The Best Business Checking Account for Your LLC: How to Find and Choose One

Meredith Wood

Meredith Wood

Editor-in-Chief at Fundera
Meredith is Editor-in-Chief at Fundera. Specializing in financial advice for small business owners, Meredith is a current and past contributor to Yahoo!, Amex OPEN Forum, Fox Business, SCORE, AllBusiness and more.
Meredith Wood
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We all have a favorite personal bank—perhaps the one you grew up using or wherever you had your first bank account. But when you need to choose the best business checking account for your LLC, pure loyalty simply isn’t enough. There’s actually a lot that goes into this decision, since where you set up your business bank account for the LLC you’ve just established could affect your business operations.

Hang on as you look to open a business checking account for your LLC at your long-standing personal bank. You’ll be happy that you first weighed important factors—including your business needs, and how you plan to manage your finances day to day.

If you take the time to shop around for the best business checking accounts for your LLC, you’ll be able to make a choice that’s maybe better than what you expected. That’s because some business checking accounts offer more benefits and fewer (or no) hefty fees that can be associated with some business checking accounts.

Here’s what to look for in the best business checking account for your LLC:

3 Important Factors to Identify the Best Business Checking Account for Your LLC

Banks have their specialties and offer products designed for certain types of small businesses. With that in mind, what should you be looking for to determine the best business checking account for your LLC?

That depends on the needs of your LLC. That said, you can use a few basic benchmarks to compare business checking accounts against each other. These criteria will help you determine the account that’ll be the best fit for your LLC:

1. Free Checking Account Option—or the Ability to Waive Fees

Although banks used to pay you in the form of interest to keep your money with them in a business bank account, that’s not quite the case any longer. It’s much more common now to find yourself as the customer paying the bank for the privilege of doing business with them. This is especially true for business checking accounts, which often come with monthly fees that can add up over time to be a significant business expense.

But that’s not always the case. Free business checking accounts do still exist. And there are other ways to get around fees, too, that’ll allow a checking account with a fee to become free for your business.

As you’re shopping around, keep in mind that business checking accounts that appear costly on the surface can actually become free checking accounts for your LLC with a fee waiver, provided that you meet certain requirements set by the bank. This often includes minimum balances, or limits on transactions.

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2. Terms That Match Your Business Situation

Finding the best business checking account for your LLC without paying a fee that’ll cut into your LLC’s bottom line ultimately comes down to one key factor. You have to choose the business checking account option that’s set up best for your business’s particular situation.

For instance, if you do most of your business in cash, you’ll want a business bank account that has brick-and-mortar branches for deposits. Or, if you do a high volume of transactions, you want to make certain that you’re not going to go over your limit each month. Or, if you’re completely new to business and aren’t sure about being able to maintain a minimum balance, there’s a business checking account that’s best for your LLC, too.

However, you’ll have to carefully consider your business’s circumstances as you shop around to make sure that the way you do business on the regular is a good fit with the terms and requirements of the bank you decide to partner with.

3. Long-Term Fit

When you’re in the process of choosing the best business checking account for your LLC, you have to think about growth. It’s important to consider not only the right account for your businesses circumstances right now, but also how a given bank or checking account will match your needs down the line.

Setting up accounts and building a relationship with a new bank can be a time-consuming process. There may also be fees involved when switching from bank to bank. To avoid making frequent changes, try to think about the future needs of your business as well as your current circumstances to make sure that the checking account you choose will be a good, long-term fit.

Compare the Best Business Checking Accounts for Your LLC

Now you know what you’re looking for in a business checking account for your LLC. Here are details on five options, so you can make the best choice for your business:

1. Chase

→A Great Fit for: Small LLCs and Side Businesses

If you operate your LLC as a side business—or if you’re just starting out and have a slow trajectory of growth—the high minimum balance requirement of some other business checking accounts might be unrealistic for your stage of business.

This is exactly the circumstance in which a business checking account from Chase Bank may be a perfect fit.

Chase Bank offers three business checking accounts for LLCs:

  • Total Business Checking
  • Performance Building Checking
  • Platinum Business Checking

Particularly if you’re a small- or low-income LLC, the Total Business Checking Account might be a great fit for you because of the low monthly fee and smaller minimum balance requirement compared with other business checking account options.

The Total Business Checking Account from Chase costs just $15 a month, but that fee is waived if you maintain a minimum daily balance of $1,500. This is the lowest balance required by any bank for waiving the monthly fee. You’re not going to find a better deal out there for a small LLC that’s just starting out and doesn’t yet have the cash flow to keep in the bank.

With the Total Business Checking, you also get 200 transactions a month and deposit $7,500 in cash without paying extra. And, for a limited time, Chase is offering the opportunity to earn an extra $200 bonus for opening a new Chase business checking account. You can see offer details and apply right here to claim it if you’d like.

