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What you need to know about opening your first checking account

 Wednesday, October 17    CCCU
What you need to know about opening your first checking account

What you need to know about opening your first checking account
Whether you’re opening your first ever checking account, or if you’re transferring from a youth savings account to a checking account, knowing what to look for can be complicated. We’re here to make sure you get all the information you need to make an informed decision.
 
In this blog, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of different kinds of checking accounts, how to select the right one for you, and everything you need to know about what you’ll need to open one.
 
Checking vs. savings accounts
Deciding whether you want a checking or savings account really depends on what you’ll be doing with it.
Checking accounts are generally lower interest, and allow you to pay your bills, get a debit card, and write checks. Savings accounts offer the ability for you to build emergency funds and put away money for your financial future.
 
What to look for in a checking account:
- Low or no overdraft fees
- No monthly fees
- Convenient ATM access and network
- High interest if possible
 
What to look for in a savings account:
- High interest rates
- Low monthly fees
 
What is the peak checking account?
There is another kind of account that may be right for you. Our Peak checking accounts allow you to collect a 2.02% interest rate on balances up to $20,000, but you’ll need to meet a few requirements.
First, you’ll need to have a minimum opening deposit of $25 to open a Peak Checking account. You’ll also need direct deposit, sign up for e-statements and at least 12 debit transactions per month.

3 things to consider before selecting a checking account:
1. How much money are you planning on keeping in the account? Depending on different banks and credit unions minimums and interest rates, you may be able to bolster your savings account with interest earned on your checking account.
2. What are the fees associated with overdrafting? Understanding how much it will cost you if there’s an accidental overdraft is essential to your financial health.
3. How have your interactions been with the bank or credit union? When you’re contacting potential banks and credit unions, make sure to note how they treat you. A great customer experience is essential, and if you aren’t getting individualized attention and care, that could be a bad sign for your future interactions.

Everything you'll need to open your checking account:
No matter what kind of account you’re opening, you’ll need some personal identification information to get things started. Here’s a checklist of what to bring:

1. Identification: A valid, government issued ID will be necessary. If you drive, your driver's license is perfect. If you don’t, a government issued ID like a passport or state ID will work as well.
2. Personal information: Social security information, current address, age, will all be necessary to fill out paperwork.
3. Co-owner: If you’re opening a joint account, you’ll both need to be present and the account’s co-owner will also need to bring the required identification with them as well.
4. Account requirements: Understand what the requirements of the account are. For instance, some checking accounts require regular direct deposits.

Whew! If that felt like a lot, we get it. Save this article for future perusal, and take the time to research more if you need to. If you’re in the Portland Oregon area, we’d suggest our Peak Checking account. You’ll receive higher rates, to the tune of 2% interest, and personalized service from professionals who can help you make great financial decisions with your hard earned cash. Contact one of our representatives today to learn more!




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