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Fifth Third Business Checking Review

Sally Lauckner

Sally is the managing editor at Fundera. Previously, she was a senior editor at SmartAsset, a personal finance startup, and has held various editorial roles at the Huffington Post and AOL.com. She is passionate about financial literacy and educating small business owners.
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If your business is in the Midwest or Mid-Atlantic, you’ve probably heard about Fifth Third business checking accounts. This regional bank offers a slew of personal and business checking accounts that come with all of the bells and whistles of a national bank, plus the personal touch of a smaller banking partner.

There are several Fifth Third business checking accounts to choose from, depending on the size of your business and your banking needs. Options start on the small size, which provides the essential tools any nascent business needs for keeping on top of its finances. Fifth Third offers even more support on the upper end of its business checking accounts, too, in case your business is big enough to require more support.

There’s a Fifth Third business checking account for your company, no matter your needs. Here’s an overview of what each Fifth Third business checking option provides, as well as what to look for in an account before you decide to apply.

Fifth Third Business Checking Accounts

There are three Fifth Third business checking accounts to choose from. Much like other business banking options, Fifth Third offers tiered accounts that are designed to help businesses depending on what kind of services they need, as well as how much money they intend to keep in their account on a daily basis.

Finding the right Fifth Third business checking account for your company largely depends on how you intend to use your account. If you’re just starting out (or only need basic checking account features), you’re better off choosing an account with lower fees and fewer services. On the other hand, if your business requires tons of banking support, you should begin your search on the higher end of the Fifth Third account options. Here’s an overview of each, and some recommendations about which one is right for your company.

1. Business Standard Checking Account

The Fifth Third Business Standard Checking Account is a straightforward, no-frills option that provides the standard features one might expect from a modern business checking account. There’s no minimum deposit required to open (which is true for all of Fifth Third’s business checking accounts), and you can avoid the account’s $11 monthly service fee with a balance of $3,500.

Fortunately, that $3,500 balance includes business checking, savings, and CDs, so you don’t need to keep the entire balance in your checking account in case you want to open a business savings account or business CD. Alternatively, you can also have your fee waived if you spend $500 or more per month with a Fifth Third business credit card, by opening a wealth management or Fifth Third Preferred Checking account, or if your company is a 501(c)(3) charitable nonprofit.

The Fifth Third Business Standard Checking Account provides you with 250 free transactions and $5,000 in cash deposits every month. You’ll also get a 20% savings on payroll services through Paycor—a comprehensive HR and payroll company for small- and medium-sized businesses. Plus, you’ll get a debit card, online banking and bill pay, and text alerts for activity on your account, which is the case across every Fifth Third business checking account.

2. Business Premium Checking Account

Fifth Third’s Business Premium Checking Account is the bank’s mid-range business checking option. For $25 a month, this account provides you with 450 free transactions and $10,000 cash deposits every month—and the monthly fee is waived with a $10,000 average daily balance across the same range of accounts as the Business Standard Checking Account.

One key advantage of the Fifth Third Business Premium Checking Account is its interest-bearing capabilities. You’ll earn interest on your checking account if you have a Fifth Third Business Relationship Savings account, which is their lingo for a linked business savings account that’s maintained and funded by your company. Opening a Business Premium Checking Account also entitles you to a fee-free personal Fifth Third Essential Checking account, which is available to every business signer on your company’s checking account.

3. Elite Checking Account

The Fifth Third Elite Checking Account is the bank’s premier-tier business checking option, which offers you 650 transactions and $25,000 in cash deposits every month. The account fee is an affordable $35 a month, which is waived if you maintain a monthly average balance of $25,000 across business checking, savings, and CDs with the bank. You can also avoid this fee through a Fifth Third business loan or business line of credit. Lastly, you can also save the $35 fee if you spend at least $500 a month on a Fifth Third business credit card and use either Fifth Third’s electronic deposit manager or cash management essentials programs.

And just like the Fifth Third Business Premium Checking Account, an Elite Checking Account provides you with a fee-free personal checking account for you and any other co-signer associated with your business. Plus, of course, a business debit card for your checking account and online banking.

fifth third business checking

What to Look for in a Fifth Third Business Checking Account

Now that you know what your options are for a Fifth Third business checking account, let’s get into the nitty-gritty about the factors to consider before applying for an account. Thankfully, most of the considerations you’d make for any Fifth Third account are the same you’d want to think about with any other business checking account provider. The real question is whether or not these factors align with the Fifth Third account that interests you, and whether or not any of them are the right fit for your needs.

