Bank of Scotland


The Bank of Scotland plc is a commercial and clearing bank based in Edinburgh, Scotland that was first established in 1695. It is the second oldest surviving bank, next to the Bank of England that was formed one year earlier. It is the only commercial institution created by the Parliament of Scotland that is still in existence and it was the first bank in Europe to issue its own banknotes.

The purpose of the Bank of Scotland was to support Scottish business and the founding Act granted the bank a monopoly on public banking for 21 years. There was a long rivalry with the Royal Bank of Scotland that lasted almost 25 years, and the Bank of Scotland in response opened branches across Scotland and the first branch in London opened in 1865. In the banking crisis of 1857, which saw the collapse of the Western Bank, The Bank of Scotland stepped up to the plate with other Scottish banks and honoured all their notes.

During the 50s, there were several mergers including the Union Bank of Scotland, the North West Securities (now the Capital Bank) and in 1971, they merged with the British Linen Bank which is owned by Barclays Bank. Therefore, Barclays acquired a 35% interest in the Bank of Scotland, which it retained until the 1990s. In 1959 Bank of Scotland became the first bank in the UK to computerize accounts and then in 1985, they introduced HOBS (Home and Office Banking Services), a remote access technology for banking customers - an early version of online banking.

Then in 2007, the Governor and Company of the Bank of Scotland, became the Bank of Scotland plc as part of the HBOS Group Reorganisation Act 2006. Then in 2008, the HBOS group agreed to be taken over by the Lloyds TSB Group and in January 2009, the Bank of Scotland became part of the Lloyds Banking Group.

Remortgages offered through Bank of Scotland

Remortgages are offered by the Bank of Scotland through Halifax. Before applying for a Halifax remortgage you will be required to have:

  • Your addresses for the last three years
  • Any existing accounts with Halifax
  • Your employment and income for the last 18 months
  • Your credit commitments
  • Your current mortgage

They also suggest arranging new insurance and they offer:

  • Up to 20% discount on buildings and contents insurance when you buy online (excluding Halifax renewal customers)
  • Up to 30% No Claims Discount
  • Option to pay monthly at no extra cost
  • Unlimited buildings sum insured - your home is automatically covered for the full cost of rebuilding.

The Halifax remortgage options include:

  • Halifax flexible rate mortgage which gives you the choice of changing how you make your payments to suit you and your circumstances. This product offers three main advantages:
    • You can choose to repay your mortgage early by increasing your monthly payments - this in turn could lower the amount of money you pay in interest
    • You can borrow money quickly and easily - this would be charged at the same rate of interest as your mortgage
    • You can even reduce your payments or take a payment holiday - you can't always tell what ups and downs life will bring so having the option to free up extra cash when you need it may suit your needs.
  • Halifax fixed rate mortgage which is more secure. The interest rate you pay stays the same and you will know exactly how much you will pay per month throughout your fixed rate term. This is less risky than the flexible rate mortgage but it does mean you pay a fixed amount.
  • Halifax tracker rate mortgages which are linked to the Bank of England base rate - Halifax will charge you an amount above this rate. The amount you will pay will vary according to the movement of the base rate. A tracker rate mortgage would mean you would benefit if interest rates are reduced. If you want to be able to change you mortgages payments to adapt with your situation then a flexible mortgage would suit you.