Jonathan Halloway

Expertly compared by Jonathan Halloway

Products Updated September 2, 2019

Children’s Bank Accounts

Compare the UK’s best children’s bank accounts from across the market. Get exclusive offers and rates from a wide range of banks and building societies. Apply direct with the provider below.

 

About Children’s Bank Accounts

Child learning to save up

Piggy banks are all well and good for somewhere for your little ones to keep their pennies, but a children’s bank account is generally a better option for managing their money. They are a great way of getting children into the habit of saving and understanding the value of money.

There are a few types of children’s bank accounts available, and they can be opened with most major banks and building societies. This guide explains everything you need to know about children’s bank accounts and how to open one for your kids.

What are children’s bank accounts?

A children’s bank account works in the exact same way as an adult’s account, however depending on the type chosen there may be restrictions in place. They are available to children under the age of 18, and a child’s current account can give them a debit card to access funds and buy things in shops.

Children’s savings accounts work slightly differently, and there are different options to choose from when it comes to savings. Generally, a children’s current account cannot be opened by anyone under the age of 11, but savings accounts can be opened for younger children.

Some banks and building societies offer different features with their children’s accounts depending on the age of the child. For example, children aged 16 to 18 might have more features available than children aged 11 to 15.

What types of children’s bank accounts are available?

There are various types of children’s bank accounts to choose from, and it really depends on what you want the account to be used for. The main two types are current accounts or savings accounts:

Children’s Current Accounts

A current account for children works in the same way as an adult current account, but with fewer features and no option for borrowing. They are a way for your child to access their money without the need for cash. A children’s current account can be used for paying in pocket money and depositing cheques. They will then be able to use the money in their account for their own spending, using either an ATM to withdraw money or a debit card to spend in store and online.

This type of children’s bank account is not available to children under the age of 11 and will need to be opened by a parent for children under 16. Children’s bank accounts will never have an overdraft option, so there is no risk of a child getting into debt.

Children’s Savings Accounts

Children’s savings accounts work in a similar way to adult savings accounts and are a popular way of adults saving for their children. Most banks allow children over the age of 7 to open a savings account. When it comes to children’s savings accounts, there are a few different types to choose from:

  • Easy Access Children’s Savings Account: This account will allow you to deposit and withdraw money as you please, similarly to a child’s current account. These can be opened in a child’s name but managed by parents until they are old enough to operate it by themselves. Easy access savings accounts are perfect for saving up money given as gifts and teaching children how to save effectively.

They often have lower interest rates than other children’s savings accounts because there are no restrictions on withdrawing the money.

  • Term Children’s Savings Account: This type of children’s bank account will tie up your child’s savings for a fixed period of time. This is usually 1, 2 or 3 years at a time, and they offer good interest rates. Term accounts are useful for saving up your child’s money for a long period of time.
  • Notice Children’s Savings Account: With this type of account, you will need to give the bank or building society notice before you can withdraw the money. This notice is typically 1 to 3 months, and a notice savings account will usually offer high-interest rates because of these restrictions.
  • National Savings Children’s Bonus Bond: Bonus bonds are not technically a children’s bank account but are a popular choice for saving for your children. It is a lump sum investment that is made for a child by either a parent, friend or grandparent. A maximum of £3000 can be invested in each bond and interest accumulates at a fixed rate that is tax-exempt.
  • Junior ISAs: A tax-free ISA account that allows parents and other family members to contribute a certain sum every year. The money in a Junior ISA can’t be access by the child until they are 18 years old.

Children’s savings accounts are a great way of saving money for a child’s future as children do not need to pay any tax on their savings. As well as this, interest rates on children’s accounts are often much higher than on adult’s accounts.

How to get a children’s bank account

Once you know the type of children’s bank account you would like for your child, you can begin to look around between providers. All major banks and building societies offer children’s bank accounts. Compare the different options available for your chosen account type, and look out for the different restrictions, interest rates and requirements.

Check what the minimum and maximum age limits are and what will happen once your child reaches the maximum age.

Applying for a children’s bank account is very similar to applying for an adult’s bank account. You can often begin the application process online on the bank’s website but will likely have to visit the branch to complete the application. You will be required to provide a proof of identity like a birth certificate or passport, as well as proof that you live in the same address, such as a bank statement or utility bill.

All banks must ask for parents’ permission before issuing a child under the age of 16 with a debit card for their bank account. This is because they can be used to spend money in shops and online.

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