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As a freelancer or self-employed individual, your priorities may be different than that of a typical consumer or big business. Running your own business is complex, and you may be looking for features like budgeting or accounting tools, business rewards, easy access to your funds or low fees. Luckily, there are several inexpensive options that can provide you with the services you need without charging monthly fees or at least making it easier to get them waived. 

If you're freelancing or are self-employed, take a look at our top picks for the best business checking accounts.

Account Monthly Fee New Account Bonus Notable Features Best for

Chase Business Complete Checking®

$15 (waivable)

$400
  • Unlimited debit card purchases + Chase ATM transactions
  • More than 4,700 branches

Cash businesses and in-person service

Axos Basic Business Checking

$0

Up to $400
  • Unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements
  • Two domestic wire reimbursements monthly

Online banking and wire transfers

LendingClub Tailored Checking

$10 (waivable)

None

  • Up to 1.50% APY
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on qualified purchases when you meet requirements

Cash back

Bluevine Business Checking

$0

None

  • Up to 2.00% APY
  • No overdraft fees
  • Can open multiple sub-accounts

Running multiple businesses

Lili Business Checking

$0 or $9 for Lili Pro

None

  • No overdraft fees
  • Accounting, tax and invoicing tools

Bookkeeping and other business tools

Found Banking

$0

None

  • QuickBooks + Stripe sync
  • Virtual debit cards
  • Tax tools
  • Paid tier offers APY

Those with employees + who need accounting tools

Chase Business Complete Checking®

Open Account

at Chase

  • Our Rating 5/5 How our ratings work Read the review
  • APYN/A
  • Minimum
    Deposit Required
    N/A
  • Intro Bonus $400Expires April 18, 2024 More Info

    Earn $400 when you open a new Chase Business Complete Checking® account. For new Chase business checking customers with qualifying activities.

The Chase Business Complete Checking® account is an attractive option. It offers the convenience of one of the largest financial institutions in the country, and it frequently offers bonuses that are relatively easy to earn. While it does not allow you to accrue interest on your funds like some other popular small business checking accounts, it's still very much worth considering if you can meet the requirements to waive its monthly fees.

Overview

The Chase Business Complete Checking® account comes loaded with a valuable sign-up bonus and an assortment of helpful perks, so long as you can meet the requirements to waive its monthly fees. It’s a good fit for many business checking customers, regardless of business size.

Pros

  • Generous signup bonus
  • Several options to waive monthly fee
  • Same-day deposits using QuickAccept℠ service
  • Huge network of in-person branches and ATMs

Cons

  • Monthly maintenance fee
  • Overdraft fees are relatively high
  • Limit on fee-free cash deposits and physical transactions

Why We Like It

The Chase Business Complete Checking account is the only one on our list from a brick-and-mortar bank, meaning it may be a good fit if you prefer in-person service. Plus, Chase offers a sizable bonus for new account holders, though you'll need to tie up some money with the bank for a couple of months to earn it. And if you're a cash business, you can deposit up to $5,000 each month without fees.

Fees:

  • Monthly fee: $15, waivable with:
  • ATM fees: $0 in Chase ATM network; $3 for out-of-network ATMs and $5 for withdrawals outside the U.S.
  • Foreign exchange rate conversion fee: 3% of withdrawal amount after conversion to U.S. dollars
  • Overdraft fee: $34 per transaction or $0 if:
    • You have Chase Overdraft Assist℠
    • Your account is overdrawn by $50 or less at the end of the business day or by more than $50 and you bring your account balance to overdrawn by $50 or less at the end of the next business day
    • You meet a few other requirements per the Chase fee schedules

Perks and features:

  • Deposit $5,000 cash monthly without fees
  • 15,000+ fee-free ATMs
  • Access to other banking products, savings accounts and more
  • Huge branch network

Best for

Those looking for a brick-and-mortar bank with a big footprint and the ability to deposit a lot of cash each month without a fee.

small business owners looking at computer in cafe Related Article

9 Ways Chase Business Checking Benefits Small Businesses

Read More

Axos Basic Business Checking Account

Open Account

at Axos

  • Our Rating 4/5 How our ratings work
  • APYN/A
  • Minimum
    Deposit Required
    N/A
  • Intro Bonus Up to $400Expires June 30, 2024 More Info

    Open a business checking account by June 30 and get up to $400 when you use promo code NEW400 on your application and maintain a minimum average daily balance of $50,000.

Axos Basic Business Checking is a good fit for new businesses or those that don’t generate a lot of sales (yet). It offers a sign-up bonus worth up to $400, which is relatively competitive, has no monthly fees, and unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements. However, Axos is an online-only bank, so it’s not a good option if your business handles cash regularly.

