Frequently asked questions

What is Nous?

Nous is a new service that helps households get smart and stay vigilant against the rising cost of living. We’re here to make your life simpler and fairer. Follow our progress on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.

How does Nous work?

By telling Nous where you live and securely connecting your household bank accounts through Open Banking, we can automatically identify your utility providers and calculate what you should expect to spend with them, based on price rises and inflation. Your household forecast shows utilities, insurance, mortgage and NI all in one place, and Nous updates in real time so you always have accurate information to manage your finances.

Nous gets smarter as each new household teaches our technology about providers and prices. We track which providers are acting fairly and spot those taking advantage. And we use that knowledge to help households.

Our cost-of-living service is free to use and always will be – but we are building a premium service that will free you from the effort of keeping your household on fair tariffs with reliable providers. For a monthly subscription, you’ll be able to get rid of a lifetime of household admin and hold on to more of your money. Follow our progress on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.

Will you ask me before changing my provider?

You keep control of all decisions. We’ll always notify you before we make any changes on your behalf. If you decide you don’t want us to go ahead, you can tell us to leave things as they are.

What makes Nous different from auto-switching companies?

Unlike auto-switching companies and price comparison sites, we don’t make money through commissions from providers. They earn as much as £60 a pop in kickbacks for switching you. Which makes you wonder, who are they really working for?

We earn money from your subscriptions, which means our interests are closely aligned with yours. And if providers pay us commissions for work we do on our members’ behalf, we’ll never pocket it ourselves. Instead, we give it back to our members. Because that’s the fair thing to do.

Why do I have to pay to join Nous?

We earn money from membership fees, not advertising or commissions. This means (unlike so-called ‘free’ price comparison websites and auto-switching companies) we don’t need to rely on kickbacks from providers to cover the costs of our service.

In short, our membership model means we’re on your side for the long term, not in the pockets of providers. And remember, when you join Nous you won’t pay anything until we’ve saved you £100.

What does Nous do with provider commissions?

If providers pay us commissions for changing your provider, we think it’s only right to pass that on, in full, to you. That keeps things fair and square between us – we won’t make any money from commissions, so we’ll only ever switch your provider if it’s genuinely in your household’s best interest.

How does Nous help?

The cost-of-living crisis is hitting all households, but each one is affected in its own way.  Most coverage and analysis of the crisis is generalised and alarming. At Nous we think the first step to navigating rising costs is to get an accurate picture of your current situation. Our free household forecast tells you exactly what to expect in the next 12 months, based on your current spending. We’ve also evaluated the best ways to reduce your costs and other steps you can take, including letting you know if your household could be eligible for financial assistance.

Can Nous help if I’m struggling with household bills?

The rising cost of living has already affected millions of households and if you’re struggling to pay essential bills, you’re not alone. Our free service helps households understand exactly how rising costs will affect their finances, including advice on the best ways to reduce your bills.

Some households may need urgent or more specialist help than we provide and we can recommend various organisations which provide free and confidential assistance. Visit our cost-of-living resources page to find out more.

Do I have to pay to join Nous?

Nous is a free service that helps households get smart and stay vigilant against the rising cost of living. In the future, you’ll have the option to upgrade to our premium service which will automatically keep your household on fair tariffs with reliable providers, saving you from a lifetime of admin.

How does Nous make money?

Right now, we don't. We're privately funded by investors while we build an automated service from which, in future, we’ll earn membership fees. The free personalised report will remain free and you’ll always be able to access it. We won’t ever make money through advertising or selling data. We believe that your data belongs to you, and we best act in your interests by being completely transparent about how we store and process your personal information. (Read our privacy statement).

What is my household forecast?

Our free service includes a personalised forecast to help households get smart and stay vigilant against the rising cost of living. It shows all your essential spending under one roof. Once you’ve connected your household, we work out exactly what you can expect to spend with each provider, based on forecasted price rises and inflation. The forecast is updated in real time so you always have accurate information to manage your finances, taking the guesswork and uncertainty out of rising costs.

How does Nous calculate my household forecast?

For every household that joins our service, Nous uses Open Banking and industry data to automatically identify providers and essential spending. Categories currently include energy, mortgages, and NI and council tax, with water, broadband, mobile, satellite TV and insurance coming soon. Nous estimates personalised price increases for your household using rates published by your providers, inflation published by the Bank of England, and relevant local and national government information. Your household’s cost-of-living forecast is in your Nous account, showing the increases in each category and your annualised total.

