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What Is a Bank Statement, and How Do I Get One?

What Can I Do with a Bank Statement?

What Is a Bank Statement, and How Do I Get One?

Bank statements come in handy for a variety of reasons. From monitoring your spending to catching errors, bank statements are an easy-to-use financial tool.

Here are the main things you can do with a bank statement:

  • Gauge your spending: Review your bank statement monthly to keep a tab on your expenses.
  • Track your savings: Look at your beginning and ending balances over the course of a month or a quarter. Take note of how much you’re accumulating.
  • See how much interest you’re earning: If your bank or credit union gives you interest, see how much money it’s making you every month. Depending on what interest you earn, you may want to put some of your money in an investment account or money market to earn more.
  • Monitor your account balance: Reduce overdraft fees by ensuring you always have enough to pay for bills and ATM transactions.
  • Identify fraud: Review your statements regularly to help spot fraudulent activity, like someone using your debit card. Promptly contact your bank should you find any fraudulent transactions.
  • Catch banking errors: Banks sometimes make mistakes. Contact your bank if you suspect any errors, such as depositing in the wrong account or mischarging you.
  • Watch for mistakes: Say a waiter accidentally typed in $52 on a restaurant credit card machine when your bill was only $25. Make sure your bank account is free of errors, duplicate charges, and discrepancies.
  • Apply for a loan: Whether it’s a personal loan or mortgage, you may have to provide bank statements to your lender to prove your financial standing.
  • Rent an apartment: A landlord or rental agency might request to see your bank statements before signing a lease.
  • Refinance your home: Financial institutions may want to see several bank statements if you plan on refinancing your home.
  • File your tax return: You may need to reference your bank statement when you file your taxes.
  • Maintain records: Keep your statements in a safe place in case you need them in the future. You can download them on your computer or print them and place them in a secure file.

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