If you are a tech-savvy entrepreneur looking for a banking platform that makes life easy for you, Bank Novo is a good place to look into. Now, first things first. While it is called Bank Novo, this is actually not a bank.
However, it is partnered with the Middlesex Federal Savings Bank to manage your account and debit cards. The Middlesex Federal Savings Bank is FDIC insured which means that your account is safe for up to $250,000. It’s just like having a regular checking bank account.
It is a completely digital banking platform that is based out of New York and has no other branches because it is entirely digital. And one of the advantages is that you can get in-depth customer service through a call, email or the app from Monday to Friday from 9 am to 6 pm EST, just like a regular bank.
So, those of you who have moved on to the paperless world of digital-only transactions will find this an extremely comfortable option. You can manage your account through your laptop or phone using the Novo online banking option or the Bank Novo iPhone or Android mobile app option.
This is a platform for small business owners who want all their dealings to be online. Now, this is not your regular checking account. So, it will look a little different, but look into any of the many Novo business banking reviews and you will find that it is the better option if you want to stay cashless.
How Bank Novo Works
Unlike a regular bank, you will only have one option here. That is the Novo business checking account which will give you all the features an entrepreneur with a cashless business is looking for. And here’s how it works.
To apply for a business checking account you must submit an application on the Bank Novo website. For that, you must be at least 18 years of age, a citizen or permanent resident of the United States and most importantly, you must have a business based in the US.
You will need to give some information about yourself and any other partners involved with your business. This includes both personal ID documents and legal documents about your business. You must also provide your Social Security Number, cell phone number and a valid mailing address in the US.
You will also provide a username and password for your account and download the app while filling out the application.
After you submit the application, it will be reviewed. If Bank Novo has any queries or needs more information, they will reach out to you directly. Otherwise, you will know how it went in a matter of two or three working days.
If you have been approved, you will be able to log in to your online banking account with the username and password you provided along with your application. Then you will see that there are several tools linked to your account that you can start using right away.
Bank Novo has quite a few tech integrations (which we will talk about separately) to make business transactions easy. So, you can integrate the accounts you have with the likes of TransferWise and Shopify or even QuickBooks for your transactions.
You will also get a debit card for your checking account if you chose to get one when you were applying for the account. This will be delivered to the US mailing address you provided on the application.
Now, technically, you get only one card per user. But using the mobile app, you can add more than one user to your account and get debit cards for those users. Just remember that they will have total access to the account and will be able to transfer funds.
Now that you have a business checking account, you can make domestic or international wire transfers with a few taps on your smartphone using the mobile check deposit option.
If you need to withdraw money, you can do so using ACH or a paper check via mail through the smartphone app. And the best part might be that there are no hidden charges for any transfer coming in or going out of this account.
The features that you will miss by choosing Bank Novo over a traditional banking account are:
● Regular wire transfer
● Checkbook facility
● Cash deposits (which is the case with all online banks)
● No interest on bank balance
Who Is Novo Business Banking For?
In broad strokes, the answer is business owners. But that is not all. Bank Novo works with many service providers because it aims to make life easy for business owners.
The idea is to come up with a banking platform that makes it easy to integrate a checking account with all the services an entrepreneur would need. That is why they have collaborations with the likes of Slack, Zapier, Stripe and Xero. You can also use the app to deposit a check for free.
But specifically speaking, this business checking account is meant for:
Freelancers and Business Owners: businesses that hire freelancers often face a few challenges when it comes to payment issues. This is because some of them are hired directly and the others are subcontracted. Paying through ACH or a payment app that is linked to a bank account makes it a lot easier.
The same is true for freelancers and those who are starting their own small business ventures. Whether you are gunning for individual customers or large businesses or anything in between, the mode of payment is something that should be clear and easy. When you have a range of tools hooked up to the bank account, that problem solves itself.
Anyone Who Is Tech-Savvy: As mentioned earlier, if you are planning to go cashless, this is an excellent choice for banking transactions. Bank Novo is entirely an online operation which makes it a lot more flexible in terms of dealing with other apps that facilitate money transfers.
This is still not the case with traditional banking solutions. They all have online banking and mobile apps, but integration is what makes Bank Novo stand out.
And in case you run into any trouble, there is a human being on the other end of the customer service call waiting to untie the knots while you make your transactions on the app or the website.
