NorthOne Business Banking Review: Is It a Good Option?

Banking
Updated: 29th Sep 2021
Written by Jordan Blansit
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August 13, 2021
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If you’re on the market for a new business banking arrangement, NorthOne might just fit the bill.

This online-only institution aims to simplify small business finance with a single monthly fee, a mobile-first experience, and extra perks that traditional banks don’t offer (or charge an arm and a leg to use).

While this bank isn’t ideal for everyone, it’s worth your consideration for small business owners, freelancers, and independent contractors in need of an affordable banking experience.

NorthOne Business Banking Overview

Features:Details:
ATM Access:300,000 fee-free ATMs in the United States and 2 million worldwide
Monthly Fees:$10
Accounts:Business Checking and Business Savings Accounts
Min. Opening Deposit:$50
Year Founded:2017
Sign Up Bonus:None
Transactions:Unlimited fee-free transactions
Branches:None, Entirely Online

NorthOne Business Banking Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Transparent fee structure
  • Unlimited fee-free transactions
  • No ATM withdrawal fees at over 2 million Cirrus and MoneyPass ATMs worldwide
  • Cash and check deposit options
  • Integrations, invoicing, and customer support available right in the app

Cons:

  • No option to waive monthly fee
  • $50 minimum opening requirement
  • No reimbursements for owner-operator ATM fees
  • No international wire transfers, paper checks, or lending services
  • As a new bank, NorthOne may be more prone to technical issues and product rollouts

What is NorthOne?

NorthOne was conceived and founded in 2017 by Justin Adler and Eytan Bensoussan and officially launched in August of 2019.

The business owners spent countless hours brainstorming, researching, and surveying their community to find out what small businesses need in a bank.

Then, they built it.

NorthOne is designed to be a no-frills banking solution for freelancers, contractors, and small businesses with simple needs.

Currently, the platform is entrusted by more than 190,000 businesses in the United States thanks to their low fees, unlimited transactions, and digital banking tools.

How Does NorthOne Business Banking Work?

All of NorthOne’s services are provided online, via the app, and over the phone. To process its customers’ banking needs, NorthOne partners with The Bancorp Bank.

But NorthOne itself manages its digital products, including bill pay, invoicing, cash flow reporting, and more.

To get started with NorthOne, you can sign up online or in their mobile app. You’ll receive your NorthOne Mastercard debit card within 10 days.

In the meantime, enjoy deposit-qualified checks, mobile ACH transfers and deposits, low domestic wire transfer fees, and FDIC insurance up to $250,000 per account.

What Does NorthOne Offer Business Owners?

NorthOne is designed for freelancers, contractors, and small business owners who want to bypass big banks’ pomp and frills (and lines…*shudders*).

This stripped-down banking service offers the essentials in its native platform, including:

  • Business Checking accounts (a must-have)
  • Subaccounts (instead of savings deposit accounts) to allocate funds for payroll, taxes, rent, and more
  • Cash and check deposit at thousands of fee-free ATMs as well as the GreenDot network and Ingo mobile app
  • Free invoicing tools plus the NorthOne invoicing app
  • Unlimited app integrations
  • A sleek dashboard with cash flow reporting, expenditure breakdown, and transaction search tools

And best of all, you never have to step foot into a branch.

NorthOne Business Banking Features and Benefits

NorthOne comes with many notable features – including a robust financial suite and limitless integrations.

Unlimited Fee-free Transactions

Just like it says: NorthOne never charges a transaction fee of any kind (except on domestic wire transfers).

That said, you do have daily and monthly transaction limits – although they’re higher than you’ll find at most banks:

  • Direct deposits: No maximum dollar or transaction limit
  • Incoming wire transfer: No maximum dollar or transaction limit
  • Domestic wire transfer: Maximum $10,000 per wire, per day
  • Internally and externally initiated ACH transfers: $10,000 per deposit, per day
  • Qualifying mobile app transfers: $10,000 per day
  • GreenDot cash transfers: $10,000 per day; maximum one transaction per day
  • ATM cash withdrawals: $2,000 per withdrawal, per day; maximum five withdrawals per day

NorthOne Mastercard Debit Card

Every NorthOne account comes with a Mastercard Debit Card for every owner (up to four per account).

