Online-only banks provide consumers with a number of advantages over standard brick and mortar banks. Here are a few of the most compelling reasons to switch to a virtual bank.
The End of Bank Fees
Because virtual banks have lower overhead expenses compared to banks that still need to support physical locations, bank fees are becoming a thing of the past. Virtual banks charge far lower fees than standard banks and, depending on the type of service, may charge no fee at all.
Make More Money on Your Money
As a complement to lower bank fees, virtual banks also promise much higher interest rates. It's not uncommon for online-only banks to give savings account holders 1% to 2% interest on their invested funds. Compare that to the 0.1% you're likely to get from a brick and mortar bank. This may not seem like a major increase, but consider that 0.1% interest on a $10,000 balance is $10, whereas a 2% return would net you $200.
Free ATM Use
A virtual bank has no physical branches. Instead, they rely on ATMs for customer deposits and withdrawals. Usually, they'll partner with a network of ATMs, like Pulse or Cirrus, and then allow their customer's unlimited free use of any location within that network. Free ATM transactions are another way that virtual banks save their customer's money.
Industry-Leading Mobile Banking
Brick and mortar banks are still playing catchup to online-only banks in terms of the functionality and ease of use of their mobile banking apps. Virtual banks have, out of necessity, made major investments in their entire online services infrastructure, which includes their mobile apps. As a result, virtual banks offer some of the most robust, feature-rich, and secure mobile banking platforms available.
24/7 Customer Support
Many virtual banks make up for their lack of a physical location where customers can go to talk in person with an account advisor by offering live customer support 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Depending on the bank, this may include online chat support, phone support, or both. Having access to account help around the clock can be a huge boon to customers.
Internet banks take online security very seriously because they know the internet is involved in every single action a customer makes. So virtual banks offer some of the strongest, most complete security available in the banking industry.
Virtual Banking May Be For You
If these advantages sound like something that would work for you, compare multiple providers to find the best deal.
About: Mr. Rory Brown has focused on financial technology and investment management for 30+ years. Rory Brown is currently working on a new app that will help consumers navigate online banking. The app will connect clients with the best virtual banks in the world, where they can get comparisons on rates for home loans, auto loans, and more.
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