According to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, seven percent of households in the United States do not have bank accounts. This amounts to about nine million people. Some people prefer to pay for things with cash, and others use prepaid debit cards or other similar options for handling their money. However, if you are one of these people, now is the time to start thinking about opening up a checking account. These are a few of the major benefits that you can enjoy after opening up a checking account.
Store Your Money in a Safe Manner
Even though a lot of people like the idea of keeping their own cash, but this can be dangerous. It can make you prone to theft, and if someone steals your money or if you lose it, there is little that you can do about it. By storing your money in the bank, you can keep it and yourself safe without worrying about theft or other issues.
Save Money on Fees
Sure, many checking accounts come with fees that you have to pay each month. However, a lot of banks will waive the fee if you sign up for direct deposit or if you deposit a certain amount of money every month. Prepaid cards often charge higher fees than banks do for things like swiping your card at a point-of-sale or using it an ATM, and using services like those at check cashing companies can be costly, too.
Have a Place to Cash Checks
Cashing checks when you do not have a bank account can be a big pain. You may be able to get checks cashed if you take them to the issuing bank, but if someone sends you a check from a bank that you do not have in your area, you could have a tough time cashing it. Some retail stores and check cashing businesses will cash checks for you for a fee, but many of them will not cash handwritten checks or checks over or under a certain amount. If you have a bank account, however, you will have a place to go every time that you want to cash a check. Some banks even allow customers to take a picture of their checks to cash them without ever walking into the bank.
Get Your Direct Deposits
Some employers prefer to pay their employees by direct deposit, and having a bank account will make this an option for you. Getting your money through direct deposit is a good way to skip dealing with the hassle of cashing a check, and it often allows you to get your money more quickly on each payday, too.
Use Online Banking
If you are like many people, you might find that paying your bills is a big hassle each and every month. You might have to run around town to pay your bills, or you might have to carefully address and mail each one. If you want to be able to pay your bills more quickly and easily, using online banking through your bank can be handy. In fact, if you don’t want to have to fuss with your monthly bills each and every month, you can set up your online banking so that your bills are paid automatically for you on the days of the month that you designate.
Establish a Relationship with Your Bank
According to Sycamore Bank, starting a bank account is a good way to establish a good relationship with your bank. Once you get to know your banker and get in the habit of using your checking account, you can find out more about savings accounts, home mortgages, car loans and more. Then, you’ll have a go-to place to go if you need any other financial services.
As you can see, if you don’t have a checking account, now is the time to sign up for one. Whether you choose a small credit unit, a local bank or a big bank from a major chain, you are sure to find that a lot of things are a whole lot easier — and cheaper — when you have a bank account rather than living without one.