Other LLC Benefits from Chase Bank

If you choose to get your business checking account for your LLC from Chase, you’ll also have access to some of the best business credit cards on the market.

Through your business checking account from Chase, you’re building rapport and financial history with a credit card provider that offers a ton of benefits with their cards. For example, the Chase Business Ink Preferred card offers:

  • An 80,000 point sign-up bonus
  • Approval for credit scores starting around 660
  • Earn 1 to 3 points per dollar spent
  • Potential to earn substantial cash back

Because it offers all of these benefits for a small $95 annual fee (waived in the first year), the Chase Business Ink Preferred card is considered one of the best business cards on the market. It’s a huge perk of choosing a Chase business checking account for your LLC.

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2. Capital One

→A Great Fit for: LLCs with Lots of Transactions

Some banks have a pretty small limit for the number of transactions that can be processed per month before you start seeing fees added. When you run a business that processes a substantial number of transactions at a low dollar amount for each sale, these fees can quickly add up. To a significant expense.

If that’s the case, the best business checking account for your LLC might be from Capital One.

There are two options for business checking accounts from Capital One:

The best part of these two accounts is both offer you an unlimited number of transactions for free. The Spark Basic has a monthly fee of $14, and the Spark Unlimited has a $35 fee.

Depending on the size of your LLC, you might want to go for the more robust option, Spark Business Unlimited Checking. This business checking account from Capital One offers your LLC unlimited transactions, no fee for cash deposits up to $40,000 per month, and waiving of the monthly fee if your 30- or 90-day account balances average $25,000. With the Spark Business Unlimited, you also get two Spark Business Basic Checking accounts for free.

If your business doesn’t quite have the cash flow described above, the Spark Business Basic Checking account still offers you unlimited transactions for a lower monthly fee and waiver requirements.

Other LLC Benefits from Capital One

Capital One has a great focus on small businesses. That makes it a fantastic option for any LLC that’s just getting started. With Capital One, you’ll also gain access to their Spark Business IQ, a resource for entrepreneurs in how to manage their business.

They also have a really robust suite of credit card products, including the five Capital One Spark Business Credit Cards. They offer tons of rewards, no matter what your business is looking for—whether you need to build or rebuild credit, or are looking for major cash back.

With a focus on small business and the ability to tailor products to different industries, if you’re a new entrepreneur or have just started your LLC, Capital One is a great option to consider.

3. Bank of America

→A Great Fit for: LLCs with Cash Deposits

Are you opening a brick-and-mortar retail location that often deals in cash? If so, keep that in mind when choosing the best business checking account for your LLC.

Some banks carry big fees for cash deposits, and those can add up over time. To avoid mounting fees for cash deposits, consider Bank of America as a strong possibility for your business checking account needs.

Bank of America has two options that are available to LLC business owners:

Of these two accounts, the best one for an LLC that makes a lot of cash deposits is the Business Fundamentals account. Business Fundamentals lets your LLC deposit up to $10,000 a month for free. After $10,000, there’s a 0.2% fee on each deposit. After $25,000, there’s a 0.3% fee on each deposit.

The Business Fundamentals business checking account from Bank of America has a monthly fee of $18. But you can easily get this fee waived by doing any one of these things:

  • Charge at least $250 per month on a Bank of America business debit or credit card.
  • Maintain an average monthly balance of more than $5,000.
  • Keep a minimum daily balance of at least $3,000.
  • Have a combined average in linked Bank of America accounts of $15,000 or more.

Any one of these steps will qualify you for a free business checking account from Bank of America with no monthly fee. And these all happen to be steps that financial experts recommend in order to maintain the general financial health of your business.

What the Business Fundamentals account does best is offer LLC owners a business checking account with the lowest fees on cash deposits of any bank. If your LLC deals primarily in cash, this is the best business checking account for your LLC.

Other LLC Benefits from Bank of America

One of the reasons that Bank of America stands out as great for LLC businesses is that they make it so easy to waive the monthly fee for a business checking account. You have four options for how to waive the fee and all of them are pretty simple to achieve, even for a small or newer LLC.

With Bank of America, you also get access to Clover Solutions, their point-of-sale devices that are designed to make running your business more efficient.

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4. Wells Fargo

→A Great Fit for: Small but Growing LLCs

There are a lot of factors to consider when choosing the best business checking account for your LLC. But when you’re evaluating a bank partner as a fast growing business, things can become even more confusing. What seems like a good fit for your business now may not be the ideal fit six months from now—or even sooner.

For businesses on a fast trajectory of growth, there are several reasons to look to Wells Fargo as an ideal banking partner.

Wells Fargo offers LLC’s four different options for a business checking accounts:

As you can see, one of the best perks of opening a Wells Fargo business checking account for your LLC is having multiple options within one bank. This makes it easy for your business to grow, using different types of business checking accounts from Wells Fargo to fit each stage of your business.

