How to Open a bank account in Cameroon. Opening a bank account in Cameroon isn’t as simple as walking up to a teller and delivering your money. Creating a replacement account requires a touch of preparation and thought. for instance, you will need to make a decision which sort of account you would like and the way you would like to use it. Luckily, while banking jargon is often intimidating, this process isn’t difficult once you recognize a couple of banking basics. Follow along step-by-step to open a bank account in Cameroon.
Opening a Basic Account
1. Make sure you’re eligible to open an account.
Before you head to the bank, it’s knowing check whether you meet all the standards for opening an account. As a general rule, most banks would require the following:
If you’re under 18, some banks might require your parents to sign some forms once you make your account. Not all banks do that, so if you do not want your parents to be involved your banking, try emailing banks before you enter them asking whether or not they require your parents to sign.
You’ll need to possess valid identification and be willing to share basic information about yourself.
You’ll need to possess a minimum amount of cash for opening account. this will vary supported the bank and account you select . for instance, a basic Bank of Ecobank account requires a minimum deposit of 5k
2. Choose the bank that’s best for you.
Not all banks are an equivalent, even when it involves basic personal accounts. It is often very knowing contact the banks in your local area to debate what exactly you’d get if you opened a sic account. Few banks in Cameroon include; Ecobank, UBA, CCA, Citibank, CBC, Afriland first bank.etc
While all banks are different, they will generally be lumped into two general categories: large chain banks and smaller local ones. See below:
Large chain banks:
Large banks usually have branches in most towns and cities across Cameroon, which suggests you will be ready to get basically an equivalent service regardless of where you go. This wide coverage can assist you to avoid fees you will have to buy using other banks’ services (like ATM fees, etc.) Large banks also usually have the resources to supply services like 24-hour helplines for his or her customers. additionally, these banks tend to possess a stable, trusted reputation — they’re unlikely to fail or present you with “surprise” difficulties.
Smaller local banks:
Small banks offer a more personal, human experience. they have a tendency to be friendlier than big banks in several ways — not only will they be willing to supply more personal, one-on-one attention, but they’ll often be willing to “work with you” when something goes wrong (like you overdraft from your account). Smaller banks also usually charge smaller fees for using their services.
Smaller banks often invest their money into the communities, instead of in national, or multinational large projects that chain banks could be investing in.
On the opposite hand, smaller banks fail more frequently than large banks (this remains very rare, though). additionally, credit unions are an alternative choice for banking.
Credit unions are not-for-profit financial institutions, often with a mission to be “community-oriented” and “serve people, not profit. Credit unions have successfully made their services more accessible by partnering with other credit unions to supply shared branch banking and ATMs.
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3. Pick the sort of account you would like.
Most of the time, when someone opens his or her first checking account, it’s a daily checking or bank account (or both). Both of those sorts of accounts allow you to securely store your money with the bank and withdraw it once you need it.
However, each sort of account is best for various tasks. See below:
A bank account is what most of the people use for day-to-day purchases. With a bank account, you will get a chequebook and an open-end credit that you simply can use to buy things with the cash in your account. Money during a bank account doesn’t change over time — if you would like extra money, you’ve got to place it in yourself.
As its name suggests, a bank account is best for saving money long-term. Money during a bank account slowly gains interest — in other words, the bank can pay you a little amount for storing your money with it.
The extra money you’ve got within the account and therefore the longer you reserve it, the more interest you get. you’ll still withdraw money from a bank account at banks and ATM, but you cannot generally use it for checks and open-end credit payments.
If you’ve got enough money to satisfy the minimum deposit for both, having both a checking and a bank account is typically best. you’ll use the bank account for your daily expenses and put extra cash in your savings to form interest.
4. Visit your bank and ask to open an account.
Opening an account face to face is typically the simplest option for first-time account holders. One big advantage of opening an account face to face is that you simply can ask the teller all of your questions and obtain immediate answers (as against the waiting you will have to try to online or on the phone).
Also, because you’ll sign the forms and receive your confirmation documents on the spot, the method of opening an account is additionally usually speedier face to face.
