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aving a business checking account is about more than just having a place to store your money. The bank you choose should also be a partner that can help your business grow. Having a partner that makes it easier to manage your funds and obtain necessary loans—and that won't overcharge you for its services—will allow you to focus on growth.
Big banks tend to make things more complicated for small businesses by creating confusing fee structures and more obstacles to getting their best service. Novo strives to keep things simple for your business. In this article, we're going to outline the differences between Novo Business Checking and two of Bank of America's business checking options so that you have the information you need to make the right choice for your business.
Overview of Novo
Novo Platform, Inc. (“Novo”) is a powerfully simple® checking account and banking platform built for small businesses and self-employed individuals. Novo enables small businesses to get paid faster, automate budgeting, and seamlessly connect with other business tools. Novo also offers:
- No monthly fees, no minimums, and all ATM fees reimbursed
- Free and unlimited invoicing from directly within your Novo account
- Integrations with other business tools, including Quickbooks, Xero, Shopify, eBay, PayPal, Stripe, Square, and more
- Human-powered customer service
- Thousands of dollars in perks
- Novo Reserves, a feature that allows you to allocate funds into different budgets for upcoming expenses
- A fully digital experience and application that takes less than 10 minutes
Novo is optimal for businesses that primarily make money online or via card payments, so it might not be the best fit for businesses that frequently deal with cash. Additionally, due to regulatory requirements, Novo does not open accounts for cryptocurrencies, privately-owned ATMs, cannabis companies, gambling businesses, crowdfunding businesses, money services businesses, or adult entertainment businesses.
Note: Novo is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services are provided by Middlesex Federal Savings, F.A.; Member FDIC.
Overview of Bank of America business checking solutions
Bank of America offers two checking account options for small, medium, and large businesses: Business Advantage Fundamentals™ Banking and Business Advantage Relationship Banking.
Business Advantage Fundamentals™ Banking
Business Advantage Fundamentals™ offers:
- Fee-free accounts for businesses that hold an average monthly balance of $5,000 or more
- Mobile banking
- An additional checking account for employees, granting limited access to your business account at no extra cost
Business Advantage Relationship Banking
Business Advantage Relationship Banking is designed for medium to large businesses, with features such as:
- No monthly fee for accounts that hold an average monthly balance of $15,000 or more
- Free incoming wire transfers
- Flexible account access to control what employees with access to the business account can see
- Cross-account management that lets you manage multiple accounts with one login ID
Each account charges different fees for its services and has different requirements to waive fees.
Novo vs. Bank of America Business
While Bank of America offers some of the same services as Novo, the fees and integrations differ.
Tips for choosing a checking account for your small business
Not sure how to choose the right financial institution for your small business? Consider the following factors:
- Fees: Go over a bank's fee schedule to get a better understanding of what you will be charged for.
- Account minimums: Do you need access to all of your money? Many banks require a minimum balance, which means you only have access to a portion of your funds if you don’t want to pay a fee.
- Online banking: Having the option to manage your funds online makes it easier to run your business from anywhere in the world, at any time.
- Credit: If you need a loan to support your business, consider a bank with a line of credit. There are also other funding options to consider, such as Merchant Cash Advances.
- Integrations: Your business checking account should integrate with other apps to facilitate taxes and payments.
- Available features: Look at the additional features each business checking account offers, such as accounting software integrations, ATM refunds, and eCommerce payment integrations.
- Location: If you need access to a physical location to avoid fees or deposit cash, make sure your bank has locations nearby. Otherwise, consider online-only checking accounts, which often come with reduced fees.
- Customer service: Eventually, a problem will come up, and you'll need help. Make sure your bank’s customer support can provide the knowledge and assistance you need.
How to switch business checking accounts
Looking to switch from Bank of America to Novo or another business checking solution? Here’s how:
- Open a new account at the bank of your choice.
- Update direct deposits connected to your old account.
- Transfer any automatic transactions to your new account.
- Withdraw the money from your old account.
- Download or print any important documents, and take pictures of important checks.
- Notify all clients and vendors.
- Update your accounting software to reflect your new bank account information.
- Close your old account.
- Keep an eye on your new account – ensure all transactions are processing correctly and there are no unexpected charges.
For more detailed instructions, check out Novo's guide to switching business banks.
Sign up for a Novo account
Interested in switching to Novo? Apply today! To get started, we’ll need some information from you — this checklist covers what you’ll need to complete your Novo application.
Business banking FAQs
Q: How long does it take to get a Novo checking account?
A: It typically takes less than 10 minutes to apply for a Novo account. The majority of applications are approved within 24 hours. Once your application is approved, you'll receive your debit card in the mail within 7-10 business days.
Q: What business documents do I need to open a Novo account?
A: At a minimum, you’ll need a copy of your identification to open a Novo account. Depending on your business structure, you may also be required to provide your articles of incorporation and a signed operating agreement.
Q: What do I need to open a Bank of America business checking account?
A: You'll need:
- Business documentation such as filing documents, articles of organization, articles of incorporation, and/or your certificate of resolution
- Your business Tax ID
- The name and address of your business
- The state where your business operates
- The state where your business was formed
- The date your business was established
- Your Social Security number, address, and date of birth (assuming you're the business owner)
- Your initial deposit of $100 or more
Q: How do I close a Bank of America business account?
A: The are three ways you can close your Bank of America business checking account:
- Make an appointment at your nearest branch and close it in person
- Call customer service at 1-800-432-1000
- Mail a request that includes:
- Your name, address, and account number
- The business owner's signature
- Transfer information for your account's balance or a request for a cashier's check
- Notarization for balances over $25,000
Mail the request to:
- Bank of America
- P.O. Box 25118
- Tampa, FL 33622-5118
Q: How can I avoid business checking fees at Bank of America?
A: Several fees that Bank of America charges can be waived if you meet certain conditions. To find out how to meet these conditions, take a look at the bank’s clarity statements:
- Business Advantage Fundamentals™ Banking Clarity Statement®
- Business Advantage Relationship Banking Clarity Statement®
Q: What is the minimum deposit to open a Bank of America business checking account?
A: The minimum initial deposit is $100.
Q: How do I contact Bank of America?
A: Business checking customer service can be reached Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET at 1-888-283-4075.
Q: How do I contact Novo?
A: To contact Novo, reach out through the Novo app or email support at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also call the customer support phone number on the back of your Novo debit card.
Novo Platform Inc. strives to provide accurate information but cannot guarantee that this content is correct, complete, or up-to-date. This page is for informational purposes only and is not financial or legal advice nor an endorsement of any third-party products or services. All products and services are presented without warranty. Novo Platform Inc. does not provide any financial or legal advice, and you should consult your own financial, legal, or tax advisors.
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