If your LLC primarily deals in cash, the Business Choice Checking account from Wells Fargo is the best business checking account for your LLC. One of the major benefits of the Business Choice Checking from Wells Fargo is that it makes it easy to deal with cash.

The account has a $14 monthly fee, but don’t discount it right off as a free checking account option. This monthly fee can easily be waived if you maintain an average balance of $7,500 or a balance of $10,000 over multiple Wells Fargo accounts.

The Business Choice Checking account also allows you to deposit up to $7,500 cash per month, which is almost double what most checking accounts allow without an additional fee. Anything over that amount costs just $0.30 per $100. Each month, your first 200 transactions are free, with a small fee of $0.50 per transaction above that limit.

Other LLC Benefits from Wells Fargo

More than just offering great business checking accounts for your LLC, Wells Fargo is also one of the biggest lenders out there. In fact, Wells Fargo is among the most active SBA lenders in the United States.

So, not only does Wells Fargo offer great lending options as LLC business loans, they also have the highest access to SBA loans, which is considered the best small business loan product on the market. Knowing this will help you make your decision as to which is the best business checking account for your LLC because it’s always nice to know that there’s room to grow. This makes Wells Fargo a great fit for smaller and cash-based LLCs with aspirations to grow into a larger business.

By having a business bank account with Well Fargo, you’re beginning to build credit with a potential lender. Pay your bills on time, maintain a significant balance, and show strong borrowing history, and when you’re in need of a loan, Wells Fargo will be far more likely to have a strong lending option available to your business.

5. Azlo

→A Great Fit for: Online-Based LLCs

If your business generates its revenue solely through digital transactions—and you’re more than happy never to set foot in a brick-and-mortar bank again—check out Azlo Business Checking. This all-digital checking account doesn’t come with the wide-ranging suite of financing products you’d find at your local bank, but it’s simple, straightforward, and completely free to use. All Azlo accounts are backed by BBVA Compass Bank, so all accounts are FDIC-insured.

Unlike the other banks on this list, Azlo only offers one checking account option. Sure, that gives users less freedom to pick and choose their product, but that single option makes the occasionally complicated process of finding a checking account a lot easier. And, truth be told, most LLCs (or any other types of small businesses, for that matter) don’t have the desire, or the bandwidth, to slog through all that fine print.

Some key features of Azlo’s checking accounts include:

  • Free bank-to-bank ACH transfers (domestic banks only, with free international transfers coming soon)
  • Free debit card with free ATM access at select ATMS, and no foreign transaction fees
  • Mobile check deposit
  • Receive domestic and international wires for free
  • No minimum balance requirement
  • A fast and free signup process

Other LLC Benefits from Azlo

When you sign up for Azlo’s checking account, you’ll have access to a few supplementary tools that help small business owners more efficiently track and manage their accounts, like:

  • Create and send invoices to request payment instantly
  • Connect your business’s Stripe payment processing system (other providers are coming soon)
  • Electronic bill payment  
  • Pay others via mail with digital checks
  • Instant, free payments between Azlo users

As you can probably tell, what unites all these features is that they’re all completely free. Of course, Azlo is limited in its offerings—it doesn’t offer a savings account, a business credit card, investment options, or any of the other myriad options that a traditional bank can. And if you hope to secure a small business loan from your bank, a relationship with Azlo won’t help you out.

But that’s also what makes Azlo so simple: One product, totally free, and no hoops to jump through to use it. So, if your business makes all of its money through online payments, you don’t mind managing your bank account solely online, and you don’t have the time or energy to sort through tons of checking account options—and you don’t want to pay for your transactions, either—then Azlo is the right business checking account for your LLC.

Choosing the Best Business Checking Account for Your LLC

No matter how you do business, how old your LLC is, or what your financial history says about your business, there is a business checking account that’s right for your LLC.

When choosing your business bank account:

  • Take the time to analyze how your LLC does business now as well as how you plan to grow.
  • Match it to the business checking account that will work best for you.
  • Take care to reduce the fees your business is paying in checking.
  • And think about other products you might want available, too, like credit cards or small business loans, since you’re building a relationship with a bank.

Ultimately, it’s most important to remember that when it comes to choosing a business checking account for your LLC, you are the customer. If you’re not happy with your original choice or find that you outgrow the provisions of a certain account, you always have the option to take your business elsewhere.

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.
Meredith Wood

Meredith Wood

Editor-in-Chief at Fundera
Meredith is Editor-in-Chief at Fundera. Specializing in financial advice for small business owners, Meredith is a current and past contributor to Yahoo!, Amex OPEN Forum, Fox Business, SCORE, AllBusiness and more.
Meredith Wood

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