I will admit it. I’m the type of person who prefers not to have to leave the house unless there’s a compelling reason or a hiking trail calls me. Even before the pandemic, I always preferred to stay out of stores and shop as much online as possible. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I bought clothes from a real store.
So it’s no surprise that I’m opting to do my banking online. Here are three reasons why it works well for me.
1. It’s convenient
As a full-time worker with a busy household and a bunch of kids, I don’t have much time to drive all over town to get things done. And by banking online, I save myself a lot of travel — and a lot of time.
When I receive a check in the mail, I don’t have to travel to a branch to deposit it. Instead, I just open an app on my phone, take a picture, and wait for that money to hit my checking or savings account.
Now, you could say that online banking makes it harder to access cash because online banks don’t always have convenient ATMs. But since I don’t tend to do a lot of cash shopping, that’s not a problem for me.
I pay pretty much all my bills online, and when I need to share bills with friends or pay them, I use Venmo, which is linked to my checking account. As such, money is not something I tend to have around or use.
2. I tend to get a slightly better interest rate
Let’s be clear. Right now the interest rates on savings accounts are downright terrible and I currently earn very little on the money I keep in the bank for emergencies. But compared to savings account rates offered by nearby physical banks, the rate I get on my savings is higher. Although that doesn’t mean much these days, during periods of higher interest rates, it does make a difference.
The reason online banks are often able to offer more competitive interest rates is that they don’t have the same overhead as brick-and-mortar banks. And as a customer, you might as well take advantage of it.
3. Customer service is excellent
Not all banks are equal when it comes to customer service. But in my experience, online banking means a smooth experience when I need a customer service representative to help me.
Typically, when I call my bank, I’m instantly connected to someone from customer service. And I discovered that my bank representatives really know their stuff.
This does not mean that physical banks do not offer excellent service. But often, to get this great service, you have to leave the house and talk to someone in person. It’s something I tend not to have time for.
To be clear, online banking has some drawbacks. My bank, for example, has few convenient ATMs. This is not a problem for me, but it can be problematic for someone who tends to need cash. But for me, online banking is a great solution. And if you haven’t explored this option yet, you might want to do some research and see if this is a good setup for you.
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