Bank Choices

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This page collects information about potential banks for Noisebridge (a california non-profit to be created). From the information given here, Noisebridge will choose a bank.


Things to ask about when choosing a bank, in no particular order.

  • Low fees
  • Wire transfer rates: incoming/outgoing, domestic/foreign (esp. European)
  • Corporate credit cards/debit cards for nonprofit officers
  • Ability to publish spending for all noisebridge members
  • No-interest accounts
  • Minimum balances?
  • PayPal link OK?
  • Accept personal cheque deposits?
  • Restrictions on who can open/hold the account (e.g. USAA military-only)

Current Status[edit]

We now have a Nonprofit Checking Account at Wells Fargo. Our banker at 16th and Mission is Crist'obal "Cris" Mun~iz. David Molnar has invited him to our Tuesday meetings; he may bring his daughter. Please make them feel welcome if you see them!

What We Need To Open[edit]

This is from BankOfAmercia, please edit if other banks have different requirements.

  1. Employer Identification Number. We don't plan to have employees, but this is the number the IRS uses to track corporations, including non profits. We can obtain one online here:,,id=102767,00.html
  2. Certificate of Incorporation or Articles of Incorporation
  3. Corporate Resolution identifying authorized signers if officer names are not listed on Articles of Incorporation or Certificate of Incorporation

Potential Banks[edit]

Please contact your favorite bank, and add info here.

Redwood Credit Union[edit]

User:adi has a personal account. They are a CU, with the benefits that entails. Their Business Plus Basic Checking seems appropriate. They have a branch on Van Ness Avenue just a block or two from City Hall. They do have a $1k minimum balance requirement to avoid an $8 monthly fee (although they may waive it for "community organizations").

    • This looks good - do they offer check cards for multiple people? (DavidMolnar)
    • Recently merged CalFed CU,
    • $1k daily everyday else you get a $8 fee, avoid this with a "non profit" acct w/ certificate that proves our status to eliminate this.
    • Basic acct is limited to 75 withdraws a month, max of 15 deposits

First Republic Bank[edit]

Cornfield Electronics, the company Mitch started to create TV-B-Gone, uses this bank. With a minimum balance of $7,500, the account is free, with no fees ever, except for $25 to wire money out (wiring money in is free). If the account goes below $7,500, everything is the same, but there is a monthly charge of $16. $5,000 minimum needed to start an account. Non-profit (even DBA's) can earn interest, but the interest in minimal unless the balance goes above $50,000. The interest is optional. People can be added and removed easily. They will accept deposits any way available: PayPal, personal checks, cash, direct wire, etc. When Noisebridge becomes incorporated, we could start a new account, and transfer all money over. (Accounts for DBA's and for corporations are the same.)

First Republic will allow many signers for one account. Each person needs to have all of their personal info: SSN, DOB, mother's maiden name, address, phone, employer, etc. Only one person needs to be present to open the account. But others can be added to the account at the same time if the person present has all the necessary info for them. Others can be added later, also. I imagine that pretty much all banks are the same in these respects. (Mitch) Here's the link for their simplified business checking:

Bank of America[edit]

Yes, they are evil. Worth comparing, though. No fees if above $10,000 average monthly balance or $4,000 daily balance, otherwise $13/mo (but in some cases waived for first two years if anyone happens to already have a BofA checking account). Includes business debit cards, online banking, etc.

Wells Fargo[edit]

Offers a nonprofit checking account; $5 monthy fee, fee waived if we keep a $100 monthly balance and sign up for online statements only. Offers debit cards. Offers "business spending report" which can be saved as a PDF. Online statements.

  • Wells Fargo has a branch within 100 feet of the 83C Wiese space.


Offers a nonprofit checking account. No minimum balance, 50 no-charge transactions per month, including ACH debit/credit. Offers debit cards. Doesn't specify monthly fee?,,440_450_3403,00.html

To Ask[edit]

  • Washington Mutual: Lists an interest-bearing checking account for non-profits on their website: [1] Now part of JPMorgan Chase.