What Types of Features Do Personal Checking Accounts Offer?


Quick Answer

Features of personal checking accounts may include paper checks, debit cards, online bill-pay services, and in some cases, interest on account balances, explains About.com. Accounts are sometimes free with no conditions, and in other cases, they are free as long as customers meet certain requirements.

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Full Answer

Free checking accounts have no fees for low balances, no fees for using ATMs and debit cards, no charges for direct-deposit transactions and no minimum or maximum amounts for monthly check writing, explains About.com. While it is common for savings accounts to earn interest, some online banks, credit unions and small banks also pay interest on checking accounts. People who have checking accounts with big banks often get their fees waived by meeting requirements such as paycheck direct deposit, meeting minimum balances or having a mortgage account with the bank.

A few free checking accounts offer features that go beyond the usual, explains About.com. Those features include free books of checks, no charges for using ATMs outside of the bank's ATM network or reimbursement of ATM fees, and overdraft protection plans.

Features common with paid checking accounts include the ability to see checks after they have been paid, stop payments and canceled check return, says About.com. However, those features are rarely needed for personal accounts.

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