Banking convenience vs interest…


When choosing the bank that is best for you there are many different factors that come in to play. Factors vary from person to person depending on how you like to bank and what services you are looking for from your bank. Many people are just looking for good customer service, others are strictly worried about overdraft policies, most these days are just looking for convenience and some are looking to earn a little interest on their checking account.

It’s a new age.

The age of the coffee pot and free suckers has been slowly coming to an end in the retail banking business. Banks have been realizing that customer service has started to take a back seat to convenience over the past two decades. Today, the sales pitch you will get from your personal banker in order to get your business will be along the lines of ATMs and online banking. Pretty much telling you that he is great at helping you when you by keeping you out of the bank.

The personal relationships are dwindling now that employees are having their checks direct deposited and they are paying their bills via the internet. For those who are looking for great customer service it is recommended that you stick to a community bank. These banks have less customers and focus on different things than the major banks.

For those who really don’t care about customer service and just want the most convenience possible it is best to stick to the largest bank in your area. These banks that dominate the market share usually have the best online banking and bill pay systems and always have the most ATMs in their regions. These banks are for those that get direct deposit and pay their bills online. In this day in age it is possible to never step foot in a bank. A customer can open an account online and manage it from home in a quicker and more comfortable manner than waiting in line at a bank just to be greeted by a disgruntled employee.

When it comes to giving competitive interest rates, however, the big banks really drop the ball. They feel they do not need to pay a lot of money in interest to gain your business. If taking advantage of interest rates is your game, community banks and online banks are your best bet. The small banks with just a few branches usually give high rates because they are trying to build up a large deposit balance. Online banks also give some of the highest rates on checking accounts, and you do not need a minimum in the account to avoid service fees, like most other banks require.

Is the interest rate worth giving up convenience?

For those people with very large balances in their checking accounts it may be worth looking in to a high yield checking account. However, if you do not have a high balance in that account, at least 50k, it probably is not worth giving up the convenience of a larger bank. Rates are all below 1% in checking accounts, making the payout worth just pennies a month. You can compare rates at websites like to get a good idea of the current checking account rates in your area.

Good luck in choosing your next bank, just remember that you will have to choose if giving up the convenience of a larger bank is worth receiving interest in your accout.

This post was written by

jason – who has written posts on Budget Clowns.
Father of three and married to a lovely women. Always looking for ways to save money, and invest it properly for my children's future.

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