Whether you’re just starting out as a sole trader, or the proud owner of a flourishing limited liability company, you need a business account to manage your finances. You’ll find that there are many commercial banking options, including accounts which are designed for startups and new businesses with low transaction needs, and products aimed at businesses with more complex financial arrangements.
Bankwest has a range of bank account options, including Money magazine’s pick for the cheapest bank account for 2019, with zero domestic transaction fees to pay.
When you’re deciding which account will work for your business, it’s a good idea to do some research. If you trade internationally, or expect to work in future with customers or suppliers overseas, you may find that the best option for you isn’t from one of the big traditional banks, but from a specialist provider like TransferWise for business.
We will take a look at the features and benefits of the Bankwest account options, as well as an alternative - the borderless account from TransferWise - to kickstart your search for the perfect account for your needs.
Bankwest offer their award winning Business Zero Transaction Account - voted by Money magazine to be the cheapest business bank account out there - alongside a range of other account products.
To choose the account that’s right for you, you’ll need to think about the sort of transactions you need to make and the features that really matter to you. The Zero Transaction Account, as an example, comes with no domestic transaction fees - but if you regularly travel and use ATMs overseas, or need to pay international suppliers, you’ll still find there are fees to pay for these more complex transactions.
If you’re planning on sending or receiving international payments, you might find an alternative like the borderless account from TransferWise for business suits you better.
Here’s a rundown of the Bankwest options available to you.
This is Bankwest’s award winning business transaction account, coming with a linked debit card, 24/7 account access online, and no domestic transaction fee. You’ll also find there’s no monthly fee, and no minimum balance to worry about, making this a good all round account for new businesses, and companies carrying out mainly local transactions.
If you’re likely to hold a balance in your business account, and want to earn interest, this account might help. It’s also an easy access account with online banking and a debit card available, making it a neat hybrid of a deposit account and a transaction account. There are monthly fees of $10/month to pay for this account.
The TeleNet Saver product comes with a slightly higher interest rate than the High Interest Account mentioned earlier. However, the functionality of this account is somewhat more limited. You’ll need to link your TeleNet account to another business bank account held in your company name in Australia, either with Bankwest or another provider. You can only deposit and withdraw funds from that linked account, which means that this option wouldn’t work as a transaction account for everyday banking. There are no monthly fees or minimum balance to pay to use the account - although you may need to pay fees for your linked account.
This is a term deposit account, meaning you commit your surplus funds to the account for a fixed period and won’t be able to easily withdraw them during this time. There’s a minimum deposit of $10,000, but you can then tailor the package to suit your needs, choosing the deposit length that works for you. The interest rate you get may vary depending on the amount you’re investing, and the length of the deposit term you choose.
If you’re looking for a specialist account to suit your business, you might also benefit from some of the other Bankwest products available. You’ll find statutory trust accounts which are intended for solicitors and real estate agents who need to hold funds in trust for clients, accounts which are aimed at farmers and primary producers, and a range of specific investment vehicles for corporate customers looking to save over $500,000.
To open any of the regular business bank accounts with Bankwest, you’ll need to fulfil the following conditions:
- Your business is as a sole trader, partnership, company, trust, super fund, society, strata or cooperative
- Your business was established in Australia and is resident for tax purposes
- You’ll need to be an Australian permanent resident or citizen aged 16 or over, with a local residential address
To open one of the deposit account you’ll also need an Australian bank account which can be linked to the Bankwest account for payments in and out. There may be other conditions for the specialist accounts, so it’s worth double checking the exact requirements before you commit to one.
You will be able to begin your application online via the Bankwest website. Depending on your situation you may then need to visit a branch to hand over your documents and provide signatures. This will depend on the business type you run, the account you choose, and whether or not you’re already a Bankwest customer. Follow the prompts on screen to understand how the application process will work in your particular case.
In any case, you’ll need to provide some documents and information to get your account open. You can expect to need:
- Photo ID for anyone connected to the application, unless you are already Bankwest customers
- Australian Business Number (ABN) if available. If this isn’t available, Bankwest may need to withhold tax to comply with their legal obligations
- Depending on your business type you’ll also need further paperwork such as a partnership agreement, ACN, or trust deeds
Before you choose the right business account for your needs, you’ll want to check out the full functionality and costs of the products you’re interested in.
Below is a summary of some of the more common costs involved in using a Bankwest account. It’s worth noting that some features, such as making or receiving international payments, or using ATMs are not available with deposit accounts. Check out the full details including features, benefits and fees for each account, online.
|Open an account||Free|
|Monthly maintenance fees||Business High Interest Transaction Account - $10/month The other regular accounts described do not have a monthly fee, although there may be minimum deposit requirements depending on the account you select|
|Sending an international transfer (where available)||$35 per transfer arranged in a Bankwest store, $14 for transfers set up via online banking|
|Receiving an international transfer (where available)||$10|
|International transaction fee (where available)||When paying for goods or services with a merchant or financial institution not based in Australia - 2.95% of the transaction amount|
|International ATM use (where available)||$5 per transaction|
One area where traditional banks may not serve business customers well is in making and receiving international payments. As companies become more and more likely to buy and sell globally, this can prove a problem. If you’re planning on working with suppliers or customers overseas, you may find you can save by using a specialist account from TransferWise for business.
The TransferWise borderless account is a multi-currency account for businesses, and lets you hold money in dozens of different currencies in the same place. You can switch between currencies when you need to using the Google exchange rate and for just a low fee. You’ll also be able to accept fee free payments in Australian, US and New Zealand dollars, as well as euros and British pounds - making it easier for global customers to pay you.
The borderless account for business can save you money. But it can also save you time, with smart features like Xero integration and batch payment facilities. Check out the pricing and coverage for the TransferWise borderless account for business, to see how it might work for you.
You can call Bankwest’s business bankers or use the email form provided online to connect with the service team there.
If you’re interested in exploring other options, why not contact the dedicated customer support team at TransferWise?
As a business owner you know you need a strong team onside. That includes your suppliers and staff, service providers, and a smart and effective way to manage your business finances. Do some research before you choose the right business bank account for your needs. You might discover that the best account for you isn’t from a bank at all.
See if you can save with a specialist online business account which is designed to save you time and money from TransferWise for business.
Sources correct as of 21 August 2019
This publication is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content in this publication. The information in this publication does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from TransferWise Limited or its affiliates. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.
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