Top savings accounts: where to find the best rates for your cash

Top savings accounts: where to find the best rates for your cash

Savings rates keep rising, with some of the best rates on offer in many years. However, it's important to keep your money moving if you really want to benefit.

lovemoney staff

Savings and ISAs

lovemoney staff
Updated on 5 September 2023

The savings market has been booming of late, with interest rates of up to 7.5% available depending on the type of savings account you go for.

It’s the best savers have had it in years. 

With the consumer prices index (CPI) measurement of inflation currently at 6.8%, it means that savers can in some circumstances actually beat inflation, and see the value of their pot grow in real terms.

As a result, it's well worth getting your money moving if it has been stuck in the same account for a while.

Old savings account = rubbish rate

Savings rates have continued climbing in recent months, thanks largely to hikes to the Base Rate of interest, which has jumped a staggering 3.5% in the last year alone to stand at its current level of 5.25%. 

However, not all savers will benefit.

As we highlighted here, banks will often respond to Base Rate hikes by introducing shiny new savings accounts.

Those with existing products will often see their rate rise only slightly – if at all. Just take a look at this article from This is Money, which highlights the 100 worst savings accounts - some of which pay as little as 0.1%.

That's why it's important you look to regularly shift your funds to a best buy account in order to really benefit. 

So, let's look at the best rates currently available.

We'll start with current accounts and regular savers, which tend to offer by far the best rate.

The catch is they're only available on small sums of money (usually under £2,500), so if you're looking for a home for a larger pot then scroll straight to the section on 'best fixed-rate savings'. 

Manage all your savings accounts in one place with Raisin, the simple savings service

Regular savers: up to 7.5% (if you’re a member)

Regular savings accounts are generally best for new savers as they don't allow you to deposit a lump sum upfront: instead, you make regular monthly contributions, and the money is returned to you with interest after one year.

However, if the rates are generous enough, and you are eligible, then they can also work for savers with a pot already built up.

All you do is put your funds in the best-paying easy access account and filter some money into a regular saver (or savers) each month.

So, what rates can you get?

The top rate comes from Skipton Building Society, and pays 7.5%.

The caveat is that you need to have had a mortgage or savings account with the mutual which was opened before the end of May 2023.

Savers can stash away up to £250 a month with this one.

An easier regular saver to obtain comes from first direct, paying a rate of 7%.

You’ll be able to pay between £25 and £300 a month into the account, though the downside is that you will need to be an existing first direct customer to qualify (apply for a first direct current account here).

If you do switch to first direct, you may be eligible for a £175 cash gift – find out more in this roundup of the best bank switching bonuses.

The best regular savings account we could find that truly is open to everyone comes from little-known Beehive Money, with its regular saver paying 6% interest for a year and the monthly contribution is capped at £250.

Best fixed-rate savings - up to 6.20%

Before we get into the best fixed-rate savings, we wanted to point out an interesting shift we've seen in this part of the market.

In recent years, you were generally rewarded with a higher rate by agreeing to lock your money away for a longer period, with five-year fixes the best-paying accounts. 

But, with Base Rate expected to start falling at some point in 2024 as inflation comes under control, the best rates currently available are actually on shorter-term accounts, with one- and two-year fixes the pick of the bunch. 

Now that we've got that out of the way, let's look at the top fixed-rate deals.

The best rate at the moment is 6.20% paid by National Savings & Investments (NS&I) on both its Guaranteed Growth Bond and Guaranteed Income Bond, both of which are available on one-year terms. You only need £500 to open them too.

For those who want to lock their money away for longer, you can get two-year fixed rate bonds paying 6.05% from a handful of providers, including Close Brothers,  Ford Money, and Ikano Bank. The Ford account requires only £500 to be opened.

Current accounts: earn up to 5.12%

If you have a Barclays current account and sign up for the Blue Rewards scheme, you can get access to the Rainy Day Saver account, which offers 5.12% AER on balances of up to £5,000 (0.65% on balances over this amount).

Unfortunately, the Barclays Blue Rewards scheme costs £5 a month, but you can get £5 back when you pay out at least two Direct Debits every month – find out more here, including how to qualify for the scheme.

Alternatively, you can get 5% for a year on up to £1,500 with Nationwide’s FlexDirect account, but the interest rate falls to 0.25% after 12 months.

To qualify for the 5% rate, you'll also need to pay in at least £1,000 a month.

Don't fancy banking with Barclays? Find the best alternatives in our roundup of current accounts that pay in-credit interest 

Notice accounts: get up to 5.59%

Notice accounts are effectively a halfway house between fixed-rate and access accounts. 

You'll need to wait a few months before accessing your funds, but the rates are slightly more generous than those offering instant withdrawals.  

The top option here comes from Oxbury Bank, which payd 5.59% on its 180-day notice account and requires a minimum deposit of £1,000.

If that's a little longer than you'd like to wait to access your cash, the same provider has a 120-day account with a marginally lower rate of 5.53%.

If you want access to your money in two months, West Brom Building Society pays a rate of 5.25% on its notice account (£1 minimum deposit).

Best easy/instant access savings: up to 5.20%

The best rates on easy access savings have improved recently.

In February, the best rate was 2.86%, while just a couple of months ago it was 4.35%.

Now, you can bag a rate of 5.20% with Santander Bank, with the account available with just £1.

Cash ISAs: earn up to 5.8%

The Personal Savings Allowance (PSA) has meant that it’s easy to get a tax-free return from your savings even if you don’t use an ISA, though it’s still important to use your tax-free ISA allowance (which is £20,000 for 2023/24).

That’s because any money you put into an ISA will stay tax-free long-term, even if the interest you earn grows beyond the PSA limits.

With the PSA, any interest you earn beyond the £1,000/£500 limit is taxed at your marginal rate.

The best rate on an easy-access Cash ISA is 4.55% paid by Cynergy Bank on balances above £1. 

Savers are only allowed to open one Cash ISA account per tax year, which usually means having to choose between the flexibility of an easy access deal and a better rate by locking into a fixed-rate deal.

Virgin Money is the best option for a one-year fixed rate ISA, paying 5.80% on balances of at least £1, while over two years you can get 5.78% from Charter Savings Bank on balances above £5,000.

Where to earn the most interest on your cash

Here's a table with all the top deals for you to compare at a glance.

The account you go for will probably be determined by the amount you have to save and whether you want instant access to your money.

Please note that we've only included the highest-paying account from each category (i.e. five-year bond, instant access ISA).




Interest rate

Minimum/maximum deposit

Skipton BS

Regular Saver*


Up to £250 per month


Guaranteed Growth Bond/Guaranteed Income Bond (one-year term)



Ford Money

Two-year fixed-rate bond



Virgin Money

One-year fixed-rate ISA



Charter Savings Bank

Two-year fixed-rate ISA



Oxbury Bank

180-day notice account




Saver account**

5.12% for balances up to £5,000

£800 into the linked account


Easy access account



Cynergy Bank

Easy access ISA




*You need to be a Skipton BS member.
**You need a Barclays current account and to sign up to Blue Rewards to access the Rainy Day Saver account.

Time to consider investing?

While it's good news that rates have been improving, the reality is you're likely to achieve a better return over the long term by investing (five years or more).

If you are comfortable taking on some risk for potentially better returns, you could consider investing in the stock market (capital at risk).

*This article contains affiliate links, which means we may receive a commission on any sales of products or services we write about. This article was written completely independently.




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