The rest of this section will assume you’re opening an account face to face. However, counting on your bank, you’ll even be able to open an account over the phone or maybe online. These options vary from bank to bank — not all banks will allow you to open your account these ways.
5. Ask important questions before you finalize your account.
Now’s a superb time to invite clarification on any issues regarding your account that you simply don’t understand. Below are a couple of suggestions for questions you’ll want to ask, but do not be afraid to ask any others that occur to you.
Is there a monthly fee for maintaining this account? If so, what’s it?
Is there a minimum balance that I need to keep within this account? If so, what’s it?
What kinds of fees apply if I’m going thereunder limit?
What is the rate of interest in my savings account? How often does interest generate?
Is there a limit to the number of transactions (deposits/withdrawals, check writing, ATM uses) I even have per month?
Where am I able to withdraw cash without paying any fees?
what’s the fee for using an ATM that does not belong to the present bank?
Is the account I’m applying for insured by a Deposit Guarantee Scheme (DGS)?
6. Supply the required information to make your account.
As noted above, opening a bank account requires a couple of basic pieces of private information. you’ll or might not need to provide documentation to prove this personal information. this relies on the precise bank you’re opening an account with. generally, it is a good idea to have:
Proof that you simply are who you say you are: Have a government-issued ID together with your photo thereon with you (a driver’s licence or a passport are best).
Proof of address: A telephone bill, driver’s licence, or the other legal document together with your name and address will usually do.
- Keep the account documents you receive secure.
Once you finish completing your account, you’ll receive documents that contain important information about your account. Keep these during a safe place, sort of a strongbox.
Don’t let people you do not trust access these documents — they’ll be ready to use them for malicious purposes. If you’ll, it is a wise idea to commit the subsequent information to memory in order that you do not get to believe the documents within the future:
Your four-digit PIN number: you would like this to use your open-end credit for purchases.
Your checking account number: you would like this for financial tasks like fixing direct deposits
Your Social Security number: you would like this for various tax and financial tasks within the future
If you think your account information has fallen into the incorrect hands, you’ll always contact your bank and request a “freeze” on your account to stop unauthorized use.
Using Your Account’s Features
1. Withdraw money from your account when needed.
The most important advantage of having a checking account is that it is safe thanks to storing your money. Money within the bank cannot be lost or stolen — it’s yours until you spend it. Even within the unlikely event that your bank is robbed, your money is insured by the govt, so you will not break down.
Once you want to urge the cash in your checking account, you would like to form a withdrawal. There are several ways to try to do this:
Visit the bank face to face and fill out a withdrawal form. You’ll usually need your account number and basic personal information for this. Somewhat time-consuming compared to the opposite options, but necessary for special tasks like large withdrawals.
Use an ATM. See below for more information.
Online. during this case, your withdrawals are usually limited to transfers between accounts and payments to other individuals — you cannot “get cash” online. See below for more information.
2. Get cash from an ATM.
ATMs (automatic teller machines) are convenient thanks to getting cash when you’re out and about. ATMs are located at most banks. additionally, you’ll usually find them in areas of commerce, like malls, grocery stores, and a few restaurants.
To use an ATM, you’ll get to know your checking account’s four-digit personal identification number. See our ATM article for detailed instructions.
It’s always best to use your own bank’s ATMs when possible. Usually, you will have to pay a little fee for using ATMs that do not belong to your bank. Note also that your bank may have a limit on the number of times you’ll use its own ATMs per month without receiving fees.
But before you’ll use your ATM or open-end credit to form any quite transactions they’ll be online or offline like withdrawal of cash from your account using an ATM machine you’ll need to activate your open-end credit.
The procedure to activate an open-end credit varies from bank to bank so you ought to ask your bank about the procedure which is to be followed to activate your debit or ATM card.
1. Write checks to buy purchases.
Differently to use your checking account to buy purchases is to write down a check. this is often a convenient option once you do not have cash handy.
A check is essentially a politician slip of paper that shows that you simply promise to pay someone a particular amount of cash.
When the person you write the check to brings it to the bank, it’ll use money from your account to pay.
See our article on writing checks for more information.
