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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

We are moving from France to Scotland in about a week. I got a job working at a university. We have temporary lodging (AirBNB) for a couple of weeks, and plan on looking for a permanent place as soon as we arrive.

I am guessing that we will need a UK bank account in order to rent an apartment in Scotland. We currently have French and USA bank accounts.

My question is, then, how hard is it to open a new bank account in the UK? Can anyone tell me what kind of documentation I might need, particularly in terms of residence? Does anyone have advice for how to best prove our UK residence seeing as we will have just arrived?

Thanks!
 

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My fiance is from Scotland, he opened his account years ago, but he said you will need proof of address of your new place in the UK, and I think proof of an ID like a passport.
 

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Also someone who has recently arrived from abroad is likely be sent FATCA questionnaire. After completing it, you will have to send in your certified passport copy and certificate of residence to show you aren't a US citizen, permanent resident or dual-US national. Someone with US citizenship or permanent residence will be sent additional documents to complete.
 

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But you still need to meet the UK requirement on address verification, ID etc, as it will be a UK resident account.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks, everyone. It sounds like it's the same Catch-22 as in France, where you need an established address to open a bank account, and you need a bank account to get an address.

I can give the bank my temporary AirBNB address if they will do something like send a letter there to confirm -- but if they want a utility bill or something, that's not going to be possible.

Here in France, I had to go down to the bank with one of my coworkers and say I was staying with him. Then he received a letter from the bank to confirm that he lived there. I guess I'll have to do something similar?
 

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UK banks don't do that. They just require official evidence of residence, so you need to wait till you get somewhere more permanent and get your name on council tax. Or people have applied for NI number and used the letter of confirmation from HMRC as evidence.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
OK, how is rent normally paid in the UK? I just don't know how I'm supposed to establish myself at a residence without being able to write the landlord a check from a UK bank account. Maybe I could pay cash or transfer directly from my French account. Anyone else have experience with this?
 

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By standing order from your bank account. Until you open a bank account, you can withdraw cash from your French account.
 
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