Bigger Not Always Better: Large Banks Vs Small Banks

By: Peter Kenny

Large Banks Vs Small Banks 

What are you looking for in a bank?
Are you more concerned about having extensive access to your account at all times or is your experiences with those that work in the bank every day? Depending upon how you answer that question and others, will go a long way in determining whether you would be happier with a large bank or a small one. Naturally, there are very clear-cut differences between larger financial institutions with multiple branches across the state or country and the small local bank that may have only one location in the county. 

There are several factors that should be considered when it comes to a comparison between large banks and small banks. None of them is more important than what kind of service you as the potential customer prefer. The best way to illuminate the differences is to compare the pros and cons of each one and let you, the customer, decide where you would be more comfortable doing business.

Advantages & Disadvantages of Big Banks

  • Large Banks Have Branch Coverage
    One of the biggest advantages of the large bank is sheer coverage. There are often multiple branches not only in a town or city but even across the country.

    Another advantage of bigger banks is the fact that even if you have to relocate, you will not have to transfer bank accounts and account numbers. This is a big plus for renters and those who have to move to a different city for business reasons.

    No Extra Charges for ATM
    Especially when making of their ATM. With so many locations spread out across a broad area, it is more likely that you will also have better ATM coverage provided by that banking network. 
  • Large Banks May Lack Personal Touch
    Some of the cons of bigger banks only become obvious when you deal with them over time. Naturally, unlike a smaller bank, you are less likely to have that personal touch, and interaction with certain tellers and other bank employees. Bigger banks have large departments and customer service representatives handling issues sometimes from all over the country, depending upon the size of the institution.

    Another disadvantage is the fact there are typically far more fees associated with bigger banks and their practices than you will find in smaller banks. Personal service may take a backseat to other affairs when dealing with bureaucracy in the bank setting. (You are less likely to get assistance with loans and small business services in the larger bank setting.)

Advantages & Disadvantages of Small Banks

  • Small Banks Provide Personal Attention
    You get genuine attention and a stronger connection between bank worker and customer. In the smaller bank setting, you will be able to get assistance with loans. It is not uncommon to speak directly with the person in charge of approving a loan whereas in a larger bank setting you would never have access to someone in that executive capacity. Smaller banks are apt to work with their customers especially in cases with overdrawn accounts, account mistakes, etc.
  • Small Banks Lack Network
    One of the disadvantages of small banks is that, you dont have mobility of account and huge access to ATMs. With small banks, if you have to move, you may have to change bank accounts entirely since a branch may not exist in your new locations. Small banks also have less ATM network. This means you will have to pay extra fees for using another bank's ATM. 

Large Banks Vs Small Banks
Certainly, there may be other differences not mentioned here, but those highlighted should suffice to show you some of the obvious differences between these two kinds of banks. The only question is, 'Which one would you rather use?'

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