Royal Bank of Scotland
Financial support on offer
Santander offers up to 18 months free day-to-day banking for businesses that have started up in the last 12 months. Business loans, overdrafts and commercial mortgages are also available.
The business start-up account offers 12 months’ free banking or 18 months free with a Santander Business Start-up Extra Account (if you hold, or switch to, a personal current account with the bank). You will also gain access to online content including advice and business guides.
Businesses have access to a local business manager who is there to offer you advice and support. Santander also offers a range of cards to help you run your business efficiently including a Visa debit card, an Operator card (which lets you authorise other people to do your banking for you) and a Post Office cash deposit card.
Charges on cash and cheques
Following the fee-free period your account is automatically moved to a Business Current Account which has a £7.50 tariff, with the option to choose a more suitable tariff if desired. Cheque deposits and withdrawals, cash withdrawals, debit card payments, direct debits and transfers, and transfers between linked accounts are free and unlimited on all Business Current Account tariffs.
There are limits, however, on the amount of cash you can deposit monthly. You can deposit up to £1,000 on the £7.50 tariff, up to £3,000 on the £12.50 tariff and up to £5,000 on the £20 tariff. If you exceed your limit, you will be charged 50p thereafter for each deposit of £100 on all tariffs.
Overdraft and loan interest rates
The unsecured business loan is a fixed term loan; you can borrow between £1,000 and £25,000, choosing to repay the loan between 12 months and five years. The interest rate is 7.9% p.a and a ‘business loan calculator’ is a handy tool on the website which will calculate your monthly repayments.
Arranged overdrafts are offered between £500 and £25,000 without security and for more than £25,000 with security. The arranged overdraft interest rate is 5.5% EAR with an unarranged fee of 25.5%.
Website and online banking
The Santander website is very accessible with clear options to take you to the information you want to find. Santander is very transparent with its interest rates and charges, which can be viewed online in PDF form.
You can view a demo of Santander’s online banking system which has recently been updated. You can now use e-documents to view statements in PDF format online, manage both your debit and credit card in one place, make faster payments and send and receive secure messages.
When you open an account you will be introduced to your local business manager, who will get to know your business and understand its place within the local community, according to Santander. You can phone them, arrange to meet them at the branch, or invite them to meet you at your business to discuss products and services.
It can take up to 10 days to open and switch your account.
Number of branches: 1,400 branches across the UK, access to 10,500 Post Office branches and 25 Corporate Business Centres
Ratio of small business managers to branches: A local business manager is available in every branch