What Type of Checking Account is Right for Me?

 

 

Not all checking accounts are the same.

A checking account allows people to deposit and withdraw money using a debit card or check. It holds your money safely and can be accessed fast. You can set up direct deposit, use online checking account tools, manage your money, and a host of other benefits. There are different checking accounts, and it’s crucial to pick the one based on your financial situation and needs.

But not all checking accounts are the same. Some checking accounts offer high interest or rewards, while others provide features specific to the needs of a particular group of people.

If you’re looking to start a new financial relationship, locate a credit union near you and they can match you with the best account for your needs. Perhaps you only want to move into a different account at your current financial institution, we’ll show you the most popular accounts to consider.

Hand stacking coins one by one

 

Types of Checking Accounts

Choosing which checking account to open with so many options can be tricky. Determine which factors are the most important. Avoiding fees might be more critical than a high-interest account. Every financial institution will vary on features and benefits. Talk with a financial representative for specific details.




Traditional checking account

Also known as a regular checking account or a share draft account at credit unions, this account pay no interest on the balance but has other valuable features. These might include: 




Free checking account

A free checking account can mean different things to different financial institutions. It’s important to know what is free and for how long. A free checking account can mean no minimum balance and free checks but a monthly service fee. Here are a few of the most popular options in a free checking account. 

Banks and credit unions offer a version of free checking or premium checking if a member meets requirements, such as having a certain number of products or services.




Student checking account

Student checking accounts are designed for students between 18 and 24 years old. If a parent or guardian opens a minor or teen checking account, it can easily be converted to a student account once they become of age. Student accounts generally have one or more of these features:




Senior checking account

Senior checking is similar to a traditional checking account but has features that people over 55 might find beneficial. These include: 

Senior checking can offer excellent benefits for those over 55. Be sure to check age requirements and other considerations. 




Interest-bearing account

Opening a high interest checking account is a good idea if earning interest is essential. This checking account earns interest based on the average monthly balance. Since it makes interest, these accounts usually have larger minimum balance requirements. 

Important considerations:

  • Interest is subject to taxation.
  • Some high-interest accounts are available only online.
  • Potential fees include overdraft fees, monthly maintenance fees, and foreign-ATM fees.



Checkless checking

Checkless checking is an alternative checking account with no checks, and all transactions are through a debit card. The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) and Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) insure these accounts. Additionally, these accounts may include: 

A checkless checking account can be a good option for members who have been denied a traditional checking account because of poor credit. 




Low-Balance Checking Accounts

Many financial institutions offer low-balance or checking accounts. This type of account allows members to maintain a charge even with a balance as low as five dollars. Accounts may require limited check writing per month, no paper statements, or overdraft protection.




Premium Checking Account 

Premium checking provides all the perks and rewards a checking account can offer. Every financial institution will have a unique premium checking account package. Here is a sampling of offerings banks and credit unions can offer with a premium checking account. 


Ready to Open a Checking Account?

 

A checking account can serve as a financial tool that is a fundamental part of any personal financial system. It serves as a safe home base for your money. Even if you no longer carry a checkbook or write paper checks, a checking account can offer countless benefits.

Find the right Credit Union for you

There are more than 5000 credit unions to choose from across the U.S.