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What Type of Bank Account is Right for You?

Bank Account Guide

Type of Bank Account Features Bank Fees Checking Savings Money Market Certificate of Deposit USA

International Money Transfer - International Money Order
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  • Comparison of Bank Accounts, Bank Features, and Bank Fees. For more information, see:
    Types of Bank Accounts

What type of bank account should you open? The answer depends on how you plan to use the bank account. If you want to build up your savings and you think that you will not need your money soon, a certificate of deposit may be the right type of bank account for you.

If you need to reach your money, however, a savings or checking account may be a better type of bank account for you. You will probably find that a checking account is best for you if you plan to write several checks each month (for example, to pay bills). But if you usually write only two or three checks each month, then a money market account might be a better deal. Money market accounts usually pay a higher rate of interest than do checking accounts, but minimum balance requirements for this type of bank account are often higher as well.

Below is a bank account comparison chart to help you, but remember that bank account features and bank fees vary from one banking institution to the next. If you have questions, you should ask a representative of the institution about any bank account features and bank fees BEFORE you open a bank account.

 

Type of Bank Account
Will I Earn Interest?
May I Write Checks?
Are There Bank Withdrawal Limitations?
Are Bank Fees Likely?
Regular Checking Account
No
Yes
No
Yes
Interest Checking Account (NOW)
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
Money Market Account
Yes, usually higher than NOW or savings
Yes, only 3 per month
Yes, 6 transfers per month
Yes
Savings Account
Yes
No
Same as MMDA
Yes
Certificate of Deposit (CD)
Yes, usually higher than MMDA
No
Yes, usually no withdrawals of principal until the date of maturity
Yes, if you withdraw from principal before maturity date

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