So more often than not people just walk into a bank and open a basic account but they don't really know what perks.... or downsides.... there are to that account. Do you know anything about your account?
Being that I've been in banking for 3 years I know what all of my accounts offer me. I know the minimum balance requirements and I know about the fees that I would have to pay if I was to overdraw my account. I urge everyone to get online (or be really crazy and go INSIDE a branch) and look up your account type or request a pamphlet and learn about it.
Did you know that some banks offer a discount on their loan rates just for holding an account there? I will say that usually that means you have to auto debit your loan payment from your account but c'mon y'all.... almost every PF blogger will tell you to automate your finances. My employee checking account offers me a 0.25% discount on my loan if I auto debit. I'm not gonna try to be a math whiz kid and tell you how much that would be on an $18,000 auto loan but it would be worth looking in to!
Do you know if your checking account earns interest? I used to think this was basically non-existent (and let's be real, interest rates are terribly low, so it won't be much) but some checking accounts do offer interest depending on your average collected balance. Only one of my checking accounts is interest bearing and it is on a tiered basis, so from 2500-5000 average collected balance I would get a certain percentage and so on and so forth. Now that looks like a lot to have in a checking account but some people do!
Everyone knows that each bank is going to have fees for various things from overdraft protection to mobile banking, but did you know some banks charge to receive paper statements? I mean when you think about the money the bank would save by just sending an email with your statement instead of printing the statement and paying for postage and mailing it out, it really does make sense. One thing that I like about e-statements is that the bank basically saves these on their network for usually about 7 years so you can go back that far and print statements when you need them instead of keeping your file cabinet full of statements you probably don't need that much.
I'm not going to pretend that I know the perks of every checking account everywhere but I am a firm believer in knowing what your bank/account offers. One of my accounts offers me discounts on meds and eye glasses. I can even send in $100 worth of receipts each quarter and they will send me a check for $10. So basically I send in $100 worth of receipts for groceries and gas and I get $10 back. That's awesome.
You may research your account and see that you are getting fees because you don't carry the required minimum balance or because your direct deposit doesn't meet the requirements the bank sets forth. Who really wants to be paying fees? Not me.
Research your stuff, you won't be sorry!
*****I can't get the link to work but this post is part of Financially Savvy Saturdays