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  1. #1
    Ken Bates's Avatar
    Ken Bates Guest

    Angry Banking--Business or Personal Account?

    Do you deposit your fees in a Business or Personal checking acccount???

    Mianstream and alternate media have been tellling us that banks are going to raise fees, which will raise the cost of banking.

    Well, they were not kidding.

    A few days ago I got a notice advising of an increase in monthly maintenance fees.

    Up from $11 to $25 unless you maintain a balance of $10,000. That's $300 a year!!! Acceptable in good times when you are working your donkey off, but we will NEVER, EVER see those times again. Our country has been irreversibly ruined.

    My wife uses a dedicated personal account with no problems. It uses her own name and does not have a business name. ( no concerns regarding lawsuits and she has a million dollar policy for her professional work which is Electrolysis for women. )

    She says "cash out the business account and use your persoal account" My tax preparer say's "don't as comingling could could be a problem during a theoretical IRS audit."

    How many people have their clients write checks to their own name and how many use a dedicated business account? I only need to maintain a $5,000 balance in my personal acct. to avoid fees. Bank officers are greedy Pr!3ks.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Philadelphia PA

    Default Re: Banking--Business or Personal Account?

    I formed a single member LLC and use a dedicated small business checking account at my credit union. No fees.

    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN

    Default Re: Banking--Business or Personal Account?

    I have a business account for the business and we have personal checking accounts for the family and household items.

    I think most banks if not all have really restricted "dba" (personal accounts doing business as) accounts due to some federal laws. Unless you have clients make checks payable to you (in your name) you will most likely have to have a business account. Banks report to the Feds the total amount of deposits with checking account, this is most likely what your tax person was talking about.

    I don't worry about the fees, we have a CD on deposit for years with out bank that covers the minimum deposit. We have 3 checking accounts and do not pay any fees because of that CD. Our banker helped us also by setting up the accounts so all of them would be included.

    Shop around, you will find that banks do not all charge the same. Credit Unions have some of the best rates and benefits for their members.

    Last edited by Scott Patterson; 03-22-2012 at 05:30 AM.
    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN

  4. #4

    Default Re: Banking--Business or Personal Account?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Bates View Post

    My tax preparer say's "don't as comingling could could be a problem during a theoretical IRS audit."
    Listen to your tax preparer.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Banking--Business or Personal Account?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Bates View Post
    My tax preparer say's "don't as comingling could could be a problem during a theoretical IRS audit."
    While stablishing ANOTHER personal account could prevent the comingling,especially if it was at another bank; I agree with the comments about shopping around. I have found that credit unions around here offer some of the best service anywhere!

    As for, "...we will NEVER, EVER see those times again. Our country has been irreversibly ruined," that is a whole other thread!

    Egbert Jager
    Diamond Home Inspection

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Osceola, AR

    Default Re: Banking--Business or Personal Account?

    When I established my business my attorney and my accountant both were quite adamant that I open a business account. I pay them for their advice and it made sense to listen to the professionals. Bank fees are just another cost of doing business.

    Alton Darty
    ATN Services, LLC

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    St Paul, MN

    Default Re: Banking--Business or Personal Account?

    I have a business checking account. Check, credit card and cash payments all get deposited into this account. My wife and I each have personal accounts and one joint checking account.

    Any business expense is paid from the business account. Draws from the business accounts are put into the personal and joint accounts. It makes it easy to track income and expenses and easy to do my own taxes.

    We have a small fee if any of the balances go under $1500/month but as Alton said, it a cost of doing business.
    Minnesota Home Inspectors LLC
    ASHI #242887

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Capistrano Beach, CA

    Thumbs up Re: Banking--Business or Personal Account?

    Up from $11 to $25 unless you maintain a balance of $10,000. That's $300 a year!!!
    It's part of the Cost Of Business.

    You are not paying the $300/yr, your clients are and the difference from what you (they) are paying now is an increase of $168/yr

    Even if you are only doing 85 inspections a year a $2 increase in fees per job you are coming out ahead. Break down that $2 per job into your hourly fee and it is a very small number. Hopefully your are doing many more than 85 inspections a year which makes the needed increase even less.

    You don't have to be happy about the bank fee increase but I would not toy around with combining your accounts because of the very small increase in fees your clients should be covering.

