Business Bank Accounts
Navigating through the assortment of business bank accounts that are available isn't very difficult once a person has defined their banking needs. For some people a totally free checking account from the local retail bank will be adequate. For others, an interest-bearing account from a commercial bank may be what's needed. So even before choosing an institution, ask a couple simple but important questions. First, how often will deposits be made into the account, and is there a desire to see the money grow over time. Perhaps the nature of the business dictates that money will be deposited and withdrawn from the account often. Second, how do you prefer to do your banking? Traditional banks that a customer walks into and meets face-to-face with another person offer better service than online banking. But they also have limited hours, and come with other hassles such as long wait times. Some traditional banks offer the flexibility of online banking as well. If a problem occurs, a short trip may resolve the situation. Employees become familiar with their customer's needs and habits. This can be comforting when a problem surfaces. So, before deciding on a service, make a list of important issues and needs. Doing this will reduce the worries and anxieties normally associated with banking. Reducing stress is part of God's plan. "And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature on cubit? If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest?" (Luke 12:25-26)
The Internal Revenue Service requires that business bank accounts be maintained separately from personal funds. Again, keep in mind what is needed from the account. There are several options available to business owners. Interest-earning checking is available but normally requires more money to open, and sometimes a minimum balance is required to be maintained. Totally-free checking is also available, but they are not always totally free. They require less money to open and maintain. But customers get nailed with higher fees for other services such as endorsement stamps or a box of checks. Investigate free checking services to ensure they meet all the basic needs. Consider an interest-earning savings account, if checking services are not needed. Another option is the Negotiable Order of Withdrawal accounts that are offered by some commercial banks, mutual Savings banks, and savings-and-loan associations. A NOW account is an interest-earning account with which the customer is permitted to write drafts against money held on deposit. However, most for-profit organizations are not permitted to open a NOW account. For-profit entities that are prohibited from opening NOW accounts include corporations, partnerships, associations, and business trusts. The one exception does exist for business owners. Individuals who do business as a sole proprietor under a trade name such can open and maintain a NOW. For example, John Doe doing business as Doe Enterprises can maintain a NOW account.
Large and small business bank accounts are available in a variety of financial institutions. Doing a little research into each type can help a person get the best banking service according to their needs. Basically there are six types of financial institutions available to choose from: retail banks, investment banks, commercial banks, credit unions, online banks, and savings and loans associations. A brief description of each will help owners make an informed decision regarding business bank accounts. Retail Banks work with customers on personal, as well as business, accounts. They are the most common type of financial institution and offer a variety of checking and savings options. Talk to an officer concerning the specifics of each type. Retail banks also offer Certificates of Deposit, safe deposit boxes, mortgages, auto loans, and unsecured and revolving loans. Basically, retail banks are general purpose banks designed for a wide range of customers. Others are more specialized. For example, a commercial bank is designed to serve the needs of businesses. Commercial banks also offer checking and savings business bank accounts. But these types of banks specialize in lending money for real and capital purchases. Other services include lines of credit, lockbox services, payment and transfer processing, and foreign currency exchange services. Investment banks are even more specialized. They assist other organizations that are trying to raise money through issuing stocks and bonds. In other words, investment banks guide other people though the investment markets.
Community bankers provide suitable business bank accounts, too. Credit unions are owned by its members or customers and since they are nonprofit organizations usually stress service over profitability. But credit unions are safe and insured. As a financial institution they are required to make sound banking decisions. Credit unions don't open their doors to everybody. A common bond has to exist. Some allow those who live within a certain radius of the credit union to open accounts. Others restrict membership to a specific workplace, company, or a religion. If physically getting somewhere is an inconvenience, than online banking might be an option. Online banks are used primarily on the internet and offer many of the same services as traditional banks, along with some advantages.
