There are many financial institutions, which offer a wide variety of baking services. Examples include national banks, community banks, credit unions, and online-only banks among many others. Deciding which institution to join requires you to consider a wide variety of factors for you to get the most suitable one for your needs. Below are some of the top considerations to make.
Top factors to consider
Types of accounts offered
You should start by deciding which types of accounts you will need. This will help you to narrow down on the options, eliminating the institutions that do not offer such accounts. This is more of a factor to those who prefer having all their account at a single bank. For example, if you wish to have savings, checking, loans, credit cards, and money market accounts in one bank, you will have to choose a bank that offers all those accounts. It is also okay to spread out your accounts to different banks, checking for the best deal for each account type.
Fees and rates
Most banks will charge a fee for various services and products. Monthly account maintenance, overdrafts, ATM use, and money transfer and examples of the situations where you may be charged some fees. You should consider the amount of fees charged for such services. Choose a bank that has friendly charges. You should also consider the interest rates charged on loans and credit card usage, as well as that for a savings account. You can find most of the information that you will need to make an informed decision from the websites of the banks or their customer service.
Branches and ATMs
To ensure that you enjoy the most convenience, you should choose a bank which has many branches and automated teller machines. One of the branches or ATMs should be located close to your home or workplace, such that you can access it easily at any time of the day. The bank should also have branches in places where you travel on a regular basis. This will allow you to access the banking services even when you travel. If you always do digital transactions only and rarely use cash, you may consider choosing an online-only bank.
You should choose a bank that has embraced the latest technologies. Good technology can only serve to bring more convenience to both you and the bank. Mobile banking, for example, will help you get access to your money without having to go to a branch or ATM.