Does one need a bank account anymore?

Discuss all general (i.e. non-personal) investing questions and issues, investing news, and theory.
Topic Author
K8ya
Posts: 83
Joined: Fri Aug 10, 2012 12:48 am

Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by K8ya » Fri May 31, 2019 5:38 am

The fidelity article on this topic made me think. If I have a cash management and brokerage account with them, what might I miss with those being my only accounts?

student
Posts: 3381
Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2015 6:58 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by student » Fri May 31, 2019 5:44 am

I still have bank accounts but certainly I can use my CMA account instead of it.

3-20Characters
Posts: 492
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:20 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by 3-20Characters » Fri May 31, 2019 5:49 am

IMO, the biggest potential downside to not having an additional bank account is that if your one and only account gets frozen for some reason (fraud/security review) you can’t access money for day-to-day bills and expenses. Some will say, just use a credit card, but I’d prefer to have a standard bank account for this.

Edit: modified for clarity
Last edited by 3-20Characters on Fri May 31, 2019 9:01 am, edited 1 time in total.

HomeStretch
Posts: 750
Joined: Thu Dec 27, 2018 3:06 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by HomeStretch » Fri May 31, 2019 6:25 am

+1 on having more than one account in case of account issue like a freeze.

I have a Brokerage CMA but keep my local free B&M bank for several other reasons:
- safe deposit box
- ATM
- ability to deposit cash / coin counting machine
- Certified checks

I think free donuts, coffee and lollipops were mentioned in prior BH threads on this topic that you can search for.

ETA: I use Fidelity CMA Debit card to get cash at local ATMs. In another thread, a poster said larger amounts of cash (5-figures?) can be obtained with the CMA debit card from participating B&M banks without an account there. I haven’t tried this yet.
Last edited by HomeStretch on Fri May 31, 2019 10:00 am, edited 2 times in total.

mptfan
Posts: 5272
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:58 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by mptfan » Fri May 31, 2019 7:28 am

3-20Characters wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 5:49 am
IMO, the biggest potential downside to not having an additional bank account ...
The OP did not ask about an "additional" bank account, the OP asked "Does one need a bank account anymore?"

User avatar
Doc
Posts: 9100
Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2007 1:10 pm
Location: Two left turns from Larry

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by Doc » Fri May 31, 2019 7:37 am

Yes. Some of us need to have actual cash in the form of $5s and $10s etc. The bank branch at the supermarket 3 blocks away is very convenient for that purpose. The local Schwab and Fidelity branches are 20 minutes away by car and I doubt if they have much actual cash on hand if any.

Would I need to go to PA to get a cashier's check to close my upcoming RE transaction?
A scientist looks for THE answer to a problem, an engineer looks for AN answer and lawyers ONLY have opinions. Investing is not a science.

User avatar
Sandtrap
Posts: 7468
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2016 6:32 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by Sandtrap » Fri May 31, 2019 7:43 am

K8ya wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 5:38 am
The fidelity article on this topic made me think. If I have a cash management and brokerage account with them, what might I miss with those being my only accounts?
There are no inconveniences nor additional expense to having bank accounts at a physical location (ample locations across the nation helps, too).
Establish ACH transfer links to your brokerage to move funds back and forth with ease.
True, you don't "have to have" a bank account(s) with physical locations, but, there are times when it is greatly useful and you'll be glad you had it.
IE: cashier's check, checks, cash, large cash withdrawals (substantial), personal face to face service, etc.
YMMV.
Wiki Bogleheads Wiki: Everything You Need to Know

student
Posts: 3381
Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2015 6:58 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by student » Fri May 31, 2019 7:49 am

Doc wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:37 am
Yes. Some of us need to have actual cash in the form of $5s and $10s etc. The bank branch at the supermarket 3 blocks away is very convenient for that purpose. The local Schwab and Fidelity branches are 20 minutes away by car and I doubt if they have much actual cash on hand if any.

Would I need to go to PA to get a cashier's check to close my upcoming RE transaction?
You can use your Schwab and Fidelity CMA ATM cards with no charge. They will reimburse you on the fees from the ATM also. You can get a cashier's check from Fidelity by mail. http://personal.fidelity.com/misc/ekits ... equest.pdf

flyingaway
Posts: 2289
Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2014 10:19 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by flyingaway » Fri May 31, 2019 7:52 am

If no fee, why not to have another one. But my current bank needs direct deposit to waive fees. I don't like it.

