A checking account is something you may want to use for the rest of your life. Therefore, it makes sense that you'd want to be very careful when making a choice between checking accounts. Which factors should you look for in the ideal checking account?
Banks are frequently targeted by many different types of criminals. Therefore, you'll want to that there's no chance a cybercriminal will siphon money from your account and leave you with nothing. Choose a bank that's insured by the FDIC (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation) or NCUA (National Credit Union Association.
Some banks will charge fees for their services. You don't want a bank that will charge you even for basic services like account assistance or those that charge monthly fees, since these can quickly pile up. There are banks that will provide many of these services at no cost.
Some banks charge ATM fees while others don't. Some will reimburse your ATM fees if you use other banks ATMs. Depending on how often you use your ATM card, this could be a very important factor to consider.
You can open a free checking account with some banks while others will charge a fee or require that you deposit a certain amount of money in the account right at the start. Depending on what you need the account for, having to put money in it at the start may not be to your liking.
How Easy Is It to Deposit?
It's easy to get spoiled by direct deposit, but you shouldn't forget that you may have to deposit money or a check directly into your account at some point. Does the bank have a location that's near you, or do they have features such as mobile deposit services? These could turn out to be very important at some point.
Purpose of the Account
If this is your primary personal account, you will have different needs than if you're opening a business checking account. The volume of transactions may be different, and the specific features you'll need will be different. Also, business accounts may have multiple users and more demanding accounting needs. Often the best way to see if your financial needs will be met is to speak with a representative.
Online banking features can make much easier to perform certain transactions. Whether it's transferring money to someone else or paying a utility bill, online banking features definitely make it much easier to live with certain checking accounts.
Every now and then, you'll need the assistance of the bank to do certain things. This is why it's important for a bank to have good customer service. A bank that treats its customers well is also one that values your business, which is always nice.