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Novo Review

Thursday, October 6th

2022 Business Bank Account Reviews

Novo Review 3 Star Rating

Novo

3 Star Rating
  • Virtual card
  • Send and track invoices
  • Reserves for setting aside funds for expenses, taxes, and so on
  • Stripe integration
  • App for transferring and managing funds
  • Instant unlimited check deposits via the app
  • Send payments
  • Integrated apps
  • Connect to Google Pay or Apple Pay

Novo is a financial technology company facilitating banking transactions for customers of Middlesex Federal Savings in Massachusetts. It supports over 15 payment and eCommerce systems like Stripe, PayPal, Shopify, QuickBooks, eBay, Etsy, Woo, Square, and others. Novo's app lets you transfer funds, deposit checks instantly, reserve money for future purchases, and access your funds with the Novo Virtual Card in-app.

Very Few Fees

Novo does not charge a fee to open an account, nor does it have any regularly scheduled or hidden fees. There is a $27 fee for insufficient funds and another $27 fee for uncollected funds returned. There is a minimum amount of $50 to open an account. And if you want to do instant transfers (same-day ACH), there is a 1.5% transaction fee with a minimum of $0.50 and up to a maximum of $20 for all instant transfers. All other activities are fee-less.

Limited ATMs

Novo allows $1,000 per day cash withdrawals with no fee from its own ATMs, which are located in the Medford/Somerville, MA area. For nationwide ATMs, Novo will refund any fees incurred at the end of each month back to your account, including international ATM fees.

You can also get cash back from merchants who offer that feature or get a cash advance at most major banks. For cash deposits, unfortunately there are no ATMs equipped for Novo to handle this. You'll need to purchase a money order from USPS, Walmart, and grocery stores and then use the mobile check deposit feature in the Novo app to deposit the check (what a pain in the neck!).

No Interest-bearing Checking

Novo does not offer interest-bearing checking or savings accounts. But, they are considering it for users in the future.

QuickBooks Integration, But Not For Desktop

Novo can be integrated with QuickBooks Online (but not QuickBooks Desktop) for all your accounting needs through the Novo app, the web app, or the QuickBooks website. After QuickBooks is connected, Novo will automatically send transactions each hour electronically.

Be Careful Who You Allow to Access Your Account

You can also add your accountant as a user of your Novo account, but there is no way to limit what any user can do, so you will run the risk of having money withdrawn from the account without your knowledge. Be sure you fully trust those you give access to.

App-Based Transfers

Transfers between accounts in Novo happen through the browser on the desktop or via the app on mobile devices.

Best Business Bank Accounts

Bill Pay Is Not Available

Traditional online bill pay is not available in Novo business checking accounts, but you can create invoices and track and get paid through their invoicing system.

Sub-accounts Are Called "Reserves"

Novo has named its multiple accounts or sub-accounts feature "reserves" . Reserves allow you to allocate funds to various categories so that you can better budget for expenses, taxes, payroll, and other needs. After creating a Reserve, you get to it through the Novo dashboard, the App Marketplace, or in the Reserves section of the web app. You can also allocate funds to Reserves automatically by creating custom rules with percentages. Reserves can be used to make direct payments. You can also retroactively assign expenses to Reserves on the transaction's detail screen by selecting the "Pay from Reserve" dropdown.

Various Limitations On Transactions

Novo's limits on ACH are $1,250 per day for pulls and $5,000 per day for pushes. The limit for mailed checks is $5,000 per day. Check deposit limits are $20,000 per day or $40,000 per month with a 20 checks per month transaction limit. For Point of Sale (POS), the limit is $5,000 per day or 20 POS transactions per day. For ATM withdrawals, expect a limit of $1,000 per day.

Support

Support is only available via a searchable FAQ system, email, and the phone number on the back of your Novo debit card. There is no live chat.

Lackluster Reviews from Customers

Novo has a Better Business Bureau non-accredited rating of "A-" . A bare majority of customers like Novo. Those who like it say they enjoy the benefits of all the technical integrations with third-party platforms, great customer service, transfers clearing on time, refunded ATM fees, and perks/reward system.

Customers who did not like their experience with Novo complained of unauthorized or fraudulent behavior in their accounts, bad customer service, lack of more deposit options than just mobile, not being able to cash a check, long wait times to receive the debit card, checks being rejected multiple times, and delays in transferring funds for large purchases.

Needs Better Feedback from Business Bank Customers

Novo has a too-close-for-comfort mix of positive and negative reviews, and no cash deposits. Also, with the exception of the Better Business Bureau complaints, Novo doesn't seem to be responding to complaints. We recommend you proceed with caution if you choose to bank with Novo.

The 10 Best Business Bank Accounts

Where Should You Open a Business Bank Account?

The answer to this question depends on a lot of factors. How mature is your business in terms of growth and revenue? How do your customers pay you? How do you pay your vendors? Do you expect to earn interest on the money you hold in your checking account? Can you afford to pay fees on transactions?

Access to cashflow is a big part of running your business. Without cashflow, you can't operate. So being able to deposit or withdraw money quickly, with the least amount of hassle, will partly determine whether you're successful in your entrepreneurial endeavors. For example, if you can't make payroll happen in the timeframe your employees expect, they will complain or even quit. Or, if you can't pay your bills on time, you'll be assessed fees and fines that put a dent in your bottom line.