MichCPA
Posts: 601
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2018 9:06 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by MichCPA » Fri May 31, 2019 7:54 am

I have needed a physical bank location maybe once every year or two, but there isn't much downside to having a bank account.

User avatar
JoMoney
Posts: 7119
Joined: Tue Jul 23, 2013 5:31 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by JoMoney » Fri May 31, 2019 7:54 am

My bank has free coffee in the lobby.
Doc wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:37 am
...
Would I need to go to PA to get a cashier's check to close my upcoming RE transaction?
FWIW, there are online banks that offer cashiers checks. Capital One 360 has a feature that will next-day FedEx a cashiers check to either you or the person you designate.

I'm not sure of what the requirements with Fidelity are, but they have a form to request one:
http://personal.fidelity.com/misc/ekits ... equest.pdf
"To achieve satisfactory investment results is easier than most people realize; to achieve superior results is harder than it looks." - Benjamin Graham

MichCPA
Posts: 601
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2018 9:06 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by MichCPA » Fri May 31, 2019 7:56 am

flyingaway wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:52 am
If no fee, why not to have another one. But my current bank needs direct deposit to waive fees. I don't like it.
Can you just setup an automatic x-fer based on your payroll calendar?

Jack FFR1846
Posts: 9477
Joined: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:05 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Fri May 31, 2019 7:59 am

Doc wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:37 am
Yes. Some of us need to have actual cash in the form of $5s and $10s etc. The bank branch at the supermarket 3 blocks away is very convenient for that purpose. The local Schwab and Fidelity branches are 20 minutes away by car and I doubt if they have much actual cash on hand if any.

Would I need to go to PA to get a cashier's check to close my upcoming RE transaction?
I am honestly curious. Why do you need actual cash? Personally, when I go to club offroad runs, the property fee is $20 cash, so indeed, I need cash money. I can't think of anything else I've needed cash money for besides maybe giving my son money when he's going with friends out to eat or something. My older son (22) gets money when his grandfather stops over and he hands it to me like it's Mongolian currency.....he doesn't even know where he would use it. He uses his credit card everywhere. I put it in his credit union account.

I have gone to a bank where I don't even have an account, paid the fee and gotten a cashier's check. So I think I would agree with a safe deposit box (which I don't have).
Bogle: Smart Beta is stupid

anoop
Posts: 918
Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2014 1:33 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by anoop » Fri May 31, 2019 8:05 am

Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:59 am

I am honestly curious. Why do you need actual cash? Personally, when I go to club offroad runs, the property fee is $20 cash, so indeed, I need cash money. I can't think of anything else I've needed cash money for besides maybe giving my son money when he's going with friends out to eat or something. My older son (22) gets money when his grandfather stops over and he hands it to me like it's Mongolian currency.....he doesn't even know where he would use it. He uses his credit card everywhere. I put it in his credit union account.

I have gone to a bank where I don't even have an account, paid the fee and gotten a cashier's check. So I think I would agree with a safe deposit box (which I don't have).
If you buy or sell a used car, often times cash is the most reliable and efficient way to transact. This means that one may need to have a way to withdraw an amount more than what an ATM can dispense, and also have a way to deposit large sums. Doesn't happen often, but it's worth having that option available.

What did you use to buy the cashier's check at the bank where you didn't have an account?

User avatar
goingup
Posts: 3577
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 1:02 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by goingup » Fri May 31, 2019 8:13 am

I go into my local bank branch, mainly for cash, usually 100's. I give cash for birthday, graduation, and Christmas. (Creative, eh?) I pay the dog-sitter in cash. On our recent trip to Philly, several restaurants only took cash. Tipping for hotel housekeeping, shuttle service, etc--all cash. The ATM is fine for getting 20's, but other denominations require a branch visit.

It may be a generational thing, but I can't imagine not having a local brick and mortar bank.

User avatar
midareff
Posts: 6254
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 10:43 am
Location: Biscayne Bay, South Florida

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by midareff » Fri May 31, 2019 8:21 am

I think you do.. or at least we do. We have an online bank we use for almost everything but there are some travels that take lots of cash and for that I still maintain my former employer's local brick and mortar Credit Union account. There is only so much cash that you can get from an ATM.

