Taking your Account balance under Advisement – Supervisory Guide
It is of utmost importance to know how much is left in your bank account (Account Balance) and how much of your total account balance is readily available for spending (Available Balance).
Your Available Balance
As you check your bank balance, pay attention to the type of balance that you get. When you go online or use the bank’s app, most banks show an available balance (which tells you how much you can afford to spend or withdraw today) as well as a total account balance.
The available balance is usually less than you think you have (what you think of as your “account balance”) because of pending transactions: debit card authorisations, upcoming bill payments, and deposits that have not cleared yet. Those funds may become available in a few days, but until then, the funds are frozen
Benefits of Monitoring your Account
Monitoring your account on a regular basis helps you know your stand financially, and which transactions have been cleared in your account. You can also spot problems (like fraud and errors) before they get out of hand.
If you balance your account regularly, you almost never need to check your balance (although it’s a good idea to do so, just to double check and identify problems before they get worse). In fact, you will probably know where your balance is headed before your bank does. If you write a cheque or spend before the transaction hits your account, your own records will be more accurate than the bank’s records.
So how can you keep an eye on your bank account? The strategies below make it so easy that it will actually happen. And once you view your balance, be sure you understand the difference between the account balance and your available balance.
Six Easy Ways
You can check your bank account balances online anytime—and you can do much more than that. To get started, go to your bank’s website and figure out how to access your account information online. In most cases, you will look for an option like “Login” or “Account Access.” If it is your first visit, select options like “register” or “first time user.”
If the idea of online banking is new to you, see why you should give it a try. In addition to checking balances online, you can often transfer money to other banks, pay bills without writing a cheque, and more.
Mobile Apps and Text Messages
Mobile phones, tablets, and other devices make it easy to check on accounts from just about anywhere.
Most banks provide apps (or at least websites designed for mobile devices) that allow you to see your account balance online. Apps typically let you do even more than you can do from a desktop computer.
The fastest way to use your cell phone is to set up text messaging with your bank. You don’t even need to log in—you can request a quick balance update if your bank offers that option.
Use an ATM
ATMs can provide updated account balances. Just insert your ATM card or debit card, and follow the on-screen instructions. It is best to use your own bank’s ATM (or an ATM network that your bank uses). Other ATMs will most likely charge fees—even if you don’t withdraw cash. Your bank may also charge an additional fee for using a “foreign” ATM, so those balance inquiries can cost you.Call the bank: If you prefer a more traditional approach, call your bank to find out what your balance is. To speak with a real person, you might need to call during certain hours, but most banks have automated systems that provide 24/7 account information. Getting set up to use those systems might take some effort (you may need to establish a PIN, among other things). But once you are up and running, it will become routine.
In fact, in some institutions, you might need to make an initial phone call just to set up online access. For added security, a customer service representative may need to enable self-service features on your account
Set up alerts
Instead of checking your bank account balances manually, you can have your bank push information out to you when something happens.
Just want a heads up when your account balance gets low, or whenever there is a significant withdrawal? If so, set up alerts so that your bank sends you an email or text message. You can typically customise the types of messages you get and what dollar amounts are relevant to you. With alerts in place, you can assume all is well until you hear from your bank. Still, it is wise to log in and review your account periodically. If there are any errors or fraudulent transactions, you need to report them promptly to get full protection.
If all else fails, speak with somebody in person—assuming you use a brick-and-mortar bank with local branches.
Unfortunately, it is getting harder to get access to tellers, and some banks even charge additional fees for personal service.
While a face-to-face talk can be helpful, it is best to get comfortable with some of the self-service methods above. You will appreciate being able to get things done on your own time, from almost any location.
Should an account holder go ahead to implement all of these guidelines and directives given above, you and your account would be in constant synchronization and you will know when there is something fishy going with your account balance.
And lastly – Please, do not be a victim to fraudsters; do well to ignore all calls and messages about your account balance, except the message is from your Bank, and you can confirm that message by calling the customer care line or by visiting their vatious online platforms ( if the news is not personal account related).
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