Startup Business Bank Accounts

Startup business bank accounts can help you manage your company finances as you get your business up and running.

Cash Plus Business Account
Monthly fee Free
Foreign exchange 2.99%
Bank transfers 3 free per month
ATM fees £2
Bank transfers above 3 per month charged at £0.30 each. Card issuing fee £9.95.
Any size of UK business or organisation can apply – even if you don't have a credit or trading history yet. Instant online decision, simple online application.
OFFER
Tide Business Account
Monthly fee Free
Foreign exchange 0%
Bank transfers £0.20
ATM fees £1
Get 3 company expense cards for free using code - EXPENSES.
Just starting out? Or scaling up? Apply today for a free, FSCS-protected Tide account and then upgrade to Plus or Cashback when you're ready for fee-free transfers, priority support and a legal helpline.
Pleo Business Account
Monthly fee Free
Foreign exchange 2.5%
Bank transfers -
ATM fees £5
Use your current bank and get going in a matter of minutes. Load your Pleo wallet and Pleo Cards fast, with no fees.
Revolut Business Account
Monthly fee Free
Foreign exchange 0.40%
Bank transfers 5 free per month
ATM fees 2%
Send and receive international payments, with no hidden fees. Free international and local payments within your plan allowance, and free transfers between Revolut Business accounts.
Card One Money Business Account
Monthly fee £12.50
Foreign exchange 2.75%
Bank transfers From £0.30
ATM fees £1.50
Application Fee £55. Earn cash rewards of up to 3.5% at more than 35 major retailers.
Open your business account within 4 hours. No credit checks. Monthly management fee is inclusive of transactional fees and charges. The Card One Money current account is not covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. Your funds are held in safeguarded bank accounts separate from our other assets. Please see Card One Money FAQs for more information.
Anna Business Account
Monthly fee Free
Foreign exchange 1%
Bank transfers £0.20
ATM fees £1
Open your ANNA business current account in less than 10 minutes. Get your own payment link straight away so clients can pay directly into your account. International payments are charged at £5.
Soldo Plus Business Account
Monthly fee £33
Foreign exchange 1%
Bank transfers Free
ATM fees 1%*
Soldo Mastercard cards have no fees for domestic transactions and our foreign exchange fee is fixed at just 1%. It's free to add funds, and money is available to spend instantly. Allocate funds to cards when your team needs it.
*ATM withdrawals cost 1% of amount with minimum of £2
Amphere Business Account
Monthly fee £20
Foreign exchange 0.35%
Bank transfers Free
ATM Fees £1.50
Business Account setup fee of £35, followed by monthly maintenance fee of £20.

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Finding the right business bank account for your start-up. 

By Laura Rettie, Personal Finance Journalist.

Laura Rettie

Setting up a new business can be exciting yet intimidating. Find out how to choose the best bank account for your business with our guide. 

What is a start-up business bank account? 

A start-up business account is a bank account suitable for companies that have only just started trading. 

Similar to standard business bank accounts, these accounts have features that make them the best business bank accounts for start-ups with a small turnover.

With a start-up business account, your company will be able to receive payments from customers, create a payroll for staff, set up direct debits and standing orders, and track your cash flow. 

Start-up business bank accounts are only available to businesses that have been trading for less than a year, making them different from small business bank accounts. 

Some features of the best business accounts for start-ups include: 

  • Lower minimum opening deposit amount 
  • Integration with invoicing and accounting software
  • Online banking capabilities 
  • Fewer and cheaper fees when compared to other business bank accounts 

Are start-up companies required to have a bank account?

Most businesses are legally required to have a business bank account. If you're starting a limited company, where the business is registered as its own legal entity, it will need a business bank account to register it in the UK. 

A business bank account helps keep the finances of your start-up business separate from your personal finances. This can be really important for tax purposes. 

If you're just starting out as a sole trader or freelancer, you're not legally required to have a business bank account because your business finances can also be considered your personal finances. 

However, some personal current account providers will state in their terms and conditions that their accounts cannot be used for business transactions. 

Here are a few reasons why having a business bank account is worthwhile:

  1. Having a business bank account allows you to keep your personal finances separate from your business’s finances. This is helpful for tax reasons, but it can also make tracking your business's cash flow more manageable. 
  2. A business bank account allows your business to build a credit history, which is essential for when you may need to apply for things like a loan for a business credit card in the future. 
  3. Start-up bank accounts have features to help new business owners. Many providers will have resources providing tips and features that can streamline some standard business functions. 

Are start-up business bank accounts free?

Most business bank accounts, including start-up accounts, will come with fees, and you'll struggle to find an entirely free business account. 

You'll most likely have to pay an annual fee to keep your account open, and the amounts can vary depending on the provider and the features available to you. This annual fee will usually be taken from your account each month. 

Some business bank accounts for start-ups may be advertised as 'free accounts', but this can be misleading. 

When an account advertises itself as free, it usually means there's no annual fee, not totally fee-free. 

These types of accounts will charge you a fee each time you complete an online transaction or pay a percentage of each cash withdrawal you make. These charges can make your start-up account reasonably expensive, especially if you're regularly using a service that charges a fee. 