User avatar
midareff
Posts: 6254
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 10:43 am
Location: Biscayne Bay, South Florida

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by midareff » Fri May 31, 2019 8:22 am

Sandtrap wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:43 am
K8ya wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 5:38 am
The fidelity article on this topic made me think. If I have a cash management and brokerage account with them, what might I miss with those being my only accounts?
There are no inconveniences nor additional expense to having bank accounts at a physical location (ample locations across the nation helps, too).
Establish ACH transfer links to your brokerage to move funds back and forth with ease.
True, you don't "have to have" a bank account(s) with physical locations, but, there are times when it is greatly useful and you'll be glad you had it.
IE: cashier's check, checks, cash, large cash withdrawals (substantial), personal face to face service, etc.
YMMV.
+1

mptfan
Posts: 5272
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:58 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by mptfan » Fri May 31, 2019 8:24 am

Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:59 am
Why do you need actual cash? Personally, when I go to club offroad runs, the property fee is $20 cash, so indeed, I need cash money. I can't think of anything else I've needed cash money for besides maybe giving my son money when he's going with friends out to eat or something.
I am laughing because you asked why do you need actual cash and then you gave two situations where you needed actual cash. It seems like you answered your own question.

asif408
Posts: 1696
Joined: Sun Mar 02, 2014 8:34 am
Location: Florida

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by asif408 » Fri May 31, 2019 8:27 am

I don't think you absolutely "need" one. I do have one, FWIW, mainly because it doesn't cost me anything and I'm old enough to remember the days when plastic wasn't as widely accepted. Occasionally it is nice to have some cash, or be able to quickly access cash from the local ATM, but I do find these instances grow fewer and fewer over the years.

Mike Scott
Posts: 1322
Joined: Fri Jul 19, 2013 2:45 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by Mike Scott » Fri May 31, 2019 8:28 am

I do but you may not. What have you done in the last few years that required the bank and/or bank account?

MnD
Posts: 4287
Joined: Mon Jan 14, 2008 12:41 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by MnD » Fri May 31, 2019 8:30 am

A separate brick and mortar or separate online bank is unnecessary and adds additional complexity and potential expense.
My adult kids couldn't imagine having either, and my only regret about dumping both types is that I didn't do it years earlier.
Banking or banking-like services will continue to integrate with financial services, both from startups and large mature shops like Schwab/Fidelity.
I'm also curious why people continue to imagine that one cannot get some cash with "only" something like a Fidelity or Schwab account for cash management.
Last edited by MnD on Fri May 31, 2019 8:34 am, edited 2 times in total.

sjt
Posts: 222
Joined: Fri May 26, 2017 3:03 pm
Location: NC

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by sjt » Fri May 31, 2019 8:31 am

I've gotten by without a brick and mortar bank for over a decade. Schwab can handle (nearly) everything for me, and I can pull cash from any ATM with fees reimbursed.

However, I have been unable to cash in my fully matured Series EE savings bonds. My local Schwab doesn't do it (Schwab brokerage is separate from Schwab bank), the only Schwab bank is in Las Vegas (haven't been in Vegas recently), my credit union won't cash them, and the other credit union and Brick and Mortar banks won't cash them unless you have an account with them (AND wait the required waiting period). Not really a fan of the big - nation wide banks in my area. Seems that the only reason I find to have a local bank is to cash in your EE savings bonds.
"The one who covets is the poorer man, | For he would have that which he never can; | But he who doesn't have and doesn't crave | Is rich, though you may hold him but a knave." - Wife of Bath tale

mptfan
Posts: 5272
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:58 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by mptfan » Fri May 31, 2019 8:33 am

sjt wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 8:31 am
Seems that the only reason I find to have a local bank is to cash in your EE savings bonds.
It's also convenient for depositing cash.

texas lawdog
Posts: 111
Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2016 5:33 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by texas lawdog » Fri May 31, 2019 8:42 am

Safety Deposit Box

I do confess there are too many B&M branches

mptfan
Posts: 5272
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:58 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by mptfan » Fri May 31, 2019 8:44 am

texas lawdog wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 8:42 am
I do confess there are too many B&M branches
There are less and less, I can think of three near me that have closed recently.

