The right banking partner can help you achieve financial independence by providing the products and services you need to help you to meet your financial goals.
Here are 6 factors to consider:
1. Account types – Find the right account for your needs. For example, you might be looking for an everyday bank account to manage your day to day income and spending. Or perhaps you are looking for a regular savings account so that you can keep your savings separate from your everyday spending.
2. Basic or advanced - Look for the account features to fit your needs? For example, you might simply want a basic bank account to deposit your income, make payments, and withdraw cash from ATMs. Or perhaps one that comes packaged with a range of added benefits (e.g, breakdown coverage or travel insurance) which may charge a monthly fee?
If you have savings, an ordinary savings account, that provides instant access to your money might be ideal. Or perhaps you are looking for one that pays a higher rate of interest.
3. Digital banking – Today, digital banking enables you to do most of your everyday banking without needing to visit a branch or even to pick up the phone. For example, many banking providers offer mobile apps for their accounts, with which you can:
4. Services offered – Specific services you know you need, like using checks, sending payments overseas or setting up automated payments. Depending on your situation, there may be specific features you are looking for, such as a fee-free overdraft, if you are a student.
5. Interest rates and fees – The rate of interest offered on your savings, or charged on your overdraft, will be key to your choice of account. As a student, you might prefer to opt for an account with an overdraft with low (or no) fees, or a savings account that offers instant access. Once you are working, you may be happy to pay a monthly fee in return for additional services that would benefit you.
6. Values – People are choosing to trust their finances with providers who share their personal values. For example, you may prefer to bank with a provider that has strong ethical credentials, committed to reducing its carbon footprint. Or one that invests in specific environmental causes, like renewable energy companies or community projects.