Figure out Your Needs

This point may sound self-evident, but the first step in choosing the right business checking account for your company is to determine which features you need, and which ones you don’t. If you only need the basics from your account—such as deposits, transfers, and withdrawals—then it’s worth thinking about an account with fewer features, lower minimum balance requirements, and smaller fees. If, however, you intend to move around more money every month than a small account can provide, you’ll want to rule out the smaller options in favor of a checking account that can address your needs.

Assess Your Average Daily Balance

Your average daily balance plays a large role in determining which account is right for you. Your average daily balance is the mean amount of money in your account during a month. So long as your total cash in the account satisfies the account’s average daily balance, you won’t have to pay the monthly maintenance fee set by the bank.

If you choose an account with a high average daily balance requirement, you may end up having trouble keeping enough money in checking to avoid paying fees on your account. On the other hand, if you pick an account with a low average daily balance requirement—one you can clear easily every month—you may end up losing out on features and perks you’d otherwise get with a more robust account.

Build for the Future

Remember that you’re not just choosing a checking account for where your business is today. You also need to think about your company’s needs in the future. You should pick a bank that offers several checking accounts that will help you address your banking needs as your company expands. Changing banks is a large undertaking, particularly when your business is growing. But if you pick the right bank from the outset, you can upgrade your account as your needs change.

fifth third business checking

Fifth Third Business Checking Alternatives

Fifth Third business checking accounts are great options for businesses that fall into the middle or upper level of service requirements. But two accounts may offer a compelling reason to look elsewhere if you’re interested in Fifth Third’s entry-level business checking account. Here are two other accounts to consider if you’re looking for an alternative to Fifth Third business checking.

1. For Business Checking Basics: Chase Total Business Checking

Chase offers flexibility and convenience throughout their 5,100 branches and 16,000 ATMs nationwide (compared to Fifth Third’s 1,150 branches and nearly 2,500 ATMs). And with Chase Total Business Checking, you’ll get many of the same features as Fifth Third’s Business Standard Checking Account but can avoid the $15 monthly service fee with a lower minimum average balance of only $1,500.

Chase Total Business Checking gives you 100 free transactions and $5,000 in cash deposits every month for free. Plus, you’ll also be able to accept and submit international wire transfers—albeit at a fee. This is something that Fifth Third bank doesn’t spell out in their accounts, which is worth noting if you do any business overseas. Plus you’ll get a $200 bonus just for signing up through our site.

2. For the Digital-Centric Small Business: Azlo Business Checking

Azlo is a digital-only bank, meaning that there are no physical branches and no Azlo-branded ATMs. But in exchange for doing all of your banking online, Azlo offers you a slew of free features that Fifth Third business checking doesn’t. Namely, we’re talking about unlimited deposits, withdrawals, and transfers. You can access your cash for free at any affiliated ATM within their network (which Azlo spells out in their mobile app) in case you want to grab cash from your account. Plus, you can integrate your Azlo Business Checking account with Stripe and Square, in case your business deals in credit card transactions.

Azlo’s signup process is entirely online as well, which means you can save a trip to a bank branch when applying for an account. You’ll still have email and phone support in case you have any questions or issues with your bank account, and can still accept check deposits from clients via the mobile app. A word of caution, though: If you deal mostly in cash or need to cut checks, Azlo may not be the bank for you. There’s no support for cash deposits and no physical checks. If either of those items are part of your daily operations, you might want to go with a more conventional bank.

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No matter which account is right for you—whether it’s a Fifth Third business checking account, or another option, there are plenty of factors and options to consider. Pick a bank that gives you the services you need right now for your small business but also offers beneficial accounts in the event that your relationship with your bank needs to expand.

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.

Sally Lauckner

Sally is the managing editor at Fundera. Previously, she was a senior editor at SmartAsset, a personal finance startup, and has held various editorial roles at the Huffington Post and AOL.com. She is passionate about financial literacy and educating small business owners.

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