Is Wave Money a good solution for a small business checking account? Here’s what you need to know.
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What is Wave Money?
If you haven’t read up on Wave Accounting, it’s a great alternative to QuickBooks for smaller businesses with less complex needs. This includes basic freelance and independent contractor work.
How do you get Wave Money?
Wave Money is currently invitation-only to users of other Wave products. It took me about four months to get an invite. Things may start moving more quickly as the product leaves its testing stage.
Once you get your invitation, you have to use a phone or tablet to download the app. You’ll then fill out the same basic application info you would for any other bank account. Approvals are instant but you can’t actually use the account until you receive your debit card in the mail and activate it. It took about a week for the debit card to arrive.
What does Wave Money cost?
There is no minimum deposit or maintenance fees. There are other possible fees such as rush debit card replacements or overdraft fees.
What features does Wave Money have?
Wave Money has limited banking features.
- To add money you can
- Do a push transfer from another bank
- Use the Wave invoicing software
- Use another payment processor with Wave Money as your deposit account
- To send money you can
- Email a vendor or contractor to set up an ACH withdrawal or use ACH info they gave you. Although this is advertised as free, it tried to force me to sign up for the payroll service when I tried to add a contractor.
- The debit card can be used for purchases or cash withdrawals. The app allows you to locate no-fee ATMs nearby.
- If you use Wave invoicing, they waive the 1% instant transfer fee to immediately deposit paid invoices into your Wave Money account. The normal credit card or ACH fees of 2.9% or 1% still apply.
What does Wave Money not have?
- Check deposits (says coming soon)
- Cash deposits
- Physical checks
- Mail checks through the app (says coming soon)
- Interest on deposits
- Linked bank accounts
- ACH push or pull transfers through Wave Money
- Physical branches
Why do you have to use an app?
This is the biggest annoyance of using Wave Money. Even though you can link it to your Wave Accounting to sync your transactions, you can’t use banking features on the desktop website. If you’re doing your bookkeeping or other business on a computer, you have to take out your phone or tablet to take care of your banking.
Is the app itself good?
The app itself is fairly easy to use and beats out other banks for the same tasks. There are large buttons that are clearly labeled. You can do just about anything you need to with 1-3 clicks.
If banking in an app is important to you, Wave Money is good if the account matches your needs.
Is Wave Money a good small business checking account?
I give a neutral to slightly negative recommendation on Wave Money.
There are many free small business checking accounts that you can access on a computer and have a full set of banking features. You can also link other banks to Wave Accounting or other bookkeeping software. The most interesting feature, sending money, is tedious and requires the use of Wave Payroll which I find to be overpriced compared to competitors.
If you just want the basics that are available and are fine using the app, Wave Money should get the job done.