User avatar
rh00p
Posts: 72
Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2019 1:21 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by rh00p » Fri May 31, 2019 8:44 am

mptfan wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:28 am
3-20Characters wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 5:49 am
IMO, the biggest potential downside to not having an additional bank account ...
The OP did not ask about an "additional" bank account, the OP asked "Does one need a bank account anymore?"
Yes he did. If the OP has all his money at Fidelity, what's the need for an "additional" bank account.
Preparing for the worst. Hoping for the best.

3-20Characters
Posts: 492
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:20 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by 3-20Characters » Fri May 31, 2019 8:45 am

K8ya wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 5:38 am
The fidelity article on this topic made me think. If I have a cash management and brokerage account with them, what might I miss with those being my only accounts?
This thread has morphed into “does one need a B&M bank?” The OP was asking if one needs a any bank at all outside of Fidelity cash management account.

Edit: rh00p beat me to it. See above.

mptfan
Posts: 5272
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:58 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by mptfan » Fri May 31, 2019 8:49 am

rh00p wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 8:44 am
mptfan wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:28 am
3-20Characters wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 5:49 am
IMO, the biggest potential downside to not having an additional bank account ...
The OP did not ask about an "additional" bank account, the OP asked "Does one need a bank account anymore?"
Yes he did. If the OP has all his money at Fidelity, what's the need for an "additional" bank account.
Fidelity does not have a bank account, it is a "cash management account" which is a brokerage account, not a bank account.

The Fidelity® Cash Management Account is a brokerage account, for your everyday spending and short-term investing needs with all the benefits of a traditional checking account...

https://www.fidelity.com/cash-managemen ... nt-account

User avatar
Watty
Posts: 16465
Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2007 3:55 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by Watty » Fri May 31, 2019 8:53 am

K8ya wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 5:38 am
The fidelity article on this topic made me think. If I have a cash management and brokerage account with them, what might I miss with those being my only accounts?
I have always made a point of having my checking and credit cards at different places than my major investments so that if there is ever a problem it will not impact my investments.

I do not have any credit cards at financial institutions where I have other accounts.

I have my checking account, ATM, and online bill paying at a local brick and mortar bank where I rarely have more than a few months expenses.

One thing to understand is if there ever a problem with one of your accounts then the lender has the "right of offset"(Google this) and can take money out of your other accounts to pay off the account. For example if you have a fraudulent credit card charge and you dispute it occasionally the company will research it and deny your dispute. At that point if you refuse to pay off the the company can and will just withdraw the funds from some other account, like your money market or checking account, to pay off the credit card.
Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:59 am
Why do you need actual cash?
If nothing else I always carry enough cash to pay for things like a meal if they are having trouble with their credit card machine or there is a power outage.

I will also pay cash if I am in some place like a restaurant where I get bad vibes about them maybe skimming my credit card information.

I usually pay cash for anything that is less than 20 dollars. That way my monthly credit card statement is less cluttered so that any questionable charges will be easier to spot.

targetconfusion
Posts: 38
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2018 1:02 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by targetconfusion » Fri May 31, 2019 8:59 am

sjt wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 8:31 am
I've gotten by without a brick and mortar bank for over a decade. Schwab can handle (nearly) everything for me, and I can pull cash from any ATM with fees reimbursed.

However, I have been unable to cash in my fully matured Series EE savings bonds. My local Schwab doesn't do it (Schwab brokerage is separate from Schwab bank), the only Schwab bank is in Las Vegas (haven't been in Vegas recently), my credit union won't cash them, and the other credit union and Brick and Mortar banks won't cash them unless you have an account with them (AND wait the required waiting period). Not really a fan of the big - nation wide banks in my area. Seems that the only reason I find to have a local bank is to cash in your EE savings bonds.
This is the precise reason that, in addition my Schwab account, I was also a Chase checking account holder for roughly a month.

3-20Characters
Posts: 492
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2018 2:20 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by 3-20Characters » Fri May 31, 2019 9:02 am

mptfan wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 8:49 am
rh00p wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 8:44 am
mptfan wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:28 am
3-20Characters wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 5:49 am
IMO, the biggest potential downside to not having an additional bank account ...
The OP did not ask about an "additional" bank account, the OP asked "Does one need a bank account anymore?"
Yes he did. If the OP has all his money at Fidelity, what's the need for an "additional" bank account.
Fidelity does not have a bank account, it is a "cash management account" which is a brokerage account, not a bank account.

