Bank account comparison tool
I needed to set up a new business checking account recently, but I didn’t know how I should compare the options. Nerd Wallet kept showing up in my search results, so even though I hadn’t heard of the site before, I finally bit. It offers a broad range of financial advice, including several articles about choosing business checking accounts (a small business checking primer, an FAQ on how to pick an account, an explanation of fees, and general recommendations for the best and free business checking accounts).
Even better, it has a tool that will suggest banks based on criteria you can specify: location, bank type (big bank, community bank, internet bank, credit union), business type, typical monthly and daily balances, monthly transactions, cash handling requirements. It’s a great way to start a list of candidates, though I still called all the banks I was considering to verify the details and to ask questions not covered by Nerd Wallet’s summary. One thing to be aware of: Nerd Wallet’s search tool will recommend specific accounts, so the same bank may show up several times in your search results. Sometimes the same account name will be recommended multiple times, which seems like a bug.
Nerd Wallet’s founders and editors are experienced financial professionals, and the advice articles I found were all reasonably fresh (published in the last year). It has also been recommended at least twice in the last year by the New York Times’ Bucks blog (here and here).
There are other similar bank comparison/recommendation tools out there. The Bucks blog has also reported on a few alternatives, including FindABetterBank. That tool has a more in-depth questionnaire, but it doesn’t cover business accounts so didn’t work for my needs.
Business Checking is just one small area of the Nerd Wallet website, which offers similar tools for other types of bank accounts, personal finance, investing, and credit cards. I look forward to exploring these other subject areas on the site, but I can’t speak to them just yet.02/4/13