Banks provide various facilities to their customers, but if you thought all that was free then think again. A bank’s job is to make money out of its operations and for almost every service that it provides, you will be charged a fee.
That however does not mean you can’t do anything to save on bank fees. Here are a few tips to minimize your bank related expenses.
Minimum balance accounts
Look for a free checking account. It is easier to get such an account if you can maintain a high average or minimum balance. In some banks, this facility can only be used if you arrange for some of your regular checks, like your salary, to be deposited directly to that account. Although even such an account is not entirely free, as the bank makes some money on your minimum deposit, it will still be much cheaper than an account where you have to pay an annual fee.
Before signing up for a minimum balance account, make sure that you can always maintain that balance as otherwise you’ll have to pay a penalty. Manage your money in such a way that you always have an approximate idea of your current balance. In case of joint account holders, it is important that both of you inform each other of your withdrawals. Further, if you have two accounts in the same bank, you should consider merging the two so that you don’t have to maintain the minimum balance in two separate accounts.
Look for zero annual fee credit cards
When you think about charges for credit cards, you may just consider the interest that you have to pay for revolving credit. But the fact is that many banks even charge a fee for providing the credit card facility. Look for a card that has zero annual fee. Banks may also charge a fee for increasing your credit limit. So always assess your credit needs before you agree to an extension of credit limit.
Avoid using another bank’s ATM to withdraw money
Choose a bank that has an ATM around the areas where you live and work. This will allow you to minimize withdrawing from ATMs of other banks, which usually result in a fee. You should also estimate how much money you are going to need for a particular period and withdraw accordingly so that you don’t have to look for an ATM every time you need money.