Basically, Bank Novo is for you if you want these four features:
● A business checking account that is free and does not require a minimum balance.
● A business checking account that you can connect to the other financial platforms that you already use.
● A way to manage your finances online without having to do cash deposits regularly… or ever.
● Want to use ATM services anywhere in the country without the hassle of service charges.
What Novo Business Banking Offers
Truth be told, this is a new approach. But it is easy to use, insured and apart from the interest on the existing bank balance, it has everything to offer to those who want to go cashless.
In fact, it makes banking a pleasant experience thanks to the flexibility. The transactions will happen quickly and there are no surprise charges that will make you frown.
But that is just the overall outlook. When you look at individual services and compare them with the traditional choices, you will agree with the findings below which demonstrate that Bank Novo is actually a much better alternative.
As you know now, there is only one type of account with Bank Novo. But that means you don’t have to figure out the details of different options to pick one. There are also a few other benefits like a minimum balance requirement once you open the account.
However, you will need to have $50 to start. The process of opening the account is very easy and also just a matter of minutes. But there’s more. Take a look.
1. Easy to Sign Up
One of the reasons banking can be tedious is because right off the bat, the signing up process is cumbersome with traditional banks. And if you are setting up a business account, the time and effort that needs to go into it can demotivate you from the whole enterprise.
Jokes aside, it is not always the easiest process to go through. But with Bank Novo, that’s one less problem to solve. Everything that you need to do is online and you just need good credit and $50 to fill up the application. After that, you just need to wait for their approval unless you missed any documentation.
● Easy to use interface
● Straightforward signing process
● Unlike dealing with a traditional bank assistant, you can’t come back the next day with your documents. You need to have them all with you before you start the process.
2. No Hidden Fees
This might be one of the best features of Bank Novo. There is no minimum balance requirement or monthly fee. There is also no fee for regular transactions or incoming wires. You also don’t have to pay for ACH transfers, incoming or outgoing. And the same is true for replacing your debit card or getting paper statements.
You can deposit mobile checks for free and pay bills with physical checks that can be mailed from the app.
● You don’t have to worry about discrepancies because what you see is what you get, quite literally.
● There is a small fee for uncollected funds returned and insufficient funds.
3. Free ATM Services
There is no ATM fee for any of your transactions. While they don’t have a partner network, you can use any ATM and the charges (if any) will be refunded to you.
It will come back straight into your account at the end of the month. This is definitely a big shift from the traditional competitors even the ones that are online only. And you can do this internationally too.
● No extra charges to worry about.
4. Online and Mobile Banking
The idea of Bank Novo is to make transactions easy for the likes of small business owners and freelancers. No matter where you are and what other financial tools you are using, this account should be a flexible addition to your web of financial transactions.
In fact, it should not feel like such a web. And most importantly, you never have to go to the bank. Do it all on the website or the app and if there is a problem, talk to a human customer service executive who will help you out right away.
But this also means their tech game has to be super strong because there is no room for failure. And it is. You can do almost all the transactions a regular bank would offer with this banking platform without the hassles of the traditional system.
You will also see a Novo Reserves Budgeting tool which can be used to organize and set funds aside for different kinds of expenses. This makes budgeting easy too.
● Better than your average banking apps and websites
● Helps organize finances for different expenses
5. Tech Integrations
This is another fantastic benefit of doing business with the help of Bank Novo. Your account will be integrated with business tools like Stripe, Xero, QuickBooks, Shopify, TransferWise, Slack and Zapier. It is not currently integrated with PayPal, Square, Venmo, Wave, Google or Apple Pay but you can still link your accounts.
Although you can get add-ons when you bank with some other competitors, Bank Novo has the advantage because of the seamless connectivity with so many tools that are already used by businesses.
● Seamless integration
● Wide array of options
● Connectivity even if the tools are not integrated with Bank Novo
6. Discounts and Perks
Apart from the integration, you can expect to get discounts from certain services and software to make your transactions easier. This includes savings opportunities if you are associated with QuickBooks, Google, HubSpot and Gusto. You can also get discounts from your GoDaddy purchases and ad credits from Snapchat.
You will also get card processing for free from Stripe. A 40 percent discount for the first six months of your online QuickBooks package. A $150 worth credit from Google Ads and many more benefits from Booking.com, Google Cloud, Zendesk, Salesforce Essentials, Segment and Homebase.