    Properly calculating your Cost Of Business is probably the most important thing any inspector can do to make sure his/her business is successful. I developed software specifically for inspectors and I teach this all across the country. Come see me at the Atlantic City Inspection Conference, it's only 30 days away!

    Now here is an idea I've been toying with and maybe now would be a good time to see what you all think.

    Two of the things I'm very passionate about and truly believe they will make your business profitable and successful or more profitable and more successful are:

    1. Taking a professional approach at truly and correctly figuring out your Cost of Business. Be truthful with yourself. Are your inspection fees mainly or completely set by what your competition is charging? The answer is "Yes" for the overwhelming majority of inspectors. Do you really believe that your competition has accurately calculated THEIR Coast Of Business and even in the off chance that one of them did it has little to do with what YOUR Cost Of Business is. You need to work this out.
    2. Actively working your referral market. Referral inspections are the best sort of inspection/client you can get. Sure, your phone may ring every now and then from a referral but how active are you at keeping in touch with your past clients so they are more inclined to remember you, care about you and give you more referrals? The top salesman around the world have at least one thing in common, they write letters or send cards to their clients or past clients and they do this consistently. Not one "Thank You" card and their done, they send out several a year. I'm talking about the written word in a letter or card, not email. Email is cheap, looks cheap and is largely ignored. You need to send something that shows professionalism and value. For you it needs to be quick, easy and cost effective. It may not be as cheap as email but a much better value for your marketing dollar/time. For this I use SendOutCards (SOC) and it has been incredible for my business and personal life. I honestly get "Thank You" messages when I have sent Thank You cards because it is so unexpected theses days and people truly appreciate it and they remember you. All created easily on-line but the card is then printed, stuffed, stamped (not metered) and mailed for you. This will change your life & business. You can import your contact database so all your client address information is in the system ready to use.
    So here is my thought/offer to those here at InspectionNews. The Cost Of Business normally sells for $99. I will give you the Cost of Business for FREE when you sign up through the InspectionNews account for SendOutCards, using the "Preferred Customer Subscription" ($31/month. That is $31 that your clients are paying because you will be factoring this into your Cost Of Business under your Marketing) and keep the SOC account for at least 3 months. That $31 will cover the cost of sending 50 of the pre-made cards (there are thousands) or 33 custom cards that you create and add your own pictures to (plus normal postage).

    I hope that you will immediately see the value in SOC. Surely in 3 months you will see how it benefits your business. If it is not for you after 3 months, cancel the account and you still get to keep the Cost Of Business.

    I will give you the Cost Of Business up front after you create your SOC account, you do not have to wait until you have used SOC for 3 month. No worries, I trust you will keep the SOC account for 3 months as promised.

    So that is my offer to my InspectionNews members.

    Here is how to sign up:
    1. Go to: SendOutCards for InspectionNews
    2. Watch the quick video.
    3. Send a Free card to test out the system (it's a great system. it will walk you through it step by step)
    4. Sign up for the "Preferred Customer Subscription" then let me know you have done so and I will send you a code to get the Cost of Business for free.
    I think it is a great offer that will benefit your business in many ways, I hope you see the value in this offer too.

    View The List Of InspectionNews Member Benefits!

    Brian Hannigan /
    Helping Inspectors $ucceed Since 1997TM

    Twitter: @InspectionNews

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007

    Default Re: Banking--Business or Personal Account?

    I agree with others and especially what Brian says... a BUSINESS checking account is about the most fundemental part of being a BUSINESS.

    Co-mingling and saving a few bucks by trying to slide by with a personal account makes you not look like a serious/legitimate business IMO.

    Consumers notice little things like this and it is a piece of the puzzle they use to form an overall opinion. Pay the couple bucks and pass it along to your clients.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Berks County PA

    Default Re: Banking--Business or Personal Account?

    Keep shopping. When I went looking for a bank two years ago I started by looking at websites of banks with local branches. The fees were high. Turns out if you go into a branch to talk with someone about small business banking they have package deals that eliminate fees. All my banking business and personal banking is at one place. The minimum balance is a combined low low balance of all accounts.

    I had to open a business credit card account through the bank. The card has discounts up to 5% for business related services charged to the card.

    I also have a business debit card I'm required to use twice a month to avoid a $35 monthly fee. Using the debit card is hard for me, not my thing.

    If I play by the rules, the only fee I have is $25 annually for a line of credit I need for start-up.

    Keep shopping. Go into a branch and talk to a real person. It worked for me.


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