A Martin Lewis fan has explained how he’s made £4,000 by switching bank accounts – and convincing others to do the same.
David Buckeridge, 31, from Cambridge, takes advantage of cash switch offers to help him make an extra bit of money.
Also known as switch bribes, this is where banks will literally offer a cash amount to get you to move your main account to them.
As well as cash upfront, sometimes they’ll advertise vouchers or another incentive for new customers.
Speaking on the final episode of Martin Lewis’ Extreme Savers on ITV, Mr Buckeridge says he has moved banks “15 or 16 times” in the last six years – and says the amount he has made went towards him buying his first home.
He said: “In the space of seven days they will transfer across all the money that you have in your account currently, they will transfer your direct debits across for you and any standing orders you currently have.
“So, the idea of it is to try and make as seamless a switch as possible.
“For one of the banks, I actually made £250 as a cash incentive and that was a £150 upfront but, because they were so confident in their services, they offered anyone who wanted to leave after six months, a £100 for leaving.
“So, six months came round and I said I’m gonna leave and true to their word, they gave me £100.”
In total, he reckons he’s made £1,600 in switch money alone but says that amount doesn’t include any extra cash for referring friends and family, as well as interest.
Altogether, Mr Buckeridge says he is £4,000 better off compared to what he would’ve been if he’d never moved accounts.
He continued: “I would estimate I’ve made around £1,600 so far and that doesn’t include some of the referrals I’ve made from referring some of my friends and family to do exactly the same thing and it doesn’t also even include the ongoing interest.
“So, if we talk about the ongoing interest compared to if I’d just left things as they were and kept with my old faithful account, I’ve made £4,000 more.
“I was able to put down a deposit on my first house and there’s no way I would have been able to do that without the bank switching.”
At the moment, the top up-front cash offer for switching is £100 from First Direct.
Another bribe currently on the table is from Virgin Money, which is giving 12 free bottles of wine plus £50 to a charity when you switch.
Keep in mind that you shouldn’t switch bank accounts purely for the switch offer alone – you need to check it is actually the right one for you.
For example, you may be able to get better rates, overdrafts or customer service elsewhere.
There are also conditions you’ll need to meet in order to qualify for the switch bonus – for example, most banks will require you to pay in a certain amount of money each month.
Or sometimes you need to be a new customer, or someone who hasn’t banked with them for a particular length of time.
With the First Direct offer, you need to pay in at least £1,000 within three months of opening the account to get the £100 offer.
In the show, Martin also issued a word of warning.
Switching banks regularly can impact your credit score, which is something to keep in mind if you’re needing to take out credit soon, or perhaps buy your first home.
- Watch Martin Lewis’ Extreme Savers on ITV Hub