Make sure you’ve got enough money in your account to buy your purchase before you write your check. If you do not, your check will “bounce.” this suggests that the payment won’t undergo, you will have to pay a fee, and you will still be held liable for the cash.
Some banks offer “overdraft protection” services for check-writing. In these cases, once you write a make sure you do not have enough money to buy, your bank may “spot” you the cash to hide the acquisition. you’ll still need to pay a fee but you will not need to affect the check bouncing.
2. Make a deposit to feature extra money to your account.
Once you want to place extra money into your bank accounts, you would like to form a deposit. like withdrawals, there are several ways to try to do this:
Bring your money or check to your bank. you’ll need to fill out a deposit form, which needs you to supply your account number.
Use an ATM. Today, many ATMs (especially those at banks) allow you to form deposits. you’ll usually need to do that at one among your own bank’s ATMs.
Use mobile check deposit services. One relatively new thanks to deposit checks involve taking an image of the ask your mobile and sending it to the bank. This usually requires you to download your bank’s mobile app. Note that not all banks offer this.
3. Try your bank’s online banking features.
Today, nearly all banks will offer some kind of online options for viewing and managing your bank accounts online. Usually, you’re prompted to line these up once you first open your account. These services will differ from bank to bank and account to account. generally, most banks will offer:
Secure online login options on the bank’s official site
The ability to look at your accounts’ balances
The ability to look at a record of purchases, withdrawals, and deposits for every account
The ability to transfer money between accounts
The ability to send money to other individuals
4. Set up an immediate deposit to form maintaining a balance simpler.
Don’t need to form a visit to the bank whenever you’re paid? Most employers offer the choice for you to be paid directly into your checking account — this is often called “direct deposit.” during this case, taxes are withdrawn before the cash is added to your account.
Talk to your employer’s payroll if you would like to line up an immediate deposit. this may usually require you to fill out some forms and supply information about your checking account (like your account number).
Setting Up Special Accounts
“Linking” two separate accounts to every other usually means the funds from one account are made available to the opposite for special expenses. as an example, if you link your checking and savings accounts, some banks will allow you to use the cash from the bank account to hide overdrafts on your bank account.
Other benefits include:
Avoiding some sorts of minimum-balance fees
Receiving one combined account instead of two separate ones
Allowing easier transfer of cash between accounts.
2. Consider making a joint account with somebody else.
Once you open an account with another person, it’s called a “joint account.” Married couples often open one among these accounts, but any two people can do that.
You and therefore the co-account opener have equal ownership over all the cash within the account and may cash in of all the services that accompany the account. Either owner can deposit or withdraw money without having to answer to the opposite holder.
For these reasons, it is vital only to open a joint account with someone you absolutely trust. as an example, there’s nothing the bank can do to prevent one owner from taking all the cash out of the account without the other’s notice.
To make a joint account, both account holders must comply with the terms of the account and fill out their own copy of the account creation forms. this suggests everyone will get to provide an ID.
Generally, most joint accounts carry “rights of survivorship.” this suggests if one among the joint account owners dies, the surviving owner gets all the cash within the account.
3. Consider opening a high-interest account.
Looking to earn more interest on the cash you’re storing long-term in your bank account? Many banks offer special options for starting accounts with higher-than-normal interest rates.
This increases your long-term earnings, but you’ll usually need to meet certain conditions to stay these accounts. See below for more information:
High-interest savings: This account comes with all the advantages of a daily bank account, but features a higher minimum balance (that is, you’ve got to stay additional cash sitting within the account).
You’ll even be limited in terms of how often you’ll withdraw from it. In return, you’ll earn higher interest.
Interest Checking: This account features everything that a daily bank account has (ATM privileges, check writing, etc.), but it includes a rate of interest, so it acts a touch sort of a regular bank account.
However, the monthly maintenance fees for these accounts are usually higher. this suggests it’s in your interest to stay enough money in your account in order that the interest outweighs the monthly charge.
4. Consider a certificate of deposit (CD) for long-term gains.
Once you put your money during a CD, you legally comply with put it away for a particular amount of your time.