Obtain a business bank account without paying bank charges

Most banks charge businesses higher fees than they charge individuals. This is often because a business processes many transactions. In addition, most business accounts require two signatures.

If you're running a very small business from home, you can still have what looks like a business bank account, using your business name. This has several advantages, because payment is made out to the business instead of to you, individually, and that allows you to keep business income separate from other revenue.

Having a business name gives credibility to your operation, but even if you request payment in your name alone, some people will put the business name on checks/cheques which are then difficult to cash or deposit.

The solution is to use a virtual bank, like ING.  You have to link your ING account to your individual bank account, which allows you to transfer money back and forth. The ING account is useful for two things: savings (they pay better interest because they don't have buildings to maintain and staff to pay), and to link an account in your business name to your individual ING account.

ING will send you postpaid envelopes, and sends printed statements quarterly. If you use your ING business account for all your business deposits, you can easily track your revenue. I use my ING individual account as a forced saving, setting up an automatic transfer from my "regular" bank, and allow that money to earn extra interest until I need to transfer it back to pay a large bill. This is a good way to "put aside" money for taxes, insurance, or a new car or computer. This method keeps you from spending so much each month that you're caught short by those special bills when they arrive, while earning extra interest in the meantime.

There are limitations to using ING for your business, of course. You have no checks/cheques with your business name, but most of us charge purchases and pay utility and similar bills online. If you use your "regular" bank to pay for any business expenses, just make sure you record them and save the receipts.

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