Monday, January 25, 2021

Best Business Checking Accounts for 2021

Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Want to jump straight to the answer? My top pick for the best business checking account is Novo Bank or BlueVine

Your business needs a checking account.

Whether you’re running a large company or a side hustle, you’ll need to separate your business transactions from your personal finances.

For the most part, a business checking account functions very similarly to a personal checking account. However, business checking accounts typically have extra fees, minimum balance requirements, and monthly transaction limits.

So before you open a new account, it’s important that you find a bank that meets the needs of your business.

Top 11 Best Business Checking Accounts For 2021

There are hundreds, if not thousands, of business checking accounts on the market today.

From small local banks to large national chains and online-only banking, there are really only eleven accounts that I would consider.

The majority of these are free business checking accounts. Some do have a monthly fee, but it’s fairly easy to get those waived by meeting reasonable requirements.

I’ll give you an in-depth review of the top business checking accounts below. We’ll cover the top features, benefits, prices, and any potential drawbacks that should be taken into consideration.

The Best Business Checking Account Reviews

Novo – Best online-only business checking account for freelancers and entrepreneurs

Novo is an alternative to traditional banking. It’s an online-exclusive business checking account intended for freelancers and entrepreneurs.

They’re a straightforward solution with transparent pricing and no hidden fees. You can apply for a Novo account in less than ten minutes online.

These are some of the notable highlights for Novo business checking:

  • No minimum balance requirements
  • No monthly maintenance fees
  • Free ACH transfers
  • Free incoming wires
  • Free mailed checks

Novo lets you open a new business checking account with just $50.

This is a modern banking solution. You can integrate your account with Zapier, Xero, Slack, and other tools that your small business is currently using.

Since it’s online, you can’t walk into a physical branch. So if your business has in-person banking needs, then Novo isn’t for you. However, Novo will reimburse you for ATM fees imposed by other banks. So you’ll still be able to access cash from anywhere without paying an extra fee.

BlueVine – Best business checking for bootstrappy entrepreneurs

BlueVine Business Checking offers great accounts tailored for entrepreneurs.

Their features list is perfect for bootstrappy startups:

  • No monthly fees
  • No minimum deposits
  • No “non-sufficient funds” fees
  • Unlimited transactions
  • 1% interest rates

Easily set up one-time or recurring payments through their dashboard. Also, you’ll be able to easily pay vendors via ACH, wire, or check.

As for downsides, there aren’t many. They have a 38,000 ATM network—though it might be difficult to find an ATM within network depending on your location.

BlueVine also gives you live support, though advisors are only available during office hours. That’s Monday through Friday 8am – 8pm ET.

Axos Basic Business Checking – Best online-only business checking account with no monthly fees

Axos Basic Business Checking offers an excellent online-only checking service with zero monthly fees.

Some great features of the account:

  • $1,000 minimum opening deposit
  • No monthly fees
  • Up to 200 free transactions per cycle ($0.30 per transaction after)
  • Surcharge-free ATM network
  • Compatible with Quickbooks

The online and mobile banking solutions from Axos are exceptional, as you would expect from an online-exclusive bank. You can deposit a check from anywhere using your mobile device.

Overall, Axos Basic Business Checking is suitable for small business owners with modest banking needs.

Chase Business Complete BankingSM – Best checking account for small businesses

Chase Business Complete BankingSM is perfect for small business owners.

Top benefits and highlights of Chase Business Complete BankingSM include:

  • Earn $300 when you open a new Chase Business Complete Checking account. For new Chase business checking customers with qualifying activities.
  • More ways to waive fees. Multiple options to waive the Monthly Service Fee, including maintaining a minimum daily balance or purchases on your Chase Ink® Business credit card
  • Convenient access to payment processing. Accept card payments anytime, anywhere in the U.S., and get transparent pricing with Chase QuickAcceptSM.
  • Same-day deposits with QuickAccept. Free up the cash you need to keep your business moving forward with same-day deposits at no additional cost.
  • Alerts to help you stay on top of your account activity
  • Easy account management through Chase Business online and the Chase Mobile® app.
  • Unlimited electronic deposits, ACH and Chase Quick DepositSM
  • Convenient access to 16,000 ATMs and more than 4,700 branches

Chase also offers 24/7 customer service for customers. This is fantastic for those any issues, big or small, that might come up.

They offer the tools you need to manage your growing business, including some of the best business credit cards on the market today. Overall we find that Chase Business Complete BankingSM is one of the best checking accounts for small businesses.

Citizens Bank Clearly Better Business Checking – Best free business checking account with no minimum balance

For those of you seeking a free business checking account, look no further than Citizens Clearly Better Business Checking.

You won’t have to worry about meeting any minimum balance requirements because there are no maintenance fees. This makes Clearly Better Business Checking a top choice for business owners who maintain a lower bank balance.

