Types Of Bank Accounts
High St Bank Account
This is the ‘typical’ and traditional option. The ‘Big 5’ High St banks – NatWest, Lloyds, Barclays, HSBC and Santander – all offer a full suite of business banking services. Along with the other UK banks, they work under a more stringent regulatory framework than fintechs, and are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Prudential Regulatory Authority (PRA). As such, they come under the Financial Service Compensation (FSCS) regime that guarantees depositors protection up to a certain amount of money.
In terms of paperwork required, you must have a UK director and a UK trading address – not just a registered office, but an actual physical presence. Then you also must apply for company tax number and proof of intentions to trade, or historical statements. That The entire process can take up to six months, as once the application is submitted to the chosen banking partner, we are then at the mercy of their AML and Compliance teams processing and turnaround.. There are also a number of other criteria that should be fulfiled as part of the application process. This link provides a checklist of items to open a UK based bank account.
The benefits of a traditional High St bank account mostly focus on the range of products and services they offer: most will offer an overdraft facility, and will also look to offer you other financial products like Asset-based lending and other commercial finance products that can be useful when trying to grow a business. As larger and more established entities.
They also have more physical and human infrastructure – you’re likely to have a branch and a relationship manager if you set up a High St account. Of course, the other side of that coin – more services, more contact – means that you are more likely to be charged higher fees for certain services (FX in particular).
For those clients who prefer to have a High Street bank account, for credibility or panache, then we recommend a Fintech account in the interim, until such time as the high-street account is open and fully operational.