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