Many banks offer free checking to entice new customers to choose them over their competition. The idea of having a checking account with no monthly service fees is definitely appealing. Free checking may not always be entirely free, so it is important to carefully read the fine print and consider all transaction charges that your bank or credit union may have. Essentially, when financial institutions refer to free checking they mean that you will not have a monthly account fee. Here are the 5 Best Online Checking Accounts of 2014.
A free checking account is an account that does not have a monthly fee associated with the account. However, you may still have charges associated with your account, like ATM fees, balance inquiry fees, and overdraft fees. A few banks may still charge you a fee if you go above a certain number of debit card transactions each month.
Before signing up for a free checking account, you need to read all of the limits on the account. You may be better off with an account that covers most of these fees with a low monthly service fee.
Each bank has a different set of rules for their free checking accounts. You need to understand the rules when you open your account so you can avoid any fees that may be associated with the account.
For example, some banks have free checking as long as your paycheck directly deposits into the account every month. If you were to stop the direct deposit, the bank will start charging you a monthly service for the account. Some banks waive the monthly service fee if you maintain a minimum balance in your account. The minimum balance may be quite high. Another checking account option offered to some customers is requiring depositors to maintain a CD account at the institution with a minimum balance requirement, to avoid a monthly fee.
It may be more difficult to find free business checking. You should begin by looking at local banks and credit unions to see if they offer this type of account. They may charge you per transaction after you reach a certain limit, or require you to have additional accounts at the institution
Visit bank websites to see if they have comparable products and whether you qualify. If you have a large business and generally make more than 200 transactions through your bank a month, you may be able to qualify for a free business checking account. However, shop around for a free checking account that is affordable.
There are several banks with free checking. Some banks may advertise free checking, but you may have to ask at other banks to see if you qualify. Before you switch banks, talk to a customer service representative to see if they can waive your monthly service fee or if they can change your account to one without a monthly service fee. With just a little research online or in person, you should be able to find banks with free checking.