How to Switch to a New Checking or Bank Account

Let us help you get started using a few easy steps.

Switching to a new checking or bank account can allow you to take advantage of attractive offers, access to new technologies, and potentially fewer fees.

While it may seem like a lot of work to select the right account, transfer your funds and change your automatic payments, making the move to a new checking or bank account can be completed in a few easy steps. 

1. Open a new account. 

Open a new bank account  online or in-person at a branch. After making your first deposit, you can start enjoying the benefits of your new personal checking or bank account immediately. 

2. Add direct deposit to your account. 

To save yourself a trip to the bank or ATM to deposit your paycheck, sign up for payroll direct deposit with your employer (if available). M&T offers a direct deposit authorization form as a convenience. For Social Security direct deposit, enroll at Go Direct or call the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213. Be sure to have your new account information with you when you call.

Setting up direct deposit to your new account early on in your transition may allow  you to establish a positive balance before redirecting automatic payments to your new account. Keep in mind it may take a few weeks for your employer to switch your direct deposit. 

3. Take an inventory of your automatic payments. 

Review a year’s worth of transactions to identify any monthly, quarterly, semiannual or annual expenses that are automatically withdrawn from your account. Taking a thorough inventory of your expenses and setting up new automatic transfers will help prevent any bills linked to your old checking account from going unpaid. Skip this step if you do not have any automatic payments being withdrawn from your account. 

4. Redirect automatic payments to your new account. 

Inform each company that you regularly make payments to that your account information has changed. Enter your new payment information online, or fill out an authorization form and either email or mail a copy of it to each company. You may also have the option to make one-time or recurring  payments using online bill pay or your debit card. Skip this step if you do not have any automatic payments to redirect. Remember, automatic payments can be added at any time. 

5. Monitor your old account. 

Keep your old account open for  enough time to ensure all pending checks have cleared and there are no more automatic payments still being deducted from your account. Always be aware of your balance to avoid an overdraft during your account transition. 

6. Close your old account. 

After all pending checks and transactions have been cleared and your automatic payments have stopped, you can withdraw any remaining funds and close your old account. 

7. Use the transfer checklist.

To keep track of automatic payments you've authorized third parties to make from your new account, use our automatic payments transfer checklist. With all the automatic payments you’ve transferred to your new checking account in one place, you can better understand your budget and spending habits. 


Is switching banks bad for your credit?

Your credit score is based on borrowing activities, , so switching banks  does not affect your credit score. 

What happens when you switch bank accounts? 

When you switch bank accounts, you transfer your funds and automatic payments to a new account at a different institution and close your old account. Oftentimes, you can gain access to competitive advantages, such as greater convenience and higher interest rates, by moving bank accounts. 

What are the benefits of switching to an M&T bank account? 

M&T offers convenient online tools and branch locations, a relationship-driven approach and a trusted community of dedicated bankers.  Plus, we have accounts that fit our customers – no matter what stage in life they are at 

How long does switching banks take? 

You can open a new bank account online and close your old account in minutes. However, it’s best to keep your old account open for enough time  to ensure all pending checks have cleared and there are no more automatic payments still being deducted from your account.

A Bank You Can Count On

We know you count on your personal checking and savings accounts to meet your everyday banking needs. With M&T, you can count on so much more. Discover how we go beyond the basics to meet all your banking needs in the branch and online, now and in the future.

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