By Ken McCormick
Vice President of Relationship Management

Why You Still Need a Checking Account

Dec 18, 2023

  • Banking
  • Checking Accounts

In today's digital age, it may seem like traditional banking methods are less in demand. With the rise of online banking and mobile payment options, many people question the need for a checking account. Even with new technologies, a checking account is essential for managing your money effectively. This article will explore why you still need a checking account and its benefits.

The Basics of a Checking Account

Before discussing why a checking account is still necessary, let's define what one is. A checking account is a bank account that permits deposit and withdrawal of funds, making transactions, and settling bills. It typically comes with a debit card, checks, and online banking access. A savings account saves money over time, while a checking account is for everyday transactions.

Easy Access to Your Money

One of the main benefits of having a checking account is easy access to your money. With a checking account, you can withdraw cash from an ATM, make purchases with your debit card, and transfer money to other accounts. This convenience is beneficial in emergencies when you need quick access to funds. Many checking accounts have online banking and mobile apps, making managing money while on the move convenient.

Safer Than Carrying Cash

Carrying large amounts of cash can be risky. If you lose your wallet or someone steals it, you could lose all your money. With a checking account, you can keep your money safe in the bank and only carry what you need for daily expenses. Furthermore, if you lose your debit card or someone steals it, you can quickly cancel it and obtain a new one, safeguarding your funds.

Checks Can Still Serve a Purpose

While checks may seem outdated, they can still come in handy. Some landlords, utility companies, and other businesses may only accept check payments. With a checking account, you can quickly write a check and avoid the hassle of finding a money order or paying with cash.

Direct Deposit and Automatic Bill Pay

Many employers provide direct deposit, enabling them to deposit your paycheck into your checking account automatically. This eliminates depositing your check and waiting for it to clear. Many checking accounts have automatic bill pay, letting you schedule recurring payments for rent, utilities, and credit card bills. You can save time and ensure that you consistently pay your bills on time.

Why You Still Need a Checking Account

Now that we've covered the basics of a checking account, let's explore why it's still an essential financial tool.

Widespread Acceptance

While online banking and mobile payment options are becoming more popular, not all businesses accept these forms of payment. Many small businesses and local vendors still only accept cash or checks. Having a checking account ensures that you can pay for goods and services, no matter where you are.

No Monthly Fees

Many checking accounts have no monthly fees, making them a cost-effective option for managing your money. Some banks may require a minimum balance or charge fees for specific services. However, there are numerous options available that offer free checking accounts. This can save you money in the long run compared to using alternative payment methods that may have hidden fees.

Overdraft Protection

One of the most significant benefits of a checking account is overdraft protection. If you accidentally spend more money than you have in your account, the bank will cover the difference. While this service may have a fee, it can save you from costly overdraft fees and declined transactions.

Easy to Track Expenses

A checking account allows you to easily track your expenses and see where your money goes. Most banks offer online banking and mobile apps that allow you to view and categorize transactions. This can help you create a budget and make more informed financial decisions.

Build Credit History

Having a checking account can also help you build your credit history. A checking account doesn't directly affect your credit score but helps create a bank connection. This can make it easier to get approved for loans and credit cards in the future.

How to Choose the Right Checking Account

When choosing a checking account, there are a few factors to consider.

Fees and Minimum Balance Requirements

As mentioned earlier, some checking accounts may have monthly fees or require a minimum balance. Research and compare different options to find one that fits your financial needs.

ATM Access

If you frequently use ATMs, choose a checking account that offers a vast network of ATMs or reimburses ATM fees.

Online and Mobile Banking Features

If you prefer to manage your money online or through a mobile app, look for a checking account with these features. Some banks may have more user-friendly interfaces or additional budgeting and spending tracking tools.

Interest Rates

While checking accounts typically do not offer high-interest rates, some may provide a small amount of interest on your balance. If this is important, compare interest rates when choosing a checking account.

Online banking and mobile payments are essential, but a checking account is still necessary to manage finances. A Checking Account is widely accepted and allows easy access to your money. Digital options cannot replace its many benefits. When choosing a checking account, consider your financial needs and compare options to find the best fit. If you want to know more about the checking accounts at NASB, click here or visit one of our branches.