If you operate in New York, Ohio, Indiana, or Pennsylvania and need affordable business checking products, Northwest Bank is an excellent provider. It offers basic, analyzed, and interest-earning checking options with low fees and generous transaction limits:
- Business Checking PLUS has no monthly service fee and offers 300 fee-free monthly transactions.
- Business Analysis Checking provides an earnings credit to offset transaction costs.
- Business Tiered Interest Checking gives 100 free transactions and has a $10 monthly service fee, which can be waived by maintaining a $5,000 minimum balance.
The bank’s other products include a rewards-earning credit card, savings products, lending products, trust services, small business investment planning services, and employee retirement planning services.
- Only available in Indiana, New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania
- No online account opening option for business checking accounts
- Does not offer certificates of deposit (CDs)
- Basic, analyzed, and interest-earning checking options available
- Business debit card
- Online banking with bill pay
- Mobile banking and text banking
- Integrates with QuickBooks and Quicken by enrolling in Direct Connect
- Savings and money market accounts
- Rewards-earning credit card available
- Commercial real estate (CRE) loans and small business administration (SBA) loans
- Trust services, retirement services, and small business investments
How Northwest Bank Stacks Up With Its Competitors
Transaction Limit Before Fees
Minimum Opening Deposit
Business Checking PLUS
300 fee-free transactions per month, then 40 cents per item
Silver Business Checking
125, then 50 cents per item
None at U.S. Bank and MoneyPass ATMs
All states U.S. Bank is available in all states via online banking. It has branches in Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
Refunds all ATM fees
All states (online-only)
Visit Novo Novo is a fintech platform backed and FDIC-insured by a supporting bank partnership with Middlesex Federal Savings.
Northwest Bank offers a free account with a high monthly transaction limit. Clients are spared from Northwest Bank ATM fees when they access the bank’s and Allpoint ATMs. Similarly, U.S. Bank and Novo have free checking accounts. However, U.S. Bank’s free transaction allowance is less than half what Northwest Bank offers while Novo does not impose a free transaction limit.
When opening a business checking account, U.S. Bank and Novo allow online account opening, while Northwest Bank requires a branch visit or customer service call. Both Northwest Bank and U.S. Bank have a $100 opening deposit. In comparison, Novo does not collect any. As for ATM access, Novo beats both since it reimburses all ATM fees each month.
When Northwest Bank Is a Good Fit
- You make 300 or fewer transactions per month: Its basic business checking account, Business Checking Plus, offers 300 fee-free transactions per month. Transactions include debits, credits, and deposited items.
- You want access to investment and trust services: The bank has long and short-term investment planning, legacy planning, succession plan development, Escrow services, and endowment and trust services.
- You want assistance with employee retirement plans: Businesses can work with Northwest to design and implement employee retirement plans, including pension plans, 401(k) plans, 403(b) plans, and 457(b) plans. The bank will also help companies educate employees through enrollment assistance, presentations, and one-on-one consultations.
- You want a rewards-earning credit card: Purchases on the Northwest Platinum Visa Business Card earn points that can be redeemed for gift cards, travel, and other merchandise.
When To Consider Northwest Bank Alternatives
- You want nationwide branch access: It only has branches in New York, Indiana, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Businesses needing greater access to physical branches should check out Chase, which has over 4,700 branches across 48 states. Read our review of Chase’s business checking accounts to learn which of the three fits your needs.
- You want access to CDs: This bank doesn’t offer business CDs. Meanwhile, Live Oak Bank offers six-month to five-year term CDs with rates as high as 5.20%. Learn more about this product in our Live Oak Bank Business Savings review.
- You rely on wire transfers: Northwest Bank charges steep fees for wire transfers. Businesses that make wire transfers regularly should go with Mercury, which charges no fees for all incoming and outgoing wire transfers, whether domestic or international. Check out our review of Mercury business checking for more information on the product.
If your small business meets one or more of these scenarios, check out our guide to the best small business checking accounts for additional recommendations. You may also be interested in our list of the leading banks for small businesses in New York.
Northwest Bank Business Checking Overview
Northwest Bank Business Checking Requirements
Part of the Northwest Bank business checking requirements is that applicants must visit a physical branch or call (877) 672-5678. Customer service representatives are available by phone from Mondays to Fridays, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., ET, and on Saturdays, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., ET.
For a checklist of business documents most banks require, refer to our guide on how to open a business bank account.
Northwest Bank Business Checking Features
Basic, Analyzed & Interest-earning Checking Options
The bank offers three business checking products, each requiring a minimum opening deposit of $100:
- Business Checking PLUS is a basic free business checking account that lets businesses make 300 fee-free monthly transactions. These can be a combination of debits, credits, and deposited items. Past the limit, a 40-cent fee per item is charged.
- Business Analysis Checking offers competitive earnings credit to offset transaction fees of debits, credits, and deposited items.
- Business Tiered Interest Checking earns tiered interest based on an account’s balance. It provides 100 free combined debits, credits, and deposited items per month and charges a fee of 40 cents per item after the limit. The $10 monthly service fee is waived by maintaining a minimum balance of $5,000.
