Most business bank accounts aren’t built with very small businesses in mind, let alone freelancers and solo entrepreneurs. If you have big plans for your company or independent professional practice but haven’t grown to the point where a traditional business bank account makes sense, you’re probably a bit frustrated by your options.
If that’s the case, look to the NorthOne Deposit Account. It’s a flexible business account with a reasonable monthly fee, no minimums, and some useful built-in tools. It can’t do everything and might not be appropriate for every growing business, but it’s definitely worth a closer look.
What Is the NorthOne Deposit Account?
Also known as the NorthOne Business Account or simply the NorthOne Account, the NorthOne Deposit Account is a small-business checking account. It has a flat $10 monthly fee that can’t be waived but has few additional fees, which makes it a lower-cost alternative to most traditional business bank accounts.
The NorthOne Deposit Account is a fully online bank account. NorthOne itself is a financial technology app; banking services and FDIC insurance come courtesy of The Bancorp Bank, NorthOne’s banking partner. The NorthOne Deposit Account is NorthOne’s only deposit account product.
Despite having no physical branches, NorthOne offers a comprehensive lineup of business banking services, including remote check deposit and bill payments, same-day ACH transfers, built-in budgeting tools, and external integrations with third-party accounting and payroll apps. Other benefits include no NorthOne ATM fees at any ATM in the United States (though third-party fees may still apply) and virtual debit cards on demand.
What Sets the NorthOne Deposit Account Apart?
The NorthOne Deposit Account stands out from other business accounts for several reasons:
- No ATM fees charged by NorthOne. You can use your NorthOne debit card to withdraw cash at any U.S. ATM without paying any fees to NorthOne. Some ATMs may charge third-party fees that NorthOne can’t control, but this is still a big advantage over most business banks.
- Built-in budgeting tools. NorthOne has a built-in envelope budgeting system that makes it easy to track and control business expenses through the month.
- Unlimited virtual card numbers for account owners. You can create unlimited virtual card numbers on demand, which is a huge plus if you make a lot of online purchases with vendors you don’t fully trust.
- Few additional fees. This account comes with some additional fees, like for wire transfers and instant ACH transfers, but it’s a far cry from the long, convoluted fee schedules found at most traditional business banks.
- No way to avoid the $10 monthly fee. This account’s biggest downside: there’s no way to avoid the $10 monthly maintenance fee. But you get what you pay for.
Key Features of the NorthOne Deposit Account
The NorthOne Deposit Account is simple enough as business bank accounts go, but do take the time to understand its core features and capabilities before opening an account.
Account Fees & Minimums
The NorthOne Deposit Account has a $10 monthly fee that can’t be waived. There’s no minimum opening deposit or ongoing balance.
Debit Card & ATM Access
This account comes with a free Mastercard debit card accepted wherever Mastercard is. You can use it to deposit or withdraw cash at any U.S. ATM with no fees charged by NorthOne. ATM owners may still charge fees that are out of NorthOne’s control.
NorthOne has a built-in envelope budgeting tool that lets you create pools of cash earmarked for specific expenses or goals, such as payroll, rent, and debt service. Each envelope remains part of your main account, but you can pay bills directly from them to avoid commingling funds.
Payments & Transfers
The NorthOne Deposit Account allows you to cut physical checks to third-party payees directly from your account. There’s no fee for this service.
Standard ACH transfers also cost nothing. However, same-day ACH transfers cost 1.5% of the transaction amount (maximum $15) and domestic wire transfers cost $20 to send.
Third-Party Software Integrations
The NorthOne Deposit Account integrates directly with more than a dozen business and consumer software apps:
- Accounting tools like QuickBooks
- E-commerce platforms like Amazon, Etsy, and Shopify
- Payment processors like Square, Stripe, PayPal, and Venmo
- Payroll processors like Gusto
There’s no cost to link your NorthOne account to any external platform, though all charge fees for their services.
NorthOne has a comprehensive mobile app that’s well-reviewed (over 4.5 stars) by thousands of verified users and has a long history of reliability and usability. Anything you can do with the desktop interface, you can do with the mobile app.
This account comes with FDIC insurance coverage up to $250,000. If NorthOne or its banking partner go out of business, the federal government reimburses you up to this amount.
Pros & Cons
There’s more to like than dislike about the NorthOne Deposit Account, but no business bank account is perfect.
- No minimum balance
- No NorthOne ATM fees
- Built-in budgeting capabilities
- Numerous third-party software integrations
- No way to avoid the $10 monthly fee
- No interest on balances
- Extra fees for certain account activities
The NorthOne Deposit Account is a flexible, relatively low-cost deposit account for small, growing businesses.
- No minimum balance requirement. This account has no minimum deposit or ongoing balance requirement. You can fund your account in any amount and keep as little cash in it as you wish.
- No ATM fees charged by NorthOne. NorthOne charges no ATM fees at any U.S. machine. ATM owners may still charge fees that NorthOne can’t control, but your overall cash withdrawal costs should still be lower than with a traditional bank.
- Free remote check deposit and payments. You can deposit checks on your phone with NorthOne and cut physical checks to send to vendors right in the app. There’s no fee for either action.
- Built-in budgeting capabilities. NorthOne has a built-in envelope budgeting system that helps you keep your expenses straight and identify potential problem spending areas. Many business accounts have nothing similar.
- Easy integration with third-party business software. The NorthOne Deposit Account integrates with more than a dozen third-party business apps, including QuickBooks, Shopify, Stripe, Square, and Gusto.
The NorthOne Deposit Account has an unavoidable monthly cost and some important limitations that could give you pause.
- No way to avoid the $10 monthly fee. This account’s $10 monthly fee is unavoidable. There’s no way to avoid it with a minimum balance or transaction activity.
- No interest on balances. This account pays no interest on balances. This is a big downside if you’re looking to put your company’s cash reserves to work.
- Fees for some account activities. NorthOne doesn’t charge a ton of extra fees, but it does charge for activities like instant ACH transfers and wire transfers, both of which you may need to do as your business grows.
How the NorthOne Deposit Account Stacks Up
Before you open a NorthOne Deposit Account, see how it stacks up against other popular business bank accounts. One popular alternative is Bluevine Business Checking, which also has no minimums and relatively low fees.
|NorthOne Deposit Account
|Bluevine Business Checking
|No, but Envelopes have similar function
|Yes, up to five
|2.00% APY on eligible balances
NorthOne beats Bluevine on ATM access and subaccount availability (if you count Envelopes as subaccounts, which they basically are). But it falls short on the monthly fee (Bluevine is free month-to-month) and account yield (NorthOne doesn’t pay interest).
The NorthOne Deposit Account is a flexible, user-friendly account for independent professionals and small businesses. While it’s not appropriate for larger companies, or even for small businesses with really complex finances, it nevertheless appeals to millions of people who aren’t well-served by traditional bank accounts.
If you’re among them, the NorthOne Deposit Account isn’t your only option. But it’s one of the better ones.