Overview

With Axos Bank’s Basic Business Checking Account, you don’t have to worry about monthly maintenance fees, minimum balances or a minimum opening deposit. Add on a sign-up bonus worth up to $100, and it’s easy to recommend this account to newly incorporated small businesses, or those who want to try out Axos Bank.

Pros

  • No monthly maintenance fee
  • Unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements
  • No minimum deposit required to open an account
  • 2 free domestic wire transfers each month

Cons

  • Account does not earn interest
  • No physical branch locations

Why We Like It

The Axos® Bank Basic Business Checking account is an online account, so you’ll have convenient access to your funds through the bank’s website and mobile app. One of the biggest benefits is the bank's unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursement benefit, which means you're not tied down to a specific network of ATMs. You can also get up to two domestic wire transfers reimbursed each month.

That said, Axos doesn't have any physical branches, and it's not recommended to send cash deposits. So, if you're a cash business, consider another option.

Fees:

  • Monthly maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fees: $0 for domestic ATMs

Perks and features:

  • Online bank with mobile and digital tools
  • Unlimited domestic ATM reimbursement
  • Two domestic wire transfers reimbursed per month
  • Also offers business savings accounts and CDs

Best for

Freelancers looking for the convenience of an online bank combined with reimbursed fees at domestic ATMs for cash deposits or other transactions.

LendingClub Tailored Checking

Why We Like It

LendingClub Bank is an online bank that offers one business checking account along with some personal banking products. However, you'll be hard-pressed to find a business account that offers an APY as high as Tailored Checking provides. It also offers 1% cash back on signature-based purchases—where you don't use your PIN—as long as your account has been open for at least 30 days and you maintain an average balance of $500 or more. 

Fees:

  • Monthly fee: $10; waivable if you maintain a balance of $500 in your account.
  • ATM fees: $0 + unlimited surcharge rebates for ATM fees charged by other banks
  • Overdraft fees: $0
  • Stop payment fee: $25

Perks and features:

  • Earn 1.50% APY on balances up to $100,000 
  • Unlimited ATM fee rebates (includes international ATM fees but not international exchange fees)
  • Create and send digital invoices
  • Sync to QuickBooks and Quicken
  • Can deposit cash at MoneyPass® and SUM® Network ATMs

Best for

People looking to earn interest on their business checking account and want access to other perks, like ATM fee rebates and cash back on some purchases.

Compare Chase Ink Business Credit Cards

Credit Card Intro Bonus Annual Fee Rewards Rate Learn More

Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card

$750Cash Bonus More Info

Earn $750 bonus cash back after you spend $6,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening

$0 1.5%Cashback More Info

Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase made for your business. The advertised rewards type is cash back, but it’s important to note that you’re technically earning Chase Ultimate Rewards points (which can then be converted to cash back).

Ink Business Cash® Credit Card

$750Cash Bonus More Info

Earn $750 bonus cash back after you spend $6,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening

$0 1% - 5%Cashback More Info

Earn 5% cash back on your first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone services each account anniversary year. It also offers you 2% cash back on your first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year.

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

100,000Chase Ultimate Rewards Points More Info

Earn 100,000 bonus points after you spend $8,000 in the first three months Dollar Equivalent: $2,300 (100,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points * 0.023 base)

$95 More info

This fee includes extra cards for authorized users, such as employees, at no additional charge.

1x - 3xPoints More Info

Earn 3x points on the first $150,000 of combined spending in a number of key business categories

Ink Business Premier℠ Credit Card

$1,000Cash Bonus More Info

Earn $1,000 bonus cash back after you spend $10,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

$195 Up to 2.5%Cashback More Info

Earn unlimited 2.5% total cash back on purchases of $5,000 or more and unlimited 2% cash back on all other business purchases.

Bluevine Business Checking

Bluevine logo

Bluevine

Why We Like It

The Bluevine™ Business Checking account is an online checking account that offers an even higher APY than LendingClub Tailored Checking. It’s light on fees, with no monthly, overdraft or incoming wire fees. You'll also get fee-free ATM transactions at more than 37,000 ATMs in the MoneyPass network. 

Fees:

  • Monthly maintenance fee: $0
  • Overdraft fees: $0
  • ATM fees: $0 in network; $2.50 fee for transactions outside of the MoneyPass® network

Perks and features:

  • Earn 2.00% APY on up to $250,000 in deposits, as long as you:
    • Spend $500 per month with your Bluevine Business Debit Mastercard® or
    • Receive $2,500 per month in customer payments via ACH, wire transfer, mobile check deposit or directly from your merchant payment processing provider.
  • Thousands of fee-free ATMs in the MoneyPass Network
  • Can add five sub-accounts with their own account numbers, which is helpful if you’re running more than one business
  • Can deposit cash at more than 90,000 retail locations in the Green Dot® network (for a fee)

Best for

Self-employed people running multiple businesses and need several accounts under one roof.

