Minimum Opening Balance Requirement
Almost half of all banks required an initial deposit of $100 or more to open a basic checking account. On the most basic or entry-level checking account, 6 percent of banks required a minimum opening balance of more than $100 and 42 percent required precisely $100 on accounts without direct deposit. Forty-eight percent of banks required $50 or less to open such an account.
Monthly Maintenance Fees for Basic Entry-Level Checking Accounts
Nearly two-thirds of banks charged no monthly maintenance fees on basic checking accounts, though one in five charged more than $3 per month on accounts without direct deposit. Regardless of whether a bank had products and services that specifically targeted unbanked and underbanked consumers, respondents were asked to indicate the features and fees for their most basic or entry-level checking accounts. Sixty-five percent of banks charged no monthly maintenance fees, 10 percent charged fees of between $1 and $3, and 22 percent charged fees in excess of $3. On checking accounts with direct deposit, 72 percent of banks charged no maintenance fee. Among those that charged a fee, the median monthly amount was $5 for accounts with and without direct deposit.