To get started on becoming financially independent, you are going to need a bank account. Here are some things that you need a bank account for:
Developing a good and strong credit score
Keeping track of all your earnings and transactions
Building secure trade lines
Keeping all of your money in a safe place where it can grow
Choosing who to take care of all of your hard earned dollars is a big deal. You wouldn’t want to open up a bank account and then later down the road, find out that you are being charged a “special fee“ for just using your account. In my opinion, there is no need for you to be charged to spend your money. Luckily, most of the financial institutions out there have gotten the picture.
You want to look around and see what your options you have in your area. Do you live in an area with a bunch of different places you can go or do you live in a small town where you only have one or two options? After you find out what you have available, now it’s time to look into everything and start pulling apart the good and the bad of your findings.
This may seem a bit overwhelming because of all of the information that you will have to sift through, but it may seem a little easier if you choose whether you want an account with a bank or with a credit union. As I have mentioned in my previous review, when the occasion arises that my money needs to be in someone else’s hands besides my own, I do what I do best and dig deep into these institutions to find out if they have my best interests in mind.
Personally, I like to lean more towards credit unions rather than banks. Reason why is because credit unions normally operate as nonprofits. What that means for the average person like me and you is that you are less likely to be subjected to those extra fees and fines that usually come with an account with an actual bank. Plus, credit unions tend to have higher interest rates on savings accounts which means that your savings account with a credit union will grow faster than it would at a bank.
Banks are owned by its stockholders which means that they are more inclined to cater to them rather than it’s customers. As a member of a credit union, you are the one being catered to.
Another difference between banks and credit unions is location and availability. Most banks are nationwide and have locations and ATMs dotted across the map where credit unions are much smaller institutions that are at generally only statewide. To be honest, this never seemed to be a problem seeing as almost each and every financial institution out there has the option of mobile banking with apps which make banking on the go a breeze.
Speaking of which, a good mobile app for your smartphone is definitely a factor to consider when choosing where to open up an account. Let’s face it, it’s 2017 and our whole world has gone digital! When I was looking into it for myself, I took some time to look into the apps that came with the accounts. I read the reviews from actual consumers in the play store and took both good and bad reviews into consideration. It wasn’t easy but I sure am glad I did it.
The final point that I would like to touch on is of course, what can your account do for you? When opening an account with either a bank or a credit union for the first time, you should really keep your credit in mind. You credit score and history is very important and should be truly handled with care. When you sign on that dotted line, you officially begin the start of your “financial history”. Make sure that you look into any credit building options that they may have and go for whichever option would suit you best.
If you have never purchased anything with credit before signing up for an account, you are at a great advantage. During the initial months of being a member of a credit union or a customer at a bank, you have the chance to develop a pretty high credit score. What I did was apply for a credit building “loan”(essentially a loan that takes your money out of checking and puts it into savings (it’s still your money, just circulating around in your account), a line of credit (builds credit and saves you from paying any overdraft fees, (in the case that you go into the negative), and last but not least, I applied for a credit card that I literally locked away as soon as it came in the mail.
Doing all of the steps listed above, I was able to start my adult life off with a decent credit score and secure trade lines (credit card, line of credit and loan). Trade lines are important for when you go and apply for a loan or even a mortgage.
Thank you so much for reading this, I truly put a lot of hard work and research into this review in hopes that it would help some of you like I would have helped me. Keep in mind that I am by no means a professional. But, I can say that I personally went through this whole process and learned a whole lot. If you choose to take my advice, please do all that you can to look at every option possible before making your final decision. If you have any questions on anything in this review or about something that I didn’t cover, please don’t hesitate to send me a message.
Thanks again and check back here for the next review!