Children’s Savings Accounts – Now What Do I Do?

Since I wrote yesterday about having to sort out the savings accounts for our children, I have been through files and drawers trying to find paperwork and passbooks for the accounts that we have. I’ve found them you’ll be pleased to hear, now for the next step – to find out what interest is being paid.

First off there’s Nationwide ‘Smart 2 Save’. I’ve just checked their website and found that the Smart account (which I assume is the same thing, perhaps I need to check?) pays 0.75 % AER. It’s an instant access account and the minimum balance is £1.

Second, there’s a FirstSaver account with Britannia Building Society. Oh my, this is only paying 0.2% AER! I know the base rate is low and savers are being hit hard but this is ridiculous, isn’t it? Let’s not forget that inflation has just been confirmed at having risen to 4.4%, up from 4.2% the previous month.

I need now to do some research on other children’s savings accounts and find out what interest is being paid. We’re not talking a lot of money but I am keen to make the most of what the children have got.

Instant access or fixed term, no access accounts?

As well as instant access accounts, I’m going to see if there’s much difference in the interest rates offered for fixed term accounts – accounts which don’t allow access to the money for a period of time in return for a higher rate of interest. Perhaps an option is to put some of the money into an ‘instant access’ account and some into a fixed term, no access account?

Other children’s savings accounts too.

During my search I found 2 further ‘Smart 2 Save’ passbooks. These had been opened by my father for our children. Again whilst there’s not a lot of money in the accounts there is some and so I need to sort these out too. The complication is that sadly my father died last year, as did my mother and I don’t know what the implications are re ownership of these accounts? We dealt with probate and all other matters for my parents, an emotionally difficult time as you can imagine, but were these included? If not, should they have been?

I think I’ll pop into the Nationwide branch as a first step and  get their input. Perhaps it will simply be a case of transferring the money from these accounts opened by my father to those that we have opened for the children? I will keep you posted.

And other savings accounts as well.

There’s an Abbey National Instant Saver – yes shows you how long this has surfaced seeing as they are now Santander. There’s also a Halifax Savings Liquid Gold account.

Neither of these has been updated since 2007 and both only have a few pounds in but I’ll need to decide what to do with them.  First though I’ve just checked the interest rates on these accounts – Liquid Gold is hardly gold as it’s only paying 0.05%AER. I can’t actually find the Instant Saver one referenced on the Santander website, the closest is the Santander Instant Access Saver but as that requires a minimum opening balance of £1,000 it’s certainly not what I’m looking for!

Come back to my blog soon to find out how I get on with sorting out all these savings accounts – or if you want to be sure to keep up to date sign up to my newsletter – it’s free and packed with all my personal finance activities, thoughts and tips and a whole host of special offers – it’s great, in my opinion of course!

Am I the only one in such a mess with these savings accounts?

I know it’s not going to be difficult to sort, just time consuming and that’s why it’s become one of those many personal finance matters that forever get put off until tomorrow – or as my grandfather used to say ‘don’t put off until tomorrow what you can put off until the day after’ – how well that plays out sometimes!

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