Opening a new bank account involves more than showing your picture ID and bringing a check or cash to deposit. Particularly when the account is to be used for business purposes, there are a few things to keep in mind when opening a new account and preparing to sign on the dotted line with a particular bank or financial institution.
Compare different institutions
Don’t assume that because one bank or financial institution is a well-known name that the account offerings it has are necessarily going to be the best for your business. Compare different banking account features until you find the one right for your business. Solicit information from various institutions so that you can compare them all before making a decision on one specific account.
Ask about fees
Be sure to get as much information about the account up front. Ask the customer service representative to give you an accounting of all possible fees associated with your account choice, from low balance fees to fees incurred if you opt to get a copy of your cancelled checks. Keep these information in a folder or notebook to refer back to later in the event that you see a fee crop up on your account you’re unfamiliar with.
Keep opening deposit low
Until the account is established and you are sure that the account features are what you want, don’t funnel every penny your business has into it. Whatever method you are currently using – another existing account, an at-home safe or a cash box under your bed – keep using it a little longer until the account is up and running and you are fairly sure that you are happy with the financial institution.
Order collateral right away
If you have just opened a business current account, don’t wait days to order cheque books. You may find that you need them before you thought you might and will spend more time than necessary running back and forth to the bank. Order any cheques, deposit or withdrawal slips and any other collateral associated with the account right away so you can make full use of it.
Triple-check account information
When the customer service representative gives you the papers to sign to open the account, triple-check everything, including the spelling of your name, your address, social security number and any other personal information associated with the account. While you can change mistakes later when you notice them, you may incur extra expense to do so, such as having to order a new set of checks.