I have two checking accounts and one savings account at Wells Fargo. The first checking account was opened many years ago, maybe even as long as twenty years ago, and I use it mostly for our personal finances.
When Mr. A started his business, we decided to open an account to use for his business. He was only working for a couple of family members to start out and we weren’t advertising or actively promoting his business to the public, so we thought having a regular account would work out. We could get the account free, if we opened a savings account, and made a transfer to savings once a month. Otherwise they charge $12/month for the accounts. Also at this time we were having to get money orders and they are free with this particular plan.
It worked out pretty good and then business started picking up and Wells Fargo started fussing at us, realizing one day that we were depositing a check with a business name written on it (something we’d done many times before and they never said one word) that this wasn’t an official business account, and then started trying to talk us into getting a business account every time we went into the branch, and also by phone. Mr. A wanted to have an account with a credit union so we finally went and did that in April 2009. I was so glad when we opened the official accounts because then I could order checks with the company name.
We stopped using his Wells Fargo account then, and it just sat kind of dormant. Until one day I noticed we’d been charged $12 service fee. I called my personal banker to find out why and she said when she set up the accounts she set it so that the service fee would be waived for the first year. I told her I thought it was waived because of the savings transfer, which I’d set one up automatically, on purpose, to avoid the service fee. Well, it turns out that the savings transfer I’d set up was from my old personal checking and that doesn’t count. Bummer.
So there’s this weird shuffle I have to do every month. Move some money into the checking account we aren’t using, so that the automatic transfer can occur and go into savings, to prevent being charged $12/month. If I have the extra money to let it go into savings, I just leave it. But sometimes I don’t have the extra money, so I have to move it from savings back to personal checking.
In order to stop this extra hassle, I’ve been thinking about reallocating those accounts.
Additionally, I need an account where I can put the income I earn for side jobs. It would make things a lot easier if I stop commingling the money.
What I’m thinking about doing is making the second checking account the main checking account. That way all the savings transfers I’m already making for personal upcoming bills will take care of waiving the account fees. Then I can use my original checking account to manage my side jobs income.
I am also thinking about opening a separate PayPal account to accept payment for side jobs which pay online, and I can then connect that account to the original checking account.
This won’t be too difficult to do, I will need to get Mr. A and AJ debit cards for the other account, since they both have cards for the original one. I have a few automatic payments coming out of that account, as well as some automatic savings transfers. I guess I need to make a list of what needs to be done.
Finally, I am planning to use the savings attached to the checking account as our emergency fund, which I have slowly been building. I want to move the excess funds (over the emergency fund amount) to ING Direct sub-accounts. I am reluctant to put all the money over at ING Direct, even though the interest is better than Wells Fargo I want to make sure I have immediate access to at least $1000 at all times. I know it takes a couple of days for the money to move sometimes, and I don’t want to make the mistake of say forgetting to pay the auto insurance until the last minute and then bam, no access to any money because I also forgot to move money over.
Have you ever reallocated accounts?