Having complete, 24-7 access to your bank accounts can help you minimize risk and avoid financial mishaps.
Moving money today–whether you’re paying someone or buying goods and services–is easier than ever thanks to online banking, mobile banking, and payment service platforms. The more activity you authorize, however, the higher your risk for payment issues, overdrafts, and fraud.
For these reasons, having total visibility into your bank accounts is critical because it allows you to monitor transactions closely and keep watch for anything that might affect your account balances or impact your overall financial wellness.
At Chambers Bank, we work diligently to provide you with the tools and education you need to keep your accounts safe. In this article, you’ll learn why it’s important to have total visibility of your bank accounts and why it’s so important to regularly monitor your accounts.
How Often Should I Review My Bank Accounts?
While there’s no hard and fast rule for how often you should review your accounts, once per week or once every few days is probably a good idea. To that end, a benchmark study by Lexington Law found that 30% of respondents were reviewing their checking accounts once per week while 36% were doing so daily.
Regardless of how often you decide to monitor your accounts, consider this: If you’re trying to get a better handle on your spending habits or if you’ve had account issues such as overdrafts, excessive fees, or fraudulent activity–then the more often you review–the better. You can log in to your accounts anytime and anywhere using Chambers Online Banking or Chambers Mobile Banking. Just be sure you always use a secure internet connection.
What is Account Visibility?
To put it simply, account visibility is the degree you’re able to see your bank account information. If you have 100% visibility of all bank accounts, you will be able to:
- Access your accounts at any time.
- Know how much cash you have available.
- See interest rates on account balances, if applicable.
- Know your total debt and how much credit is available.
- Review all credits and debits applied to accounts, including interest and fees.
Chambers Online Banking and Mobile Banking are a few tools that give you 100% visibility of your Chambers bank accounts, but you can take visibility a step further and sign up for Personal Finance, Chambers Bank’s free digital money management platform. With it, you can see all of your accounts in one place (even external accounts) and utilize tools like budgeting, account aggregation, categorization, and mobile access.
Why is Account Visibility So Important?
Whether you have two accounts or ten, you’re likely paying bills and receiving income through at least one of them. And beyond your most active accounts, the rest of your accounts will likely have updates at least every month or quarter via interest earnings or fees–which is more than enough reason to monitor them regularly.
So without further ado, here are some key reasons why total visibility of your bank accounts is so important:
You can watch for fraudulent activity.
Seeing an unfamiliar purchase or withdrawal made against one of your bank accounts can be unnerving and downright scary. The first thought that may come to mind is “Did someone steal my debit card?” or “Is that online store I just bought those shoes from a spoof website?” The unfortunate reality is, that criminals can access your card and account information in many ways, from the use of card skimmers and video cameras to sophisticated telephone and internet scams.
With these kinds of risks looming, having full access to your accounts is critical to identifying unauthorized activity and stopping it before it causes you monetary loss or worse–a stolen identity.
For more information about safeguarding your Chambers Bank accounts, please read through our web page Protect Yourself & Your Finances.
You can keep track of your spending with ease.
If you’re a Gen Xer or from an earlier generation, you probably remember the old days of receiving paper bank account statements and balancing every transaction by hand once a month. While some individuals still manage their accounts in this manner (it’s still good to do once a month), many use online banking or mobile banking to check on their purchases and automatic withdrawals. This kind of visibility can help you decide whether you need to cut back on spending for the month or if you have enough cash available for additional purchases, debt repayment, or savings.
To make tracking your spending even easier, Chambers Bank has a tool called Bill Pay, which is a safe and secure way to pay bills automatically online. You can set up repeating payments, one-time payments, and even have Chambers Bank send paper checks on your behalf if the payee does not accept automatic payments. Additionally, you can request automatic email notifications to alert you every time a payment has been made. Now that’s visibility! To get started with Bill Pay, follow this link for set-up instructions.
Chambers Bank has another tool you may find useful if you’d like to pay friends and family online. Similar to apps like Venmo and CashApp, the Chambers People Pay tool is an easy and convenient way to pay someone through your Chambers account using their mobile number, bank account number, or email. It’s safe, secure, and available through Chambers Online Banking. To learn more about People Pay, follow this link.
You can avoid overdrafts and unnecessary bank fees.
Not checking your bank accounts regularly and not balancing your checking account can result in unnecessary spending on overdraft charges, late fees, and account transfer fees. This can happen easily if you use your debit card a few too many times, forget about automatic withdrawals, or get shorted a deposit you were expecting to receive. With banks and credit unions charging an average of $35 per overdraft, the costs add up fast if you’re on a tight budget.
By reviewing your checking account at least once a week, you’ll be able to see your balance and then determine what deposits are incoming and what withdrawals you have coming up next. If you’ve spent too much or a deposit won’t be in on time, you can move or deposit money far enough ahead of time to avoid an overdraft. In some cases, you may be able to contact a creditor and change the automatic payment date until you can realign your finances.
At Chambers Bank, your financial success is our financial success, and we are here to help you access the tools and resources you need to have total visibility of your banking accounts. For more information on how to manage your accounts better or how to use our free financial tools, please fill out our online form or contact our Customer Care Center at 1-800-603-1226.