You can control everything from your phone, including setting spending limits, editing your PIN, and of course, locking and unlocking your cards. Plus, every transaction is automatically tracked in your dashboard.

Powerful Digital Tools

No digital-only bank would be complete without a swath of powerful digital tools, now, would it?

That’s why NorthOne provides its customers with a suite of simplified, powerful features such as:

  • Sending and receiving payments
  • Invoicing
  • Subaccounts with automated, targeted saving
  • Cash flow reporting
  • And even a native ATM locator

NorthOne Envelopes

NorthOne doesn’t offer traditional savings or interest-bearing accounts. But with Envelopes, you can shuffle funds from your NorthOne Checking account into subaccounts to save for tax season, payday, and more.

And with “smart rules,” you can automate periodic deposits by dollar amount or transaction percentage.

Easily Monitor Account History

Monitoring your account and transaction history is as easy as logging into your dashboard. You can filter by account, business name, card number, transaction ID, and more.

Send and Pay Invoices

NorthOne offers not one, but two separate invoicing tools.

The first is built right into your mobile app. From here, you can create and send invoices, designate items such as the payment method and due date, and track pending and paid receipts.

Then, there’s the separate – and free – NorthOne invoice-maker app. Here, you can enjoy a host of invoicing tools, including all the functionality above, plus additional features such as quote and estimate management.

And better yet, you don’t need a NorthOne account to use this invoice-maker.

NorthOne Business Account Integrations Made Smart & Easy

One of NorthOne’s most exciting features is its unlimited third-party app integration. With this tool, you can fully integrate your business’ financial ecosystem by linking with:

  • Accounting and tax prep apps such as QuickBooks and TurboTax
  • Payment processors and POS terminals like Square, Stripe, and PayPal
  • Individual business’ apps, including Uber and Airbnb
  • Ecommerce solutions such as Shopify, Amazon, and Etsy

Accounting

NorthOne also provides some basic accounting tools, such as designated subaccounts and a robust dashboard with revenue, spending, and payment reporting.

But if you need more than that, you can integrate any of a dozen accounting apps to feed your raw data into an existing system, or even provide limited bookkeeper access.

Security

No digital bank can be trusted without security protocols in place. Fortunately, NorthOne puts the power of safeguarding your financial data in your hands, with debit card freezes, biometric logins, and two-factor authentication.

And on their end, the bank automatically monitors all accounts for fraud and suspicious activities.

Downsides of NorthOne Business Banking

Never trust a review that doesn’t list at least a few negatives of the product, that’s what I always say.

And though NorthOne doesn’t have many – at least, not if you’re part of its target demographic – its shortcomings happen to be doozies.

Digital First Bank

NorthOne maintains no in-person branches or support of any kind, which may not suit all customers.

That said, if you need in-person banking, choosing a digital-only bank probably isn’t the right decision for you.

Fee Schedule

While NorthOne only charges one monthly fee, there’s no way to waive it by meeting specified criteria.

Additionally, if you need to deposit checks via mobile, you may be subject to $5 or 5% fees for instant access to your money. (Although check deposits with a 10-day hold are free.)

No Interest-Bearing Accounts

It’s a small point, but a poignant one: any money you save in your Envelopes just sits there, with no interest in sight.

If you want your money to get a side hustle and generate some return, this isn’t the bank for you.

No Capital or Financing

Lastly, NorthOne does not currently offer financing of any kind. That includes credit cards, business loans, auto loans, real estate financing, or even investment tools. (Though they do participate in the government-backed PPP program.)

NorthOne Businesses Banking Fees, Explained

NorthOne aims to be “radically transparent” with its banking fees. That’s why it has only two:

That’s it. No insufficient fund fees, ACH return fees, or overdraft fees.

You get the picture.

