What is the minimum balance requirement for a savings account?
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Banks have a particular minimum balance limit that an account owner must maintain; to save themselves from paying the charges levied by the bank. The minimum balance limit varies with banks and will depend on the location of the bank.
What is zero balance savings account?
Due to rising demand as opposed to the traditional practise of holding thousands in the bank account to avoid fees, many banks now provide zero balance savings accounts. According to the Bank of Baroda website, “a zero balance savings account is a 0 balance account where the account holder is free to operate the account without maintaining a minimum balance.”However, there are limitations on zero balance account
Such accounts usually has monthly limits on free transactions and withdrawals. If your total transaction value or number of withdrawals exceeds this limit, the bank may charge you an extra fee based on the manner of transaction.
Here is a comparison of the minimum balance requirements of State Bank of India (SBI), Punjab National Bank (PNB), Canara Bank, ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank.
SBI minimum balance
In March 2020, SBI decided to remove the Average Monthly Balance (AMB) requirement from its basic savings accounts.
Before, SBI account holders had to keep an average monthly balance of Rs 3,000, Rs 2,000, or Rs 1,000 in their accounts, depending on whether their branch was in a metro area, a semi-urban area, or a rural area.
HDFC Bank minimum balance
Customers of HDFC Bank will be subject to service and transaction fees in the current month based on the AMB held in the account in the prior month.
According to the HDFC Bank website, “It is mandatory to maintain a minimum average monthly balance of Rs. 10,000 or Fixed Deposit of Rs 1 Lakh for minimum 1 year 1 day period (w.e.f 1st July’22) for urban branches, average monthly balance of Rs.5000 or Fixed Deposit of Rs 50,000 for minimum 1year 1 day period (w.e.f 1st July’22) for semi-urban branches, and an average quarterly balance of Rs. 2500 or a Fixed Deposit of Rs. 25,000 for a minimum tenure of 1 year 1 day (w.e.f 1st July’22) for rural branches.”
ICICI Bank minimum balance
The minimum average monthly amount for the bank’s regular savings accounts is Rs 10,000 for metro areas, Rs 5,000 for semi-urban areas, and Rs 2,000 for rural areas.
Canara Bank minimum balance
For Canara Bank customers the average monthly balance to be maintained is Rs. 2000/- for urban/metro branches, Rs. 1000/- for semi-urban branches and Rs. 500/- for rural branches.
PNB minimum balance
For PNB customers the average monthly balance to be maintained is Rs. 1000/- for rural customers, Rs 2000 for semi urban customers, Rs 5000 and Rs 10,000 for Urban and Metro customers respectively.
Charges for not maintaining is Rs 400 for Rural and semi urban customers, and Rs 600 for Metro and urban customers.