Disclaimer: Originally published in May 2018. It is being republished since it still remains an interesting topic till today.
Creating a bank account is a big step in a student’s (or young professional’s) life. After years of considering banking to be one of those many things parents look after, it’s suddenly time to handle it on your own. Here’s your simplified guide to creating your very first bank account:
What You Need Beforehand
You will need to carry certain documents with you to the bank in order to create an account, so make sure you keep them ready beforehand.
You will need:
1. A few passport size photos (at least 4) of yourself, preferably recent, to stick on the account opening forms.
2. Identity proof- always carry your Aadhar card as it is considered to be the most irrefutable proof of identity. If you don’t have one, a valid passport or driving license should do, but with your CURRENT permanent address.
3. A photocopy of your identity proof, as this is usually requested by the bank to be attached along with your account opening documents.
4. A pen. Believe me, there is a lot of filling up and signing involved, and you can’t rely on the bank to have a pen ready for you.
The Account Opening Documents
Once you go to the bank and tell them you want to open a savings account, you will be handed the account opening documents.
Basically, you will need to fill up your personal details such as name, date of birth, father’s name, address, identification mark etc on multiple sheets of paper. Make sure you write legibly and all in capitals.
Be careful– crossing out and overwriting could lead to them giving you a fresh form to fill up all over again.
Attach a photocopy of your identity proof with the completed documents, and submit them to the respective bank employee.
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The Actual Account Opening
Now, most of your work is done. The bank employee will fill in your details into the system and create your bank account.
Depending on the functioning procedures of the bank, your debit card and passbook (and in some cases, cheque-book) will either be mailed to your residential address, or you will be able to collect them then and there.
You will have to sign on the back of your debit card as well as in the allotted space in your passbook, and stick a passport size photo of yourself in the latter.
Usually, opening a bank account also involves depositing a small sum as the starting balance.
– Remember to change the PIN of your debit card often, in order to avoid theft.
– Update your passbook often to make sure the transactions are correct and you can keep a track of your financial transactions.
– In case of change of address, signature, email id etc, write a letter to the bank stating your name, account number, old details, and new details. Also, speak to a bank employee to make sure the changes are made.
– Even if you’re not yet a working person, it is advisable to get a PAN card, as most banks these days prefer their clients to have one.
– Always maintain the minimum balance (if the bank has such a stipulation)- otherwise, a fine will be levied.
So these are your basic guidelines for opening a bank account! Make sure to be prudent in your transactions, and never share details like your account number and PIN with strangers (ideally, your PIN should never be known to anyone but yourself). Happy banking!
Image Credits: Google Images