Other top features include:

  • 200 free monthly transactions
  • Overdraft coverage
  • Dedicated business customer support
  • Online and mobile banking
  • Grant read-only controlled access to your account (for bookkeepers and accountants)

One potential drawback of Citizens Bank is its size. While the company has more than 1,000 branches and 3,100+ ATMs nationwide, most of them are located on the east coast. So if you’ll need to visit a branch, for anything, verify that there is a Citizens Bank near your business before opening an account.

Unlike other business checking accounts, Citizens does not offer a sign-up incentive for Clearly Better Business Checking.

TD Business Convenience Checking Plus – Best checking account with up to 500 free transactions a month

You can open a TD Business Convenience Checking Plus account with just $100. However, you’ll need to maintain a $1,500 daily balance to waive the $25 monthly maintenance fee.

If you link a personal checking account to your Business Checking Plus account, TD Bank counts your combined balance between the two accounts toward the daily minimum. So this is a great choice for business owners who already have an account at TD Bank.

Let’s review some of the account benefits:

  • 500 free transactions per month
  • Up to $5,000 in cash deposits per cycle
  • Overdraft protection
  • Online statements and mobile deposit
  • Up to four signers

While TD Business Convenience Checking Plus does have a high maintenance fee, you’ll benefit from more free monthly transactions. For comparison purposes, Chase Total Business Checking has a $15 fee for just 100 free transactions each month.

Plus, it’s easy to waive TD’s $25 fee by maintaining a low combined balance between two accounts.

Even though you’re limited to $5,000 free cash deposits each month, you’re only charged $0.25 per $100 thereafter. So an additional $5,000 cash deposited in a cycle ($10,000 total) would cost you $12.50. That’s just 0.13% of your deposits, which is next to nothing.

TD Bank gives you access to other services, like merchant solutions, business loans, and business lines of credit.

US Bank Silver Business Checking – Best free checking account for low transaction volumes

US Bank Silver Business Checking is 100% free. They do impose a $5 monthly fee for paper statements, but you can waive that charge by going paperless.

Here’s an overview of the account benefits:

  • 125 free transactions per month
  • Remote deposits
  • Overdraft protection
  • Mobile and online account access
  • 50% off first order of checks
  • Digital bill pay

One thing that needs to be taken into consideration is the strange wording US Bank uses to limit cash deposits. The account allows 25 “units” of free cash deposits each billing cycle.

After reading the fine print, you’ll learn that a unit is calculated by dividing each deposit by 100 and rounding the value to the closest whole number.

Here’s an example. Let’s say you deposit $920.

920 100 =9.2

Round 9.2 down to 9, and you just used 9 of your 25 credits for the month.

This credit system is a complex way of saying you’ll get up to $2,500 in free cash deposits each billing cycle. So if you’re making cash deposits on a regular basis, this account might not be the best option for you.

Huntington Unlimited Business Checking – Best business checking for large businesses with high cash flow

Huntington Unlimited Business Checking is a top option for larger organizations. If you have a higher monthly transaction volume, some of the other accounts on our list won’t fit your needs.

The top features and benefits of Unlimited Business Checking from Huntington include:

  • Unlimited transactions
  • Overdraft protection
  • Online and mobile banking
  • Free text and email alerts
  • Up to $10,000 free cash deposits each month

Huntington does charge a $20 monthly maintenance fee for this account. But it’s waived with a $10,000 combined balance between all of your eligible Huntington Bank accounts.

With an Unlimited Business Checking account, Huntington Bank allows you to choose one of the following bonus services as well:

  • Fraud tool
  • Huntington deposit scan (up to 50 per month)
  • 10% off payroll services
  • Two free incoming domestic wires per month
  • Returned deposited items (up to 25 per month)

This bank also has a tool called “The Hub” for business checking accounts. It comes with several digital tools for things like cash positioning and cash flow forecasting. The Hub is a great resource for managing your revenue and expenses.

Navy Federal Business Checking – Best business checking account for veterans

Navy Federal Business Checking is a top choice to consider if you or someone in your family is a member of the armed forces, National Guard, or DoD.

It’s a straightforward and basic account, best for startups with a low transaction volume.

The best part about this account is that it’s 100% free. You’ll never be charged a monthly maintenance or service fee.

Your first 30 non-electronic transactions are free. After that, it’s $0.25 for any in-branch deposits, withdrawals, or transfers. But you can deposit up to 12 checks at the same time, and it will count as a single transaction.

Another reason why I like Navy Federal Business Checking is because they have other banking solutions to meet your needs as the business grows. Once your banking activity increases, consider upgrading to:

  • Navy Federal Business Plus Checking
  • Navy Federal Business Premium Checking

Those accounts cost $8 and $20 per month, respectively. The Premium Checking maintenance fee is waived if you maintain a $5,000 daily balance.