Lili Business Checking

Lili logo

Lili

Why We Like It

For those on a tight budget, Lili's basic checking account has no account fees. If you sign up for a paid tier, however, you'll get a variety of business benefits like overdraft coverage, fee-free ATM transactions, cash-back rewards with select merchants, tax and invoicing tools and more. 

Fees:

  • Monthly fee: $0 to $33, depending on tier
  • ATM fees: $0 in network; $2.50 outside of MoneyPass® Network
  • Overdraft fees: $0 up to $200 overdraft  

Perks and features:

  • $200 in overdraft coverage free of charge
  • Fee-free ATM transactions at more than 38,000 ATMs
  • Cash-back rewards with select merchants
  • Can deposit cash at more than 90,000 retail locations (for a fee)
  • Access to the company's high-yield savings account
  • Tax optimizer too and invoicing software

Best for

Those looking for added services to serve their business needs, like invoicing software, tax tools and a savings account.

Found Banking

Found banking

Found

Why We Like It

Financial services company Found provides a digital-friendly bank account backed by FDIC insurance through Piermont Bank. The best aspects of this account are the built-in expenses tracking, reporting and tax tools that can make running a business easier for a busy freelancer.

Fees:

  • Monthly maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fees: $0 for withdrawals (though you’ll likely face third-party ATM fees)
  • Overdraft fees: $0
  • Minimum balance fee: $0
  • Instant withdrawal to external debit card: 1.75% 
  • Found Plus (optional paid tier): $19.99 per month or $149.99 per year 
  • Stripe invoice fees: 1%-3.1%, depending on client’s payment method

Perks and features:

  • Can connect your account to QuickBooks and Stripe
  • Create virtual debit cards for others to spend from the account
  • Tools to help you pay contractors and generate 1099 forms
  • Real-time tax estimates based on your income and expenses
  • Paid tier, Found Plus, offers APY on balance and more business tools

Best for

Self-employed people, especially those who contract or hire workers, and want integrated tax and bookkeeping tools at their fingertips.

How to Choose the Best Bank Account for Freelancers

Every freelance business is different, and that’s part of the fun of being your own boss. As you compare bank accounts for your business, think about your specific business needs and how you receive and spend your funds.

Here are a few things to consider as you search for the right bank account for your freelance work:

  • Low or no fees: Many bank accounts have no monthly maintenance fees or at least ways to waive them. Fees for overdrafts, falling below a minimum balance requirement and wire transfers are a few other charges to look for.
  • Digital banking tools: Freelancers tend to keep hours outside the usual nine-to-five. If that’s you, online and mobile banking tools that help you access your money 24/7 could benefit you.
  • In-person services: Some freelancers handle a lot of cash, and if that’s you, you might prefer a bank with a local branch where it’s easy to make deposits. If you need in-person support, make sure you pick an account with a decent brick-and-mortar presence.
  • Interest or rewards: You can find some accounts that offer the ability to earn interest on your balance, which can be easy money on the cash you’re not using right now. Some accounts also offer cash back on purchases or other business perks, too.
  • Bookkeeping and budgeting tools: Some accounts provide budget tools or even bookkeeping resources that can help streamline your business finances, keep track of your spending and even help you prepare for tax time. 
  • Wider ranger of business banking products: If you’re also in the market for a business credit card or might want a small business loan at some point, you can look at banks that offer a lot of services under one roof, which could offer some convenience for busy freelancers.

Which Business Checking Account Is Right for Me?

woman working from home

Pexels

Picking the right account for your business can be highly personalized depending on your line of work. Think about your unique needs as a freelancer or self-employed individual. If your business is strictly online, having an online bank with a lot of added features can make sense. But if you work with cash customers, having a bank with local branches or at least a way to deposit cash via an ATM or retailer may be the better fit.

As you shop around and compare options, consider the services and features you want in a checking account—like low fees, convenience and mobile tools—to find the best fit for you and your business.

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Ben Luthi

Ben Luthi is a personal finance and travel writer and credit card expert. He has a degree in finance from Brigham Young University and worked in financial planning, banking and auto finance before writing full-time for NerdWallet and Student Loan Hero. Ben is now a full-time freelance writer and enjoys traveling and spending time with his two kids. His work has appeared in several publications, including U.S. News & World Report, USA Today, Money, Success and Slickdeals.