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6 best free business checking accounts

Find a free business bank account that won’t charge you fees for doing business.

Best for new freelancers: Lili

From $0

Monthly fee

  • Referral rewards
  • Early direct deposit
  • Tax and emergency buckets
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The best free business checking account offers unlimited transactions and built-in tools to help you manage your cash flow. But unlike personal checking accounts, there’s usually a limit to how many deposits and transfers you can make each month. Once you hit that limit, you pay a fee for additional transactions.

We researched over 50 accounts to bring you the best free business bank accounts available today. This meant zeroing in on accounts with no monthly fees, then digging into other factors like opening deposit requirements, number of free monthly transactions and availability.

What’s changed in 2021?

We removed Azlo from our list because BBVA is discontinuing it. We replaced it with BlueVine because it has unlimited transactions, a 1% APY and integrates with major accounting and bookkeeping platforms.

We added Lili as the best checking account for new freelancers because it has built-in tools to help you set aside money for taxes and track expenses. We added Wave Money as best for established freelancers because it integrates with Wave’s bookkeeping software and has higher transfer limits than Lili.

Novo was named the best account for online businesses because it has unlimited transactions and no monthly fees, but you can’t deposit cash.

Closer look at the best free business checking accounts

Do a deep dive into the best free business bank accounts by comparing their pros and cons:

Best free checking for ATM reimbursements

Axos Bank Basic Business Checking

Axos Bank Basic Business Checking logo
Finder Rating: 4.5 / 5

★★★★★

Apply now
at Axos Bank's secure site
N/A
APY
None
Fees
$1,000
Min. opening deposit
  • No fees or minimum balance requirements. This account is free to open and you won't get penalized for running low on funds.
  • Unlimited ATM refunds. Axos refunds any and all domestic ATM fees you incur each month.
  • Quickbooks compatibility. If you use Quickbooks for your business, you can link up your accounts to budget and manage your money all in one place.
  • No interest. Axos offers some interest-bearing checking accounts, but this Basic Business Checking account isn't one of them.
  • Inconvenient cash deposits. Axos doesn't let you deposit cash through an ATM, so you'll need to send a wire transfer to deposit cash.
  • Limited in-person support. You can visit one of its six offices for in-person support. Otherwise, you'll need to be comfortable with phone or email support.
APY 0%
Account fees $0 monthly
Can the fee be waived? Yes
Insufficient funds fee $25
ATM transaction fee $0

Best free checking account for online businesses

Novo

Novo logo
Finder Rating: 4 / 5

★★★★★

Apply now
at Novo's secure site
N/A
APY
None
Fees
$50
Min. opening deposit
  • No hidden fees. With Novo, you won't pay anything for monthly maintenance, ACH transfers, stop payments, debit card replacements and more.
  • Integrations. Novo integrates with Wise, Slack, Xero, Stripe, Square and more to help you seamlessly manage cash flow.
  • Discounts and perks. Sign up for an account and get discounts to popular services like Hubspot, Quickbooks, Gusto, Google Ads, Zendesk and more.
  • No recurring payments. You can't schedule automatic payments from this account. You'll have to do it manually.
  • No payroll providers. Novo doesn't currently integrate with any payroll providers, although it's looking to offer this feature in the future.
  • No cash deposits. As with most digital banks, Novo doesn't accept cash deposits of any kind.
APY 0%
Account fees $0 monthly
Can the fee be waived? Yes
Insufficient funds fee $27
ATM transaction fee $0
Paper statement fee $0
Foreign transaction fee 0%
Overdraft fee $0
Accout closure fee $0