BBVA Business Connect Checking – Best business banking for sole proprietors

BBVA has free banking solutions for small businesses. Sole proprietors can apply online for a BBVA Business Connect Checking account. Other business types need must apply at a branch.

Here’s an overview of the account advantages and highlights:

  • No monthly service charge
  • No minimum balance requirements
  • Free digital bill pay
  • Free online and mobile banking
  • $100 minimum opening deposit
  • $5,000 cash deposits per month at no charge

BBVA gives you free unlimited transactions every month, sort of. You’ll get two in-branch deposits, and five in-branch withdrawals or processed checks free each month. All other transactions are unlimited at no charge.

You’ll only find BBVA branches in the following states:

  • Alabama
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Florida
  • New Mexico
  • Texas

However, you’ll have access to a network of 55,000+ ATMs nationwide. That’s because BBVA is an Allpoint partner. There are no ATM fees at Allpoint ATMs and participating 7-Eleven locations.

Azlo Business Checking – Best online bank for freelancers accepting digital payments

Azlo Business Checking is a bit unique compared to the other options on our list. This online-only banking solution is made for freelancers and entrepreneurs.

The company is very straightforward in saying that they are not right for all businesses. Azlo doesn’t accept cash deposits or offer checkbooks. So it’s only suitable for businesses that send and receive digital payments.

With that said, the account definitely has its advantages:

  • No monthly fees
  • No minimum deposit
  • Unlimited transactions
  • Create and manage custom digital invoices
  • Pay vendors, freelancers, and yourself
  • Exceptional mobile banking app
  • Apply online in minutes

Azlo integrates with platforms like Stripe, PayPal, Square, QuickBooks, and Xero.

Overall, Azlo is a modern way for freelancers to access their banking needs online. But it’s definitely not suitable for everyone.

How to Find the Best Business Checking Account For You

All business checking accounts are not created equally. The best choice for one business might not be ideal for yours.

This is the methodology that you should use when you’re evaluating business checking accounts. I’ll explain each feature in greater detail below.


Service fees and monthly maintenance fees are common for business checking accounts. In most cases, these fees fall somewhere in the $10 to $50 range.

But there are still plenty of free business banking solutions. In fact, seven of the eleven accounts on our list don’t have monthly fees. While the remaining four contain fees, you can easily waive them by maintaining a minimum account balance.

There’s no reason to pay these fees if you can avoid them.

Balance Requirements

Some banks require a minimum opening deposit. So choose a bank with a reasonable opening deposit minimum based on your situation.

If you’re launching a startup and don’t have a ton of cash on hand, you can open some accounts with as little as $50 or $100. Some banks don’t require a minimum opening deposit at all.

In addition to the opening deposit requirement, some accounts will charge for you falling below a certain minimum daily balance. Make sure that your cash flow is enough to maintain your minimum requirements without getting penalized.

Transaction Limits

Personal checking accounts will rarely if ever, cap the number of transactions you can make in a billing cycle. But that’s not the case for most business checking accounts.

Depending on the bank, activities like deposits, withdrawals, and transfers count toward a monthly limit. Some banks will restrict the number of in-person transactions you can make while offering free unlimited electronic transactions.

For the most part, free monthly transaction limits start at 100. TD Business Convenience Checking allows for 500 free transactions per month. Other banks give you unlimited transactions, with a few contingencies.

You’ll pay a small fee for each transaction over your monthly limit. This is usually somewhere in the $0.25 to $0.50 range.

Mobile Banking and Online Accessibility

Every bank offers some way to access your account online or through a mobile app. But with that said, some of these digital solutions are definitely better than others.

Choose a business checking account that lets you deposit checks remotely, set up account alerts, and pay invoices automatically.

I do nearly all of my business banking from a mobile app, and I’m sure you’ll want that convenience as well.

Branch Locations

Some banks are region-specific, while others are large national chains. It’s important to choose a bank near your business location if you need to access a branch for anything.

However, there are several business checking accounts that are online-exclusive. These banks don’t have any physical locations. But those solutions aren’t for everyone. For example, if your business accepts cash, you’ll definitely need access to a physical branch for in-person deposits.

Online-only banking is very popular for freelancers and entrepreneurs working remotely and accepting digital payments.

Additional Banking Services

This may not be important to you immediately, but it’s nice to have a bank that will provide you with additional services as your business grows.

Whether it’s merchant services for credit card processing, additional accounts, or a business loan or line of credit, it’s easier to get these from a bank where you have an existing relationship.

Always look at what else a bank has to offer beyond your immediate checking account needs today.


Every business owner needs a business checking account. But everyone has different banking needs, which is why finding the best business checking solution can be difficult.

These are the top eleven best business checking accounts on the market today:

There’s an account for every type of business on this list. From freelancers and startups to small businesses and larger organizations with high transaction volumes, I’m confident that you can find a checking account from one of the options above.

from Quick Sprout