Whether you’re looking to save money better or just want somewhere to deposit your paycheck at the beginning of the month, your bank should give you plenty of options to use and access your money without charging you to do so. Should you overdraw from your account in the case of an emergency or purely on accident, most banks will levy charges against you that can add up over time. In fact, the average U.S. household pays over $300 dollars a year in unnecessary bank fees! This is a serious amount of money that could be better spent on something special for you and your family, like a day trip out or a special treat for your home.
The good news is that many banks are changing the way that Americans can control their finances. Mistakes happen: checks get paid late or changes in financial circumstances take place. Reputable banks believe that their customers shouldn’t be penalized just because something went wrong with their short-term financial situation, which is why they are now offering tons of services and features that can help their customers save money.
When you’re looking to switch bank accounts, be sure that you will not be charged for the following:
- Accessing your money from anywhere without paying fees. Some banks will charge you a percentage or one-off fee to access your money from ATMs or counters. A no-fee bank, however, offers over 38,000 fee-free MoneyPass and Visa Plus Alliance ATMs across 30,000+ cash back locations, meaning you will never be charged for accessing your own money when you need it.
- Monthly fees for simply having an account. Some banks can charge as much as $23 a month for service fees. Finding a no-fee bank that doesn’t charge monthly fees or service fees means that you get to keep every cent you deposit without having to bulk up your bank’s bottom line.
- No minimum balance. Life changes, and so does the amount of available cash you have at any one time. Whether you have $1 in the bank or $1000, your bank shouldn’t penalize you by enforcing minimum balance requirements or fees for going below the final amount. Many banks won’t even consider letting you open an account unless you can guarantee a regular minimum balance of $500. Make sure you go with a bank that doesn’t expect you to have loads in your account in order to work with them.
- No overdraft fees. Your overdraft facility is there to protect you should the worst happen. If your paycheck is late, you’re briefly out of work, or you have a very expensive few weeks, your overdraft is there to pick up the slack. Most banks will charge overdraft fees of around $35, so switching to a fee-free bank could save you $100s in the long run.
- No foreign transaction fees. In the digital age, it should be as easy to send money around the world as it is to send it to your neighbor. Some banks charge as much as 3% of the total transaction amount for this service. A good no-fee bank will want you to be able to share and access your money anywhere in the world, so it won’t charge you foreign transaction fees just because it can.
In addition, many innovative banks believe in offering all different card options, from prepaid cards to debit to credit and everything in between. Depending on your situation, your banking representative can help you figure out which option is best for your situation and means.
A helpful bank should help you save your money, not take it in case of emergencies. Switching to a no-fee bank will transform the way you do banking!