The Fidelity® Cash Management Account is a brokerage account, for your everyday spending and short-term investing needs with all the benefits of a traditional checking account...

https://www.fidelity.com/cash-managemen ... nt-account
I modified my reply. I hope it puts an end to it.

quantAndHold
Posts: 3438
Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2015 10:39 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by quantAndHold » Fri May 31, 2019 10:05 am

flyingaway wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:52 am
If no fee, why not to have another one. But my current bank needs direct deposit to waive fees. I don't like it.
We have wife’s social security direct deposited into the local bank to avoid the fees, then I have an automated transfer to send it into the account we actually use. About once a year, we find it handy to have a bank branch to go into.

User avatar
alpenglow
Posts: 820
Joined: Tue May 31, 2011 12:02 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by alpenglow » Fri May 31, 2019 10:10 am

I use the Fidelity CMA and really like it. At the same time, I still keep an account at the local credit union for the following reasons:

* Ease of depositing checks that the app won't accept
* My kids have linked accounts at the CU and I like them getting used to saving/going to the bank
* Free change counting machine
* Ease of depositing matured paper savings bonds
* Safe deposit box

Jack FFR1846
Posts: 9477
Joined: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:05 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Fri May 31, 2019 10:12 am

anoop wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 8:05 am

What did you use to buy the cashier's check at the bank where you didn't have an account?
I was selling a car. The buyer and I went to his bank. He did a withdrawal as a cashier's check in my name. I signed it and asked that a new cashier's check be made in my name. They said $5 please. I said "never mind, I'll take cash". They then waived the fee and made out a new cashier's check in my name. This disconnected the buyer from the check, should he try to put a stop on it.

As it turned out, the buyer had buyer's remorse soon after purchase and tried to undo the purchase. With no tie to the check, he was unable to force this.
Bogle: Smart Beta is stupid

Trader Joe
Posts: 808
Joined: Fri Apr 25, 2014 6:38 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by Trader Joe » Fri May 31, 2019 10:14 am

K8ya wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 5:38 am
The fidelity article on this topic made me think. If I have a cash management and brokerage account with them, what might I miss with those being my only accounts?
I have (and need) a bank account.

snowman
Posts: 899
Joined: Thu Jan 31, 2013 12:59 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by snowman » Fri May 31, 2019 10:23 am

flyingaway wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:52 am
If no fee, why not to have another one. But my current bank needs direct deposit to waive fees. I don't like it.
This can be easily mitigated by opening account at the bank that doesn't charge any monthly fee (many don't), or by setting "direct deposit" from your current bank. I have yet to find B&M bank that doesn't code ACH from Fidelity CMA as direct deposit (I play bank accounts bonus game).

btenny
Posts: 5075
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2007 6:47 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by btenny » Fri May 31, 2019 10:40 am

Yes a physical bank and a bank account are necessary for
- safe deposit box
- checking account (checks less than $500)
- cash withdrawal more than $300
- checks for yard guy
- check for pool lady
- check for small garbage company
- kid and grand kid presents

So I think it is still needed.

snowman
Posts: 899
Joined: Thu Jan 31, 2013 12:59 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by snowman » Fri May 31, 2019 10:42 am

K8ya wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 5:38 am
The fidelity article on this topic made me think. If I have a cash management and brokerage account with them, what might I miss with those being my only accounts?
If there is no need in your daily life, you don't really need another account. I love Fidelity CMA! There are some reasons why others (like myself) do have additional accounts:

1. Local B&M bank with no monthly fees for safe deposit box, ability to deposit occasional cash, and free donuts and coffee while doing it.
2. Any bank/CU where teenage kids can setup their first account with debit card and parents can easily transfer money between accounts.

