9 Things To Look For When Choosing A Bank

We have been really lucky in that we’ve used the same bank for over a decade.  Both my wife and I used the same bank before we were married.  Once we combined finances, it was a pretty easy choice.  But, what if you need to choose a bank?  Whether you’re looking at opening your first account, or looking to move, the choices are many.  So what are some things to look for when choosing a bank?

Read on.

The Importance Of Choosing The Right Bank

Many people think that banks are a dime a dozen.  After all, what could be different?  Well, as it turns out, there’s an awful lot that could be different.  Every bank should provide the same basic services in handling your money and making it available, but how they go about this is what separates one bank from another.  A bank that is a perfect fit for one person may not work for another.  It’s extremely important to have a list of things to look for when choosing a bank.  Here a few things to get you started.

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Do You Even Know Your Bank Anymore?

It’s no secret that there has been a ton of consolidation in the banking industry, more notably before the financial meltdown.

mb-201102piggybankWhen I lived in my condo a couple of cities away, there was one branch of a bank that seemed to be going through a buyout every year or so.  You could almost make a pastime out of watching a new sign get installed before the new one was even a year or two old!

My wife and I were at dinner a couple of days ago, and actually started talking about “What bank did this used to be?” I had no real idea how Chase entered the Detroit market, and there are other banks that I had no real idea how they got there.  She’s kept up on it more than I have, so we were pretty much able to piece together how the various banking institutions that grace our brick & mortar banks have come to be.

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Another Reason To Check Your Bank Account Every Day

My wife was out shopping over the weekend and sent a rather alarming text message: Her debit card purchase had been declined.

This instantly sent a terror down my spine as I pictured our bank account having been drawn down to zero with someone else living the good life.

Luckily, I was able to use my Blackberry to log in to our bank’s mobile site.  It told me that our balance was right along the lines of what it should be (having looked yesterday), and I was able to look at the most recent transactions and see only one had appeared since I looked yesterday, which was for buying a pizza the night before.

In other words, absolutely nothing was out of the ordinary.

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