Sole trader banking

Business account for sole traders

An award-winning account with no monthly fees.

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Starling sole trader account interface

Plate spinning, juggling, putting out fires; it’s fair to say that life as a sole trader can be a bit of a balancing act.

So whether you’re self-employed or happily side-hustling, we’ve built an award-winning sole trader account to save you time and money while you run the show – and (here’s the best part) it’s free.

Apply for an account in minutes and connect with your accounting software or invest in a Sole Trader Toolkit to tackle the numbers directly from your bank account, on desktop or mobile.

Please note, to open an account as a sole trader, customers must first open a personal current account and meet certain eligibility checks, which include looking at credit data and understanding the nature of the business. If eligible, you will see the option in your app to apply in minutes for a sole trader account.

Unfortunately we are unable to let customers know whether they will be eligible for a sole trader account prior to opening a personal current account because we use the personal account opening process to verify your details and eligibility.

When applying for the account we will need evidence of trading activity, and the sole trader can’t engage in any of the prohibited activities set out in the sole trader current account terms.

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Why it’s the best sole trader bank account

A free sole trader bank account, in minutes.

Once your personal account is open, you are ready to open your new account! No fussy forms, no waiting around, no need to visit a branch (not that we have any). Get to business today with a simple in-app application and no monthly fees.

24/7 UK support.

Chat to our all-human, all-UK-based team via the app or on the phone. Get in touch to find out if the Bounce Back Loan Scheme could be applicable for your business. If you’re working, so are we.

Instant payment alerts.

Client payment? Networking lunch? Get real-time alerts as soon as money enters or leaves your account.

Capture receipts.

Buried in receipts? There’s an easier way. Stay organised by capturing them in-app as you go.

Automate your expenses.

We’ll automatically put your expenses into business categories to simplify your self-assessment tax return.

Connect to business tools.

Link your account to other services, such as accounting software or insurance, through our Marketplace. Use Xero, QuickBooks or FreeAgent? No problem, connect for free.

No hidden fees.

No monthly account fees, no UK transfer fees, no bank ATM fees, and no fees abroad. Where we do have charges and fees, they are transparent and easy to understand.

Space to separate overheads.

Business trips. Tax. A new laptop. Whatever’s coming up, keep it to one side in Goals.

Cash and cheque deposits.

Deposit cash easily at your local Post Office, and deposit cheques of £500 or less via the Starling app. When we said you wouldn’t miss branches, we meant it.

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Please note: overdrafts and loans

Our focus at the moment is on delivering CBILS and BBLS borrowing as quickly as we can to our customers. We are not accepting applications for non-CBILS or non-BBLS Starling business loans or overdrafts at the moment.

All of Starling’s accounts are protected and supported by world-class security and 24/7 customer service - plus your money is protected up to £85,000 by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.

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Supercharge your free sole trader account with the Business Toolkit

Need a bit more from your free sole trader account? Something that’s reliable, looks after your bookkeeping, totally invisible and only £7 a month? Add on our Business Toolkit, it comes supercharged with the bells and whistles you need for bookkeeping and VAT. Send and manage invoices, record and submit VAT, and keep track of all your bills – all from your sole trader bank account. Get all the same features of our original sole trader account, but with extra tools and features to help make accounting simpler.

Sign up and get your first month for free!

Business Toolkit

Everything in the original free account, plus


  • Instant invoicing and automatching
  • Automated expenses and bookkeeping
  • MTD compliant VAT submissions
  • Tax estimation (sole traders only)
  • Bill upload and payment scheduling

Original free account


  • No monthly fees
  • Connect to QuickBooks, Xero or FreeAgent
  • 24/7 UK customer support
  • Instant notifications
  • Free UK bank transfers

How we measure up

It’s great to have options, so we’ve compared the sole trader and business accounts from a variety of high street banks and challengers so you can see how we stack up.

Compare accounts
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Ready to switch to Starling?

We take the hassle out of switching banks. With just a few taps in the app, you can let us know you’re ready to make the move, and we’ll take care it from there. Our switching service is simple, completed in seven working days and covered by the Current Account Switch Guarantee. Find out how to switch.

Eligibility criteria

Sole trader accounts are subject to eligibility checks, which include looking at credit data and understanding the nature of your business. The option to apply for a sole trader account in the Starling app will only be shown to customers that match our criteria, based on details provided for their personal current account.

Please note: Opening a sole trader account at Starling does not guarantee that you will be approved for a loan under the Bounce Back Loan Scheme or any other lending scheme.