Best free checking account for new freelancers

Lili

Lili logo
Finder Rating: 4.7 / 5

★★★★★

Apply now
at Lili's secure site
Up to 1%
APY
None
Fees
None
Min. opening deposit
  • No hidden fees. The standard version of Lili has no monthly maintenance fee, and there's no charge for overdrafts, account inactivity, bill pay, card replacements and more. But there is a Pro tier that costs $4.99 per month.
  • Savings buckets. Stay on top of taxes by having a percentage of your paycheck automatically sent to a tax savings bucket each time you get paid.
  • Early direct deposit. Freelancers can get deposits up to two days quicker than they would with a traditional bank account.
  • Supports cash deposits. Unlike most digital banks, this one accepts cash deposits at over 90,000 Green Dot locations.
  • Limited customer support. Lili's customer support team is only available weekdays from 9 a.m to 7 p.m. ET.
  • Low transfer limit. You can't transfer more than $1,000 a day to your linked bank account, which could be restrictive if you typically pay yourself more than that.
  • No EINs. You can only set up your Lili account using a Social Security number. No business EINs allowed.
APY 1%
Account fees $0 monthly
Can the fee be waived? Yes
ATM transaction fee $0
Foreign transaction fee 0%
Overdraft fee $0

Best overall

BlueVine Business Checking

Up to 1%
APY
None
Fees
None
Min. opening deposit
  • Unlimited transactions. Open a BlueVine account with as little as $0 and enjoy unlimited transactions and no fees for monthly maintenance, incoming wires and non-sufficient funds.
  • Earns interest. You'll earn 1% APY on balances up to $100,000 &mdash
  • a rate higher than most high-yield savings accounts available today.
  • Software integrations. Sync your BlueVine account to QuickBooks Online, Wave, Freshbooks, PayPal, Stripe and more for easy money management.
  • Fee for cash deposits. You'll pay $4.95 when you deposit cash at a Green Dot location. This is a standard fee charged by the retailer, not BlueVine.
  • No savings account options. BlueVine doesn't have any other bank accounts, but considering your balance earns 1% APY, this may not be a big deal.
APY 1%
Account fees $0 monthly
Can the fee be waived? Yes
Insufficient funds fee $0
ATM transaction fee $0
Overdraft fee $0

Best free checking account for large businesses

NBKC Business Checking

N/A
APY
None
Fees
$5
Min. opening deposit
  • No fees. You won't pay anything for overdrafts, stop payments, incoming domestic wires or monthly transactions.
  • Large ATM network. You get free access to over 32,000 MoneyPass ATMs nationwide. Plus, NBKC reimburses up to $12 in non-network ATM fees a month.
  • Allows cash deposits. Even though NBKC is almost entirely an online bank, you can deposit cash through any in-network ATM that accepts cash.
  • Other fees. You'll pay $5 to send a domestic wire transfer and $45 to send or receive an international wire transfer.
  • Limited in-person support. NBKC operates almost entirely online and only has four branch locations in Kansas, so you'll need to be comfortable chatting with customer service online.
APY 0%
Account fees $0 monthly
Can the fee be waived? Yes
Overdraft fee $0

Best free checking account for established freelancers

Wave Money

N/A
APY
None
Fees
None
Min. opening deposit
  • Built-in bookkeeping. Most accounting software costs $70 or more a month, but you get access to Wave's software for free when you open this checking account.
  • Free instant payouts. Instant payouts typically have a 1.5% fee on other platforms, but you'll receive them for free when someone pays you using Wave Payments.
  • Third-party app integrations. Wave Money connects to Shopify, Stripe, PayPal and Square for faster payment processing.
  • No joint accounts. You can't currently open a Wave Money account with a business partner, but it's hoping to change this in the future.
  • Not fully available yet. Wave Money has rolled out to active Wave users, but it's not available to the general public as of January 2021. Still, you can reserve your spot on its website.
APY 0%
Account fees $0 monthly
Can the fee be waived? Yes
ATM transaction fee $0
Overdraft fee $0

How to find the best free business checking account

Find the best free business checking account for your needs by considering these factors:
  • Fees and transaction limits. It’s not uncommon for business bank accounts to have monthly fees — and it’s also not uncommon for banks to charge you even more fees once you’ve made 200 or 500 transactions a month to and from your account.
  • Account perks. Depending on the account, it could earn interest, integrate with your accounting software, come with free invoicing and more. Consider which features will help you grow your business.
  • Accessibility. Most free accounts don’t come with cash deposits, but some like BlueVine are starting to offer it. Others may not support wire transfers or ATM withdrawals. Think about how you’ll deposit and withdraw money and find an account that supports those methods.

