With the different fees, resources, and types of accounts, choosing a checking account can sometimes feel overwhelming. There’s a lot of different factors to compare! We’ve put together this guide to help you know exactly what to look for when it comes to comparing the different checking accounts so you can find the best fit for you.
Some institutions require a monthly maintenance fee or service fee for your checking account. This fee will vary between institutions and may even vary between types of checking accounts. However, not all institutions charge this fee. Free checking accounts allow you to avoid paying the institution to store your funds.
Additional Account Fees
There are a variety of other fees that are associated with checking accounts. The most common fees that you may incur on your account are the overdraft fees, non-sufficient funds (NSF) fees, ATM fees, and paper statement fee. While many of these can be avoided by maintaining a positive balance in your account and utilizing online statements, ATM fees in particular are important to consider when comparing accounts. Some institutions have partnered together to create a network of institutions that members can utilize to avoid paying extra ATM fees, like when they're in an area where their financial institution is not.
Minimum Balance Requirements
The minimum account balance requirements vary between checking accounts and can be an important point of comparison. Some accounts will require a minimum balance of at least $500, while others may have no minimum balance required. Look at your money management habits to ensure that you find a minimum balance requirement you can work with, otherwise you may end up paying fees each month for falling below that requirement.
Rewards and Benefits
Did you know that checking accounts will actually offer rewards and extra benefits to account holders? Some accounts will offer high dividend or cash back reward options. Additionally, there are checking accounts that provide additional benefits, like identity theft protection, retail and entertainment discounts, and even cellular care coverage. These added rewards and benefits can help you when comparing accounts.
Online and Mobile Resources
The convenience of online and mobile banking makes a huge difference, as do the additional resources and tools that may be available to you within them. Most checking accounts will allow you to view online statements and account transactions online or through an app. However, some accounts will also offer the options to set up automatic bill pay, schedule funds transfers, create and manage budgets, and more! Make sure to consider the additional resources that become available with your account.
When choosing a new checking account, take the opportunity to explore accounts and how they can benefit you. Make sure the account matches your money management style and can fit your needs! If you have questions about our checking accounts, be sure to reach out to our specialists at Wasatch Peaks.