Look around for the Lowest Fees.
Of course, the goal of placing your money in the bank is for it to make you money rather than lose you money. The costs that banks charge might vary greatly, even within the same neighborhood. While some banks charge a fee for each check processed through your account, others impose a flat monthly fee that covers all transactions. Some banks will charge up to $40 for a returned check, while others will only issue a warning. Before deciding on a bank for your new checking account, inquire about their fees at various nearby banks. Is there a monthly account cost, or do they mean “free checking”? Before making a decision, request a disclosure agreement so you can read the fine print. Any bank that is hesitant to supply you with this information before opening an account should be avoided.
Is online banking available at the bank?
Most banks provide some form of online banking, even if it is merely the ability to view your last ten transactions through the Internet. Having online access to your money is essential for staying on top of your investments, savings, and day-to-day cash flow. Look for a bank that offers a complete online component, such as transfers, online bill pay, and updated transaction logs reviewed around the clock, not just at the end of the business day. Having Internet access to your accounts will save you time by providing you with up-to-date transaction logs, photos of canceled checks, and the option to transfer funds from one account to another. If you have accounts at more than one bank, many will even set up transfers between them. When looking for bank services, having the option to monitor your money online should be at the top of your list.
Does insurance protect the bank?
Check to see if the financial institution you’re thinking about using is insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) or the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) (NCUA). This will protect your investment up to $100,000 and give you peace of mind when you hand over your life money to a stranger with a dark shirt and red tie.
There are a few things you should keep in mind once you’ve opened your new bank account. To begin, balance your checkbook once a month. The greatest strategy to avoid overdrafts and “bouncing” checks are always to know how much money you have. If you can’t wait for your statement, you can balance your account more frequently by using the online summary of your account.
It should include a record of all your deposits, cheques, withdrawals, and ATM and debit card purchases. Suppose you frequently forget to write down small purchases and are concerned. In that case, internet banking will undoubtedly assist you in determining whether you have money remaining in your account and whether your lost check has been recovered and fraudulently cashed.
Always keep copies of your statements, canceled checks, ATM cards, and any other identifying documents that contain your name or other personal information safe. Identifying theft is common in the technological and financial industries. Having a strong grip on where you put your documents and financial records will help prevent someone from attempting to capitalize on your good name. Purchase a high-quality crosscut shredder from a home or office supply store.
Opening a new checking account is a critical step toward achieving or regaining financial freedom. Instead of rushing into the first bank you come across, spend some time doing your homework. You will discover that banks are as diverse as people. As a consequence, you can walk away knowing that your checking account will not cost you a fortune if the bank you choose fits all of your banking needs.