Banking online is flexible. Open and fund an account, transfer money, pay bills, and buy CD's any time day or night on a computer from home or work. Often, online banks offer more competitive rates and debit cards. On the downside, online banking customer service is often not on the same level as traditional banks, and checks clear much slower. There is one final option for business bank accounts. Savings and Loans Associations are specialty banks created to promote affordable home ownership. Depending on the size of a business some of these options may not be appropriate. Shop around and get opinions from others who have already opened accounts. Also banks are permitted to change the terms of business bank accounts with 30 days notice to the customer.
Business Online BankingBusiness online banking in today's fast moving society is an absolute necessity for the small business owner seeking to maintain a balance between his personal life and the black hole known as small business America. Studies have proven that the small commerce owner spends up to fifty percent or more time of their work week hours on business related labor than the typical 8-5 worker. The ease and convenience that online banking can bring to a small enterprise owner would almost demand that this financial service's option be a high priority to secure as a time saving tool. For the customers of the traditional brick and mortar banks, there will still have to be those daily trips to the drive up teller for making deposits and chit chat with that ever so friendly staff. But the need for entering the building may have stopped for good with the onset of Internet banking for the small commerce owner. And for some, the move from a brick and mortar banker to an Internet bank may be the new solution for being far from a local bank's venue.
Internet bank services allow the often bedraggled small enterprise owner to come home to the comfort of his own home and leisure and swiftly move through daily or weekly banking chores. Gone are the days of page worn bank books and sometimes a dozen file folders filled with information on various financial accounts. One of the most delicious aspects of business online banking is the ability to look at any and all accounts established with the lending institution. Moving quickly from savings to checking to loan accounts and back again is a powerful time saving tool. Time has certainly become the currency for many people but Jesus warned that time as we know it will come to an end with God's judgment upon the nations and he warned, "Watch ye therefore; for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning, lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping. And what I say unto you I say to all, Watch." (Mark 13:35-37)
One of the most incredible helps to the small commerce owner is the ability through Internet bank services is the connection from his business to the automated clearinghouse or ACH. This clearinghouse enables an enterprise owner to view all debit and credit card transactions associated with the owner's enterprise. It also provides a record and look at all phone and Internet originated payments. In addition, if an owner is using a payroll accounting firm, their transaction in terms of payroll direct deposit, social security payments and dividend and interest payments. Having 24 hour access to these business online banking numbers can make the small business man or woman's task a much more organized and concise task.
In addition to keeping track of income, the small commerce owner must also be concerned about the many bills that must be paid in order to keep the capital flowing. Just in the recent past, bill paying could often take up at least a day a month of the owner's valuable time. Now, thanks to business online banking, bill paying can be as easy as receiving a bill in the mail at 10:00 a.m. and having it paid by 10:03 a.m. In those three minutes the owner could have looked at the bank balance, checked for any pending transactions, and with a click of the mouse paid the bill. With an online checking account, there are no questions about whether or not a bill has been paid, and no disputes over the slow delivery of snail mail payments and even lost invoices and the option of scheduling recurring payments can keep any doubt from arising about missing any cyclical payments due. These bills can even include federal and state tax payments as well as wire transfers. Even for a small enterprise, the savings in postage and paper checks can be substantial.
Most small business owners do have financial software management software that organizes and stores all of the transactions completed in a year's time. With many banks' business online banking services, the ability to download checking and savings account information into those programs is seamless. Curling up by a roaring fire and being able to do all of the financials from one's laptop is now a reality thanks to business online banking services. And for the entrepreneurs that are beginning a new company after some rocky financial times in the past, there is new hope. Though the brick and mortar people may have frozen the owners out of getting a bank account for their new enterprise project, Internet banks are now the answer.
With 80% of all US banks using the services of ChexSystems and Telecheck, the possibility of getting business online banking services for some owners can be very difficult. These agencies collect all complaints of overdrafts and other irregularities and report them to the 80% of US banks that use their services. Getting on their list of bad faith customers will automatically put that business owner in line for banking's version of a religious shunning. The good news is that Internet banks can offer the small business owner many of the same business online banking services as the brick and mortar financial institutions. Most experts would advise comparison shopping of each Internet bank because there may be some wide variance in costs and options.