With the proliferation of online banking, it is easy to forget the benefits and advantages of traditional banking services. While online banking has offered us cheaper and convenient forms of banking there are certain things that they do not offer.
It is when you need such services that you are made aware of some of the benefits of traditional banking giants.
I will in the next paragraphs try to explain some of these advantages that brick and mortar banks have over online bankers.
Advantages of Traditional Banking
Below are some of the things that I think are missing from online bankers but are readily available at your classic banking giants.
1. Personal Interaction
There is nothing that compares to personal interaction i.e. interacting with a real person when it comes to banking. I still struggle when I have to deal with a machine instead of a real human being.
I still miss the days when I had to walk into the bank branch to meet a banking official in order for them to sort out my issues. The ability to ask questions and chat with a bank official is totally different from having to find an answer on a bank website.
For example, a human being with the ability to override the systems can after one to one discussion decide to offer you a service that a computer turned you down for.
A fell human being has feelings and can sympathize with you. A computer is a machine and does not have feelings. It just blindly follows what was fed into it.
I remember a few years ago I went to see a bank manager for a loan. Even though I did not meet the criterion for getting the loan, the bank manager decided to give me one after hearing my story. If I had done it online my application would have been declined.
2. The Ability to Process Cash Transactions
If you have cash and would like to have it deposited there is no better place to do it than in a brick and mortar bank branch. Online banks by their very name do not have the ability to process cash transactions for you. They do not have branches after all.
Therefore if you deal with cash and need to have it banked or processed in any way by the bank then traditional banking is for you.
Having an online banking account only can, therefore, be a negative if you need to deposit cash. Even when it comes to cashing checks, you will have to go through other banks’ cash machines as online bankers do not have this facility.
3. Notary Services
If you need notary services i.e. someone to witness the signing of documents and also to verify the identity of the one signing, then traditional bankers can provide that service. They can do this for free or for a small fee.
Even though a notary public does not have to a banker most people prefer doing this at their bank.
Online banking cannot provide this service as their very nature does not allow for a face to face interaction with their customers.
Fortunately, it is not always that you will need the services of a notary public. You can, therefore, get away with it or you will seek the assistance of other notaries such as lawyers.
4. Safe Deposit Boxes
The ability to provide safe deposit boxes is another thing that you can only get at a traditional bank. If you, therefore, have valuable things like jewelry and documents that you want to be kept in a safe place then online banking is not for you.
If you need a very safe way to store your valuables in a water-resistant, fireproof, and theft-proof place then there is no better than a bank safe deposit box. You can then access them anytime the bank is open, all for a reasonable fee.
Even if thieves were to be able to break in and stole your valuables, there is no better institution to be able to compensate you than a bank.
5. Almost Instant Service For Some Transactions like Cashier’s Checks
If you are looking for a Cashier’s check then the traditional bank will offer in most cases same day service compared to days for online banking.
This might be alright if you can afford to wait but most businessmen are not prepared to wait that long. They want to get their check the same day they apply for it.
While you can pay more to get your check sooner from online banks the fact that it is being posted can create all sorts of anxieties.
Whereas if you have an account with the traditional banks you can just go to your bank branch and have your check processed the same day. And you will get it yourself which is much better than having it posted to you.
Related Post: What is a Cashier’s Check and How Does It Work?
6. You Can Enjoy The Old and The New Forms of Banking Under One Roof
Even though online banks are the in thing nowadays one has to understand that the traditional banks have also done a good job improving their online stuff.
By staying with traditional banks you will, therefore, enjoy the benefits of both worlds. You will be able to enjoy services like safe deposit boxes, cash deposits while at the same time being able to make bank transactions online.
This is not so with online banks as you are only provided with electronic banking services.
I am of course aware of the fact that online banks have made it cheaper to maintain an account with them when you compare them with other banks. But that means nothing when you need services such as cash deposits, etc.
7. Traditional Banks Can Offer Other Services Such As Insurance or Stock Broking
Most traditional banks have now ventured into other areas such as insurance services and also stockbroking. You can therefore besides being offered banking services get to buy stocks through your bank’s stockbroking section.
In most cases, you can access the stockbroking services without having to go through a laborious application process. It actually took me less than 5 minutes to join the brokerage side of my bank.
Traditional banks can also offer home insurance, health insurance, and many other services that most online banks cannot provide.