The UK Challenger Business Bank Accounts Everyone’s Talking About

386
UK Challenger Business Bank Accounts

UK Challenger Business Bank Accounts are changing the way self employed individuals do their banking.  But what’s it all about? And what can it offer you to make your life easier?

UK Challenger Business Banking Accounts

What are UK Challenger Business Bank Accounts

UK Challenger business bank accounts offer easy sign up through an app. You get a debit card so you can pay for things on the move and the ability to automate your bookkeeping and taxes.

Most of all challenger business bank accounts promise to save the time and hassle commonly associated with traditional banks.

 

Traditional banking means a visit to a branch, paperwork and getting through a lot of red tape just to get up a business bank account open. All in all a time consuming and frustrating process.

So how can moving from the old to the new way of banking benefit the self employed? Here are the challenger business bank accounts on the market, designed with self employed in mind.

UK Challenger Business Bank Accounts for the Self Employed

Currently there are four main UK challenger business bank accounts for the self employed on the market.


Coconut Bank

UK Challenger Business Bank Accounts for Self Employed

Coconut Bank markets itself as the ‘first’ business bank account for Freelancers and Self Employed.  

What you get with Coconut Bank

  • A UK Current Account
  • Mastercard Debit Card
  • Automatic expense categorising and tracking
  • Real time tax estimation to avoid surprises
  • Push notifications every time a customer pays you

 

How much does Coconut Bank cost?

Currently it’s free.

With a paid version coming soon that gives additional functionality, like invoicing for £4.95 a month.

How to Sign Up for Coconut Bank

Download the app or head over to the Coconut Bank website to register your interest. You cannot currently open a business bank account straight from the app.

Who’s Coconut Bank Right For

If you’re self employed, looking for a business bank account and monitor your tax bill, then this is the option for you.  

Find out more>>


Countingup Business Banking

UK Challenger Business Bank Accounts for Self Employed

Countingup is a business banking and accounting app for self employed, freelancers and limited companies.

It promises to alleviate your stress by keeping all your banking and bookkeeping in one place.  But currently Countinup just offers a business bank account and Mastercard.

There are plans set for release in 2018 to add functionality for:

  • Automated bookkeeping by categorizing your income & expenses;
  • File your tax return;
  • Receipt photographing and storing;
  • Invoicing.

It looks like it is set to become a pretty well rounded app hopefully putting an end to administrative headaches when you’re self employed.

 

What you get with Countingup Business Banking

  • A UK Current Account
  • Mastercard Debit Card

How much does Countingup Business Banking cost?

Countingup is free up to £750 deposits per month.  After that it costs £2.95 per month.

How to Sign Up for Countingup Business Bank Account

Signing up to Countingup really is easy and takes minutes.  You just need to download the app and then uses QR codes and photos of ID to quickly fill out the forms.  

Although the sign up process is quick and easy the final approval to open up your business bank account can take up to 48 hours.

Who’s Countingup Business Bank Account Right For

If you’re a UK resident,  self employed and searching for an easy way to open a business bank account then Countingup could be right for you.

The plans for additional functionality look promising, but currently you would need to look at other options to manage your finances and file your tax return.

Find out more>>


Anna Money

UK Challenger Business Bank Accounts for Self Employed

Anna Money or ‘Absolutely No Nonsense Admin’ is set to become a hybrid digital assistant that helps with your business finances.  It promises to have AI to help speed up your business admin such as being able to email Anna to have your supplier payments set up ready for you to approve.

What you get with Anna Money Banking

  • A UK Current Account
  • Mastercard Debit Card

Much like its competitors Anna Money is still really just a business bank account and Mastercard.  But there are plans for:

  • Invoicing
  • Credit control
  • Tax reminders
  • Payroll

Although no release date has been set for this functionality.

 

How much does Ana Money cost?

Anna Money starts at £11 per month, rising for businesses with turnover of £80,000 or more to £49 per month.

How to Sign Up for Ana Money

Sign up can be done via the Anna Money app.  Anna chats you through the sign up process and tells your which information to type in.  Although responses from Anna can be slow, making it time consuming.

Who’s Ana Money Right For

If you are a UK resident, self employed and searching for an easy way to get a business bank account then this is a good option for you.  The prospect of making use of AI to help you manage your day to day banking sounds like it could be a real time saver. Although with the current limited functionality it is significantly more expensive that its competitors.

Find out more>>


Tide Banking

UK Challenger Business Bank Accounts for Self Employed

Tide Banking is one for the longest running UK Challenger Business Bank Accounts out there, boasting over 40,000 customers.

Their target market are new businesses and the self employed. They present themselves as the simple option to traditional banking and essentially they are just a business bank account and Mastercard.

What you get with Tide Banking

  • A UK Current Account
  • Mastercard Debit Card

How to Sign up for Tide Banking

Download the Tide Banking App and have the following information ready:

  • Passport or driving licence
  • Address and birthdates of shareholders
  • UK mobile number

The Tide banking app will take scans of your documents  and a photo of you as part of of the setup process.

Sign up really does take minutes but again, the final account set up can take up to 48 hours to happen and there may be additional questions to answer by email.

Self Employed Tax Hub

How much does Tide Banking cost

The account itself is free but Tide Banking charge for three things:

UK Challenger Business Bank Accounts for Self Employed

Who’s Tide Banking Right For

Tide Banking is perfect if you are just starting out in business and want to open a current account quickly and easily.  The cost of Tide Banking could rack up depending on the number of transactions you have running through your account. So it is probably worth keeping an eye on.

Find out more>>


So How Do the UK Challenger Business Banking Apps Benefit the Self Employed?

UK Challenger Business Banking Apps at the moment are really just a business bank account and Mastercard, with the promise of bookkeeping features at some point in the future.

So is it really worth being an early adopter of this tech?

Well, being able to open a business bank account through an app certainly is revolutionary. And when I tried it Tide really did take me just minutes.  

Whilst there is no doubt that integrating your bookkeeping and taxes with your banking makes total sense. Accounting software like Freeagent, Xero and Quickbooks all offer this functionality already with bank feeds.  Bank feeds pull all the transactions from linked bank accounts and use AI to allocate your transactions, ready for you to approve.

So really the integration between banking and an accounting app has been around for years now.  And how long will it be until the bookkeeping apps start offering their own bank accounts to challenge the Business Banking Apps by return?

If you’re self employed, getting a business bank account is an absolute must.  It saves you time, money and makes filing your self assessment tax return easier. So the question you need to answer is “What do I need from a bank account and bookkeeping app now”.

If the answer is just a bank account, then opening up an app using Tide makes sense for you.  Choosing a UK challenger business bank account like this will save you the time and hassle of going to a branch and preparing paperwork just to tick boxes on a form. All of which no doubt gets shelved once you leave!

But if you’re looking for a solution that files your tax return, estimates your taxes, handles your invoicing and keeps you making tax digital compliant. Then make sure you choose a challenger business bank account that links to your Bookkeeping App.  It will make your life easier.

Currently Freeagent links with Tide Banking and you can read my in depth review of Freeagent and how it use it in my business here.

Self Employed? Never Miss Good Stuff From Me

Get updates when I create new freebies, publish blog posts plus other informational emails.

I won't send you spam. Unsubscribe at any time. Powered by ConvertKit