After hundreds of hours of research, here are the best free bank accounts of 2021.
In need of a bank account? Well, you’re in luck. As you know, a bank account is needed to receive funds from a loan. Whether it’s a personal loan or a business loan, lenders require them. In this article, we will check out some of the best free banks accounts available today. You’ll learn about the best banks and financial firms where you can open an account online as well as their requirements.
You’ve probably read somewhere that checking accounts are expensive and that you have to maintain an incredibly high balance so you don’t get slapped with fees.
Go through this article and see just how far this is from the truth. You have a ton of options at your disposal. There is a free bank account for everybody, and we’ll prove it.
BBVA USA Free Bank Account
This bank account is absolutely free. BBVA USA is a subsidiary of the multinational bank Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria and operates in select states, including Alabama, Texas, California, Florida, Colorado, and New Mexico. They offer BBVA Free Checking not only in these states but throughout the country.
Benefits & Requirements
The BBV free bank account has a $0 monthly service charge. Account owners also don’t need to accomplish any requirements, such as direct deposit or minimum daily balance, to waive monthly fees. BBVA USA has many ATMs all over the country, and you can access them free of charge. You will enjoy free customizable alerts, digital and paper statements, and unlimited check writing.
To open a BBVA Free Checking account, you only need to prepare the following:
- A valid government-issued ID (passport, driver’s license, or any state-issued ID with your photo)
- Social Security Number
- A minimum initial deposit of $25 made from an existing BBVA account, debit/credit card, or another bank
Would you like to try this option? Get started here.
If you are looking for a free bank account with a minimum initial deposit lower than $25, consider Aspiration Spend & Save. Aspiration is one of the country’s biggest financial firms, and they’ve been providing excellent financial solutions for over eight years now. Spend & Save is one of their most popular services.
Benefits & Requirements
You can open an Aspiration Spend & Save account with a $10 minimum initial deposit. This free bank account promises up to 1% APY if you are enrolled in Aspiration Plus and spend at least $1,000 with your Aspiration debit card. If you don’t meet these requirements, don’t worry because you can still have your APY as long as you have more than $10,000 in your account.
To make things better, Aspiration is currently giving a $100 bonus to new Aspiration Spend & Save account holders who will spend at least $1,000 within the first 60 days from account opening. Additional features include:
- Unlimited fee-free withdrawals at any Allpoint ATMs nationwide
- Up to 10% cashback on debit card purchases
- Extra cashback on purchases made at socially-conscious stores
- A suite of eco-friendly features (one tree planted for every roundup, ATM made of recycled materials, and more)
Click here to open an Aspiration Spend & Save account.
Free Bank Account by Chase
You may not find it surprising that the U.S.’s largest bank has its version of a free checking account option—Chase Total Checking®. However, unlike BBVA USA Free bank account and Aspiration Spend & Save, Chase Total Checking® isn’t totally free. You have to pay a $12 monthly service fee unless you meet ANY of the following requirements:
- You have at least $500 total monthly direct deposit in your account
- You maintain a $1,500 balance at the beginning of each day
- Your account has an average beginning day balance of at least $5,000
Benefits & Requirements
If you can afford to pay or waive the monthly service, this is the perfect checking account option for you. Here are some of its popular features:
- It’s available nationwide. You can access your account through Chase’s 16,000 ATMs and more than 4,700 branches.
- You don’t have to fill out a slip and queue at the bank to deposit money. You can access your account through any of Chase’s deposit-friendly ATMs.
- The debit card you’ll get has chip technology, which encrypts information to make transactions more secure.
- You can open an account for your children to help them build good money habits.
- Right now, Chase is giving new account holders who have made direct deposits up to a $200 bonus.
Opening a Chase Total Checking® is simple because you can do it online. Just follow the instructions here, and make sure you don’t skip all the disclaimers.
Betterment’s Free Bank Account
Like Aspiration, Betterment is not a bank but a financial firm, but it certainly offers a collection of banking solutions. Their free bank account, called Betterment Checking, is one of the most popular bank account options in the country today.
Benefits & Requirements
When you have a Betterment Checking account, you enjoy the following benefits:
- $0 minimum initial deposit
- $0 monthly service fee
- Up to $250,000 of your savings is FDIC-insured by NBKC Bank
- You can get cashback when you buy products at Walmart, Adidas, and thousands of other brands
- You can access it through a user-friendly mobile app
- Chase automatically reimburses ATM and foreign fees
- They also don’t charge for an overdraft
To open a Betterment Checking account, click here.
When a FREE Bank Account Is Ultimately a Myth
You’ve probably noticed that although most of these bank accounts are described as FREE, you still have to meet specific requirements to avoid regular charges. Banks may ask you to open other products, maintain a considerable balance, have a direct deposit setup, or even make a particular number of transactions per month.
To put it simply, none of these checking accounts are completely free. Each will cost you more in the long run than their providers promise. But you can’t deny that they have advantages over other types of bank accounts. You save more on account opening and maintenance, and you can access your account more conveniently, too.
How to Choose a Free Bank Account
With so many banks now offering their version of FREE Checking Account, finding the product that best suits your specific needs may prove challenging. Here are a few tips.
- When the provider says, their checking account has zero ATM or monthly maintenance fee, immediately look for the catch. As explained, some banks will ask you to have a required minimum initial deposit or monthly maintaining balance.
- You may want to watch out for banks requiring a direct deposit for a free bank account if you are a student and don’t have that cash.
- Choose a free checking account with a mobile-friendly app that you can conveniently access anywhere.
- Familiarize yourself with the different financial terms to avoid misunderstanding features. For instance, learn the difference between “fees” and “service charges.”
A free bank account has its fair share of pros and cons that you must consider. Explore more of the available financial products and services here on LendingBuilder, or speak to one of our friendly financial consultants to learn about your options.