How to Choose the Best Bank Accounts for Seniors
Whether you're looking for a new checking account for yourself or a loved one, checking accounts specifically designed for seniors are worth investigating. These specialized checking accounts sometimes offer features that you won't find in other accounts.
However, the fact that it is labeled as a "senior" account does not mean that it is the best option. Sometimes the usual offer from a bank is a better offer, but you won't know for sure until you dig into the details yourself.
The advantages of using a special bank account
Whether you're a veteran, college student, or small business owner, finding a specialized account designed for your situation can offer you advantages you won't find anywhere else.
Switching to these accounts often costs little more than the time you spend on research. Banks want a business with older people and offer competitive advantages to attract them. See some of the advantages that recognized banks offer:
Bank of the USA: Although there is no special account for seniors, the Bank of the USA will waive monthly maintenance fees for anyone 65 years of age or older with an "Easy Checking" account, regardless of account balance or status. deposit activity.
TD Bank: "60 Plus Checking" account benefits include free money orders and checks. There is a monthly fee of $ 10, but this fee does not apply if the account owner maintains a minimum daily balance of $ 250. Account holders also receive discounts on home equity and personal loans.
BB&T: If you are 55 or older, the BB&T Senior Checking account offers free personal checks and, in the event of a medical emergency, the checking account will allow you to withdraw your CD in advance without penalty.
There is a $ 10 monthly fee, but the fee does not apply if you maintain an average balance of $ 1,000 or make direct deposits of at least $ 500 each month.
Other banks and credit unions also offer advantages. Wherever you decide to buy a new account, be sure to ask about senior discounts.
What to look for
Assessing your needs is not much different than when you were younger, but you may have different answers to some of the questions. When considering your options, ask yourself:
Are you looking for a bank with physical branches and this bank has branches near your home?
Are you a snowbird or frequent traveler who needs a national bank instead of a regional one?
Do you write a lot of checks?
Is a high interest rate on deposit accounts important to you?
Does the fee structure seem fair?
Do you use ATMs a lot and what advantages does this bank offer?
Is the banking app and desktop website easy to navigate and understand?
How does the bank compare to a local credit union?
Don't be fooled by senior marketing verification
Just because a bank account is advertised as ideal for seniors doesn't mean it's a better deal. For example, you can find a senior checking account that is offered with a $ 10 maintenance fee, while another account only charges a $ 5 fee.
In other cases, you may find that a checking account of any kind is pointless. If you have to keep $ 1,500 in the account to qualify for a dividend, it would be best to keep the money in a savings account or Certificate of Deposit, where interest is paid regardless of the balance.
In addition to taking a look at the fees, you should also consider the benefits in detail and how they will improve your life. If you don't send cashiers checks or money orders regularly, the advantage of getting them for free is not a great advantage.
Other checking accounts to consider
Even if an account is not labeled as a "senior" account, that does not mean that seniors will not benefit from opening the account. Keep in mind that this is a list of checking accounts, which generally have much lower interest rates than savings accounts.
If your main goal is to earn high interest on your deposits, you might consider looking for savings accounts.
Here are some of the best checking accounts for seniors in November 2020:
Charles Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking Account - If you already invest with Charles Schwab, you can take advantage of waived fees for the bank checking account. The account also offers a generous ATM policy, as well as an interest rate of 0.03% as of November 2020.
Ally's Interest Check: If you can't remember the last time you visited a physical bank branch, you may want to go with an online bank like Ally.
As a digital bank, Ally can lower fees while offering a 0.1% interest rate for accounts under $ 15,000. If you keep more than $ 15,000 in your account, you will receive interest of 0.25%.
Regardless of how much you keep in your account, you will not incur a monthly maintenance fee. Ally also offers access to a wide network of free ATMs, as well as limited refunds for out-of-network ATMs.
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