The number of kinds of banks and the various services they offer is truly staggering now! It can be confusing, because there really is no “one-size-fits-all” bank anymore. A person has to look at their own habits and then do some research in order to pick the best bank for their needs. Financial analysts describe the differences in banks in these broad general terms. Larger banks offer more sites and more ATMS, but lower interest fees. This could be important if you’re a frequent traveler, for instance, though not advantageous in other ways. Smaller banks may be less convenient, but they will also often have lower fees and slightly higher interest rates, plus there is the advantage of the “small-town” feel. While smaller banks may be inconvenient, they may also be more familiar with the area you live in, meaning it could be a bit easier to get financing for a local business, for instance. Then there are the new “online-only” banks. These definitely have higher interest rates, but they don’t have the physical, brick and mortar presence of a bank, which means your banking experience will be more impersonal; it will likely take you more steps to talk to an actual person. Still, for a younger generation that is already conducting much of their personal and business life online anyway, this approach could be a perfect fit. Do yourself a favor and check out sites that will help you search and compare banks, such as FindABetterBank.com, where you can do a search by zip code. There are also websites like Bankrate.com and Google Advisor that offer free customized searches as well. So, what’s the bottom line when it comes to choosing a bank? Do your homework!
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