Free business checking accounts by state

Generally, you must open your business bank account in the same state where you conduct business. These free business checking accounts are offered throughout several states.

InstitutionMonthly feeMinimum opening depositAvailabilityFeatures
Huntington Business Checking 100 account
Read review
$0$50IL, IN, KY, MI, OH, PA, WV
  • No charge for first 100 transactions and $5,000 in cash deposits per month
  • $200 sign up bonus when you deposit at least $2,000 within 60 days of account opening
BBVA Business Connect Checking$0$100AL, AZ, CO, FL, NM, TX
  • Up to $5,000 in free cash processing per month
  • Two free in-branch deposits monthly
  • Access to over 43,000 free ATMs
Citizens Bank Clearly Better Business Checking account$0$10CO, MA, NH, NJ, PA, RI, VT
  • Up to 200 free check transactions a month
  • Overdraft transfer or line of credit
  • Access to 1,100 branches and over 3,100 ATMs
First National Bank of Omaha Business Free Checking account$0$0CO, IA, KS, NE, SD, TX, IL
  • Up to 150 free transactions a month
  • Free online bill pay
  • $200 mortgage closing cost credit
Cathay Bank Business Checking$0$200CA, NY, WA, IL, TX, MD, MA, NV, NJ
  • 25 free deposits a month
  • 50 free checks paid a month
  • Free business bill pay
  • Business debit card
First Citizens Bank Basic Business Checking$0$0AZ, CA, CO, FL, GA, KS, MD, MO, NM, NC, OK, OR, SC, TN, TX, VA, WA, WV
  • 175 free transactions a month
  • $5,000 in free cash deposits a month
United Bank Free Business Checking$0$100DC, MD, VA
  • 500 free transactions a month
  • Free bill pay
  • Business debit card
First National Bank Free Small Business Checking$0$0MD, NC, OH, PA, SC, WV
  • 150 free transactions a month
  • Unlimited check deposits
  • Access to 550 FNB ATMs
America First Credit Union Basic Business Checking$0$0AZ, ID, NE, NM, OR, UT
  • 250 free transactions a month
  • Free online bill pay

Compare free business checking accounts by monthly transactions

Compare which free business checking account you need depending on monthly transactions and your business type.

Accounts for small businesses

Here’s a list of free business checking account options for startups and small businesses.

InstitutionMonthly feeMinimum opening depositFree monthly transactionsFeatures
Axos Bank Basic Business Checking account
Go to site
$0$1,000200
  • Unlimited ATM reimbursements
  • Compatible with Quickbooks
TIAA Bank Small Business Checking account
Read review
$0$1,500200
  • 10 free online bill pays a month
  • Earns 0.12% APY
  • Access to over 80,000 free ATMs nationwide
Navy Federal Credit Union Business Checking account$0$0Unlimited (Online) 30 (In-person)
  • Earns 0.05% APY
Bank of the Ozarks Small Business Checking account$0$100250
  • Free online bill pay
US Bank Silver Business Checking$0$0125
  • 25 free cash deposits a month

Accounts for online businesses

These free business checking accounts are offered online.

InstitutionMonthly feeMinimum opening depositFree monthly transactionsFeatures
First Internet Bank Small Business Checking
Go to site
$0$0Unlimited
  • 0.3% APY on balances over $10,000
  • Up to $10 in ATM free reimbursements each month
Novo Business Checking account
Go to site
$0$50Unlimited
  • Unlimited ATM refunds
  • Integrates with Slack, Xero and Zapier
BlueVine Business Checking account
Read review
$0$0Unlimited
  • Earns 1% APY on up to $100,000
  • Accepts cash deposits
  • Integrates with QuickBooks Online, Wave, Freshbooks, PayPal, Striple, Expensify and more
NBKC Business Checking account
Read review
$0$5Unlimited
  • No stop payment fees, no incoming domestic wire transfer fees, access to 32,000 free ATMs
  • Up to $12 in monthly ATM refunds
  • Free overdraft protection when you have an NBKC business savings account

What are the pros and cons of free business checking?