Having played bank account bonus game for a while, I am constantly amazed at high monthly fees banks are collecting in this day and age. One would think this is the thing of the past - not in my area! New bank branches are popping up like mushrooms everywhere, and most of them come with exorbitant fees just for the privilege of having checking account with them. This is a HCOL areas with median household income approaching $130K, so plenty of potential customers to fleece.

mptfan
Posts: 5272
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:58 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by mptfan » Fri May 31, 2019 10:46 am

btenny wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 10:40 am
Yes a physical bank and a bank account are necessary for
- safe deposit box
- checking account (checks less than $500)
- cash withdrawal more than $300
- checks for yard guy
- check for pool lady
- check for small garbage company
- kid and grand kid presents

So I think it is still needed.
You do not need to have a physical bank to have a checking account, there are several online only banks that provide checking accounts. You can also withdraw more than $300 by obtaining a cash advance from your debit card (there is no interest charged) from a teller at a local bank, the limits are usually well into the thousands...Schwab bank has a $15,000 limit for debit card cash advances. You can also write checks to anyone, including the yard guy and the pool lady and the small garbage company. So the only thing on that list that you can't do with an online bank is have a safe deposit box.

mptfan
Posts: 5272
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:58 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by mptfan » Fri May 31, 2019 10:48 am

snowman wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 10:42 am
I am constantly amazed at high monthly fees banks are collecting in this day and age. One would think this is the thing of the past - not in my area! New bank branches are popping up like mushrooms everywhere, and most of them come with exorbitant fees just for the privilege of having checking account with them.
Bogleheads are a very small minority of the population, most people are not as financially savvy and well informed as us Bogleheads to know about all banking and cash management options. And even some people who do know about online banking are afraid of change.

MichCPA
Posts: 601
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2018 9:06 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by MichCPA » Fri May 31, 2019 11:08 am

btenny wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 10:40 am
Yes a physical bank and a bank account are necessary for
- safe deposit box
- checking account (checks less than $500)
- cash withdrawal more than $300
- checks for yard guy
- check for pool lady
- check for small garbage company
- kid and grand kid presents

So I think it is still needed.
Is the $500 requirement a Fidelity thing too? I thought that was just a Vanguard CMA issue and the general consensus is that VG CMA isn't really competitive with Schwab and Fido CMA.

btenny
Posts: 5075
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2007 6:47 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by btenny » Fri May 31, 2019 11:32 am

I am at TDA Ameritrade for some investments. I have checking on those accounts but they limit the checks to $500 minImum and less than 5 checks per month. I think these are the numbers. I am also at Wells Fargo for other investments but have a linked checking so everything works together.

mervinj7
Posts: 912
Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2014 3:10 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by mervinj7 » Fri May 31, 2019 2:58 pm

btenny wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 10:40 am
Yes a physical bank and a bank account are necessary for
- safe deposit box
- checking account (checks less than $500)
- cash withdrawal more than $300
- checks for yard guy
- check for pool lady
- check for small garbage company
- kid and grand kid presents

So I think it is still needed.
As others have pointed out, the only thing one needs a physical B&M for on your list is a safe deposit box. In fact, I've done everything on your list this past month except for a check for the pool lady (no pool) and grand kid presents (no grandkids). I use a combination of Capital One 360 and a Fidelity CMA.

quantAndHold
Posts: 3438
Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2015 10:39 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by quantAndHold » Fri May 31, 2019 3:29 pm

btenny wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 10:40 am
Yes a physical bank and a bank account are necessary for
- safe deposit box yes
- checking account (checks less than $500) I can't remember the last check I wrote
- cash withdrawal more than $300 yes, about once every year or two
- checks for yard guy he takes Venmo now
- check for pool lady salon she has a Square reader now
- check for small garbage company I have autopay set up with them using paypal
- kid and grand kid presents they prefer cash

So I think it is still needed.
Agree that it's still needed, but less every day. The only time I've been in the bank in the past 2 years was when we needed cash in small bills for a trip to a developing country. It turned out that even in remote places with no electricity, they have cell phones and can handle credit cards. We came home with a huge wad of cash.

Broken Man 1999
Posts: 2703
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2015 11:31 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Fri May 31, 2019 3:44 pm

For now, I need one.

My credit union account pays my credit cards, along with selected companies I allow to pull funds. I still write an occasional check, like for repair folks. Not going to burden small business owners with swipe fees.

SSDI benefits deposit + electronic statements = free account.

CU has very large ATM network with no fees, every few months I grab a little bit of cash for valet parking, etc.

Broken Man 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven than I shall not go. " -Mark Twain

User avatar
nisiprius
Advisory Board
Posts: 38469
Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2007 9:33 am
Location: The terrestrial, globular, planetary hunk of matter, flattened at the poles, is my abode.--O. Henry

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by nisiprius » Fri May 31, 2019 4:03 pm

Yes, you need one. I have one word for you, just one word. Actually three:

Medallion signature guarantee.

