Update:Runescape updated (26 July 2001)
The bank has been upgraded so you can now store any item in the bank not just gold. Useful for keeping your spare weapons, gems, and anything else you might want to store. You can store up to 48 different items, with a maximum limit of 16 million items per stack. Runite items have been added to the game! Runite is the most powerful metal in the game, better than even adamantite. Both rune weapons and rune armour are now available to purchase from the champions guild. (hint - there is an extra item only available as a rare monster drop from a particularly strong monster!)
The player owned houses have been removed. This is because since they were original planned runescape has become much more popular and there is nowhere near enough to go around. Instead the 2 updates above have been included to compensate. The item bank lets anyone store the items they want to, and the runite items are an alternative for people to spend the money they have been saving on.