The Best Business Bank Accounts Compare Business Bank Accounts Compare Business Bank Account Reviews What are the best Business Bank Accounts Best Business Bank Account Reviews

Business Bank Account FAQ

A business bank account has more features than a typical personal banking account. For example, business accounts might have overdraft protection. They also might have fewer fees and interest-bearing options to help your money grow while stored in the account. A growing number of business checking accounts have integrations with popular eCommerce, payment, and accounting systems.
That depends on the bank. Larger banks with greater longevity typically have minimum daily balance requirements. Smaller banks that are trying to gain a foothold in the banking industry will entice new customers by offering a zero minimum balance requirement. While you'll never be able to completely avoid minimum daily balance requirements at all banks, the trend with newer banks is towards eliminating them in favor of the banking customer.
You can usually find an interactive, searchable map of ATMs near you on each bank's website. Most banks have an association with networks of ATM providers. MoneyPass®, AllPoint, and Green Dot Network® are examples of such networks. By pooling ATM resources in those networks, banks avoid having to build and operate their own ATMs, thus saving themselves and their customers on fees they would otherwise have to charge and pay, respectively. Some banks cover fees even for non-network ATMs.
There are banks that require up to $1,000 as an initial deposit to open a bank account. There are other banks that have lower initial deposit amounts. There are a few that offer a zero initial deposit to open an account and no monthly fees. Yet others offer zero initial deposit but charge a monthly maintenance or subscription fee.
Software and services like QuickBooks, Shopify, PayPal, Stripe, Square, Venmo, and others have proliferated since the beginning of eCommerce in the late 1990s and early 2000s. In the past 10 years, banks have increased their support for third-party financial software. Today it is more likely than not that you can connect your bank account to QuickBooks to import and reconcile bank statements and to direct funds from PayPal, Venmo, and Stripe directly to your checking or savings account. Newer and more innovative banks are beginning to provide integration with cryptocurrencies and the blockchain.
If your bank does not provide the ability to add users to your account, you're stuck sending a copy of your bank statement to your accountant. Or you can share your login credentials with your accountant, which is not recommended. Another option that some banks provide is adding team members. Unfortunately, most of the time those team members have the same ability to move funds that you do, so you're advised to keep a sharp eye on your balances. A few banks have introduced features that allow you to restrict users to specific roles and abilities, or to limit how much money they can handle.
A debit card looks like a credit card and is used similarly to a credit card at a point of sale terminal at a store or via an online eCommerce checkout form. But instead of borrowing money, it allows you to spend money directly from your business bank account. It's important to be careful with a debit card because you don't want to withdraw more money than you have in the account. You also don't want to use a debit card to spend money faster than you bring money in.
ACH stands for Automated Clearing House. Banks belong to networks of money transfer computer systems built for the purpose of coordinating electronic payments and automating money transfers. Typically the money going through the ACH system is handled in batches, which is why it can take between 1-7 days for money to arrive in the destination account. Whenever you transfer money from your bank account to another vendor (say, your accountant or a supplier), you're sending it through the Automated Clearing House system.
Compare the Best Reviews

Continued from above...

When looking for a business bank account, you will want as many convenience options as you can find. You want a bank that works for you and improves your financial success, not one that makes you feel like you are working for the bank and that they keep taking your money.

We've broken down this review of business banking into several key criteria to compare between options. Not every bank has every option available, but these are among the most common we've found:

  • Fees. What fees will you be charged for using ATMs, depositing or withdrawing cash, sending wire transfers either domestically or internationally, or from bank to bank? Fees are too often overlooked by consumers of banking services but those fees can quickly add up. It's important to read all the fine print and make calculations as to how much money, on average, you need to have in your account to avoid fees.
  • ATMs. For some businesses, having easy access to no-fee ATMs is critical, especially if you're buying goods or paying employees or vendors regularly in paper money. Being able to deposit cash is another task some businesses cannot do without.
  • Integration with accounting or accountants. Banks that provide connections to popular accounting software or payment systems have an edge over banks that don't. The same goes for banks that allow you to add team members such as accountants, bookkeepers, or other similar roles to your bank accounts. Delegating financial tasks can create a measurable difference in productivity.
  • Ease of transfers to personal accounts. Transferring money between financial institutions, to other businesses, or even to yourself should not be a chore. And it should happen as fast as possible. Some banks take up to a week or more to complete funds transfers. The best banks complete them either instantly or within 1-3 business days.
  • Bill pay. If you don't pay your bills, you can't stay in business. Having to remember to pay them on a specific schedule can be tedious and is prone to error. Instead of putting payment schedules on a calendar, expect your bank to make it easy to pay your bills online on a recurring basis. That way you can focus on what your business was made for: serving customers.
  • Ability to have multiple accounts under one. Savvy financial planners advise individuals and businesses to set aside cash reserves for taxes, bills, payroll, expenses, and other purposes that are easy to forget but essential to financial success. There is a growing number of banks who recognize the value of this and provide subaccounts or "envelopes" for storing money for a rainy day.
  • Minimum deposit required. Startups are usually low on money at the beginning. They can't afford to have too much money exit their cash flow. So having to deposit a minimum amount to start a business checking account can be a problem. Fortunately, there are banks that don't require a minimum deposit to start an account.
  • FDIC insured. To avoid another Great Depression-era financial disaster, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) ensures that if there's ever a massive failure of the banking system, you'll be able to obtain at least $250,000 of what was lost. Every bank we reviewed is FDIC insured. Very few banks are not, if any.
  • Limits to the number of monthly transactions. Let's say your business has a really successful quarter, but as a result the number and amounts of banking transactions begins to exceed your bank's imposed limits. Do you really want to be blocked or pay a lot of money to your bank for the privilege of being their customer? In our review, we included banks with low or no monthly transaction limits or costs.

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the most popular providers of business bank accounts available today. We hope this information helps you choose a bank that will make it easy and affordable to manage your money!

The Best Reviews of Business Bank Accounts