When people monitor their checking accounts, they are taking control of their financial situation and figuring out how to reach their goals. But knowing just how often to check your account may not be intuitive.
Regularly reviewing your checking account can help you keep track of your finances and spot any fraudulent activity. The frequency with which someone checks their account is personal. At a minimum, it is recommended that individuals check their account monthly, but once a week may be preferable.
How Often Should You Check Your Checking Account?
There really is no exact science when it comes to monitoring a checking account. At the very least, it’s important to check it at least one time per month to look for fraud and fees that were charged to the account, as well as to see how money is being spent. However, for most people, once per month is not enough.
According to a survey from Lexington Law, 36% of Americans check their bank account every day, while 30% check it once a week, 8% check it once a month or twice a month respectively, and 10% check it less than once per month.
There are many reasons why someone may want to check their bank account as much as once per day. Perhaps they are living paycheck to paycheck and are waiting anxiously for a check to come in, or they are a freelancer and don’t know when a deposit will be made. Maybe their debit card was stolen once and they are afraid it could happen again or they’re trying to reign in their spending by carefully budgeting every single penny.
In reality, there’s no harm in monitoring a checking account every day or even more frequently if it means that the account holder is taking charge of their finances.
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Should You Check Your Bank Account Every Day?
In general, people don’t need to check their bank accounts every day unless they are doing so to improve their financial habits. For example, they may have a problem with overspending and they are attempting to get it under control.
A daily check can help them spotlight if they are spending too much and risking going into overdraft onto their account or not reaching their financial goals.
Checking Your Bank Account
Thankfully, banks generally offer a few different options if you want to know how to check your bank account. Customers are often able to create an online username and password and log onto the bank’s website or app.
Another digital option is to use an app or website, like SoFi Relay®, where account holders can connect all of their accounts and see a comprehensive display of their money. These tools can help create a full picture of where an individual stands financially.
Some banks will offer text messaging for checking accounts as well. For instance, if a bank account goes into overdraft, a pin number was entered incorrectly, the checking account balance is low, or there’s suspected fraud, a customer might receive a text message alert.
If customers want to go into a branch in person, they can approach a teller and enter their account information via their debit card and pin to view their balances.
Banks may also offer services via phone, where customers can call in to request their balance.
Setting Up a Checking Account
Even though it’s important to figure out the answer to “How often should you monitor your checking account?” it’s also critical to set up a checking account the right way.
Some checking accounts offer a bonus when customers sign up. The financial institution generally has instructions for new customers interested in receiving the benefit. For example, there may be a requirement to set up direct deposit or establish a minimum deposit amount in order to receive the sign-up bonus.
Checking accounts also offer interest to their customers; currently, the average interest rate in the United States is 0.04%. The higher the interest rate, the more a customer stands to earn, so consumers may want to shop around for checking accounts.
When reviewing accounts, also consider the fees associated with each. Fees may vary by institution and by account type and could include things like a monthly maintenance fee, ATM fees, overdraft fees, and returned check fees.
Some banks may offer fee-free checking accounts, so it can be worth weighing a few different options.
Recommended: How To Open a Free Checking Account
Opening More Than One Checking Account
There may be times when consumers will want to open up more than one checking account. This could be advantageous if they’re trying to save up for different financial goals and prefer keeping their money separate.
For instance, they could have a main checking account that’s linked to their debit card for everyday spending, along with a separate account where they keep their rent or mortgage payment just so they don’t accidentally spend it.
Separate checking accounts could also help when it comes to budgeting. Perhaps one account will be dedicated to saving up for credit card debt, while another one is exclusively for food and another one is for entertainment.
Customers can log in and see how much money they need to save up in order to reach their goals every month. This may require them to check their bank account every day.
Recommended: Benefits of Linking Your Bank Accounts
When to Get In Touch With the Bank
Keeping an eye on your checking account can help you identify any issues or fraudulent activity quickly. If customers see a fraudulent charge on their account, contact the bank as soon as possible. Large corporate banks may offer 24/7 customer assistance so customers can get in touch any time of day.
Customers may also find that the bank charged them fees if they went into overdraft or a check bounced. Sometimes, if they call up the bank, they can get those fees reversed. A bank may only do it once or twice or take a part of the fee off, but it’s better than nothing.
Another reason to call a bank is to see if there are any promotions going on. Customers might be able to open a new account and receive a bonus or lower their monthly fees. Banks may be willing to give customers perks so that they can retain their business.
Regularly checking your bank accounts is an instrumental part of keeping your finances on track. The exact frequency with which you look at your accounts is a personal decision, but what’s important is that you stay on top of your checking account.
Consider setting a calendar alert or reminder if you are having trouble remembering to review your accounts.
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