How to Open a NorthOne Business Bank Account

Opening a business account with NorthOne is simple. Just navigate to their website or download the app, follow the signup instructions, and send off your application for review. Typically, you can expect to be approved within 48 hours.

Note that once you’re up and running, you’ll need to make a $50 minimum deposit with an external credit card to “activate” your account.

Then, it’s off to the bank…er, mailbox to collect your NorthOne business debit card, which should arrive within ten days of opening your account.

What Do I Need to Open a NorthOne Business Banking Account?

You must be at least 18 years of age, a U.S. citizen or legal resident, and have a verifiable U.S. Street address to open an account.

And aside from the usual personal information and firstborn child, NorthOne account holders will need to furnish:

  • A phone number
  • A valid email address
  • Information about your business including number of employees and tax ID

How Does NorthOne Compare to Other Business Banks?

#1. NorthOne vs. Novo

Novo Bank is another mobile banking app that primarily services small businesses and freelancers.

It caters to modern entrepreneurs who require pared-down banking features and limited fees, as well as those who don’t need checkbooks, outgoing wire transfers, or interest-bearing savings accounts.

Novo partners with Middlesex Federal Savings to provide its banking services and FDIC insurance.

>> More: Novo Bank Review

#2. BlueVine vs. NorthOne

BlueVine is a rare fee-free bank that also pays out 1% interest on balances over $1,000.

Plus, there are no minimum opening deposit or balance requirements, and customers can enjoy unlimited transactions, fee-free withdrawals at MoneyPass ATMs, and two free checkbooks.

>> More: BlueVine Business Banking Review

#3. NorthOne vs. NKBC Bank

NKBD Bank has no monthly fee or minimum deposit requirements and only charges for sending and receiving wire transfers.

And like its peers, NKBC offers fee-free ATM access through the MoneyPass network – plus up to $12 per month in third-party ATM fee refunds.

#4. Lili Bank vs. NorthOne Bank

Lili Bank is designed primarily for freelancers who need simplified banking with no monthly fees and early direct deposits – though they do offer a Pro account that costs $4.99 per month.

Lili Pro also comes with 1% interest earned on your savings and cashback on debit purchases at thousands of merchants nationwide, not to mention limited invoicing.

Users can also take advantage of Lili’s autosave and tax features.

>> More: Lili Bank Review

NorthOne Business Banking FAQs

Does NorthOne Offer Any Customer Support?

NorthOne offers customer service via live chat, email, and social media from 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM ET, seven days per week. Plus, you can schedule a phone call anytime in their extended customer support hours.

Is NorthOne FDIC Insured?

Yep! All accounts are FDIC insured up to $250,000 via The Bancorp Bank.

Is NorthOne Safe?

All accounts are FDIC insured up to $250,000 and come with security and fraud protections, making NorthOne just as safe as any other bank.

Does NorthOne Have Bank Locations?

Nope – which is kind of the whole point. But NorthOne does have physical offices in the United States and Canada, including in New York, San Francisco, and Toronto.

How Long Does it Take for a Deposit to Clear at NorthOne?

For the first month, NorthOne holds all deposits for five days. After that, you’ll see your payments post in one to two days.

Does NorthOne Offer Multiple Debit Cards for One Account?

NorthOne provides up to four owner Mastercard debit cards per account.

Does NorthOne Offer a Business Credit Card?

Unfortunately, NorthOne offers no lending, credit, or financing of any kind.

Bottom Line: NorthOne Business Banking Review

NorthOne is small business banking that actually works for small businesses. With unlimited fee-free transactions, integrations, and invoicing, as well as money management and reporting tools, you can run your business without making accounting your full-time job.

But bear in mind, this bank means it when they say small businesses with simplified needs – as evidenced by their pared-down product line.

Jordan Blansit
Jordan Blansit
Jordan is a freelance writer with an inexplicable predilection for investing and personal finance. When she’s not click-clacketing from the comfort of her living room, you can find her (or not) craftily avoiding human contact in the California redwoods or Oregon Siskiyous with her black cat, Bean.