How Long Does It Take To Switch Banks?

How Long Does It Take To Switch Banks?
Image: iStock / alfexe

Whether it’s putting off a load of laundry or pushing back on sorting your finances out, humans love to procrastinate. But some tasks don’t need to be procrastinated because the time it would take to do them is practically nothing at all.

This article has been sponsored by CUA.

Take switching your bank for example. If you’re envisioning a huge rigmarole with stress, meetings and hours of painstakingly filling out forms, you couldn’t be more wrong.

With almost everything online, switching banks can take as little as five minutes of your time, provided you know what you're doing.

As with all major life decisions, you will have to put in some effort when it comes to research. Take the time to compare your choices, because some banks will have better options for you at different times of your life — and you may even be better off going with a credit union.

But don't be put off by the concept because this is research that can actually save you a lot of time and money in the long run. There are even comparison websites that have all the details in one handy spreadsheet so you can compare the options in no time at all.

Then comes time to actually open up the new account. Again, this process is super simple. If you opt to go with a provider like Credit Union Australia (CUA), for example, you can open up an Everyday Snap account (with $0 monthly fees) in less than five minutes.

That's five minutes that you can breeze through in between procrastinating your other life admin tasks. Plus, the Everyday Snap account enables you to use CUA's Savings Top Up feature, which automatically transfers a designated amount (from 1c to $5) to your savings account anytime you spend. If you don't have funds in your account the transfer won’t happen.

Once you've opened it up, all you've got to do is transfer your other funds, close the old account and make sure that any recurrent payments are transferred as well.

Most places will help you out by doing this automatically, and all you have to do is get a list of debits from your old bank, give it to the new one and request that they notify all the payees. Then it's all their job — you're off scot free.

Ultimately, the whole process can take you as little as an hour (especially now that we're all banking on our phones anyway). If you think about it, that's barely anything in the grand scheme of things.

So if you've been putting it off because you didn't want to sink a day or two into the process, now might be the time to reconsider. It's worth the hassle, and if you want to get real, it'll serve as productive procrastination for the next thing on your list.

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