personal loans

In our best rate personal loan tables we show the lowest rates available for loans that aren't exclusive to specific account holders or existing customers of banks or other institutions. 

  • For those borrowing £5,000 over three years: Sainsbury's Bank offers a the leading rate of 7.10% APR for a £5,000 loan.
  • For those borrowing £10,000 over five years: Derbyshire Building Society offers a representative rate of 5.8% APR for a £10,000 loan.

And finally... this week's tip

Whether you are about to start studying for a degree or leaving university with a graduate loan our guide to student and graduate bank accounts is an essential read. 

We explain what to look out for when choosing a your student bank account, which banks offer the biggest and smallest interest-free overdrafts and what you need to know on how student loans and maintenance grants work.

More on this…

  • Bills & Budgeting - top tips and money saving guides on how to make your money go further
  • Which? Campaigns - find out how Which? is campaigning on your behalf
  • Which? Money Helpline - we can help you with your money queries