"Encouraging" an overdraft?

Just got an email from Monzo, saying that I can “cushion” my account with an overdraft.

I don’t think I like this. I know the lending criteria is quite strict, so I followed it through to see and they will offer me £1000 at 19% (Or similar) but I don’t like that this has been pushed on me.

I say this not to brag, but provide some context, I have more in my savings pot (only just) than the amount they’ve offered me. Maybe if I had no money they wouldn’t have emailed me, but I’m not sure if that makes it better or worse.

Also, if they can do this with overdrafts, why isn’t this inbuilt for normal accounts?


First time I signed up for Monzo, they offered me a £1000 overdraft and when I said no the wording was something like ‘risk bounced payments’ - found that to be a bit cheap & nasty at the time, tbh


Sounds like they are saying “We can see you don’t need to borrow any money from us, but we can help you get into debt if it helps.”


I think that sums it up very well!


Would there ever be any “suitable” language for Monzo to use to encourage the customer having an overdraft?

Someone is always going to take it the wrong way.

19% overdraft could be viewed as another income stream for the bank.

Banks are allowed to market their financial products to their customers.

Nothing about getting an email with some info about an overdraft inhibits you from making an informed decision. I really don’t see the problem.

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I dip into my overdraft occasionally and I’ve never seen that

I can’t think of a situation where they need to email me promoting it if I’m honest.

If I had £0.08 at the end of each month and I have payments bouncing, I’d certainly want one, but is it a good idea to email me about it? Could they get in touch to talk to me and see if there’s a way they can help?

I’m sensible enough (now, probably not when I was younger!) to turn it down but lots of people won’t be and especially with people taking big hits in the last year, someone might take that cushion a bit too literally.

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I think emailing you is a bit of a grey area but I completely disagree with them encouraging you to get into debt.

As others have pointed out banks are entitled to market their products.

Provided Monzo don’t do what Starling did and put it in the feed next to transactions I think it will remain a bit of a grey area

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Debt makes them money - so it makes sense, I think their goal of “make money work for everyone” has changed

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Yes. Don’t.

By all means advertise or promote your overdraft. But don’t encourage people to take or push it onto them and make them feel like they need it. That’s another miss-selling scandal just waiting to happen.


Was this the whole email, or was there more to it that isn’t displayed? What’s the subject etc?

This is the first part…

Then it’s just details/how it works etc

I think I’m on a different page to everyone else.

That email looks like it’s encouraging responsible use of overdrafts. It is congratulating the user on using their overdraft less and suggesting they plan so they only use it when they absolutely need to.

What am I missing?

Edit: my message crossed with the previous one. So the OP didn’t have an overdraft? Now I get it, but it all seems fairly responsible still.


Yeah, back up plan, emergencies, important payments, short term borrowing

Seems very responsible


and indeed helps you plan more doesn’t it … your £85 lower than last month , short of well done its great …your overdraft usage is coming down because you are planning

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Nope. I don’t think it’s terrible, hence my use of quotes in the title.

But I don’t have an overdraft and I don’t think I’ve ever checked to see if I’m eligible. I just don’t think this is a good email to send.

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I got the same email a few hours ago, I didn’t click through to see my rate but I also luckily have more than a grand saved in my monzo account.

They’ve probably tweaked their algorithms and some people have been booted off monzo and some allowed an overdraft.


Sounds like these emails are targeting customers that demonstrate healthy money habits and have sufficient income. So at least, if they are pushing it on people, it’s not those who are financially vulnerable.

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