Chances are you haven’t given much thought to your checking account lately. Yet, it is the single, most important account of your personal finances. It serves as the central hub for your hard-earned money – a place to deposit earnings and manage expense outflows. Unfortunately, choosing the wrong checking account is a lot like having a slow leak in your tire – difficult to notice at first, but over time, it will wreak havoc on your budget.
Most checking accounts come with free debit cards. These cards allow you to make purchases and withdraw money from ATMs. These ATMs ("Automatic Teller Machines") allow you to check your balance, withdraw and deposit money, and transfer money between your accounts.
Are you thinking about opening a checking account that has a complicated-sounding minimum balance? Did your checking account's terms just change? Let's clarify the different kinds of minimum balance requirements banks and credit unions put on checking accounts.
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How ATM Fee Rebates Work: With ATM rebates, the charge from a non-bank ATM is rebated to your account. This rebate applies to ATMs anywhere in the US or anywhere outside the bank's home state, depending on the bank. While there is often a limit to the amount a customer may receive in monthly rebates (usually $6/month), this service provides another great incentive to work with a bank that may not be so close in proximity, but offers great accounts. Unlimited ATM rebates are common for banks that have no branches (i.e. Internet Bank Accounts) or for smaller banks that want to remain competitive on a national scale.
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