Those looking to transfer their cash ISA savings will be happy to hear that in 2017, 89% of all cash ISA transfers were completed within seven working days. An agreement between the Building Societies Association, the Tax Incentivised Savings Association and UK Finance, to try and complete at least 80% of transfers within that timeframe, is to thank for this.
Prior to 2017, only an estimated 66% of transfers were completed within seven working days, so there's clearly been a welcome improvement. Now, the three associations have committed to a goal of at least 85% for 2018, so there's even more reason to trust that ISA transfers can be handled quickly.
That said, any ISA transfer still needs a few working days to complete. This is something to keep in mind if you are looking to transfer ISA funds to a new account before the current tax year ends on 5 April.
While transferring ISAs from one account to another won't have any impact on your annual ISA allowance, if you want to both add new funds to an account and transfer money over, you may want to do so at least a week before the deadline.
If you're looking to transfer your Help to Buy ISA funds into a Lifetime ISA, you'll certainly want to do so well before the deadline. Not only can it take a bit longer than a straightforward cash ISA transfer, but you're only allowed to transfer more than the Lifetime ISA limit of £4,000 in this tax year. If your transfer doesn't go through until after 5 April, you could exceed your 2018-2019 allowance.
So, to avoid too much hassle, don't wait until just before the deadline. Have a look at the available cash, stocks & shares and/or Lifetime ISAs now to see if you want to make the most of this year's allowance.