I’ve been denied a bank account—what can I do?

“tilt-shift photography of person in brown jacket” by Ümit Bulut on Unsplash

Having somewhere secure to keep, grow and spend your cash is one of the most important things in life. Unfortunately, most high-street banks won’t offer you a current account unless you meet certain criteria. This can be a major pain if you need somewhere right now into which to have your wages paid, or to settle a bill.

U Account can help you out! But first, let’s explore why this is such a big deal.

Why is a bank account so important?

Apart from the fact that it’s safer to keep your funds in an account rather than under the mattress, there’s plenty of reasons why a bank account is one of the most important things you can have in your life.

First of all, it’s a place where you can have your wages paid into. Most employers will want to pay you electronically, and you need a place for that money to go. Equally, almost all of your bills — whether that’s rent, electricity, gas or something else — will need an account from which to make the payment.

You won’t be able to shop online without an account, meaning you might miss out on a bargain. And on top of that, many service providers offer a discount if you pay your bills by direct debit — and you need an account for that, too.

Why might I be denied a bank account?

There’s a number of reasons why a traditional bank might not allow you to open a current account with them. A poor credit score can be one sticking point, or a lack of credit history altogether. It can also be difficult to get an account if you’ve recently been declared bankrupt, or if you don’t have identification like a passport, which we know not everyone can get hold of quickly and easily.

I need a bank account, and I can’t get one — so what are my options?

This is where we come in! U Account has been designed for everybody, no matter their financial history. We don’t do any credit checks when you apply. You can only spend what you put into your account — meaning that it’s very difficult to go overdrawn, and you’ll stay on top of your finances.

You may also consider a basic bank account, although again these can be tricky to open and don’t offer the free bonus features that we do at U Account: things like extra accounts and budgeting tools to help you save.

At U Account, you only need to meet two criteria in order to apply: be aged 18 or over, and live in the UK at an address we can verify.

That sounds great, but how long does it take to open an account?

Glad you asked, because it’s one of the things that make a U Account super-useful!

It can take just a few minutes to open your account. All you need to do is fill in a short application form and then verify your email address. We can usually confirm your name and address automatically, in which case you’ll get your account number and sort code straight away.

If for some reason we need some extra details to confirm your identity, one of our team will get in touch as soon as possible to get your account opened for you.

Don’t most prepaid cards charge me every time I use it?

Some providers of prepaid cards do indeed charge every time you use your card. At U Account, we do things differently. It’s free to use your U card to pay for stuff, and we offer three monthly payment options, ranging from £0 to £10 per month, so you can choose what other services you want to pay for. Plus, you can switch your payment option at any time if you think another one will suit your lifestyle better. You have complete control.

We believe in being upfront and transparent, with no penalty fees or hidden charges.

To apply for a U Account today, just head to https://www.uaccount.uk/unbank and fill in our short application form. We look forward to having you on board!