As more and more people retire, it seems like many banks are still treating seniors and retirees as a niche market, even though they represent 70 percent of bank balance holders in the United States. Even though millennials represent a similar number of customers, they only hold $1 out of every $11 deposited in a checking or savings account today.1
The way we see it, seniors don’t only represent a major percentage of customers, they also hold the largest amount of wealth in the United States today. This is why many banks are offering seniors targeted accounts to try and retain them as customers into their retirement and beyond. Many of these senior-targeted checking accounts offer perks that are designed to appeal to senior’s needs, like free checks and a low requirement amount to avoid monthly fees.2
If you’re 55 years of age or older, it definitely pays to explore your options for checking accounts targeted towards seniors and compare them with any existing bank accounts you own. Some of the best options are listed below.
TD Bank TD 60 Plus Checking
To appeal to seniors and retirees who are over the age of 60, TD Bank now offers the TD 60 Plus Checking account. It allows you to earn interest on your account balance. Even better, it only takes a balance of $250 for the bank to waive all monthly fees. If for some reason you empty out the account and have less than $250, the monthly fee is still only $10. All checks, money orders, and paper statements are free, which is a nice perk considering most other checking accounts from TD charge full price for checks after your initial order.
With the TD 60 Plus Checking account, you can choose to bank online or use the free paper statements to do your banking over the phone or by mail. You don’t need a single dollar to register for this account and as soon as you’ve got the account, you become eligible for a 0.25 percent rate discount on home equity and personal loans. Plus, with 0.05 percent APY interest, your money is working for you.3
Charles Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking
Although designed to appeal to a wide section of the population, Charles Schwab Bank’s High Yield Investor Checking account remains a great option for seniors. The account includes 0.40 percent APY interest, with a monthly fee of $0. You don’t even need to hold a minimum balance in order to avoid fees. Plus, all standard checks are free. Moreover, you’ll get a Schwab Bank Visa Platinum Debit card for free as soon as you sign up.
This account is great for people who don’t live in close proximity to a Charles Schwab Bank. You can use the debit card attached to this account on any ATM and the bank will refund all your ATM fees charged to you by other banks. If you take out cash more than twice a week, this could save you between $16 and $36 every month.4
Travis Credit Union Silver Wings Checking
Travis Credit Union offers a wide variety of savings accounts, including their Silver Wings Checking account which specifically targeted to customers over the age of 60. Like all their regular checking accounts, you only need $1 to open an account. Even better, there’s no monthly balance and monthly fee required.
Regardless of your monthly balance, account holders are eligible to earn dividends if they’ve signed up for a Silver Wings Checking account. Unlike their dividend checking account or their investor checking account, Silver Wings checking account holders earn dividends without needing to maintain a minimum monthly balance.
Considering that the Silver Wings account includes free overdraft transfer fees, free checks, and protections like ID theft assistance and 24-hour a day phone banking, it’s a pretty good deal.
This account also comes with free e-statements, and you can choose to bank online or on mobile with their free app for both iOS and Android devices.5
U.S. Bank Gold Checking Account
Another checking account that’s loaded with perks is the Gold Checking Account from U.S. Bank. While it’s not specifically targeted towards seniors, it offers a low monthly maintenance fee of $14.95 that’s waived if you have another U.S. Bank product, such as a personal loan or credit card.
It will also help you save on a mortgage if you’re looking at selling your existing home and downsizing to an apartment or condo. You can take 0.25 percent off the home loan amount and deduct it from your closing costs up to a maximum of $1,000.
If you’re sharing an account with a spouse, U.S. Bank makes it easy to get up to two additional Easy Checking accounts. As long as you’re the co-owner of the account, you won’t be charged any additional monthly fees. Your account also includes a U.S. Bank Visa Debit card and free online and mobile banking, but there are plenty of brick-and-mortar U.S. Bank locations spread across the United States if you’d prefer to do your banking in person.6
As you reach your senior years and start thinking about retirement, it pays to consider all your options for checking accounts.
While most of the checking accounts that we’ve profiled today don’t charge monthly fees, there are still some perks that will cost extra depending on your banking habits. If you’re looking to change your banking institution or move your money into a different account, it pays to think ahead and identify which perks you’re interested in. That way, you can prioritize an institution that gives you exactly what you need.
You’ve worked hard for your money. Now, it should be working hard for you.