Look out for business bank accounts with introductory offers. Some accounts may offer 'free periods' where the annual fee or charges do not apply, saving you money.

What is the best bank account for start-ups?

The best start-up business bank account for you will depend on your company's situation and which features best suit your business's scale and how it operates. Providers offer lots of different features and perks, so it’s important to compare several before making a decision.

Some things you'll have to consider when picking the best bank account for your start-up are: 

Charges and fees

The vast majority of business bank accounts, even those tailored for new businesses, will charge an annual fee for you to keep your account open. This fee will be taken from your balance every month and could be a considerable expense. 

As well as this, there may also be fees for specific features. Some accounts will charge you for withdrawing cash or transferring a balance online. Consider how you're going to use your business bank account the most and look for an account that doesn't charge you to do what you need to do regularly.

Minimum opening deposit

Some providers may require you to pay a minimum amount into the account when opening one. If the minimum opening deposit is over your budget, it may mean the bank account is unsuitable for your start-up. 

Account limits

Many start-up business bank accounts will have limitations on what you can do. 

Examples include having a transaction limit. A provider may limit the number of transactions you can complete in a month before fees are applied. If your business has many customers making multiple, low-value transactions a month, it could impact your business's potential income. 

Some providers also have limits on the maximum value a single transaction can be. For businesses that offer more expensive services to clients, this limitation can be a hindrance. 

When choosing a start-up account for your business, consider how these type of  limitations will impact your business. 

The features available to you

Many start-up business accounts will offer additional features that can be useful, especially if you're a first-time business owner. Many common features include accounting and invoicing software, educational resources, and online banking. 

Bank accounts that have these features will usually charge a monthly fee, meaning you'll have to evaluate the cost of these to make sure they're worth it. 

For example, some businesses may not need invoicing software, meaning paying for that feature may be a waste of money. Get the best start-up business account by choosing one that only has the features you need. 

Type of business account

Start-up business accounts might not be the best solution for every new business. 

For example, if your new business has a large cash flow, a standard business bank account that allows larger transactions may suit your circumstances better. 

If you're an online business or a merchant who wants to provide their customers with a simple way of paying for goods, you may want to consider a merchant account. 

A merchant bank account allows you to receive card payments from contactless, chip and pin, or online. The benefits are huge for some businesses that rely on this payment method, however, merchant bank accounts take a percentage of every card transaction. 

How do I open a business bank account for start-ups?

You can apply for a business bank account online or in-person at a branch of a bank. 

After you've completed your application, on average it takes approximately 1-4 weeks for your account to be opened. However, some providers will respond within 24 hours and have your account opened and ready to go. 

What is required to open a start-up business bank account 

To be eligible to open a start-up business account, you need to be over 18, be a permanent resident in the UK, and have your business registered in the UK. 

For a start-up business account, your business cannot have been trading for more than a year. 

When you apply for a business account you'll need to include the following in your application: 

  • Proof of identification for all company directors, such as a passport or driver's licence
  • Proof of your personal address, such as a bank statement or utility bill
  • The address of your business
  • The contact details of your business

What are the advantages and disadvantages of start-up business bank accounts? 

Pros 

  • Keeps your business funds separate from your personal finances
  • Allows your business to build a credit history, which is important when you start applying for loans or business credit cards
  • Includes valuable perks such as invoicing and accounting features 
  • Can issue debit cards to your employees

Cons

  • Most business bank accounts will charge a monthly or annual fee to keep the account open
  • There may be fees or charges for performing certain functions, such as transferring funds, withdrawing money from a cash point and using the account to pay for things abroad
  • You may be limited to the number of transactions you can make each month before fees are applied
  • Certain start-up business bank accounts will charge a fee for accepting card payments

The information provided does not constitute financial advice, it’s always important to do your own research to ensure a financial product is right for your circumstances. If you’re unsure you should contact an independent financial advisor.

Frequently asked questions

Will a start-up business account impact my personal credit score?

One of the main reasons for getting a business account is to protect your personal finances and credit rating. When you use your business account to apply for loans or credit cards, it'll be the business's credit history that's checked, not your own personal credit report. 

Because of this, your credit rating won't be impacted when your start-up business account is in use.

How long does it take to open a start-up business account?

The time it takes to have your business bank account open and ready to be used will depend on the provider. 

Some online-only providers may be able to give you a decision within ten minutes. However, others will need a few weeks to complete their checks. If you're already registered at the bank you're trying to open a business account with, this can speed up the process. 

Can I open a start-up business bank account online?

Yes. You can apply for any business bank account online, either directly on the lender's website or app. You'll have to attach scans or images of the required documentation when doing so. Opening a start-up business account online is usually faster than applying in person at a bank branch.

Can I open a start-up business account with bad credit?

It's unlikely a credit check will be performed when opening a start-up bank account, meaning you should be able to open an account with bad credit. 

However, If you're applying for an overdraft, then your credit history is likely to be checked. but most business accounts for start-ups do not offer overdrafts.