MARTIN Lewis has revealed the savings account with an "eye-watering" interest rate and is urging households to take action now.
The Money Saving Expert (MSE) founder has said the government-backed National Saving and Investments (NS&I) offer the best fixed-rate savings account right now.
With this type of account, your money is locked away for a specified amount of time – but you get a high interest rate in return.
The state-owned NS&I, previously National Savings, offers "the highest rate on the market" at 6.2% one-year fix, Martin said.
It comes as savers look to make the most of jumps in cash savings rates following a period of continuous base rate rises.
But yesterday, The Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) opted to hold the current base rate at 5.25%.
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It marks the first time since December 2021 that the central bank has voted not to raise rates.
And now, Martin Lewis is warning that the best deals might not be around for much longer.
During an appearance on Good Morning Britain (GMB), Martin said: "There is one sort-of jaw-droppingly outstanding account on the market.
"And the reason it's jawdroppingly outstanding is not just because it pays the highest rate – which it does at 6.2% – but because of who is offering it."
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You can either set up a Guaranteed Growth Bond, which will pay you a hefty lump sum at the end of the locked-away year – or the Guaranteed Income Bond, which earns you interest each month.
For example, if you saved £5,000, you can earn £310.00 a year, or £25.83 a month.
If you're going to reply on the extra cash, Martin recommends going for the income bond.
Both of these accounts allow you to deposit a minimum of £500, all the way up to a maximum of £1million, or £2million if you have a joint account.
Plus, unlike normal accounts where your savings are protected up to £85,000, every penny saved in an NS&I account is backed by the Treasury.
Martin added: "I don't think these NS&I accounts are going to be around for very long.
"So 6.2% in total safety with a big name, really is quite an eye-wateringly different deal to what else is available right now."
The next best one-year fixed savings account is with Ahli United Bank (UK), which will pay customers 6.1% if they save at least £1,000.
Martin said now is the time to open a top fix, as rates could soon drop, but it could be worth waiting before you add any cash.
This is so you can wait and see what happens to rates before locking your cash away.
Some providers have recently reported seeing significant rises in savers fixing into deals.
Fixed-rate cash savings balances have nearly doubled in 12 months, according to data from Paragon Bank.
Derek Sprawling, Paragon Bank director of savings, said it had seen a "shift" in the amount of switching to fixed-rate savings accounts.
Moneyfacts data shows the average fixed-rate 1-year savings account has risen from 2.45% at the end of August 2022 to 5.43% this year.
The equivalent ISA variant stood at 5.21% in August 2023, up from 1.85%.
ISAs (Individual Savings Accounts) are savings accounts where you never pay tax on any interest earned.
You can put up to £20,000 into one of the accounts every tax year.
There are several different types of Isa, which we explain here.
While a pause in further rate rises could mean that these deals don't stick around for much longer, this isn't time to panic, according to Sarah Coles, head of personal finance at Hargreaves Lansdown.
She said: "If your current fixed-rate deal doesn’t come to an end for a while, don’t lose faith.
"The Bank of England’s insistence that the fight against inflation is ongoing means we could see more rises further down the line, and at the very least is likely to mean it keeps interest rates higher for a considerable period.
“It means that while we may see some of the most competitive rates retreat, we’re not expecting dramatic drops in the immediate future.”
Of course, there is no certainty on what will happen to rates in the future.
Where can I put my savings?
Those looking to lock money into cash ISAs or fixed bonds lasting for a year or more will now find average rates have risen above 5%.
The only downside to fixed bond accounts is that you're forced to lock away your cash for a defined period of time.
And average easy access account rates and rates on accounts where some notice needs to be given have also hit their highest levels since 2008.
Easy access accounts tend to allow you unlimited cash withdrawals.
The best account available now is currently Leeds Building Society's Limited Issue Online Access Account.
It pays customers 5.1% on maturity, as long as they have deposited at least £1,000.
Meanwhile, notice accounts form a halfway house between easy-access and fixed-rate bonds and their top rates sit between the two.
Monument is currently offering the best rate on a 7-day notice savings account, paying 5.05%.
But if you're willing to lock your money away for 95 days, you could 5.6% interest with RCI Bank UK.
It's always worth weighing up to see what's best for you.
How can I find the best savings rates?
With your current rates in mind, don't waste time looking at individual banking sites to compare rates – it'll take you an eternity.
Visit comparison websites such as MoneyFactsCompare, Go Compare and MoneySupermarket.
These will help save you time and show you the best rates available.
These sites let you tailor your searches to an account type that suits you.
There are five main types of savings accounts, and understanding the differences can help you narrow down the options.
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- Easy-access savings accounts – usually allow unlimited cash withdrawals. However, this perk means they tend to come with lower interest returns.
- Regular savings accounts – generate decent returns but only on the basis that you pay in a set amount each month.
- Notice accounts – offer slightly higher rates than easy-access accounts but you'll need to give advance notice to your bank (up to 95 days) before you can make a withdrawal or you'll forfeit the interest.
- Fixed-rate bonds – these offer some of the highest interest rates. However, if interest rates increase during your term you can't move your money and switch to a better account.
- Individual savings accounts (ISAs) – these can pay high interest but come with high withdrawal fees. But, Lifetime Isas are great for anyone aged 18-39 hoping to buy a house or save for retirement.
A major rule change means banks and building societies have just weeks to tell customers their savings are earning next to no interest.
Do you have a money problem that needs sorting? Get in touch by emailing [email protected].
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