Online checking accounts are popping up like dandelions. Banks hope that promises to pay interest or waive fees on any balance will lure consumers away from brick and mortar checking accounts. Often, standard checking accounts at big banks are not cheap. You certainly can’t earn interest unless you have a hefty balance, and you get charged for everything from checks to using the ATM. Why not, then, switch to an online checking account?
For many, there is still some comfort knowing that you can walk downtown on a Saturday morning and see a teller about your checking account. Certainly, depositing cash into your account becomes trickier when you can’t physically go to the bank. Aside from this argument, however, online checking accounts offer everything the old banks do—they just cost less.
Both offer free debit cards and the option to get real paper checks. Both pay small amounts of interest on your checking balance as well as free ATMs. Here is a rundown of the benefits of these two top online checking accounts:
- APY: 0.20% up to $50k, 0.85% on $50k-100k, 0.90% over $100k
- Min. to Open: $1
- Min. Balance: None
- ATM Fee: None
- NSF Fee: None
- APY: 0.15%
- Min. to Open: $100
- Min. Balance: None with monthly direct deposit of $200 (else $5,000 to avoid fee)
- ATM Fee: None, other fees reimbursed
- NSF Fee: $25
- Notes: Free initial checkbook order.
Which online checking account is best? I use ING Electric Orange. Learn more here…
Do you use any of these online checking accounts? How has your experience been with using online checking?