There are various reasons why someone might have several banking accounts open at the same time. One reason is that these are different types of accounts, such as a checking and a savings account. But sometimes people also have multiples of the same type as well, such as more than one online savings account. For example, they may have one for personal finances and one for business, or keep a long-term account open for their children aside from a more active alternative.
But you can also wind up with too many open savings accounts. This can cause a headache in terms of regulations and paperwork. You can wind up paying different fines and fees to different entities, and finding it harder to keep track of the changing terms of each account. In this case, you’ll want to consolidate down to one online savings account.
First, you have to choose which accounts to close and which bank to stay with. This can come down to practical matters, such as location and customer service features. In terms of an online savings account, in particular, you want to make sure the bank’s website is user-friendly and highly maintained – and that it possesses all of the security measures necessary to protect your money from hackers and identity thieves.
You should definitely take stock of the progress and perks of each open account. You’ll want to see which bank is offering you strong interest rates and additional loyalty benefits. The key word here is “savings,” so looking at what will save you the most money in the long term might just be your absolute bottom line in decision-making.
Other variables to consider include how difficult and costly it might be to close an online savings account. In some cases, you may need to wait until the end of an agreement period before you can close out the account – or it may cost you a stiff penalty, such as a percentage of the total you have saved. You might also earn a mark against your history with that bank for closing out an account at an inopportune time, which will hurt if you plan to work with them again in the future or still have business with that bank.
On the other hand, you may just have a strong loyalty toward one bank or another based on prior experience. By talking to your banks and explaining your agenda, they can usually explain the benefits of staying with them through clear-cut comparisons between their bank and other banks; they may even make you a special offer to stay with them. This meeting can answer a lot of your questions, inform you and alleviate any concerns.