If the old-fashioned savings account is not enough for you, it’s time to try an online savings platform.
With an online savings hub, you can access a wide range of choices to maximise the interest rate you can earn.
In this review, I will give you some insights into Raisin, one of the leading online savings platforms in the UK that offers low-cost savings with high-interest rates.
Hopefully, by the end, you can decide whether or not Raisin is for you.
Table of Contents
Introduction to Raisin
Raisin was founded in 2012 in Berlin by Frank Freund, Michael Stephan, and Tamaz Georgadze. It aims to connect retail customers with banks looking to expand their deposit reach. The company has now reached 30+ countries with over 400 partner banks.
Raisin is backed by leading European and American investors, such as Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, and Paypal. In 2021, the company merged with Deposit Solutions, a B2B deposit platform.
The platform has received plenty of awards and recognition, such as the winner of Wealth ScaleUp from the Financial NewTech Challenge in 2021, Fintech Top 250 from CBInsights, and the winner of Fintech of the Year from Altfi.
How to Create an Account at Raisin
Opening an account at Raisin is easy; the process only takes several minutes.
You’ll need to enter your first and last name, home address, time lived at current address, nationality, date of birth, telephone number, contact number, national insurance number or UK tax ID number, proof of address, and a government-issued ID.
After completing your details, you will be asked to verify your identity via video call.
When you open an account in Raisin, it also means opening an account at their collaboration bank. Their collaboration bank is Starling Bank, and they’re responsible for storing and managing your money.
Raisin’s Product Range & Features
Currently, Raisin has four different types of savings accounts:
- Easy Access Savings Accounts: This is an instant access account. It is perfect for people who want flexibility when withdrawing their money. The interest rate will be lower than other account types but still be higher than regular banks.
- Fixed Rate Bonds: This type of account will require you to lock away your money for some time. You can set the maturity from 1 to 7 years. Long-term savings can give you higher interest rates, but remember that you can only access your money for a few years.
- Notice Accounts: With this account, you can have a competitive interest rate, but they need a notice period when you want to withdraw money. The Notice Account compromises the Easy Access and Fixed Rate accounts.
- Sharia Accounts: This is ideal for Muslim clients but is also open to other faiths. Sharia rates differ because they have an “expected profit rate” rather than a guaranteed rate. One plus point is if Raisin feels that the expected rate is going to change, they will offer you the option to close the account and receive your initial deposit back.
Benefits of Using Raisin
Opening an account on Raisin will give you access to savings rates of your choice. This means you can move your money quickly to establishments with the best rates. This way, you can avoid having your money sit inside an account where it’s not appreciated with interest.
With Raisin, you can move your funds between their 30 partner banks, taking advantage of their different interest rates. Some of their partner banks are QIB, Zenith Bank, Charter Savings Bank, and Reliance Bank. You can go directly to Raisin’s website to find the complete list.
Another benefit you can get by using Raisin is their refer-a-friend bonus. When you refer a friend to open an account at Raisin, you can earn £25 if they deposit £5,000 or more. And when they hit the six months mark, your friend can also receive the £25 bonus.
The good news is that Raisin has no hidden fee, and all their services are free. The only charge you need to think about is the tax bill on the interest you make.
Ensure you declare your profits to the taxation office and pay subsequent bills. Basic rate taxpayers can earn up to £1,000 for free, and higher rate taxpayers (40%) must pay £500.
How to Transfer & Withdraw Funds
After you finish your registration and sign-up, your next step will be transferring your funds into Raisin. First, you should nominate your bank account and link it to Raisin to transfer your funds.
Then you need to find the IBAN of your Raisin Account in your online banking or your welcome email. The bank will review your application when the funds arrive in your Raisin account. After it’s approved, Raisin will send you a confirmation email.
When you want to withdraw funds, log into your Raisin account and go to “my account.” Select “withdrawal” from the drop-down menu. Then enter the amount of money you wish to withdraw and confirm. The system will send you a verification code and submit it to complete the process. The transfer process can take up to 4 business days.
Safety & Security
Raisin is authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), meaning they apply strict policies to protect their client’s funds. This also means you’ll be eligible for FSCS or Financial Services Compensation Scheme, protecting your funds for up to £85,000.
Because Raisin has partner banks based in other European countries, it also falls under European Deposit Guarantee Scheme that can protect up to 100,000 EUR.
Customer Support Review
You can contact Raisin via their email account, phone number, or chat feature. Their customer service team is available Monday to Friday, 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM.
Their site stated they are currently overloaded with phone calls, so I tried to contact them via email instead. I received an automated reply saying they would get back within three days, which is quite a long time compared to other companies. If you want a faster response, try calling their number or contacting them via chat.
I also checked out their review on Trustpilot, and Raisin received an average of 3.7 out of 5, or average standing. Most complaints were about the long wait from customer service. Still, some also praised their excellent interest rate and quick transaction.
Who Should Use Raisin?
You should consider Raisin if you want to earn the best savings account rates.
But steer clear if you want immediate access to your savings, as it doesn’t offer a checking account.
This means you must keep a checking account at another institution and make transfers between banks, which could take several days.
Alternatives to Raisin
Here are some alternatives to Raisin that offer low-cost savings accounts:
- Hargreaves Lansdown: The platform also offers access to savings accounts for free. Hargreaves Lansdown has 11 partner banks compared to Raisin’s 30. But in Hargreaves Lansdown, you can also grow your money using their investment features. Read my full Hargreaves Lansdown review.
- AJ Bell Cash Savings Hub: AJ Bell also offers a savings account option without any fees. Currently, the platform has seven partner banks, much less than Raisin’s 30 partners. Their interest rates are similar to Raisin’s savings accounts. Read my full AJ Bell review.
- Interactive Investor Cash Savings: You can use Interactive Investor’s savings feature by paying a fee of up to 0.25% of your total funds, and they have 25 partner banks. Their interest rates are at the same level as Raisin’s as well. Read my full Interactive Investor review.
- Aviva Save: Aviva is also a free online savings platform that you can use, but the company has only six partner banks. Their interest rates are comparable to the ones offered by Raisin.
- Flagstone: Although Flagstone’s savings account is not free of charge, it’s still affordable at 0.15% to 0.25% of your total funds. One of their strengths is they have over 45+ partner banks. They have competitive interest rates, which are similar to Raisin.
Pros & Cons of Raisin
- High-interest rates
- Low minimum opening deposit
- Access to 30 partner banks from 1 account
- No fees
- No checking or business accounts
- No direct cash deposits
Raisin Review – Final Thoughts
With competitive rates and no fees, Raisin is one of the best options to choose if you want to grow your savings account using an online savings platform.
Raisin offers more partner banks than most competitors, which you can access with just one account. If you want easy access to interest rate options, this platform is for you.
Hopefully, my review has given you some insight into what Raisin has to offer and whether it’s right for you.