Novus bank account review

New UK banking startup Novus says it will offer a digital bank account with a conscience. Here’s what we know about it so far.

Novus describes itself as “the next-generation digital banking and lifestyle app for a sustainable future”. The app is not live yet, but you can join the waitlist via the company’s website. And for everyone who does, Novus says it will plant a tree.

What is Novus?

Novus says it will offer an account that combines traditional digital banking features with an ethical outlook. So you can set up savings goals, manage your monthly budget, and buy things using your Novus card, at the same time as making a “positive impact” on causes you care about.

What will the Novus bank account feature?

There’s no word yet on what fees may be involved with Novus, but it has revealed that its account will come with the following features:

  • Mobile banking app
  • Debit card
  • Ability to make and receive payments from the UK and abroad
  • Instant spending notifications
  • Budgeting tools
  • Savings pots
  • Spending insights
  • Overview of your other bank accounts

The app will also let users tap into an “ethically and sustainability inspired marketplace”. This will be a network of brand partners, across sectors such as food, fashion, beauty, fitness, homewares and travel.

How does it work?

Novus says that you’ll be able to generate a “positive impact” for charities and other social or environmental causes simply by using your card, but at no extra cost to you.

Details on exactly how that works are still to come. For now, though, on its website it says: “We share our economics with social & environmental causes and have built an infrastructure to connect these causes with your daily spending.

“The impact you generate is at no additional cost to you – you’re simply harnessing your everyday purchases to make a difference to wider social issues.”

So, for example, if you use your Novus card to pay for groceries or a takeaway, a part of your purchase will go towards sharing meals with people in need, it says. If you use it to pay for transport you’ll be planting trees to offset the carbon.

You’ll be able to read more about each cause, alongside how you’ve helped them. You’ll also have the option to choose exactly what causes to give to, if you’d rather.

In addition, there’s the Boost Up feature, where you can choose to boost your transactional impact by 1p, 2p, 10p if you want to give even more.

How can I sign up to Novus?

Novus isn’t live yet and it hasn’t confirmed a launch date.

However, the brand says that by subscribing to its waitlist now, you’ll be given the opportunity to become an early user of the app when it enters beta testing.

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Our verdict

As Novus is yet to launch it’s not possible to give a verdict at this time. But the opportunity to buy things and manage your personal finances at the same time as positively contributing to causes you care about seems great in theory.

We’ll be keeping a close eye on the Novus bank account and updating this page as more information becomes available. In the meantime check out other alternatives in our guide to the best budgeting apps.

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