Having multiple bank accounts can be a great financial move. It gives you options for controlling or segmenting your spending, saving toward multiple goals and keeping those amounts separate, and keeping both a joint and individual account for managing household finances. Luckily, nearly every bank will let you open two bank accounts. Not only can you set them both up when you first sign up, but you can also add a secondary account later. However, there are also risks if you use this approach. If you are considering opening two bank accounts from the same bank, here’s what you need to know.
Benefits of Opening Two Bank Accounts from the Same Bank
When you have more than one account with the same bank, you get a variety of benefits. First and foremost, it is incredibly convenient. All of your money is in one place, so you’ll have one bank to deal with if you need help. You might find that you really enjoy the customer service at one bank and want to stay with them too. States like Texas are known for their hospitality so finding your lone star bank might provide you with some of the best customer service around.
Plus, your transfers between accounts may be instantaneous, which can be helpful. For example, if your checking account is low and you have money in savings, you can shift money from your savings to your checking to handle an unexpected emergency. Potentially, the cash will move in seconds, which is great if you can’t afford to wait.
If you are considering two savings accounts, you could use each one for a different purpose. For example, one could hold your emergency fund while the other is used to build up cash for a major purchase or vacation. This can make it easier to track the purpose of your money, which is great for budgeting, too.
Risks of Keeping All of Your Money with One Financial Institution
When you have multiple accounts with one bank and don’t maintain a checking or savings account with another institution, there are some potential risks. If your bank experiences a technical issue, you might not be able to view or use any of your accounts, and that could put you in a bind. While this would certainly be a rare occurrence, it’s important to understand that it could happen.
If you have a substantial amount of money, you may also exceed the insurance limits. At banks, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) insures each account holder for up to $250,000, not each account. That means, if the total of your two accounts is above $250,000 together, you aren’t fully insured. The excess wouldn’t be covered, so you could lose it if an incident occurred.
No More Than $250K
However, if you put those two accounts in separate banks, as long as each bank holds no more than $250,000, your money is fully insured. As a result, you would be safer using more than one institution if your total savings and checking account balances would exceed that amount.
Ultimately, whether you open two accounts with the same bank or separate them by using more than one bank is a personal decision. Just make sure you are comfortable with the risks if you proceed.
Have you opened two bank accounts at the same bank? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.
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