Why Local Banks Are More Business-Oriented than National Banks

While large, national banks often fall into the mainstream, local banks offer many benefits to consumers that their larger, national counterparts tend to struggle with. National banks, as large publicly owned businesses, continue to expand, often without much thought to the individual. Community banks, on the other hand, are more willing to give and support the city or town in which they are located, and they thrive when they can offer this type of intimate service. Here are a few ways in which local banks can help businesses, as compared with national banks:

The Services Are Often the Same

It’s a misconception that local banks lack the features and innovative banking services that larger organizations offer. From ATMs to mobile apps and plenty of other technological innovations, there is no technological shortfall when choosing a community bank over larger, profit-driven organizations. It’s important to realize that smaller banks still offer all of the financial products consumers want and need, and often with even more variety and flexibility.

Personal Service at Its Best

Beyond anything else, community banks create personalized service. The feeling of being greeted by someone who knows you and who knows your needs is a great thing that can take the stress out of dealing with finances. The people at community banks know local businesses and can recommend loans and products that fit their individual needs. Because these banks are more relationship-oriented, they are able to take the time to help customers know what their options are before they even need them. High personal satisfaction is one of the most important benefits of these locations.

They Lend with More Flexibility

At larger corporate banks, the primary focus of the business is on profit and mitigating risk. At these institutions, bankers are given specific rules about who they can lend to and who they can’t. There’s no personal component here — decisions are based on credit scores and lending criteria. However, with community banks, there is more flexibility. They are willing and able to offer better loan terms than their national counterparts. They also often offer lower interest rates on loans, more lending power to make large business expenditures, and even offer more lending to startup businesses that larger organizations cannot.

Lower Fees

Some of the best small banks offer lower fees on their services. Finding a low- or no-fee checking account is a common option. They are also more willing to forgive mistakes such as accidental overdrafts. This is all because of their community-focused approach — they are more likely than national banks to build relationships that help consumers to manage their money better.

Consumers who want higher quality service, greater affordability and all of the latest banking options and products need to turn to smaller community banks. They will always get a better level of service from people who simply love getting to know their customers.