Business Debit Card
The Northwest Bank Business Debit Card can be used for purchases anywhere Visa cards are accepted. Cardholders can use their debit cards to bank at over 55,000 ATMs in the Allpoint network or make cash and check deposits at Northwest Automatic Deposit ATMs.
The Northwest Business Online Banking platform lets businesses
- Check balances
- Transfer funds
- Pay bills
- Initiate wires or automated clearing house (ACH) transfers
- Grant access to designated employees
Mobile banking with mobile deposit functionality is also available on iOS and Android devices.
To get started, you need to enroll in Online Banking by contacting the bank or visiting your local office—only branches can create online profiles for business users.
Northwest Bank’s mobile app has 4.6 stars on the App Store from around 3,000 reviews and 4.5 stars from about 2,700 reviews on Google Play. Previously, there were a lot of complaints from users regarding faulty functions during app updates. However, recent reviewers mentioned that the app is easy to navigate, user-friendly, reliable, and convenient. Still, a few stated they had issues with capturing check images and found the app slow.
Northwest Bank has a text banking feature that lets customers check balances, view transactions, transfer funds between accounts, and request customer service assistance via short message service (SMS).
Other Northwest Bank Business Products
Apart from Northwest Bank checking accounts, it has other products, such as savings accounts, money market accounts, loans, credit cards, small business investments, and trust and retirement services.
Northwest Bank offers two interest-earning business savings products: a basic savings account and a money market account:
- Business Statement Savings compounds and credits interest monthly. It requires an opening deposit of $50 and charges a $5 monthly service fee, which can be waived by meeting a minimum average daily balance of $1,000.
- Business Money Market allows six monthly transfers for check and electronic transactions and offers unlimited access to account funds through Northwest Bank offices and ATMs. It provides tiered interest based on your account balance.
Read our business money market account guide to learn how the account works and its pros and cons.
The bank has lines of credit, business vehicle, and equipment loans with up to 100% financing, CRE loans with up to 25-year payment terms, and SBA loans.
You may be interested in our CRE loan guide to learn more about its different types and how they work.
The Northwest Platinum Visa Business Card is a rewards-earning credit card with no annual fee and a low interest rate. Each dollar spent using the card earns points, which can be redeemed for travel, gift cards, and other merchandise. Cardholders can also issue cards to employees and team members and customize credit limits per card.
Northwest Bank offers legacy planning, succession plan development, escrow services, and endowments and foundations:
- Legacy planning: The Northwest Bank legacy planning service helps businesses control the most valuable assets in their financial portfolios to mitigate risk and ensure protection during the step-down process.
- Succession plan development: Northwest Bank works with businesses to ensure fair buy-sell agreements between old and new owners and facilitate smooth transitions during step-downs.
- Escrow Services: Through Escrow Services, Northwest Bank guarantees fair disbursement of money and assets between transacting parties. Types of transactions Northwest Bank oversees include noncash asset appraisals, investments, fund distributions, tax reporting, asset reporting, and fund transfers.
- Endowments and foundations: Northwest Bank combines investment management and custodial services to safeguard business assets for the present and future. It partners with Stellar Technologies to provide account-level detail for donor-advised funds.
The bank’s representatives work with businesses to develop customized short-term or long-term investment strategies. It offers two investment services: Professional Investments/Institutional Management, which helps businesses create investment portfolios that address their financial objectives, and short-term/liquidity management, which helps businesses generate high yields through short-term securities.
Northwest Bank helps businesses plan and implement retirement plans for their employees. The plans it offers include defined benefit plans, such as traditional pension plans, and defined contribution plans, such as 401(k) plans, 403(b) plans, money purchase plans, and 457(b) plans. These plans are offered for both private and public sectors.
The bank will also help businesses educate employees on their retirement plans. It provides enrollment assistance, one-on-one consultations, and in-person retirement and financial education presentations.
- Remote deposit capture
- Positive pay
- Wire transfer services
- Lockbox services
- Merchant Services
- Automated clearing house (ACH) services
- Electronic data interchange (EDI) reporting
Northwest Bank Business Checking Reviews From Users
On WalletHub, Northwest Bank received a 2.3 rating from around 160 reviews. There are no specific Northwest Bank business checking reviews available, as most comments from reviewers focused on the bank’s quality of customer service.
Some customers reported that the bank’s paper statement fee was more than the interest earned from their accounts. There were also several complaints claiming that chat sessions often ended without engagement.
On the other hand, some said that they have been with the bank for a long time and have received respectful and professional service. Others also shared good experiences with helpful loan officers.
With zero or low, waivable monthly fees and up to 300 fee-free monthly transactions, the Northwest Bank checking account options are excellent and suitable for companies operating in New York, Ohio, Indiana, and Pennsylvania. Business owners looking to generate more income may benefit from the provider’s small business investment services. Meanwhile, those seeking business expansions and upgrades can also access various financing solutions.