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Low-income earners are being encouraged to sign up to Help to Save to boost their savings by 50 per cent with government support.

Existing customers have received £146 million in bonus payments since the scheme launched in September 2018 and HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is urging individuals to take advantage of the generous savings scheme.

Help to Save is the government savings scheme for low-income earners and offers savers a 50 per cent bonus payment worth up to £1,200 over a maximum of four years.

Latest figures reveal that almost 450,000 customers opened a Help to Save account between September 2018 and March 2023, with nearly £372.5 million paid into accounts during that time.

Quick and easy

Myrtle Lloyd, HMRC’s Director General for Customer Services, said: “Hundreds of thousands of people are benefitting from Help to Save. It’s a great way of saving whatever you can and the government will top up your savings by 50 per cent. It’s quick and easy to apply online or via the HMRC app.”

Customers can open a Help to Save account if they are receiving:

  • Working Tax Credit
  • Child Tax Credit and are entitled to Working Tax Credit
  • Universal Credit and they (with their partner, if it is a joint claim) had take-home pay of £722.45 or more in their last monthly assessment period

Savers can deposit between £1 and £50 each month. They will earn an extra 50 pence for every £1 saved and bonuses are paid in the second and fourth years of the account being opened. The bonus payment applies to the highest amount saved within the period. Savers who deposit the maximum amount of £2,400 will receive a bonus of £1,200 from the Government.

Nearly 383,000 account holders across the UK have made a deposit into their accounts and the average monthly deposit is £48. More than 90 per cent of savers invest the maximum £50 each month. They can make as many deposits as they like each month via debit card, bank transfer or standing order. Money can be withdrawn at any time, although this may affect their bonus payments.

Online access

Customers can easily manage their savings account online or through the HMRC app. They can check their balance, view savings and bonus details, find out when they’ll be paid a bonus, read any messages, set up a standing order or make withdrawals.

Victoria Todd, Head of the Low Incomes Tax Reform Group, said: “For those who are able to take part, the Help to Save account is a very attractive savings scheme, especially when the saver is able to maximise their bonuses. They can do this by paying in the maximum amount each month and making no withdrawals. Those who are eligible can still get bonus payments, even if they can’t save the maximum. That is why we recently welcomed the extension of the scheme to April 2025.”

The government is also offering Help for Households. Check GOV.UK to find out what cost of living support individuals could be eligible for.

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