What if my household forecast looks inaccurate?

Each household forecast is unique, based on the information you provide through Open Banking and publicly available APIs. Nous estimates personalised price increases for your household by using published rates for your providers, inflation published by the Bank of England, and relevant local and national government figures. We’re still building our service and sometimes the sums need checking manually. So if anything doesn’t look right, chat with us or email support@nous.com and we’ll get back to you.

When are you adding the categories marked “coming soon”?

We’re working hard to add more categories and we’ll announce them by email (so make sure you’re subscribed). If you think there’s another cost-of-living category Nous should cover, chat with us or email support@nous.com and we’ll get back to you.

Can more than one person share the same account?

Yes. Most households have different people responsible for different bills, so we’ve made it easy to add additional householders and bank accounts so you can see everything in one place. Once you’ve signed up you can invite and manage access for other householders.

How does Nous connect with my bank?

Linking your account with Open Banking gives us read-only access to your relevant household transactions, and we use the information to calculate your forecast. Open Banking is built to give you more control of your banking data – you’re always in charge of access and you can revoke it at any time.

As an approved Open Banking provider we are compliant with the ICO, the UK’s data privacy body. We never see or store your bank login details, your money can’t ever be moved or transferred, and we protect your data with 256-bit bank-grade encryption (the same level of security as your bank).

For more info about how we process and protect your data, read our privacy statement. Our Open Banking is provided by Tink, part of Visa Inc., and you can read their privacy policy here.

What is Open Banking?

Open Banking was introduced by the UK government in 2016, making it easier for people to give third-party providers access to their transaction data, compare accounts, and access new products. It means customers can get more choice about how they manage their money, often including personalised insights, to help them save and spend better.

With Open Banking, third-party providers like Nous can securely access customers’ current account transaction history and can use the information to provide useful, personalised services (see How does Nous connect with my bank?)

Every Open Banking provider is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and there are now 4 million people using Open Banking in the UK. You’re always in control and you choose when, and for how long, you give access to your data.

Which banks do you work with?

All UK banks are expected to provide regulated providers like Nous with access to your Open Banking data. If you can’t see your bank in our list, it might mean they are still developing the ability for their customers to connect, as more banks are still getting up to speed. Nous can currently connect with the following banks:

  • Monzo
  • Barclays
  • HSBC
  • Lloyds
  • NatWest
  • Royal Bank of Scotland
  • AIB
  • Amazon
  • American Express
  • Aqua
  • Arbuthnot Latham
  • Argos
  • B Bank
  • Bank of Ireland
  • Bank of Scotland
  • Barclaycard Personal
  • Barclays Wealth
  • Bip
  • Burton Menswear
  • Capital One
  • Cashplus
  • Cater Allen
  • Clydesdale Bank
  • Coutts & Co
  • Creation
  • Cumberland
  • Danske Bank
  • Debenhams
  • Dorothy Perkins
  • Evans
  • First Direct
  • First Trust
  • Fluid
  • Halifax
  • Handelsbanken
  • House of Fraser
  • M&S Bank
  • MBNA
  • Marbles
  • Metro
  • NatWest One Account
  • Nationwide Bank
  • NewPay
  • Opus
  • PayPal
  • Pulse
  • Revolut
  • Sainsbury's Bank
  • Santander

How safe is Nous?

We believe that technology empowers people – as long as it’s used with good intentions. Our privacy statement explains what we do, and why we do it, without glossing over the important details, or counting on you glazing over.

As an approved Open Banking provider we are compliant with the ICO, the UK’s data privacy body. We never see or store your bank login details, your money can’t ever be moved or transferred, and we protect your data with 256-bit bank-grade encryption (the same level of security as your bank).

Why are you called Nous?

Wondering why we’re called Nous? The word “nous” means common sense or practical intelligence. Used in a sentence, you might say something like “They used a bit of nous to solve that problem”.

P.S. not sure how it’s pronounced? Just rhyme it with “house”.

How can I contact you?

We’d love to hear from you.

Live chat – send us a message here
Email – write to us at support@nous.com

And you can find us on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.

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