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 have improved significantly over the last few months, so it’s worth finding a new home for your cash if you haven't looked recently.

lovemoney staff

Savings and ISAs

lovemoney staff
Updated on 21 February 2023

The savings market has really kicked into life of late, with interest rates of up to 7% available depending on the type of savings account you go for.

It’s the best savers have had it for over a decade, even with the best accounts still falling some way short of inflation, which according to the Office for National Statistics currently sits at 10.1%.

However, if you want to take advantage of this relative gold rush then you'll need to get your money moving.

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

Old savings account = rubbish rate

Savings rates have indeed rocketed in recent months, thanks largely to the repeated, dramatic hikes to the Base Rate of interest, which has jumped from 1.25% last July to its current level of 4%. 

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.

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'. 

Willing to take on some risk? You could earn far better returns by investing your money (capital at risk).

Regular savers: up to 7% (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 up-front: 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?

Right now, the top rate on offer is a whopping 7% from first direct.

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 - this is an affiliate link).

The best regular savings account we could find that truly is open to everyone comes from Nationwide Building Society, which offers 5% interest for a year, but the monthly contribution is capped at £50.

Current accounts: earn up to 5%

You can get 5% for a year on up to £1,500 with Nationwide’s FlexDirect account. The interest rate falls to 0.25% after 12 months but you can get £200 when you switch.

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

Read our roundup of the best bank accounts for switching bonuses

Best fixed-rate savings - up to 4.55%

While still miles off inflation, we have seen interest rates rising in the fixed-rate savings market in recent months. 

Back in September, the best rate available on a five-year fix was 3.61%.

Now you can get a rate of 4.5% with Isbank via Raisin on its five-year bond. You’ll need £1,000 to open the account.

Of course, five years is a long time to not have access to your funds, so you might want to consider a shorter fixed-rate deal, which will sadly come with a lower rate.

Over a one-year term, you can get 4.21% from SmartSave, while over two years you can get 4.35% from Union Bank of India on balances of £1,000 plus.

Notice accounts: get up to 3.35%

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.  

Investec Bank pays 3.55% on any balance above £5,000 (anything below this threshold won't earn any interest), and you’ll need to provide 90 days' notice.

If you have a smaller pot, the QIB Bank 90 Day Notice Account (available through Raisin) pays 3.3% with a minimum deposit of £1,000.

Best easy/instant access savings: up to 2.86%

The best rates on easy access savings have improved recently.

Back in September, the best rate was 2.1%, but today the top account comes from Cynergy Bank which pays 3.11% on balances above £1. It includes a bonus of 0.15% for the first 12 months.

Cash ISAs: earn up to 4.25%

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 2022/23).

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 3% paid by Virgin Money, but you’ll need to have a current account with the bank to apply.

You can get the same rate from Harpenden Building Society, though you can only access the cash on three occasions per year.

Savers are normally 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.

The best one-year fixed rate comes from Virgin Money, and delivers a return of 4.25%, while over two years you can get 4.10% from Close Brothers.

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

First Direct

Regular Saver


£25, can save up to £300 per month for a year


Current account



Isbank via Raisin

Five-year fixed-rate bond



Union Bank of India

Two-year fixed-rate bond



Virgin Money

One-year fixed-rate ISA




One-year fixed-rate bond



Close Brothers

Two-year fixed rate ISA



Investec Bank

90-day notice account



Cynergy Bank

Easy access account



*You need to have a current account with first direct to apply.

Time to consider investing?

While it's good news that rates have been improving across the board, 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.




Most Recent