A review of business checking options in the Sacramento area:
Banner Bank – $100 to open, no minimum balance, no monthly service charge, debit card, first 125 transactions free per month then .30 each, online bill pay $4 month plus .45 per transaction after first 10 free, deposits of more than $10,000 per month are .15 per $100. Sole proprietors can apply online. Locations in Sacramento, Rancho Cordova, Folsom, Rocklin and Elk Grove – but only Folsom and Elk Grove have ATMs.
First Bank – No monthly fee, no minimum balance, first 150 transactions fee, free online banking, bill pay and debit card. Locations and ATMs in Rancho Cordova and Roseville. Also some locations in San Francisco and outer Bay Area. Need to apply in branch.
WestAmerica Bank (for sole proprietors and when have at least five card transactions per month, otherwise $4). $200 to open, no minimum balance, no monthly fee, first 10 deposits free per month then $1.50 each, 25 free checks paid per month then .40 each. Locations in Sacramento and Rancho Cordova. Need to apply in branch.
Good Shot at Being Free
BOFA – $16 /month (highest of any bank for minimal business checking) but fee waived if spend $250 per month with a debit card. If necessary, have a fake product for $250 using your PayPal account you buy with your BOFA card. Then download the money from PayPal to your BOFA account. Easy free checking.
Fee Banks and Ridiculously High Minimums to Avoid Charges
Chase – $10 / month
Wells Fargo – $14 / month
Union Bank – $5 / month
River City Bank – $15 / month
Umpqua Bank – $7 / month
American River Bank – $10 / month
Five Star Bank – $15 / month
Bank of the West – $10 / month
El Dorado Savings Bank – $8 / month
Fees and offers continually change, but overall you can definitely save money by researching smaller banks. No sense paying a bank to hold your money and make even more money off that.