Q&A: How do I switch my Norwich and Peterborough current account?

Switching your current account is not as complicated as it used to be, says Moneyfacts.co.uk's Charl

Switching your current account is not as complicated as it used to be, says Moneyfacts.co.uk's Charlotte Nelson. Photo:Gareth Fuller/PA Wire - Credit: PA

The phasing out of the Norwich and Peterborough Building Society name means about 400,000 customers will need to find a new current account.

The prospect of wading through mountains of paperwork and amending dozens of standing orders may strike fear into the hearts of many, but a new seven-day switching service can remove much of the hassle, as Moneyfacts.co.uk financial expert Charlotte Nelson explains.

'Competition in the current account market is strong at the moment, with some of the best credit interest in the market, cashback deals and switching incentives all tempt customers to switch to their account,' she said.

'Savvy customers could earn something for nothing for simply switching and using the account as normal. Switching current accounts might seem a hassle, but with the seven day switching service, it can be painless, particularly as most banks have signed up to this service.'

You can double check if your new bank is eligible by clicking here.

How should I choose my next current account?

Customers should always check how they use the account to ensure they get right account for them.

Current accounts offer some of the best credit interest rates in the market at the moment. However many require you to fund the account by a certain amount and set up direct debits. These accounts are designed for people in credit so the overdraft can be expensive.

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If you dip in to your overdraft every so often the best choice is for an account with low charges, to ensure you are not whack with a massive penalty at the end of the month.

Some providers offer you an incentive to switch to them; however, customers should not be sucked in by these offers and ensure they look at the overall account before switching.

How do I switch current accounts?

Once the right type of account is chosen, customers simply apply to the new bank where it will open an account for you. Customers will even be able to choose their own switch date.

The new provider should confirm it will use the switching service backed by the guarantee scheme.

What happens after that?

Customers will then have to fill out two forms: a Current Account Switch Agreement and the Current Account Closure Instruction before the switch can go ahead.

The process will be arranged by the new provider and they should inform you when the switch has started and finished. On the agreed date your new current account should be ready for you to use.

What about my direct debits or standing orders?

All direct debits, standing orders and regular incoming payments will be transferred to the new account.

Any remaining credit balance will also be transferred over so customers will be able to pick up from where they left off.

What if I have problems with the switch?

If something does happen with the switch, the new provider guarantees to fund any interest or charges you occur.