Even if you love your bank, credit union, or investment house to death, at some point, it’s probably occurred to you to shop around and look for a better place to stash your cash. And the younger you are, the more likely this is true.
According to a 2015 Accenture survey of more than 4,000 retail banking consumers in the United States and Canada, nearly 20% of millennials said they pulled the plug on their primary bank over the 12-month period prior to the survey, compared with 10% of consumers age 35-54 — but only 3% of people 55 and older.
While it’s true you may find better perks by switching between financial houses, there’s also the chance you’ll suffer from “the grass is greener” syndrome — in other words, you’ll never truly appreciate what you had till it’s gone.
Here are five surefire signs that the bank, credit union, or other institution you picked to put away your money for retirement (or your next vacation) is the right fit:
1: The Interest rate for savings plans can’t be beat. Every bank in the country supposedly offers a great interest rate for every type of loan, but to what extent is your beloved institution “telling” the truth? If you’ve used a lists like this one that compare different institutions’ interest rates, you know for certain.
2: ATMS are bountiful and free of surcharges. There’s nothing worse than needing just $20 but having to pay upwards of $5 in ATM fees — and risk skimming — to get it. If your financial institution has a wide footprint, and offers plenty of machines to take out cold, hard cash without paying cold, hard cash, you’re working with a winner.
3: Customer service is amazing. If you don’t know a darn thing about money markets, let alone the differences between a Roth and Traditional IRA account, having a team of friendly financial advisors is your lifeline to keeping your fortune intact. If the men and women who work with your bank, credit union, or other financial institution are helpful and can answer every question you have about your investments, savings, and money choices, you’ve got a great thing going!
4: Moving money is a cinch. The financial institution you’re using should have a great digital platform that allows you to make multiple transactions anytime and anywhere. If you can do just about everything from your mobile phone — like check deposit, cash transfers, and online bill pay — then you’re saving time and money.
5: You’re meeting your money goals. Banking should feel seamless, and enable you to make money, save for the future, and pay bills on time. While evaluating your current financial institution, ask yourself questions like: Is it easy to save money in a basic savings plan, or am I paying fees every time your account dips below $300? Are there rewards programs that allow me to make even more money or pay off my debt? Your answers to these questions can help you decide if your financial house is an asset or a headache.