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Five tips to boost your cash savings

Getting a better interest rate on your cash savings could be easier than you think with these top tips.

Important notes

This article isn’t personal advice. If you’re not sure whether an investment is right for you please seek advice. If you choose to invest the value of your investment will rise and fall, so you could get back less than you put in.

The last year’s been hard on savers. Rates have been slashed, leaving lots of people’s cash sitting around earning little-to-no interest.

But we’re not here to dwell on the past. Look ahead to a more fruitful year and get your cash working harder with our five simple tips.

Remember this article isn’t personal advice and inflation will reduce the value of money over time.

1. Check your rates

43%* of people don’t know what rate they’re getting on their savings, according to our recent survey. If you’re getting a poor rate, you don’t need to settle for it.

The average instant access rate is 0.06%, but big banks and NS&I pay just 0.01% on some of their most popular instant access accounts.

There are much better rates available. You can get 30 times more on an easy access savings product through our service, Active Savings. On a savings pot of £10,000 that’s £29 more than the big banks after just a year.

Instant access accounts from high street banks typically let you withdraw your money instantly. With Active Savings, withdrawals from easy access products usually take up to one working day.

Another reason to check your rate is for short-term bonuses. If you find your rate is about to disappear, get ready to move your money to a better account.

2. Sign up for rate alerts

Some providers will take the hassle out of searching for great rates by letting you know when they’re available.

Sign up to our alerts and we’ll let you know as soon as great rates are added to Active Savings.

Sign up to alerts

3. Get your savings in a fix

For money you don’t need to access immediately, but don’t want to invest for the long term, fixed-term savings products could be the answer to improving your returns.

They usually pay better rates than instant or easy access accounts, but in return you can’t usually access your money until the term ends.

You can normally fix for anything from three months up to five years, and the longer you fix for, the higher the interest rate usually is. For example, you can currently get as much as 0.65% AER/Gross** on a one-year fix through Active Savings.

4. Make the most of your personal savings allowance

Introduced in April 2016, the personal savings allowance (PSA) lets lots of people earn up to £1,000 of interest each tax year before they pay any tax.

The PSA drops to £500 for higher-rate taxpayers and additional-rate taxpayers don’t get a PSA at all. Nonetheless the PSA means that lots of savers don’t have to worry about paying any tax on their savings interest.

Remember if you’re married or in a civil partnership you could split your savings with your spouse to effectively have a combined PSA of up to £2,000.

The PSA is calculated using UK, not Scottish, income tax bands. Tax rules can change and benefits depend on personal circumstances.

5. Become a savvy saver by blending different savings products

Think about using both easy access and fixed-term products to boost your returns. You should keep your emergency fund in an instant or easy access account so you can get your hands on it if you need to. But for anything else you can look at using fixed terms of different lengths depending on when you need access to it.

You’ll probably get a much better rate overall, and can time your cash to come back to you when you need it.

Find out more about savings strategies

Make more of your cash with Active Savings

If you’re looking to get your cash working harder this year, Active Savings could help.

Pick and mix easy access and fixed term savings products from a range of different banks and building societies, all through the convenience of one online account.

And once you’re set up you can move your money around with just a few clicks. There are no forms, no paperwork and no hidden surprises. Just simple, fair saving so you always know what rates you’re getting.

The best rates on Active Savings

Easy access

Up to
0.30% | 0.30%
(AER | Gross)

Up to 1 year

Up to
0.65% | 0.65%
(AER | Gross)

Up to 2 years

Up to
0.76% | 0.76%
(AER | Gross)

Up to 3 years

Up to
0.80% | 0.80%
(AER | Gross)

Easy access

Up to
0.30% | 0.30%
(AER | Gross)

Up to 1 year

Up to
0.65% | 0.65%
(AER | Gross)

Up to 3 years

Up to
0.80% | 0.80%
(AER | Gross)

Find out more

Please note the products above are some of our most popular, but more are available. Click the link above to see our full range. Products can be added or withdrawn at any time. Minimum deposit requirements apply to individual products.

AER (Annual Equivalent Rate) shows what the interest rate/expected profit rate would be if it was paid and compounded once each year. It helps you compare the rates on different savings products. Once you have opened a fixed term product the rate won't change, but rates on easy access products can vary.

Gross means the rate without any tax removed. Interest/profits are paid gross. You are responsible for paying any tax due on interest/profits that exceed your Personal Savings Allowance to HM Revenue & Customs. Tax treatment can change.

*HL survey September 2020, 1461 respondents

**AER (Annual Equivalent Rate) - AER shows what the interest rate/expected profit rate would be if it was paid and compounded once each year. It helps you compare the rates on different savings products.

Gross - The interest rate without any tax removed. Interest/profits are paid gross. You are responsible for paying any tax due on interest/profits that exceed your Personal Savings Allowance to HM Revenue & Customs. Tax treatment can change.

The Active Savings service is provided by Hargreaves Lansdown Savings Limited (company number 8355960). Hargreaves Lansdown Savings Limited is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority under the Electronic Money Regulations 2011 with firm reference 901007 for the issuing of electronic money.

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Important notes

This article isn’t personal advice. If you’re not sure whether an investment is right for you please seek advice. If you choose to invest the value of your investment will rise and fall, so you could get back less than you put in.

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