It Might Be Time to Change Financial Institutions; Here’s How

June 17, 2021

There are many reasons for wanting a new financial institution, such as paying less fees, having digital account management options, or accessing more in-network ATMs. When selecting a new financial institution, these steps can help make the transition a smooth one. Here’s where to start.
Decide where to put your money
Determine what types of accounts will work best for your funds. With so many options, it’s helpful to have a checklist of things to look for when comparing institutions. Consider the following:
  • Fees for minimum daily balance, monthly balance, and maintenance
  • Interest rates on loans and dividends on savings products
  • Free access to online and mobile account management services
  • Number of branch and ATM locations
List auto payments and deposits
If you have automated bill payments, direct deposit, and recurring transfers, make sure that you properly switch over those transactions to your new account. It’s good practice to make a note of any places your current account is linked, such as a mobile wallet app, and update those as well.
If you’ve enrolled in text or email alert services or other notifications with your current financial institution, turn those off. You should also cancel auto-refills for paper checks. But don’t close your account just yet; you still need to make sure all of your remaining automatic payments, outstanding checks, and debit transactions have cleared.
Open your new account
Once you’ve selected your new institution, you may be able to open your account through their mobile app, which can take just a few minutes. If you prefer talking to an employee, visit a branch or open your account over the phone.
To open new accounts, you will need the following information: 
  • Legal name
  • Date of birth
  • Social Security number
  • Email address
  • Mailing address
  • Phone number
  • Driver’s license number or other I.D. number
Next, you’ll need to provide your new financial institution with your account number and routing number of your current financial institution. Once you have your accounts set up, enroll in your new institution’s online account management system and mobile app. Then set up your automatic bill payments, direct deposits, and reoccurring transfers. 
Finally, once you’re satisfied that all outstanding transactions have cleared your old account, the last step is to close it. Depending on the institution, you may be able to do this in person, online, or over the phone.

Tags: Financial Faceoffs, Money Management, Borrowing Money