Premium Bonds

First introduced in 1956, Premium Bonds are now owned by around 21 million people in the UK. Here you can find out what Premium Bonds are, when they might be a good investment and how to go about buying and selling them.

What are Premium Bonds

Premium Bonds are an investment product issued by National Savings and Investment (NS&I). Unlike other investments, where you earn interest or a regular dividend income, you are entered into a monthly prize draw where you can win between £25 and £1 million tax free.

How do Premium Bonds work?

  • You’ll need to invest at least £25
  • You can keep buying bonds until you reach the maximum holding level of £50,000.
  • You get a unique bond number for every £1 invested. So, if you save £100, you’ll get 100 bond numbers (each with a chance to win a prize).
  • Once held for a full month bonds are included in a monthly draw and you stand a chance of winning a cash prize.
  • You can buy them for yourself or on behalf of your child, grandchild or great-grandchild. You must be aged at least 16 to purchase Premium Bonds for yourself.

Are Premium Bonds right for you?

Premium Bonds may be for you if:
  • you want the chance to win tax-free cash prizes in a monthly draw;
  • if you’re a parent, guardian, grandparent or great grandparent wanting to buy for a child under 16 years old;
  • you have £25 or more to invest.

Premium bonds might not be for you if you:

  • want a regular income;
  • want guaranteed returns;
  • don’t want to worry about the impact of inflation on your savings.

Are Premium Bonds worth it?

Your chances of winning the top prize are very slim – most people will win smaller prizes or nothing at all.

  • All the money you put into Premium Bonds is secure.
  • There’s a very small chance you could earn a very high tax-free return.
  • You won’t earn regular income on your bonds. Most people who buy Premium Bonds will earn only a small amount as a percentage of the money they contribute.
  • Unless you win one of the bigger prizes, your return is unlikely to beat inflation. In other words, your money probably won’t grow fast enough to keep up with rising costs and have the same buying power over time due to it being eroded by inflation.

How to buy Premium Bonds

How to sell Premium Bonds

You can cash in your Premium Bonds at any time without penalty.

If you’re registered with an online account, you can do it straightaway.

How long does it take to cash in Premium Bonds?

According to NS&I, it takes up to three banking days for the money to reach your account, unless you have elected to cash in after the next draw.

Tax

Any prizes you win on a Premium Bond are free from the UK Income Tax and Capital Gains Tax.

Are Premium Bonds safe and secure?

Your money is secure, since Premium Bonds are fully backed by the government.

For other UK banks and building societies, your savings are usually protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). Find out more on the FSCS website

Next steps

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Whatever your circumstances or plans, move forward with MoneyHelper.

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Looking for us? Now, we’re MoneyHelper

MoneyHelper is the new, easy way to get clear, free,
impartial help for all your money and pension choices.
Whatever your circumstances or plans, move forward with MoneyHelper.

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