Can you have two checking accounts at the same bank?
- Banks will allow you to open more than one current account at the same time.
- Multiple checking accounts can be ideal for couples or parents.
- Keep track of minimum account balance requirements if your bank charges monthly service fees.
Banks allow you to have more than one current account at the same time. There are no restrictions in place on the number of accounts you can open at a financial institution.
But is it a wise decision to open several accounts in the same bank? Here’s how to determine if it’s worth exploring for your situation.
Who should consider opening two checking accounts?
First, you’ll want to assess whether opening multiple
is an appropriate option.
Grace Yung, CFP® professional and managing director of Midtown Financial Group, says it can work for couples.
“Often, couples have joint checking accounts because, naturally, it makes sense for them to share expenses,” Yung says. “That’s great, but I strongly believe that everyone should have their own individual account as well.”
You can open a second checking account for personal purposes and use the account without having to discuss withdrawals or deposits with another person, adds Yung.
Parents might also consider opening a checking account with their teens to teach them about money.
“It teaches your kids lessons in how to manage their finances,” Yung says. “Unfortunately, many schools don’t teach the basics of money management. That’s one of the reasons we see people writing bad checks or being hit with overdraft charges.”
If you are opening a checking account for a minor, most financial institutions will specify that an adult must open the account with the minor. Financial institutions may set age limits for teen checking accounts. Generally, banks require that the child be at least 13 years old.
Advantages and disadvantages of opening two current accounts in the same bank
Yung says opening checking accounts at the same bank can be convenient since you’re establishing a banking relationship.
Banks often reward customers who apply for multiple banking products. You can earn higher interest rates on savings accounts or waive monthly service fees on other bank accounts.
Relationship banking can also help you achieve long-term goals, like applying for a car loan or a mortgage.
However, Yung also notes that it’s also good to have relationships with multiple financial institutions, so you have more flexibility.
“A good recent example of this is when PPP first appeared. Existing customers of financial institutions received privileged service and access,” Yung adds.
How to manage multiple checking accounts
Yung says having multiple checking accounts can be an effective way to manage overall cash flow. You can assign a specific purpose to each current account – one account for fixed expenses and another for miscellaneous expenses.
Depending on your bank, you will want to be aware of bank charges. Several brick-and-mortar banks charge monthly service fees if you don’t maintain a specific daily account balance. Yung advises keeping track of minimum balance requirements to avoid monthly service charges.
Yung also says you might consider adding payees to your bank account.
When a joint bank account holder dies, the surviving holder can take full control of a bank account. However, if you assign a beneficiary, both the surviving owner and the beneficiary will have access to the bank account.