For nearly ten years, I had been a faithful customer of Wachovia. In the midst of the 2008 financial crisis, my beloved bank was purchased by Wells Fargo. I was not too sure how I felt about the acquisition initially – I was quite content with the products and services that I had been receiving over the years. Slowly, as my local Wachovia branches transformed into Wells Fargo locations, I finally gave into change and became more accustomed to the new brand. I’ve been a fan of Wells Fargo ever since.

I use the Wells Fargo Value Checking account for the majority of my day-to-day purchases. When I was deciding whether to keep my account with Wells Fargo following the integration of Wachovia, I researched all of my different checking options. The Value Checking is ideal because although the account has a $7-9 monthly fee, it is waived if you either carry a $1,500 balance in the account or make $500 in direct deposits each month.

Pros and Cons I’ve Found with Wells Fargo

All-in-all, my Wells Fargo Value Checking account is perfect for what I want to use it for. Of course there are still a few negatives that I run across from time to time, but overall I am content keeping this account here.

Some of the major perks of both Wells Fargo and the Value Checking account are:

  • No monthly fee with a minimum balance or deposit
  • There are over 12,000 Wells Fargo ATMS and more than 6,000 branches around the world
  • Free online banking and current technology used with their mobile banking
  • Standard fees for things such as overdrafts and obtaining cashier’s checks are in line with the amounts charged by similar banks

Still, there are a few negatives that I notice from time to time with Wells Fargo account such as:

  • Additional $3 per month charge for access to BillPay via your Wells Fargo Online Banking account
  • Less personal touch than with other banking options when visiting branch locations (may be my local branches, or may be the “big bank feeling”)
  • Little-to-no luck trying to get customer service representatives to waive occasional, accidental overdraft charges ($35 per occasion, with a maximum of four per day)

Why do I Like Wells Fargo and what do I Think They can Improve?

Despite being a very affordable nearly free account option, my Wells Fargo Value Checking account has a number of different features which gives it an advantage over smaller banks, while staying competitive with its peers in the industry. With well-supported mobile banking and fully-functional online banking including BillPay (for a small additional charge), I find accessing my account, including making deposits and payments, extremely convenient. I often am quite busy between work and family obligations, so saving time and convenience are very important features to me.

In the past I have used smaller, regional banks and credit unions and felt like I receive more personalized services with these smaller institutions when I visit the branch. Now though, with the technological advances over the past few years, I find myself visiting physical Wells Fargo locations less and less frequently. Because of that, the “big bank feeling” is less of a concern to me currently.

What is My Overall Opinion of the Wells Fargo Value Checking?

Taking everything into consideration, I would recommend the Wells Fargo Value Checking account to anyone who is looking for a very reasonably priced, customizable checking option. Unlike costly accounts which charge a high monthly fee to cover the features included, Value Checking gives you the opportunity to make it into whatever fits your needs. I rarely need to use services such as wire transfers ($15 to receive a payment and $30 to send one) or stop payment orders ($31), so paying significantly less each month is certainly worth spending a little bit extra for those options in the rate situation I need them.

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