I'm about to pick a bank for my new business and I'm not sure what I should be focusing on or looking for when I do this. Does anyone have advice from their own past experiences? Thanks.
Here are some questions we recommend asking when interviewing a banker and a bank:
· What is the bank’s specialty? Any niche expertise available?
· Do they offer any specialized services aimed at small businesses?
· Does the bank provide access to business consultants?
· What are the typical loan qualifications for businesses like yours? How long does the process generally take?
· If you will need to borrow money immediately or within a few months, ask the banker to review your credit report with you and estimate your chances of success.
· How do they stay aware of how their business banking customers are doing? Are regular update meetings acceptable to the banker?
· Do they have any ideas of services that might be useful to your particular business?
Donalson makes some very good points. Here are some other factors based on my past experience.
Physical location is important, depending on your needs. If you make frequent deposits, distance to-and-from the bank is important. Gasoline is expensive, plus time is money. Also, if you are a store front retailer who will be making after hour drops, you want a branch that is nearby and in a good neighborhood--you don't want to be driving in bad areas after hours with a bag full of cash in your hand.
Salect a bank that is business oriented instead of personal account oriented. What I mean by this is: If you pick a bank that heavily promotes free personal checking account, then no matter what time you visit the bank you'll spend 20 milnutes in line in a busy lobby. On the other hand, business oriented banks tend to be less hectic. Again, time is money. I happen to be in sales, and spending 20 milnutes in line is not best use of my time.
Finally, I find there is wide descrepency in business bank fees different banks charge. Based on your habits, pick a bank with either zero or reduced monthly checking account fees, or perhaps one that waives fees with reasonable minimum balance requirements or something of that nature. Why pay $18-20 per month if you don't have to? For example, my business bank waives fees if I use the debit card attached to the biz account at least once a month, which is easy to do..business lunch, Starbucks meeting with client, etc. Saves me $17 per month on each account, and we have two business accounts.
Availabily of business services you may need are important. Examples: Payroll, tax wiholding services, online banking, etc. But: make sure they are services offered by the bank itself, not merely services referred over to some third party. If third party, all you've done is increased your cost of doing business of adding an extra and unnecessary middleman to the price equation. Why not just go to the source of the service directly yourself and avoid the middleman referral fee? The business I am in, merchant card processing, is an excellent example of this. Many merchants feel their bank is the best place to go to arrange their credit card processing, when actually it is the worst place, for the reason discussed herein--most banks don't do their own processing, they just refer processing business to a third party--and guess who pays for the accompanying referral fee?
Hope this helps.
i have several business bank accounts and one formula that has worked for me has been the following:
1) figure out my own needs (what bank services do i need most)
2) find a bank that offers the best balance between satisfying my need and price/fees
3) stellar customer service is a must. read about each bank's service online (blogs/forums)
4) proximity and availability is key. i travel a lot, so i look for banks that i can access from anywhere easily.
5) reputation - b of a is likely going to be more stable and around tomorrow when compared to joe's bank down the road from my house
6) FDIC insurance - goes w/o saying
When researching banks, keep in mind that you are not obligated to pick the first one you spend time in. If you take your time and speak with several branch managers and bank representatives about what they can offer you, you'll eventually find one that best suits your business' needs.
I went to my tax accountant for advice on a bank. She recommended two banks. She recommended both banks for the following reasons.
1. Both banks steered clear of the greedy get rich quick schemes that got so many banks in trouble.
2. Both banks have maintained a steady growth plan and have been financially stable for decades.
3. Both banks have focused on customer service, which includes low or no fees.
You can contact me direct if you would like the names of the banks.
You have decided to go for cord blood donation. That's great! But, have you decided which bank to save your sample at? There are a large number of banks across the nation that saves cord blood. If you are baffled and can't decide which one to choose, structured settlement cash
As others have mentioned, the best bank for your business will depend on a lot of factors. But I think the most important factor is the type of business you're running. You didn't disclose what type of business you were starting, so it's hard to be specific. But the others have made good suggestions about things you should consider...