● More than the usual 5–10 percent break
● Fee-free card processing options
● Credit options for advertising
● You might be tempted to start accounts and make purchases that you might not have considered otherwise.
This one is for individual contractors and freelancers. The invoicing feature allows you to manage, send and organize any number of invoices by using your checking account. This helps you when you make or accept payments by ACH or your integrated Stripe account. You can use the website for this.
● Makes it easier to get paid without delay which is a common problem
● Is not yet available on the Android or Apple apps
8. Easy to Make Transfers
And finally, Bank Novo does not have to be your only banking account option. So, if you need some features that are offered by traditional banks, you can use them in tandem with this banking platform.
So, if you have to pay $100 to a freelancer or sub-contractor, you can do that from your other bank account in case you were taking advantage of the no minimum balance requirement of your Bank Novo account. And you can transfer money to those accounts quite easily.
● Can use traditional banking options without too much clutter
● Easy-to-use interface
● Does not tie you to their platform
Why You Should Choose Bank Novo
There are lots of benefits of using Bank Novo. The list of services should have already convinced you. But if not, here is the big picture you are looking at.
It is easy to open this account and it takes only about 10 minutes to do so once you get the paperwork in order. In fact, that might be the only dealing you will do with paper for a long time. Opening a business checking account otherwise can be quite the hassle and it chews into at least an hour of your time too.
You can withdraw money whenever you want from any ATM and you don’t have to worry about the charges. Whether you are in the US or outside the country, this rule does not change.
And in case you get charged for a transaction, rest assured that it will all come back to your account at the end of the month. You no longer have to do a scavenger hunt for an ATM in your network for fear of charges.
Speaking of charges, you also don’t have to worry about the fee schedule that other banking platforms and traditional banking options put you through. You no longer have to be on the lookout for hidden transaction charges. You login, do your thing and move on. This is most definitely a huge bonus for anyone who has a checking account.
And let’s not forget the integration with all the financial tools you are already using. Clients can no longer give you the excuse of having to do a bank transaction to pay up.
It also does not take very long for the transaction to take place. It is easy and instant. This saves you a lot of time and you don’t even need to familiarize yourself with a new interface. Just keep doing what you already have been.
There are also a lot of features that make it easy for you to access your account and the funds in it easily and quickly. The app comes with a range of business features like:
● The ability to deposit checks by scanning them with the camera on your phone.
● You can use the Bank Novo app as a mobile wallet.
● Check ATM transactions and tally your refunds if and when required.
● Create, send and manage invoices through the app.
● Get paid through other tools like Shopify and Stripe.
● Set money aside for different business expenses using Novo Reserves.
● Access a customer service team that responds to any query within 60 minutes during “bank hours”.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Can I Add Someone under 18 Years of Age to My Account?
A: Since this is a business checking account, every additional user must be above the age of 18.
Q: Can I Edit Name and Address at a Later Point?
A: Yes you can by going into the Settings of the mobile app.
Q: Is Novo Owned by a Bank?
A: No but it partners with one to make all business transactions possible.
It is natural to want to see what others who have used the platform have to say. So, if you were looking for Novo reviews, here’s a few that might put you at ease. And since there is only one type of account you don’t have to look too deep to find Novo business checking reviews.
● Customer 1: ‘NOVO is the best solution for all busy people. Fast, easy and simple way to have your business money saved.’
● Customer 2: ‘I had an issue with setting up my business account. I was going to give up, but your website, team members and forms made it very simple for me to correct the information I needed to complete my application process.’
● Customer 3: ‘Novo has been great and they continue to provide adequate service.’
The Bottom Line
Bank Novo is not as popular as some other business checking account providers. Not yet at least. And you won’t find any Novo bank reviews from Better Business Bureau (BBB) but that is not because the platform is suspect. It is just a matter of time.
Add to that basic benefits that traditional banks don’t offer like the lack of hidden fees or transparent fee schedule. The only charge you will see is a fee for uncollected funds or insufficient funds (for transactions) which are both about $27.
The debit card, transfers, incoming wires both domestic and international and mailed checks are all free. And you will also save on ATM fees which traditional banks unforgivingly collect from you.
And finally, it is insured which means if you are concerned about Bank Novo failing, which is highly unlikely, your money is still safe.
It is partnered with the trustworthy Middlesex Federal Savings Bank which has been in business since 1890 and is still in excellent shape. So, if nothing else, count on their credibility.