Monthly Maintenance Fees: What Are They?

Monthly Maintenance Fees: What Are They?
Point Editorial

Most consumers face fees that cover the cost of providing services to you. Banks are no different.

Banking maintenance fees typically come as mandatory monthly payments, but they can differ in their standardized rates.

Read on to learn more about what a monthly maintenance fee encompasses, which banking instruments come with this fee, and to see a visual breakdown of average monthly fees according to the banking institution. 

What is a monthly maintenance fee?

Banks charge customers a maintenance fee to cover the cost of working with you, whether that means opening new accounts, processing transactions, or providing their expertise on a specialized matter. In most cases, the predetermined amount is withdrawn from your bank account each month. 

This fee is also known as a monthly service fee. 

The guidelines surrounding this can vary, just like the actual cost of the fee. The fee may be mandatory, or there may be some measures you can take to avoid paying it if you meet certain qualifications.

The most common way to waive this cost is maintaining a certain account balance. Some banks offer to waive the fee if you make a minimum number of purchases with your card. Your ability to avoid the fee resets each month.

Depending on the type of account that you have, the rate may change. For example, rewards checking accounts will charge you a higher fee than a traditional checking account. 

Remember, if you have multiple accounts open, you’ll probably face various banking fees. Be careful — these can add up quickly, especially if you have high-interest fees.

Which banking products have monthly maintenance fees?

All credit lenders and banks must inform their customers of any monthly fees before they sign up for an account. This information is in the fine print, so always take time to read it as the account holder. This applies to any credit card or debit card

The majority of basic checking and savings accounts charge a monthly fee for usage, and some have transaction fees if you exceed a certain number of debit card purchases. This includes personal checking accounts and business-centered accounts as well. 

A certification of deposit account, or CD, doesn’t usually charge a maintenance fee. This is a specialized savings account that locks away your money until a maturity date. During this time, you’ll earn a higher interest rate on those funds. These accounts are subject to penalties if you withdraw your money early.

What is the average monthly maintenance fee?

Monthly maintenance fees depend on the bank, but as of 2021, the average fee is approximately $15.50. Unfortunately, this number has reached an all-time high. 

It’s always wise to do your research to stay abreast of what’s happening and save yourself as much money as you can.  

The following table outlines the most prominent American banks and their subsequent maintenance fees. Note: these fees apply to their most basic accounts, as opposed to more specialized ones. 

Checking fee Savings fee
Wells Fargo $10. Fee waived by keeping a $500 minimum balance. $5. Fee waived by keeping a $300 balance.
Chase none $5. Fee waived if you maintain a minimum daily balance of $300, are under 18 years of age, or link it to other Chase accounts for overdraft protection.
Bank of America $4.95. Fee waived by joining their rewards program or if you’re under 24 years. $8. Fee waived by keeping a $500 balance.
US Bank $6.95. Fee waived by keeping a $1,500 balance or being 65 and older. $4. Fee waived if you keep a $300 balance or if you’re under 18.
PNC none $5. Fee waived by adhering to the minimum balance requirement or if you’re under 18.
BB&T Bank $5. Fee cannot be waived. none
Regions Bank $11. Fee waived by keeping a $1,500 monthly balance or making a single direct deposit of $500. none
TD Bank $15. Fee waived by keeping a $100 daily balance or being between the ages of 17 and 23. $5. Fee waived if you keep a $300 balance, if you’re under 18, or over 62. Also, no fee applies for the first year of use.

Some banks don’t charge a monthly maintenance fee at all. These are usually online banks. However, Alliant Chime, Credit Union, American Express, Capital One 360, Discover, First Republic Bank, HSBC Direct, SoFi, and USAA are just a few brick-and-mortar establishments that don’t charge an account fee either.

Point's contributions

Though you may not be able to escape monthly banking fees entirely, one way to reduce the pressures of recurring payments is to surround yourself with financial tools that charge little to no additional fees so that you’re able to save more than you spend. 

An excellent tool to help you do just that is Point Card.  

Point is a transparent, easy-to-use alternative payment card that enables cardmembers to exercise fiscal independence. You have the freedom to spend your own money as you see fit while receiving exclusive benefits with each purchase. This includes unlimited cash-back and bonus cash-back on subscriptions, food delivery, rideshare services, and coffee shop purchases. 

More importantly, alongside the rewards program that aids you in building your wealth, Point Card comes with multiple measures that help protect it as well. Car rental and phone insurance, trip cancellation insurance, fraud protection with zero liability, two free ATM withdrawals each month, and no interest fees are just some of these benefits.

You work hard for your money, and Point works equally hard for you in return.

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