While it can be easy to stick with the same bank account year after year, if you do some research, you may find there are other transaction accounts that can do a lot more for your money. With money going in and out of your account every day, it's important to choose an account that best suits your needs. Choose an account with no fees, or one that rewards you for depositing money. You may also want to check if the account includes Visa or Mastercard debit services for easy online and face-to-face purchases.
|Company||Product Name||Monthly Fee||Interest Rate||No Withdrawal Fees|
|$0||0.01%||at NAB, Redi ATM's||Apply NowMore Info+ Shortlist|
|NAB's Classic Banking offers no monthly account fees ever (including no fees for going over-drawn) no minimum deposit and a Visa Debit card with payWave facility.|
|$0||0%||at Citibank, Westpac, St George, Bank of Melbourne, Bank SA ATM's||Apply NowMore Info+ Shortlist|
|Visa debit card, free withdrawals at over 3,000 ATM's in Australia, fee-free overseas purchases, free bottle of wine on the Citibank Dining Program|
|$0||0%||at HSBC, Westpac, St George, Bank of Melbourne, Bank SA||Apply NowMore Info+ Shortlist|
|HSBC's transaction account offers a monthly $20 credit (up to $100) in return for depositing a minimum of $5,000 (commonly your salary) for the first 5 months.|
|$5||0||at ANZ ATMs||Apply NowMore Info+ Shortlist|
|ANZ Access Advantage features a Visa Debit card, ANZ Falcon fraud monitoring and Visa PayWave for contactless payment|
|$5*||0%||at St George, Westpac, Bank SA ATM's||Apply NowMore Info+ Shortlist|
|Visa Debit card, *no monthly fee when depositing a minimum $2,000 each month, 10 free monthly SMS alerts to keep track of your balance|
|$0||0%||at any Aussie ATM when withdrawing $200 or more||Apply NowMore Info+ Shortlist|
|The Orange Everyday transaction account from ING DIRECT offers everyday banking with no everyday fees including no monthly fees and fee free Australian ATM use when you withdraw $200 or more.|
|$5*||3.10%||at BOM, St George, Westpac, Bank SA ATM's||Apply NowMore Info+ Shortlist|
|Bank of Melbourne Sense Account combines a transaction and saving account (a Sense Everyday and Sense Savings Account). *It offers no monthly fee if you deposit $2000 or more per month (salary, etc).|
|$5*||0%||at Westpac, St George, Bank of Melbourne & Bank SA ATM's||Apply NowMore Info+ Shortlist|
|Westpac Choice offers unlimited transactions with *no monthly service fees if you deposit $2,000 or more each month and optional debit MasterCard.|
A transaction account is an account that is used for everyday banking. Using this kind of account, you can arrange for your salary to be paid into it, bills to come out of it, and with a debit card or ATM card, you can withdraw money and make purchases.
Although most transaction accounts can look fairly similar, there are some differences to look out for. One of the most important things to think about is how much you will pay in fees. Many transaction accounts will charge a monthly service fee, and while it may not seem that much per month, it can really add up over time. Depositing a certain amount per month can waive the monthly service fee, or you could choose to bundle your banking products to save money as well.
Other fees to look out for are over-the-limit fees. If you have direct debits coming out of your account, or you have a linked debit card, it can be easy to go over your limit and spend more than there is in the account. Some providers can charge $10-$20 each time you go over the limit, so it's best to find out about this first and try not to go over.
You may also be charged ATM fees when you withdraw money at another banks' ATMs. Find out what ATMs you can use for free, and make sure there are plenty in your area. You may also want to check if there are unlimited transactions, or if you have to pay for withdrawals after a certain number of transactions. You may also be charged for over-the-counter transactions.
Accessibility is another important aspect. Because a transaction account will usually be the account you use most often, it's important to choose one that gives you easy access to your money and to your account information. Check whether there are phone banking and online banking options, and if you can set up direct debits to pay bills. You may also want the convenience of a Visa or MasterCard Debit, so you can use your debit card in the same way as a credit card but only using your own money.
Here is a quick checklist of what to compare when choosing a transaction account.
Look at monthly service fees, and if there is any way to have them waived, such as paying your salary into the account, or bundling other banking products.
Find out how much ATM fees will be, and check whether there are enough ATMs in your area. Other fees to watch out for are over-the-limit fees, foreign transaction fees, over-the-counter fees, and direct debit fees.
Be sure to choose an account that gives you sufficient access to your money. This includes depositing and withdrawing money, online and phone banking, and ATM or debit cards.
Visa or MasterCard Debit:
Having a debit card can really be useful, especially if you don't have or don't want a credit card. You will have the convenience of a credit card, but you will only be using your own money. This means no interest repayments, and no worrying about paying monthly bills.