In today’s world, checking accounts can do much more than make it easier for customers to pay their bills. You can now have your checking account make money for you, offer you significant shopping advantages, and give you a leg up when it comes to saving money. This comprehensive guide will teach you everything there is to know about checking accounts, so you can decide which one is right for you.
What is a Checking Account?
A checking account1, also known as a demand deposit account, is an account that allows customers to withdraw money at any time and makes it easy for them to pay their bills. It’s similar to a savings account in that you can only use it for transactions with a financial institution (ATM withdrawals and checks paid out), but you don’t receive interest on your balance. Instead, you get perks such as free ATM access and free checks, which are meant to entice people into using their checking accounts.
Before you sign up for a checking account, make sure it has a few must-have features2. The first is access to a debit card with no fees and unlimited transactions. Second, look for no minimum balance requirement. Third, don’t settle for just any interest rate on your checking account—you want one that will pay at least 1 percent of your highest balance in an interest-bearing savings account or money market certificate each month. Not all accounts will offer these benefits. Investigate different accounts that best fit your needs.
Online-only banks typically offer free checking accounts with no minimum balance requirements or monthly service fees. In fact, many let you avoid ATM fees when you use their ATMs instead of those from other banks. There are also plenty of banks that offer free checking and savings accounts that give you an interest rate when your balance is high enough—say $1,000 or more—giving you a chance to make money off your savings account.
Here’s a list of the best free checking accounts for 2022 and what they have to offer.
Discover’s Free Checking Account is a standout for its rewarding cash-back program, which offers 1% cashback on up to $3,000 in debit card purchases each month. No monthly fees, free check reordering, free debit card replacement, and free internet banking are just a few of the advantages available from Discover.
A Chime account does not need an initial deposit or a minimum balance. Everything is done online after you’ve created an account. You will also get a free Visa-backed debit card, and when you make a purchase or pay a bill with your debit card, the amount is automatically rounded up to the nearest dollar and sent to your savings account. It’s possible to link your direct deposit in the same way.
There are no monthly maintenance costs with the free checking accounts, and you can create the account with a little deposit. There are no overdraft fees, which is a significant benefit to the user. Ally’s savings account offers a 0.50 percent annual percentage yield (APY) regardless of account amount.
CitiBank is one of America’s largest banks, so it should come as no surprise that its checking account is one of our favorites. The bank offers generous monthly rewards for customers who have a high enough balance and a debit card with CitiBank. Also, anyone can open a free checking account through CitiBank without opening any other kind of account or signing up for overdraft protection. Customers simply fill out an online application and get started—no fees, no hassle.
Users may open savings and checking accounts with FNBO without paying a monthly maintenance charge or maintaining a minimum balance. FBNO offers a useful online checking account with a 0.15 percent annual percentage yield, and it only costs one dollar to create.
Wealthfront is a platform that can assist you in building and strengthening your wealth. Wealthfront offers a high-interest-free checking account that allows you to save money without incurring fees. Best of all, your Wealthfront Account will pay you 0.10 percent APY. There are no monthly fees, and Wealthfront offers unlimited free transactions, but it does cost $1 to sign up.
It is no exaggeration to suggest that a checking account is an essential component of the banking environment. The account may be used to save money and provide users with a place to track daily banking activity.