Most free checking accounts are offered by online-only banks or small credit unions. Let’s take a look at some pros and cons:

Pros

  • No fees. Nothing is better than free, and you won’t pay any monthly maintenance fees when you choose a free business checking account.
  • Features to help you run your business. Some free business checking accounts come with helpful perks like app integrations, payroll services and fraud monitoring that help you run your business with ease.
  • Low opening deposits. Most free business checking accounts are ideal for new and small businesses because they have minimal opening deposit requirements.

Cons

  • May not accept cash deposits. Because most free business checking accounts are offered by online-only banks, you may not be able to easily deposit cash.
  • May have limited transactions. Most free business checking accounts have a cap on the number of free transactions you can make a month. If you go over this limit, you’ll pay a small fee for each additional transaction.
  • Watch out for small fees. Just because a bank offers a free business checking account, it could still nickel-and-dime you for other expenses. Make sure you read the fine print to get a clear idea of how to avoid costly fees.

How do I know if it’s really a fee-free business checking account?

Usually, a free business checking account doesn’t have monthly fees. But a fee-free checking account takes it a step further by doing away with common fees charged by most banks.

If you’re looking for a business checking account that’s truly free, watch out for these small charges that could eat up a chunk of your profits:

  • Minimum balance fees. If an account requires a minimum balance, make sure you can comfortably maintain it each month. Otherwise, you may pay a fee.
  • Transaction fees. Some banks give you a set number of free monthly transactions, but then charge you a fee if you go over this limit. Make sure you choose an account that won’t charge you an arm and a leg if your business performs better than usual.
  • Overdraft fees. What happens if your account balance drops below $0 after a big purchase? The bank may cover the overdraft and charge a hefty fee, automatically decline the transaction or move money from your savings account.
  • ATM fees. Either look for a bank with a large ATM network or find one that reimburses fees.
  • Transfer fee. Check to see if you’ll pay a fee to transfer money to a checking account at another bank. ACH transfers are typically free, but outgoing wires can be expensive.

How to open a free business checking account

How you open a free business bank account varies from institution to institution. But these are the general steps you’ll take:

  1. Visit the financial institution’s website to see if you qualify for the free business checking account.
  2. Determine if you can open the account online, by phone or in person.
  3. Gather the appropriate documents, including your Social Security number, government-issued photo ID, Employee Identification Number (EIN) and business certifications.
  4. Fill out the application either online, by phone or at a local branch.
  5. Give the bank the required paperwork and pay the minimum opening deposit.

Compare other business checking accounts

Name Product Fee Minimum deposit to open ATMs
NorthOne Business Banking
$10 per month
$50
withdraw cash at any Cirrus branded ATM location (+1,000,000 locations accross the U.S + 2m worldwide), including MoneyPass ATMs

A digital bank account featuring free cash deposits, on-demand customer support and streamlined bookkeeping integrations.
First Internet Bank Small Business Checking
$0
$0
Up to $10 ATM fee reimbursements a month, plus free access to the ATM Plus Network
No minimum balance and no monthly service fee. Make unlimited deposits. Get reimbursed up to $10 per month in ATM fees
Chase Business Complete Banking
$15 per month
(can be waived)
$0
over 16,000 in-network ATMs
This Chase business checking account has built-in card acceptance using a smartphone card reader. $300 bonus offer
Brex Cash account
$0
$0
Brex Cash is an innovative cash management account that lets business owners choose whether to save or invest funds.
Lili
$4.99 for Lili Pro
$0
32,000 fee-free ATMs nationwide
Freelancers get paid up to two days early and can automatically set aside money for taxes with the Lili digital bank account
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Compare up to 4 providers

Bottom line

Whether you started your business today or have been making money for years, there’s a free business checking account out there to meet your banking needs. Be sure to find one that can accommodate the size of your business and won’t hit you with little fees if you have a better month than usual. The best business checking accounts are ones that offer a perfect mix of features, high transactions and low fees.

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