When have I needed one? When I least expected it, four or five times in my life, generally associated with moving largish amounts of assets from one financial institution to another, e.g. actual Treasury bonds from Treasury Direct to a brokerage.

Banks do this free as a courtesy to customers, just like notarizations. However, getting something notarized is not a big deal and there are all kinds of places besides banks that can do it--if you work at a big company there's usually someone right at the company who can; sometimes public libraries can. Medallion signature guarantees are a big deal, I don't personally know where you can get one except at a bank, and you need to have had an account there for a while (e.g. six months). You can't wait until you need the medalliion signature guarantee to open the account.

If you do want an account for this purpose, watch out: there have been some reports in the forum of branches of big banks telling people "Sure, we do medallion signature guarantees," and then when they actually needed one, saying, "Sure, we do them, but not here in this branch at Banjo Crossing, you need to go to our main branch twenty miles away in Zenith."

Honestly, it all seems like a racket to me but it is what it is and it is hard to get around it. People in the forum have reported that sometimes you can talk a place that needs a medallion signature guarantee into waiving the requirement if it's a relatively small transaction.

2) Normal physical biggish banks can also do overseas wire transfers. My small local bank can't. I don't think I can do any kind of wire transfer from my Capital One 360 "online bank account."

3) I've been in situations several times where it was either "produce a teller's check or no deal." Maybe I could have negotiated my way around that. Again, there is about a 24-hour difference between "go to a bank and get the check" versus "have them FedEx it to you."

4) And, of course, safe deposit boxes.
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness; Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.

warner25
Posts: 382
Joined: Wed Oct 29, 2014 4:38 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by warner25 » Fri May 31, 2019 4:19 pm

nisiprius wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 4:03 pm
And, of course, safe deposit boxes.
Interesting that you bring this up because I tried unsuccessfully to get a safe deposit box a couple years ago with Bank of America. Basically they told me that very few braches even have them anymore, and, where they do have them, it is very rare to have any availability. Apparently people keep them for many years and then pass them down to heirs with their estates.

I was concerned because we have a bunch of old paper EE and I bonds that our renters insurance wouldn't cover, but I subsequently learned here that the Treasury has a process to replace lost or destroyed paper bonds, so we're ok.

Without a physical bank, by the way, is there a process to cash out paper Treasury bonds?

User avatar
abuss368
Posts: 13983
Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2009 2:33 pm
Location: Where the water is warm, the drinks are cold, and I don't know the names of the players!

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by abuss368 » Sat Jun 01, 2019 7:46 am

We have been down to one single checking account now for a while. Years ago we had more accounts and at one time two banks (online and local). Banking and finance is changing and will continue to change.
John C. Bogle: "You simply do not need to put your money into 8 different mutual funds!" | | Disclosure: Three Fund Portfolio + U.S. & International REITs

columbia
Posts: 1640
Joined: Tue Aug 27, 2013 5:30 am

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by columbia » Sat Jun 01, 2019 7:56 am

If you in an area prone to natural disasters (I’m thinking hurricanes specifically), being able withdraw cash ahead of time is a plus.

mpsz
Posts: 354
Joined: Sat Jan 09, 2016 7:11 pm

Re: Does one need a bank account anymore?

Post by mpsz » Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:01 am

I keep a local bank for safe deposit box and occasional cashier's checks or cash deposits. I'm learning from this thread that it's getting easier to get a cashier's check online, so that's good to know.

I help an elderly relative with her finances, and redeeming paper US Savings Bonds is another reason. Dealing with the Treasury by mail is an enormous challenge... it takes forever and god forbid the USPS loses a letter. My current transaction with the Treasury -- redeeming one simple bond -- is now on its seventh month of paperwork and phone calls because a bond got lost in the mail. We're opening a new local bank account for the next bond, so we never have to do this again.
nisiprius wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 4:03 pm
If you do want an account for this purpose, watch out: there have been some reports in the forum of branches of big banks telling people "Sure, we do medallion signature guarantees," and then when they actually needed one, saying, "Sure, we do them, but not here in this branch at Banjo Crossing, you need to go to our main branch twenty miles away in Zenith."
That's a shame, I hear Banjo Crossing is lovely this time of year.

Post Reply