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  1. #1

    I need some advice

    I need a little advice.
    I am closing in on my retirement date. We will be spending the winters at our place in Florida. So, the advice I am looking for is about banking. Our checking account is in a local bank—because they are really close to home.
    How easy is internet banking? (My wife pays our bills and is old school. She is really hesitant to go on-line). How important will it be to have a brick and mortar bank down in FLA for any cash needs we might have? Would a debit card work for us? (Never used one before) Our Social Security checks are direct deposited right now. I have not set up the retirement paychecks from our investment accounts, so I could have that money deposited wherever I decide they should go.
    All the other ducks seem to be lined up right now. Help me get through these financial questions.

  2. #2
    I would just set things up online with your current bank, get your credit card bills online, your utilities online, etc.... Easy. I am sure you can link everything to your current bank online. I see no need for a separate bank in Florida. You'll be fine.

  3. #3
    Rev, a local bank is a convenience, but not a necessity. For cash needs you can go to just about any ATM, as long as you are willing to pay a transaction fee. You can check with your local bank to see if they belong to any ATM network.

    If you and your wife prefer to write checks, all you need is to have your mail forwarded and remember to bring along your checkbook when you head south for the winter.

    There's no reason you can't have another, local Florida bank account. The biggest issue with banks in secondary states is the fear the state may claim you as a resident, and tax you, but Florida has no income tax. A second, remote bank means more paperwork, another acccount to reconcile, more mail to forward, etc.

  4. #4
    When we moved to WV from MD after retirement we did open a checking account with a local bank just because they have ATMs all over the place. If you wanted to use a debit card that would address those issues without opening a new account locally. I didn't want a debit card because the consumer protections for a credit card are far better so we use credit cards instead of debit cards. Neither one of us even has a debit card.

    My pension is direct deposited to the credit union account that I've had for 30+ years and the SS deposit goes into the local bank checking account here. That way if one has access issues (hasn't happened) I have an alternative. I haven't been inside the credit union office for 14+ years and no issues yet with that arrangement.

  5. #5
    It is perfectly OK to have multiple banks and multiple checking accounts. But all should have zero fees even if the balance is $0.00.

    We have one "work-horse" checking account with free everything at a major national bank and a couple of other checking accounts that have a balance of $0.00 that don't charge us any fees. We have found that small local banks and credit unions just do not have all the free services that our big bank does.

    All banks are online now whether they have brick & mortar offices or not. And all have no paperwork if you sign up for e-mailed statements. While my work-horse bank is also the one with a physical office closest to my house, I only go there when walking the dog because the dog enjoys the free dog treats that he gets.

    So sign up for another account and test drive it. Make sure your dog gets free treats, too.


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