How to Avoid Bank Charges on Your Bank Accounts

The frustration that sets in upon realizing that bank charges have eaten into your deposits or investment is an indescribable one. We all wish we could run bank accounts without the periodic, often monthly, bank charges on our accounts. But the banks also make us believe that it is these charges they survive on. Bank charges can be killing, and have accounted for part of the reasons why some micro-businesses do not have bank accounts, and some small-scale businesses too. However, there are smart ways to open and run a bank account and still avoid the periodic bank charges.

Open a Savings or Investment Account

Many account holders seldom withdraw money from their accounts. For this group of people, the best account type for you to open is a savings or investment account –and not a current account or checking account. Savings and investment accounts do not attract charges in most countries. They rather pay you interest. Some banks allow charge-free withdrawals once every two weeks. Others, once a month.

Related: Why small businesses and startups must have bank accounts

Limit Withdrawals

Before you open an account, find out from the banker what the charges are. Another smart way to avoid bank charges is to limit the amount or number of withdrawals made from your account within a defined period. Increase ATM card usage if the card is free-to-use. As a way to decongest banking halls, some banks encourage customers to use the ATMs rather than the banking halls, by making withdrawals at ATMs free of charges.

Related: 4 ways online banking helps you and your business

Meet Deposit Thresholds

Banks are willing to waive the charges on your current account (personal or business) if you can meet defined deposit targets. For example, if you are able to deposit say more than $100,000 into your account within a period of one month, you’re not charged for that month. Giving a bank access to your funds over a period is equivalent to giving them opportunity to make money with your funds. For that reason, many banks are ready to waive the charges. Talk to your bank and find out what its threshold is, and work hard to meet it.

Consider a Call Account

Better still, you can have a checking account (current account) and still not get charged. One way to do this is to open a call account for your business. The benefits of call accounts are extremely valuable. Call accounts allow you to run your account like a normal current account, and yet avoid bank charges and even earn interest on your average deposits.

Negotiate with Bankers

Yes, you can negotiate with your bankers for a zero charge. Many businesses and wealthy individuals have applied for waiver of bank charges and fees. They run bank accounts without paying bank charges. And you can do same too. Talk to your bankers. They have a thousand more avenues to make money rather than deducting charges from your deposits.

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