The good news is that instead of opening a private or business account you can choose – let’s learn how to choose a bank. The less good news is that in order to understand exactly what each bank offers, one should go out for a short market survey that includes an online comparison or a tour of the various bank branches. Most people will look for lower fees and a higher credit line. But are these the only things that should decide the choice? Read with us how to choose a bank.
If you are young people who are interested in opening an account for the first time, or you are not satisfied with the current conduct of the bank at the moment, you can definitely start squinting out. The banks compete with each other like all industries in the economy, so whoever offers the best terms, low-interest rates, and also the best service will win you over.
How to choose a bank – wrong considerations for leaving the bank
Bad image – People check how to choose a bank for dozens of reasons, but many times due to past debts, people decide that the image that stuck to them is already lost in advance so it is better to open an account in a new place. Well, if you still have debts in the current account, they will not be able to move to the new bank and in any case, you will have to close them. While there will be no impediment to opening a new account at another bank, you will need to take into account the fact that if you have no capital or additional assets, the account will start from scratch. Any credit received that will be used will result in a double charge – both due to the debt that has not yet been closed in the old bank and in the new one.
Low fees in a new place – if the bank provides you with a better service with a branch close to your home, do not clash with you when you want to increase the credit line and knows you well on a personal level, sometimes it is worth staying, even if the fee is slightly higher. A banker who is in good contact with the account holder will be able to transfer the customer to lower fee routes if possible, give him phone alerts if necessary and consider with him creative solutions for quick rescue from the situation, reduce the need to visit the branch and can also convince branch managers of exceptional requests. On rainy days, a good and positive acquaintance between people can prevent a lot of friction down the road, as happens with many good businesses that promise a “market-breaking” price but fail to provide personal service.
Reduced fees already exist in most banks
If we analyze the comparison between the banks regarding what is more or less profitable, it depends on the number of operations performed throughout the month. Despite this, most banks today offer accounts with reduced fees or even accounts with no fees at all. Sometimes benefits for new customers are also included (such as cancellation of fees for a certain period from the moment the account is opened or non-payment for a certain period for holding credit cards) that will change later. It is always advisable to ask what are the actions performed in the commission and what are the actions for which you will receive a benefit when opening the account.
Do not just know what you will get as new customers and consider continuing your journey in the same place. I will not pay commissions in the first year? Okay. How much will I actually pay to start with your second year? Banks do not like to talk about collecting their real interest rates, so it is worthwhile to extract from them as much information as possible about current operations that you will perform, which in the future will involve a fee such as transfer to another bank account, order checkbooks, deposits, and an overdraft.
Despite the digitization, look for the perfect human capital
Although some of the big banks have already cracked down on the digital account management method, all this is not enough to convince you of the nature of the bank. The human factor has had and still has many more pluses, especially regarding human explanations of complex issues or actions that no digital account management yet allows (as of 2019), like securities trading for example. Look for a branch close to your home even if you know you will visit it infrequently and check its operating hours to suit your needs. If the bank is open on Fridays for example, this is a huge plus for account holders who can combine the small jump to the bank with a short day of arrangements.
The set of considerations will also include the level of services that each bank offers, what actions and conditions can be performed independently through the application, does the bank allows many direct debit or limited charges? Is it possible to get more than one loan at a time or manage a securities portfolio? And what about the business conditions for business customers who are considering moving and need, for example, more efficient technology on behalf of the bank in order to save time?
Define for yourself what is important to you
The more you formulate an answer to more such characterization questions yourself, the more you can focus on them in front of the conversation with the banker in opening the account (you can also request a preliminary conversation with a manager or deputy branch manager who can sometimes provide better benefits) and answer exactly your needs. Do not forget to find out who the banker will handle you personally and what his direct number is, whether it is possible to make money transfers to and from your account remotely in the app without restrictions and who updates you about account deviations and when.