The big banks. The new fees. Ugh. It's been all over the news, and it's finally trickled down to little-ol'-me. My bank notified me that my small checking account (the one I use for business) will now have a $15/month fee because my balance isn't high enough. I only have this account to keep my blog earnings separate from my family's main bank account, like I did when I did direct sales. I'm a full-time mom working not-even-part-time hours, so it's never going to have much of a balance! What to do?
It's a movement, I know, but I'm just doing it to save myself that $15/month. I did a little research on fee-free checking accounts and ended up opening an Electric Orange Checking Account from ING Direct. It's perfect for a mom with a small side business, since I never need checks (but they do offer them if you do). I rarely spend money, just a few Paypal transactions here and there and a few store purchases for supplies. I'll be able to link up my Paypal account, my affiliates and other sources of income, and I'll receive a debit card for those occasional in-store purchases. I can even get cash at ATMs all over town, if needed. It's completely fee-free, no charges at all, with no minimum balance requirement (yay!).
I'm even going to make $50 on this move. When you make 3 signature-based transactions or Person2Person Payments with your Electric Orange Debit Card in the first 45 days, you'll get a $50 bonus deposited into your account. Signature-based just means that you run the card as credit rather than debit, such as when I'm at Staples buying supplies for my upcoming coupon class. Learn about Person2Person Payments and more at ING Direct.
For now, I'm leaving our family bank account alone, but I'm keeping a close eye out for notifications about fees and other changes. I'm already researching credit unions and other fee-free options in case we decide to move.