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These banks will pay you up to £150 upfront for switching

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The New Year is a popular time for banks to launch free cash incentives to try and attract new customers.

If you’re looking to make a bit of extra money, here’s a run-down of some of the best deals on the market:

Natwest – £150

New and existing customers switching to the Reward Account can get £150 upfront if they apply by 15 February 2019. The switch must be completed using the Current Account Switching Service by 22 March.

This account comes with a £2 monthly charge and you must pay at least £1,500 into your account every month. You can also earn up to 2% in rewards on certain households bills including council tax, water, electricity, mobile, landline TV package and broadband – so long as you pay by direct debit.

HSBC – £150

HSBC is offering new customers £150 upfront when they switch to the Advance Bank Account using the Current Account Switch Service.

This is a free account but you must pay in a minimum of £1,750 per month or £10,500 over six months. You must also set up at least two direct debits or standing orders.

You’ll also be eligible to open a Regular Saver account that pays 5% interest over 12 months.

Halifax – £135

New and existing customers switching to the Halifax Reward Current Account will get £50 if they use the Current Account Switch Service.

They’ll then get £85 after six months so long as they pay in at least £1,500 each calendar month, they opt for online banking and they use their debit card to pay for something at least once.

The Reward Current Account has no monthly fee and offers a £2 monthly reward each month when you pay in £750 or more and pay out a minimum of two different direct debits and stay in credit.

first direct -£100

New customers using the Current Account Switching Service to open a first direct 1st Account will get £100 upfront. They need to deposit at least £1,000 within three months of opening the account.

The account is free, but you have to pay at least £1,000 into the account every month or maintain an average monthly balance of £1,000 to avoid a £10 fine. You are also eligible for a £250 interest-free overdraft.

M&S Bank – £180 in gift cards

M&S Bank will give you a £100 gift card when you switch using the Current Account Switch Service until 30 January 2019. You’ll then get a £80 gift card if you pay in at least £1,250 a month and set up four active Direct Debits in the first year. You also have to register for online banking within three months of opening the account and opt for online only statements.

Existing M&S credit card customers can get a £100 gift card when they switch and a £120 gift card when they stay.

Should you switch for the cashback?

Although free cash is appealing – especially at this time of year – it shouldn’t be the only consideration when switching accounts.

“While any free cash perk is tempting, customers looking to move their current account must be sure that a short-term financial incentive isn’t the sole reason for leaving their current provider, as the account may be more expensive for dipping into an overdraft or it may not pay any credit interest for example,” said Rachel Springall, finance expert at Moneyfacts.

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